NCAA Basketball Picks: Lock Temple to Outsmart Inexperienced Minnesota

Charles Stark

Thursday, November 19, 2015 1:31 PM GMT

Early matchup coming from Puerto Rico between the Minnesota Golden Gophers and Temple Owls. Let's review the NCAA basketball odds and see what this interesting game adds to our NCAA basketball picks.

NCAA Basketball Odds
Odds makers have this game now at a pick across the board. For one of my NCAA Basketball picks, I'm going to take Temple to win this game straight up. Regular NCAA Basketball odds can be found at -110 at Bookmaker.

 

Temple Owls
Against North Carolina, Temple scored 67 points, shot 38.7% from the field, and 36% from beyond the arc. This year they have to replace Will Cummings and Jesse Morgan but they have a decent core of guys and against North Carolina they went pretty deep. Last year I felt like they got snubbed out of the NCAA tournament, and this year looks like a rebuilding year. I really like Fran Dunphy as a coach who has won in the past 21 games in six straight seasons until 2014. They are going to play small starting three guards and two forwards and stretch the perimeter. Against the Tar Heels, they shot beyond the arc well going 9-25 from distance, and I expect that will be the difference tonight.

Defensively against North Carolina, Temple allowed 91 points, 50.7% shooting from the field, and 58.3% shooting from beyond the arc. Those are hard numbers to ignore, but again, that was against the number one ranked team in the country in North Carolina. Expect a better matchup tonight against Minnesota and for Temple to put together a lot more stops on this end of the floor.

 

Minnesota Golden Gophers
In two games this season, Minnesota is averaging 71.5 points, shooting 41.6% from the field, and 30% from beyond the arc. Those two games were against Kansas City, Missouri and University of Louisiana Monroe, not exactly North Carolina. Head coach Richard Pitino has the same issues, as Temple in that this year is more of a rebuilding year. Also, like Temple, they don't have a true center but their three starting forwards are all 6' 9" led by senior Joey King. This is a really young team that could possibly make some noise in a year or two, but tonight they should face a well coached defense in Temple (61.2 points allowed per game last season).

Defensively, Minnesota has allowed 27 points per game, 33.1% shooting from the field, and 37.5% from beyond the arc. In my opinion, they should be able to win the battle defensively in the paint as they have the size advantage over Temple. But I think this game is going to be won on the perimeter and beyond the arc.

For me, this really comes down to coaching, and I like Fran Dunphy a bit more than Richard Pitino. Both teams are in a rebuilding mode, but I like Temple to come out of this game with a win in Puerto Rico. For one of your NCAA Basketball picks, I recommend backing Temple who will shoot the three a little bit better than Minnesota and come out with the win.

Free NCAA Basketball Pick: Temple -110 at Bookmaker

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