Saturday NCAA Basketball Picks of the Day

Joe Catalano

Saturday, December 14, 2013 3:47 PM GMT

The streak is over, but fortunately we have many more games to choose from on this NCAA Basketball Saturday. With more games available, it will give us a better chance to be in the green with our picks on a day with no football available.

#11 Kentucky (8-2) vs. #18 North Carolina (6-2)

Advantage Carolina?

From looking at their past results this year, one would have to give the Heels the edge. They’ve managed to defeat top 25 unbeatens in  Louisville and Michigan State while the Wildcats have lost their only 2 matchups against top 25 teams in Michigan State and Baylor. Although this is true, Roy Williams has dominated Tom Izzo in head to head matchups and the Heels have had some puzzling losses against teams of a lesser caliber in Belmont and UAB. Which Carolina team will show up this afternoon as the Tarheels are a 4.5 point betting favorite on the NCAAB odds?

A Trap

Odds makers are begging for bettors to take Kentucky as they’ve made the Tarheels a somewhat heavy 4.5 point betting favorite against a team in the Wildcats which was once ranked #1 in the country this season.

The Next John Henson

Speaking of North Carolina, everyone can remember all of the double-doubles that Henson provide for them in past years. Kentucky has a standout forward in Julius Randle who plays somewhat of a similar game to that of Henson.

Randle leads the nation with 8 double-doubles this season. He’s not going to get the Wildcats 20 points each game, but his game is well rounded with production offensively and he’s a tough defender. Look for Randle to have a big game at Chapel Hill.

While I’m very surprised at the poor season that James Michael McAdoo is having, Marcus Paige has more than made up for McAdoo’s lack of production. That said, Paige has tailed off a bit in his last 3 games, averaging just 12.7 points per game. Paige has been more than solid in ball distributing and on the boards for a 6 foot 1 guard, but the Tarheels desperately need his offense in this game.

I’ll take the bait; 4.5 points are way too much to give to Kentucky. Take the points for your free college basketball picks.

College Basketball Pick: Kentucky +4.5 at Bet 365

[gameodds]14/252129/?r3=43-19-349/dec&r-1=43-19-349/us[/gameodds]

South Alabama (5-4) vs. #20 Gonzaga (9-1)

Battle-Tested

It’s safe to say that after this game as a 17 point betting underdog, the South Alabama Jaguars will definitely have been tested as they’re coming off of a triple overtime 96-93 loss to Rice and will have faced one of the most post productive and efficient offenses in the country in the Gonzaga Bulldogs. The only reason why Gonzaga is ranked 20th in the nation and not 2nd is because they haven’t faced a top 25 opponent.

Offensive Powerhouse

The Bulldogs rank 6th in the nation in points (89.4) and 3rd in field goal percentage (53.8). The only weakness to Gonzaga’s game might be rebounding, but on the offensive end, this is a team that doesn’t need many 2nd opportunities.

The Bulldogs are led by the 3-headed monster of Kevin Pangos (19.6 points, 4.3 assists, 3.1 rebounds), Sam Dower (14.9 points, 7 rebounds), and Gary Bell Jr. (13.9 points per game). All three of these players are shooting nearly 50% or above from the field and over 50% from 3-point land. In a tight situation, this is also a team that can knock down their free throws. All 3 players are shooting above 80% from the line and Pangos is an almost perfect 92.7% from the charity stripe. South Alabama will surely have their hands full defensively in dealing with Gonzaga’s “Big 3.”

South Alabama is the complete opposite of Gonzaga. The only part of their game that they excel at is rebounding and they’ll be looking for a big performance from senior Augustine Rubit. Rubit is averaging 16.7 points and 10 rebounds per game this season. For South Alabama to make a game of this, Rubit must have possibly his biggest performance of the season. The Jaguars are completely overmatched here.

College Basketball Pick: Gonzaga -17 at Bet 365

[gameodds]14/252171/?r3=43-19-349/dec&r-1=43-19-349/us[/gameodds]