South Alabama New Top Cat in Weekly ATS Rankings; Vandy Remains King Rat

Kevin Stott

Tuesday, January 23, 2018 2:00 PM UTC

Tuesday, Jan. 23, 2018 2:00 PM UTC

Montana made it an incredible 12 straight wins ATS, but that wasn’t enough to top our latest Cats and Rats ATS Rankings as South Alabama surged from third to first.

NCAAB: Top 5 College Basketball ATS Cats Rankings1. South Alabama 13-3-0 ATS (Last week: No. 3)

After a perfect 2-0 SU/ATS week in which they got the 800th win in school history in the 50th year of the men’s basketball program, South Alabama (11-9 SU, 13-3-0 ATS) is our new No. 1 Cat. The Jaguars (8-8 O/U) won and covered as 2½-point home underdogs to Coastal Carolina, 60-57, followed by an 83-77 win over Appalachian State at home on Saturday, covering as 3-point home chalks. In the win over Appalachian State, Josh Ajayi had a double-double (24 points, 11 rebounds) and Rodrick Sikes scored 26 points as South Alabama improved to 11-9 SU and above the water level.

Next up on the Sun Belt schedule for South Alabama (No. 217 ranking, down two spots from last week) is a challenging Thursday game at Louisiana Lafayette (17-3 SU, 9-4) followed by a Saturday date at Louisiana Monroe (7-11 SU, 3-7-0 ATS). If the Jaguars (+3.2 ppg vs. ATS) want to hold on to their lofty spot atop this list, they might have to pull off another 2-0 SU/ATS week. Best of luck.

2. East Tennessee State 12-3-1 (Last week: No. 1)

With a 1-1-0 ATS week (2-0 SU), East Tennessee State University (16-4 SU, 12-3-1 ATS) falls a notch after winning SU/ATS at Furman as 2-point road underdogs, 62-61, and winning big at home against Western Carolina, 66-50. ETSU (+6.3 ppg vs. ATS) failed to cover as 19-point home chalks, starting my Saturday with a resounding thud and sending the cat into hiding.

Next up for the Buccaneers (No. 57, up 2) is Wednesday's home date with Mercer (10-10 SU, 4-9-2 ATS) followed by Saturday's game at Wofford (14-5 SU, 7-6-0 ATS). The latter is a matchup of the Southern Conference's top teams (ETSU 7-0, WOF 5-1), with the Buccaneers riding a 10-game win streak into Week 12 play and the Terriers winners of six straight. Wofford, 10-1 SU at home, covered ATS in the last meeting with ETSU, 79-76 last season. ETSU is a profitable 11-1-1 ATS its L13.

3. Montana 13-4-0 (Last week: No. 4)

Nobody is hotter at the betting windows than Big Sky Conference member Montana (14-5 SU, 13-4-0 ATS), which went 1-0 SU/ATS last week to increase the Grizzlies' ATS winning streak to a mind-boggling 12 games (10-2 SU). They won and covered ATS against rival Montana State, 67-62. Montana (No. 78, up 14 spots) saw a string of four overs end, although the Grizzlies have still played nine overs in their L12 overall (over 5-0 at Home).

Next up for the Grizzlies (+3.4 ppg vs. ATS) are two home games -- Thursday against former Top ATS Cat Southern Utah (8-10 SU, 10-6-0 ATS), and Saturday against Northern Arizona (3-17 SU, 8-9-0 ATS) in two good spots to press this streak and try to win a little money.

4. Virginia 12-4-0 (Last week: Not ranked)

Welcome back, Virginia. The Cavaliers (17-1 SU, 12-4-0 ATS), through elite defense, again have won their backers money at the betting window and set eyes on a possible No. 1 seed for the NCAA Tournament. In Week 11 the Cavaliers won SU and ATS at Georgia Tech and Wake Forest. The only SU loss for Virginia this season came at then-No. 18 ranked Big 12 side West Virginia, 69-61 in Morgantown.

No. 2 ranked Virginia hosts Clemson on Tuesday, with the Cavaliers opening as healthy 10-point home favorites (BetOnline). And then Saturday, Virginia is at No. 5 Duke (17-2 SU, 11-6-0 ATS) in a game where the visitors might have trouble controlling the pace in front of the Cameron Crazies. Of note: The under is 6-1 L7 Virginia games, and the Cavs have played three straight unders and 11 in their L13 games overall.

5. UCSB 12-4-0 ATS (Last week: Not ranked)

UCSB (14-5 SU, 12-4-0 ATS) went 2-0 SU/ATS last week, winning home games against Cal-State Fullerton (covering as 6-point favorites, 83-64) and Cal Irvine (getting the money as 7-point chalks, 70-58). The Gauchos (+5.2 ppg vs. ATS) covered their third straight game ATS.

