NCAA Basketball Picks: Trust Penn St. Solid Defense To Stop Ohio St.

Swinging Johnson

Monday, January 25, 2016 4:32 PM UTC

Monday, Jan. 25, 2016 4:32 PM UTC

Penn State & Ohio State have dropped three of their last four. Here we discuss which of these two struggling teams will cash in our NCAA basketball picks tonight.

***2016 Super D's Of NCAA Basketball Betting***
***Why Do Home Dogs Rule College Hoops?***


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Free NCAA Basketball Pick: Penn State +8½
Best Line Offered: at GTBets


Penn State (11-9 SU, 9-9-1 ATS)
The Nittany Lions had just come off their most impressive win of the season, shocking Northwestern 71-62 as nine-point road underdogs, as they prepared to host Wisconsin. The NCAA basketball odds makers installed Penn State as 2½ point home dogs to the Badgers who were coincidentally coming off an upset win of their own when they edged No. 4 ranked Michigan State 77-76. The Badgers held Penn State’s leading scorer Brandon Taylor off the scorer’s sheet in the first half with a shadow named Nigel Hayes committed to locking the senior forward down. The blue print was a recipe for success as Taylor didn’t come alive until the second half where he ended with 13 points on the day but by that time it was a case of too little too late. The Nittany Lions suffered a 66-60 home defeat and failed to cover for all those who backed them in their NCAA basketball picks.

Illness and injury played a role in Penn State’s loss to Wisconsin as guard Josh Reaves (illness) failed to go while Donovan Jack suffered a back injury in the opening half and did not return in the second. The Nittany Lions have had a power outage all season long scoring an average of only 66.7 PPG good for 305th in the nation. Defensively, they have been fairly effective limiting opponents to just 68.6 PPG (tied- 120th).


Ohio State (12-8 SU, 10-10 ATS)
After cruising to a 94-68 decision over Rutgers as 20-point home chalk the Buckeyes knew that they would have two enormous hurdles in front of them with No. 3 Maryland and No. 22 Purdue lying in wait. The results were not good as the Terps feasted on the Buckeyes by the score of 100-65 and the Boilermakers added another setback with a 75-64 decision though Ohio State covered the number as 13-point road dogs. The Buckeyes actually held a three-point lead at the break but was outscored 42-28 in the second half which led to their demise.

Junior forward Marc Loving leads the team in scoring with a 13.7 PPG average while Keita Bates-Diop, held scoreless against Purdue, trails right behind with 11.4 PPG. Ohio State needs more scoring punch as they enter their game against Penn State averaging only 71.6 points per game which ranks them 215th in the nation. Defensively, they are better holding the opposition to 66.9 PPG which places them 68th in D-1 basketball. The team averages 38.5 rebounds per game (83rd) led by Jae'Sean Tate averaging 6.4 boards per contest.


Betting Analysis
?This is the first meeting between these schools this season but Ohio State is hoping the results will be similar to last year when they won and covered both home and away against the Nittany Lions. However, Penn State is 3-1-1 against the number following an ATS loss which fits the paradigm here as they fell to Wisconsin and failed to cover as 2½ point underdogs.

Perhaps the most compelling reason to align with the road dog here is the fact that Ohio State does not score a great deal of points while Penn State plays solid defense. We can also make a case for Penn State’s leading scorer Brandon Taylor to come out of the gate hard after a scoreless first half against the Badgers. While Ohio State is deeper and perhaps a bit more talented, I believe the oddsmakers are handing over too many points to the Nittany Lions in this one, so we're adding them to our Monday's college basketball picks.

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