NCAA Basketball Picks: Syracuse vs. Marquette

Jeff Grant

Monday, February 25, 2013 2:54 PM GMT

The Marquette Golden Eagles and Syracuse Orange are both looking to bounce back from losses Monday night, as they prepare to meet up at the Bradley Center in Milwaukee.


Let’s take a closer look at the NCAA Basketball odds for this Big East Conference matchup that tips off at 7:00 p.m. ET on ESPN.

All about shooting percentage

Syracuse will try to bounce back from a disappointing 57-46 defeat to the Georgetown Hoyas as 7.5-point home favorites last Saturday, while going UNDER the posted total of 124.  The Orange have dropped four of seven games this season when shooting under 40 percent from the field.

It’s going to be hard for this program to improve to 6-2 against the spread (ATS) following a straight-up loss, considering it knocks down just 39.9 percent of its shots away from home, while Marquette limits foes to the same percentage at this venue. 

Great spread success following a loss

Marquette returns home after splitting a two-game road trip, which included a 60-56 setback to the Villanova Wildcats as two-point road underdogs last time out, while going UNDER the total for the third time in four contests.

The Golden Eagles are 13-3-1 ATS following a straight-up loss in their last 17 opportunities, as they try to avoid back-to-back defeats for the first time during the 2012-13 NCAA basketball season.

Series history 

The Orange are 8-4 all-time against the Golden Eagles, but they’ve failed to cover the number in the last four meetings.  It’s also important to note that the underdog has come away with the cash in four of the last five games in this series.

Deep rotation

Marquette is certainly one of the deepest teams in the Big East Conference, considering it has 10 players that average at least 10 minutes of court time per game.  The Golden Eagles have relied heavily on their bench at times, with their reserves contributing 29.9 points and 17.3 rebounds per game.

Look for this group to determine the outcome of this primetime affair, as it accounts for 43.3 percent of the team’s scoring, which is the fourth-highest percentage nationally (16.6 ppg in 2011-12).

[gameodds]14/222132/43/us[/gameodds]

Prediction

I’m going to recommend that readers back the Golden Eagles as one of their college basketball picks Monday night, as they’ve gone 13-5 ATS as home underdogs of three points or less in their last 18 opportunities.  The Orange will fall to 0-4 SUATS in their last four games following a loss at the Carrier Dome.

College Basketball Pick: Marquette Golden Eagles +1.5 at 5Dimes