This Saturday's college hoops games are again split into two stories: three top picks for those that tip before 5 p.m. ET and those after. Here are my top NCAA Basketball picks for the evening games with Heritage's odds. Hint: I like all the favorites.
Auburn vs. Georgia (-10)
This would be a much more interesting football matchup between Auburn and Georgia than on the hardwood, and that's sort of why I'm previewing this SEC matchup. It's because Bovada has a cross-sport prop featuring the number of points Auburn scores in the first half vs. the Dawgs (+120) against the number of rushing yards for Carolina quarterback Cam Newton (-160) in the Super Bowl on Sunday against Denver's No. 1 overall defense. Of course Newton won the Heisman Trophy in 2010 when he led Auburn to the national title. Auburn averages about 74 points per game this season, so figure around 37 in the first half. Although Georgia allows only 68.3 per game. So maybe a few less than 37 for the Tigers. Newton had 47 rushing yards in the NFC title game win over Arizona but a season-low three in the divisional-round win over Seattle. He averaged about 40 yards rushing per game in the regular season. The Auburn hoops team (9-12, 3-6) is on a four-game losing streak and averaging only about 64 points in that stretch. Three of the losses have been by at least 11 points. Georgia (12-8, 5-4) ended a two-game losing with a 69-56 upset of No. 25 South Carolina on Tuesday. I had previewed that game on my picks of the night Tuesday here at SBR and recommended the Dawgs, who led by 10 at the half and wouldn't trail in the second. Georgia and Auburn split last year, each winning on the road. Back Newton and Georgia at -10 NCAA Basketball odds. Auburn is 0-6 ATS in its past six road games. Georgia is 5-0 ATS in its past five overall. The home team has covered five of the past six meetings.
NCAA Basketball Picks: Georgia -10
Best Line Offered: at Heritage
No. 24 Dayton vs. George Mason (+10)
Is it time to start mentioning Dayton (18-3, 8-1 A-10) as perhaps the best mid-major program in the country this season? Not yet, but the Flyers are probably the only thing standing in the way of VCU winning the Atlantic-10 regular-season and conference tournament titles. Dayton's only losses are to Xavier, Chattanooga (both of those you can understand) and LaSalle (that you can't). The Flyers bring a six-game winning streak into this one, the last three by at least 14 points. They are off to the best start ever under Coach Archie Miller, who almost was poached by a Power 5 Conference school after last season and could be again following this year's NCAA Tournament. This is the first time in seven years that Dayton has been ranked in the AP poll for more than a week in the regular season. George Mason (8-14, 2-7) is one of the A-10's worst teams. The Colonials do enter off a win, however, pulling off a 78-74 upset at Richmond on Wednesday. George Mason did nearly gag away a nine-point lead with 36 seconds left. The team has two injury concerns for this game in guard Marquise Moore and center Stevon Thompson. Both are probable, though. Moore leads the team in scoring (12.3 ppg) and Thompson leads in rebounding (10.3 rpg). This is the only regular-season meeting between the schools. Take Dayton with your NCAA Basketball picks, which has won five straight in the series. Flyers are 4-1 ATS in their past five road games. George Mason is 1-4 ATS in its past five at home.
NCAA Basketball Picks: Dayton -10
Best Line Offered: at Bookmaker
Georgetown vs. Seton Hall (-5)
Both these Big East schools are on the NCAA Tournament bubble. Actually that's probably being kind to Georgetown (13-10, 6-4). The Hoyas are certainly on the outside looking in right now despite wins over ranked teams Syracuse and Xavier and another decent victory over Wisconsin. Will the committee take into account close losses to Maryland and Duke? The Hoyas are trending the wrong way, losing two straight and three of four. They were beaten 87-76 at Butler on Tuesday. GU was down 16 with about five minutes left but did rally to within six with 1:11 remaining. But then Butler started hitting its free throws. Sophomore guard L.J. Peak had a season-high 22 points to lead Georgetown. Seton Hall (16-6, 6-4) needs at least a few more good wins to lock up an NCAA bid. The Pirates are trending up, having won three straight by double digits, albeit against three of the Big East's weaker teams. They took out visiting Marquette 79-62 on Wednesday. Isaiah Whitehead had 21 points and eight assists, and Angel Delgado added 19 points and 13 rebounds for the Pirates, who have now matched their overall and Big East wins total from a season ago. Whitehead is the team's star and has at least 15 points and five helpers in 10 games this season. He has a minor knee injury but is probable here. This is the first meeting of the season between Georgetown and Seton Hall. The Hoyas won both last year. Side with Seton Hall. GU is 0-4 ATS in its past four games. Seton Hall has covered six straight.
NCAA Basketball Picks: Seton Hall -5
Best Line Offered: at Heritage