Pick Dog To Cover As NCAA Basketball Odds Suggest Tight Battle Between Colorado & Cal

Joe Catalano

Friday, January 1, 2016 6:08 PM GMT

See who we like in this late night matchup as the Colorado Buffaloes meet the California Golden Bears. Get our best NCAA basketball picks for this game here.

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Free NCAA Basketball Pick: Colorado Buffaloes +7.5
Best Line Offered: at 5Dimes

 

The Pac-12 in NCAA Basketball pulls no punches to ring in the new year as the Colorado Buffaloes (11-2) travel to Cal and face the California Golden Bears (10-3). Thus far, Cal is undefeated at home and has shown that they can compete with the elite teams in the country when they lost a heartbreaker to the Virginia Cavaliers, 63-62. Tip-off is scheduled for tonight at 11:00 p.m.EST at Haas Pavlilion in Berkeley, California, According to SBRodds.com, California is a 7.5 point home favorite.

 

Close Calls
As for the Buffaloes, they've suffered just 2 losses on the season and both games have been hard fought battles; Their first loss came against Iowa State by 6 points and most recently, they lost to an undefeated SMU Mustangs team buy just 1 point. At first glance, 7.5 points appears to be a lot for Cal to lay against a team that's fought every opponent down to the wire.

Colorado is a team that can shoot the lights out as they average 83 points and shoot an amazing 41.4% from 3-point range as a team. In fact, their top 4 scorers all shoot over 40% from the field. This is also a team that can defend the boards and dish out assists. I don't see many weaknesses here.

 

Go To Guy
Although Colorado has several options on offense, senior forward, Josh Scott ,appears to be the go to guy. He claims most of the minutes on this team as he's the only player on the team that averages over 30 minutes per ball game and at 6 foot 10, 245 pounds, is a player with touch, but is a real force on the inside. For the season, Scott is averaging 18.4 points and 9.4 rebounds per game. He can play both ends of the court and the Golden Bears will have their hands full with Scott,

After two early season losses, the game that California would like to forget was the 65-64 loss to Virginia in overtime. London Perrantes put the dagger in the Golden Bears heart with a game winning 3-pointer with 10 seconds remaining in overtime to give the Cavaliers the victory. Cal has since went on to defeat Stephen Curry's old school in Davidson and should be ready for tonight's game.

 

Ivan Rabb
One player to keep an eye on this game is 6 foot 11 freshman Ivan Rabb. Rabb is a bigtime rebounder that's starting to put a complete game together as of late. He's scored in double figures in all but three games this season and is one rebound short of having 5 consecutive games of double figure rebounds. If Virginia couldn't contain him, than I don't see the Buffaloes being able to stop this freshman phenorm.

Leading scorer, Tyrone Wallace is of major concern for the Golden Bears, He came racing out of the gate at the beginning of the season, putting up a 20 spot on a regular basis. Wallace still averages 15.5 points, 5 rebounds, and 4.4 assists, but has been slumping lately. He was awful against Virginia, shooting just 4 for 13 from the field and in his last 2 games, is averaging 8.5 points, is 6 for 19 from the field, and has been a non-factor on the glass.

As the NCAA basketball odds come out, look for Colorado to cover the spread for your NCAA basketball picks as this game should be relatively close.