NCAA Basketball Picks of the Day for Friday 11/14

Joe Catalano

Friday, November 14, 2014 5:21 PM GMT

It's the start of College Hoops and while Friday's are usually reserved for Ivy League and MAAC games, tonight is a different story as you get the best of the best in this NCAA Basketball betting bonanza. Here are your free NCAA basketball picks.

Early in the season, you're going to see a lot of mismatches as the top rank teams play in tournaments and usually against the "cupcakes" of college basketball. It's also a difficult task for the odds makers to actually pinpoint the correct NCAA basketball odds as they have nothing to go by except speculation. Freshman are starting to dominate many different top-notch universities and there is nothing to go on except their high school experience and statistics.

 

Presbyterian vs. #4 Duke 

Coaches for Cancer Classic

One and Done Crew
It looks like Coach K has adapted to the new 1 year players as he and his coaching staff have instructed freshman and top recruit in the nation, Jahlil Okafor, to "dominate college basketball".

From open practices that have been documented, it appears that Okafor just might do what he's instructed to do. He's a monstrous 6 foot 11, 270 pound center out of Chicago, Illinois that averaged 24 points and 11 rebounds in his high school senior year. Okafor is also the McDonald's All-American Game MVP. The sky is the limit for this "diaper dandy". Look for Okafor to make an immediate impact in what's the equivalent to a scrimmage against Presbyterian.

Duke also sported two more freshman in the McDonald's game in freshman Tyus Jones and Justise Winslow. These players have one thing in common aside from being talented; they're all big scorers. This will work in well with senior Quinn Cook, who has a ton of experience in dealing in with the freshman and knowing what Coach Krzyzewski wants to see on the court.

Cook has talent in his own right. Last season, he averaged 11.6 points and 4.4 assists per game. His job will be to calm down the offense during crucial moments and feed the big man the basketball. The Duke Blue Devils should have absolutely no problem here as they face an overmatched Presbyterian squad.

 

Jordan Downing 
Duke's defense will be swarming this 2nd team all-conference pick for the Blue Hose. Downing is a senior that averaged 20.2 points per game last season and it should at least give Duke something to think about. These little known schools have risen to the occasion in the past against Duke in their opening game off of adrenaline alone. Don't expect that to happen here.

Duke also has Rasheed Suliamon returning and Suliamon has learned to co-exist with the big named freshman in the past. He will also be another returnee for Duke that will be a definite contributor in their quest to win a NCAA Championship.

That said, when making your NCAA basketball picks keep in mind that this game is a total mismatch; it's a matter of how many points does Duke win by? Look for Coach K to make a statement in the opener as Duke crushes the Blue Hose.

NCAA Basketball Pick: Duke- 34 at Bovada

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Grand Canyon vs. #1 Kentucky

Cawood Ledford Classic
The Kentucky Wildcats are once again touted as the top team in the nation. Last season, Michigan State defeated Kentucky and put an end to that quickly, but this season, Kentucky has eased up on the schedule as they face the Grand Canyon Antelopes. Last year, Grand Canyon was an even 15-15 and 10-6 in the WAC. Do they stand any chance of making this game competitive as a 29.5 point betting underdog?

 

Battle Tested?
This is a very deep Kentucky team that isn't just filled with freshman. This is a team that's 12 players deep, featuring frequent substitutions. Willie Cauley- Stein (6.8 points, 6.1 rebounds) will be in the starting lineup and heads a total of six returning players while Coach Calipari has his usual group of recruits that will have an immediate impact led by ESPN's Top 100 in #6 recruit in Trey Lyles and #9 Karl Towns Jr.

This team is massive in size and although Lyles. won't be starting, he'll see plenty of playing time. It appears that Calipari will start the returning players such as sophomores Alex Poythress and Aaron Harrison (13.7 points, 3 rebounds) while staying fresh with Dakari Johnson and the freshman (Devin Booker, Tyler Ulis) coming off the bench. So far, this setup has worked well as Kentucky destroyed Georgetown in an exhibition.


An NBA Mind
The Antelopes won't necessarily be ready for the WIldcats in this matchup, but former NBA player and head coach Dan Majerle has some legitimate talent on his team in seniors Jerome Garrison (16.5 points, 2.8 assists) and Daniel Alexander (12.7 points, 5.6 rebounds). That said, the talent doesn't match up and Kentucky will win big in this matchup and cover the spread with ease.

NCAA Basketball Pick: Kentucky-29.5 at 5Dimes

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