NCAA Basketball Picks - Tulsa Golden Hurricane vs Wichita State Shockers

Joe Gavazzi

Wednesday, November 16, 2016 8:53 PM UTC

Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2016 8:53 PM UTC

The Tulsa Golden Hurricane travels north to Wichita to face the Wheat Shockers in this 8:00 pm ET start at the Roundhouse, aka Charles Koch Arena. Expert capper Joe Gavazzi has a free pick for this game.

Tulsa vs Wichita St. (-22) 8:00 ET

It won’t take much for the Shockers to get motivated for this one, considering that they lost this matchup last year (77-67) as 4 point road chalk at Tulsa. That was in the midst of an early-season upheaval for Wichita, in which they were compromised without the play of lead guard, Fred VanVleet. Today, the Shockers are alive and well, even without VanVleet and his running mate, Ron Baker.  Many long time CBKB aficionados will remember games between these two iconic programs when they both toiled in the Valley. Today, it is a bus ride up I-35 for Tulsa, as they enter the Roundhouse as lambs led to the slaughter.

For the 3rd consecutive year, Tulsa is coached by veteran mentor Frank Haith. His first 2 years have gone relatively smoothly with 23 and 20 wins.  Last year, his Hurricane was eliminated in the NCAA 1st Four. This year, with just one RS, Tulsa figures to drop precipitously to no better than the middle of the pack in their new home (the AAC). The rebuilding process is now beginning in Tulsa. Proof that it can be done is Haith’s hard work at one of his previous stops, Missouri, where after winning 30 games in his first season at the helm of the Tigers, his team won 23 games the following year and returned to the NCAA with only returning starter. It is doubtful that happens again this season! Tulsa lost 7 of its Top 8 scorers and has a lone RS in Pat Birt, who averaged 12 PPG. There are 9 newcomers, a collection of red- shirts, transfers, and freshmen.  It is going to take time before the pieces fall into place. If their Opening Game home loss to lowly Jacksonville St. by a score of 84-73 as 13 point home chalk is any indication, Haith and his boys are in big trouble tonight!

Don’t feel bad for 10th year Wichita HC Marshall.  After losing VanVleet and Baker, Marshall certainly is not. He now has the program at the point where he can reload instead of rebuild. It’s that kind of culture at Wichita. Clearly, it has been positive that Wichita had 10 extra practice sessions prior to their August exhibition trip to Canada. As are so many of these preseason trips, it was great for team chemistry and bonding. The proof has been in the pudding, as Marshall has fielded a deep team that has 10 contributing players. With a wide range in athletic ability and height, Marshall believes this is one of his best defensive teams and that is saying something.  A 2-0 SU opening included an 83-39 win over S. Carolina St. followed by a 92-55 victory as 11 point favorite against Long Beach. Yes, that’s the same Long Beach team, who lost by 26 to powerful N. Carolina last night. By my reckoning, that win was coverage by 26 points and a 2-game defensive average of 47 PPG. Clearly, a bad omen for visiting Tulsa!

Driven by revenge from last year, with a 61-33 ATS mark following a victory of 15 or more points, and a 31-14 ATS mark in November, I invite you to join me in this revenge blowout loss by Wichita St. tonight.  Put the NCAA basketball ODDS in your favor and join me in my NCAA basketball PICK on Wichita St. tonight!

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Free NCAA Basketball Pick: Washington St. -22.5Best Line Offered: at 5Dimes

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