This experienced sports handicapper previews the NCAA Tournament first round game between Boise State & Dayton. Will Dayton be able to take advantage of playing on their home floor?
Two of the Last Four In
The Dayton Flyers (25-8) will host the Boise State Broncos (25-8) in a NCAA tournament first round game on Wednesday at 9:10 PM ET. These are two of the last four teams that the NCAA Tournament Committee decided to invite regarding at large bids. The other two being BYU and Mississippi. According to the college basketball betting odds at Pinnacle, Dayton is currently a 4.0 point favorite. The winner will be the #11 seed in the East Region, and will advance to play #6 seed Providence on Friday at 9:55 PM ET in Columbus, Ohio.
Broncos Looking for Respect
The Boise State Broncos have to be scratching their collective heads today wondering why they’ll be asked to play in a first round game in Dayton, and then face an opponent on their own home floor. After all, this is a Boise State team which is ranked #25 in the latest AP Poll. The Broncos finished tied for first place with San Diego State in the Mountain West regular season standings. Unfortunately they were upset in the conference tournament semifinals as a 5.0 point favorite in NCAA Basketball odds at the hands of Wyoming. On a positive outlook, the Broncos can surely use what they perceive to be a lack of respect as an additional motivational tool. Boise State is a terrific perimeter shooting team, and has converted on an excellent 39.8% of their three-point attempts this season. They can also hang their hats on the fact that they’ve won six of their previous seven true road games.
Home Cooking for the Flyers
The Dayton Flyers will look to take advantage of playing on its home floor which is a rare occurrence regarding the NCAA Tournament. The Flyers went a perfect 16-0 at home this season, shot 49.5% from the field in those contests, and a sizzling 40.2% from beyond the three-point line. Dayton finished tied for second place with Rhode Island in the Atlantic 10 regular season standings, and lost 71-65 to nationally ranked VCU in the conference tournament championship game. The Flyers have seen each of their previous six games at home go over the total. Those six games had an average total of 125.1, and there was an average of 140.3 points combined scored per game.
The obvious selection would be to take the team which is undefeated on their home floor, and installed as a relatively small favorite. However, that thought process is apparently a popular one, since 87% of early public action has gone the way of the Flyers. I’m not willing to go against the home team, nor am I an advocate of wagering on such a heavily bet side. My original estimate for this game's total is to be somewhere around 130.0. If that’s indeed the case, I’m leaning my NCAA Basketball picks over the total in this game.
NCAA Basketball Picks: Play on Boise State and Dayton to go over 126.5 from BookMaker