NCAA Basketball Picks: South Carolina To Continue Early Season Roll vs. Rival Clemson

Charles Stark

Friday, December 18, 2015 1:17 PM GMT

Friday, Dec. 18, 2015 1:17 PM GMT

The South Carolina Gamecocks face the Clemson Tigers. Get the best NCAA basketball picks for tonight's matchup as we analyze the current market NCAA basketball odds.

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NCAA Basketball Pick: South Carolina Gamecocks
Best Line Offered: at BetOnline

 

NCAA Basketball Odds Overview
NCAA Basketball odds makers have made South Carolina a -1.5 -105 favorite like at Heritage. Considering they are undefeated it makes a bit of sense, but they are facing the best team they have had so far this season. Clemson is a good team and could battle in the ACC, especially at home, but with this game on a neutral court for my NCAA pick for Friday night, I will take South Carolina.

 

Clemson Tigers
Clemson is averaging 71.3 points per game while shooting 45.8% from the field, and allowing 56.9 points per game on 37.9% shooting from the field. Once again the Tigers are one of the better defensive teams in the country statistically and they rank fourth in scoring defense. When they have played against better competition though they haven't been as efficient on that end of the floor though allowing 82 and 89 points to UMASS and Minnesota respectively, two teams I do not think are as good as South Carolina. Offensively, for the most part, they have been decent in their efficiency and shooting the three at 36.8% per contest, and their effective field goals at 53.3% ranks in the upper part of the country. This teams is talented and Jaron Blossomgame is a tough matchup who can score inside and out shooting over 40% from distance.  After him they have a four other guys averaging nine points or more per game and they go nine deep from their bench which is some good depth. 

 

South Carolina Gamecocks
The Gamecocks are averaging 83.2 points per game while shooting 48.6% from the field, and allowing 66.8 points per game on 38.2% from the field. I don't think most preseason analyst thought this team was going to be as good as they are, but I am not surprised because Frank Martin can flat out coach, and this year he has got some talent. It is true they have not played much this year, but their closest game so far was a win against Tulsa by eight points, same team that beat Wichita State and at Oklahoma State. Defensively the Gamecocks have been solid, especially good in the interior allowing opponents just 40% in two point shots, and just 22.3 made field goals per game. On the offensive side of the ball they are churning out some decent efficiency and are hitting the glass hard averaging 41.7 rebounds per game. They won last year against Clemson at home pretty handedly, and although that puts Clemson in a revenge spot, I look for the Gamecocks to make it two years in a row. I simply think they are better.

Although it might be tempting to take the team from the better league against an undefeated team that hasn't seen much competition, for your NCAA Basketball pick, I recommend backing the Gamecocks. This is a really good team with a great coach that will make some noise this year in the SEC. 

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