Next up for UCSB (No. 98, are Big West road dates at Cal-State Fullerton (11-7 SU, 9-5-0 ATS) on Thursday and at Cal-Riverside (5-14 SU, 6-8-0 ATS) on Saturday.

This week's Top 5 ATS Cats were a combined 62-18-1 ATS (77.5 percent) heading into Tuesday's NCAAB schedule.

NCAAB: Top 5 College Basketball ATS Rats Rankings1. Vanderbilt 2-14-0 ATS (Last week: No. 1)

Vanderbilt (7-12 SU, 2-14-0 ATS) stays as our King ATS Rat after a 1-1 SU/ATS week. The Commodores lost by 18 as 5-point road underdogs at Mississippi State before getting an ATS and SU win against LSU, 77-71, covering as 2-point home favorites -- making Vanderbilt a soul-sucking, win-ducking, mother-trucking 2-16-0 ATS in their L18 overall dating to last season.

Next up for the Commodores (-5.6 ppg vs. ATS) is a Volunteer State showdown with Tennessee (13-5 SU, 8-6-0 ATS) on Tuesday. The Volunteers are 11½-point home favorites with a total of 144 (Bookmaker). The home team in this series is 4-0 ATS the L4, and the Commodores are 4-1 ATS the L5 at Thompson-Boling Arena. Vanderbilt then hosts TCU on Saturday.

2. SIU-Edwardsville 4-13-0 ATS (Last week: Not ranked)

SIU-Edwardsville (7-12 SU, 4-13-0 ATS) returns to the list, with good reason. The Cougars have lost ATS nine times more than they have won, and we haven’t even flipped the calendar to February. Last week, SIU-Edwardsville (No. 322 lost twice SU and ATS in home games against UT Martin, 70-69 as a 1½-point favorites, and against Southeast Missouri, 86-74 as 1½-point underdogs in Ohio Valley Conference matchups.

The Cougars (-3.6 ppg vs. ATS) have two road game this week, at Tennessee State (8-1 SU, 5-8-0 ATS) and a Belmont (15-6 SU, 12-5-2 ATS) in what seems like a good spot to fade visiting SIU-Edwardsville (-10.4 scoring margin, No. 337).

3. Santa Clara 5-13-0 ATS (Last week: No. 3)

Despite a 2-0 SU/ATS week, West Coast Conference member Santa Clara (7-13 SU, 5-13-0 ATS) stays as our No. 3 ATS Rat. The Broncos (No. 270, up 21) had an outright win at San Francisco, 65-62 as 10-point road underdogs, followed by an admirable performance in a 75-60 loss to Gonzaga, getting the money as huge 20-point home underdogs.

Santa Clara (-7.1 ppg vs. ATS) plays Thursday at San Diego (13-7 SU, 6-9-0 ATS) and Saturday Pepperdine (3-17 SU, 6-12-1 ATS) in a game probably best avoided.

4. Fordham 3-10-0 ATS (Last week: No. 5)

Atlantic 10 side Fordham (6-11 SU, 3-10-0 ATS) went 1-1 ATS (0-2 SU) last week vs. two Big Five teams, losing at LaSalle 75-67 but getting the money as 11½-point road underdogs, then losing SU and ATS at St. Joseph’s 68-46 as 11-point road underdogs.

The Rams (No. 287, down 3) return home Wednesday against Rhode Island (15-3 SU, 9-6-1 ATS) in what seems like a good spot to back the visitors. Fordham (-4.3 ppg vs. ATS) then hosts UMass (10-10 SU, 9-8-0 ATS) on Saturday; in their previous meeting, Fordham won SU and ATS.

5. Yale 2-8-0 ATS (Last week: Not ranked)

Yale (8-10 SU, 2-8-0 ATS) edges out Charlotte (4-11-0 ATS), Denver (5-12-0 ATS), UNC Wilmington (5-12-0 ATS) and Eastern Illinois (5-12-0 ATS) for No. 5 Rat after losing at Brown by 1 as 3-point road favorites. The Bulldogs (-6.7 ppg vs. ATS, +2.0 ppg from LW) lost their fifth straight game ATS and sixth in the L7. The 161 points scored in the Brown game resulted in the first over (154) in L6 Yale games.

Next up for Yale are Ivy League matchups with Harvard and Dartmouth in games the Bulldogs covered in their previous meeting.

This week's Top 5 Rats were 16-58-0 ATS in 74 games (21.6 percent) entering Tuesday's action.

NCAAB Free Fade The Rats Thursday Pick: Montana over Southern Utah

NCAAB Free Feed The Cats Saturday Pick: Montana over Northern Arizona

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