Our NCAAB handicapper Mark Lathrop is perfect to start the NCAA basketball season. Here he looks at a lopsided matchup and is ready to pounce on another "Extra" line being offered by the books.
2017-18 NCAAB Record: 3-0 (+3.00 Units)Chicago State at No. 13 Notre Dame
Notre Dame looks to keep its record perfect on the season as its hosts Chicago State of the WAC on Thursday evening as an opening 32.5-point favorite. That shouldn’t be a hard task for the Irish, but we are after something else entirely. The Fighting Irish are coming off of two easy wins against DePaul and Mount St. Mary and this is their last warmup game before playing in the Maui Invitational, where the competition really heats up.
Preseason ACC Player of the Year Bonzie Colson, is living up to his billing in the first two games of the season. The 6-foot-6 bruiser is averaging 35 minutes, 22.5 points and 12 rebounds per game thus far. Two other Notre Dame players, 6-3 guard T.J. Gibbs and 6-1 guard Matt Farrell, are also averaging over 35 minutes per game. Both Gibbs and Farrell are shooting very well from behind the arc this season and average 15 and 14 points per game, respectively.
Chicago State, on the other hand, has only 3 players who average more than 20 minutes per game, and 11 players that average more than 10 minutes. It didn’t help much in the Cougars' first two games against major conference opponents, as they lost by an average of 56 in the contests against Iowa and Purdue. Their issue appears to be size, as they have a very undersized roster with their tallest player getting significant minutes only 6-foot-7. Both Iowa and Purdue took advantage of this with their forwards and centers leading the way in scoring. That doesn’t bode well for going against Colson, one of the best big men in college basketball who plays taller than his 6’ 6” listing.
Mismatches in size create one of the better predictors of blowouts there are in college basketball. That is because the extra length can and will lead to turnovers, which in turn leads to extra possessions for the superior team. Chicago State turned the ball over 20 times vs. Iowa and 14 times against Purdue. Purdue also held Chicago State to 2-for-21 from 3-point range as the Cougars shot themselves out of contention in a 2nd half they lost 52-14.Free NCAAB Pick: Notre Dame -32.5Best Line Offered: 5Dimes