St. Joseph's Is Our NCAA Basketball Pick To Defeat Dayton In Huge A10 Matchup

Charles Stark

Wednesday, February 17, 2016 11:59 AM GMT

Wednesday, Feb. 17, 2016 11:59 AM GMT

The game between St. Joseph's & Dayton has huge A10 champion implications and is part of our NCAA basketball picks, so do Hawks show it's for real tonight?

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Free NCAA Basketball Pick: St. Joseph's -2½
Best Line Offered: at Bookmaker

 

NCAA Odds Overview
NCAA basketball odds have St. Joe's a -3 favorite like at Pinnacle -106. For my NCAA pick today, I will back the Hawks in this spot to come out on top against a good Dayton team. St. Joe's has a lot of returners from last season and this will be their biggest game of the year.

 

Dayton Flyers
Dayton is averaging 74.2 points per game while shooting 47.4% from the field, and allowing 64 points per game on 40.1% shooting from the field. On the season, they are 12-10-1 overall against the spread, and 6-3-1 on the road. They have been playing really good basketball all season highlighted, what I think, by their best win of the year last week at Rhode Island. We went against Dayton in that matchup and Rhode Island had every chance to win the game, but the Flyers proved resilient and I have to tip my hat to them. This is a completely different monster they are facing tonight, and there is a good reason why they are a decent underdog, St. Joseph's is really good. Offensively, the Flyers can score from the inside out and rank 33rd in the country in both overall shooting percentage and effective field-goal percentage. They also are solid hitting 36.3% from distance and rank in the top part of the country in shooting efficiency. Defensively is where they shine and they rank 19th in the country in scoring defense. As well, they rank in the top part of the country in all the important offensive percentages except for defending beyond the arc where they allow opponents to shoot 35.6%. They also allow opponents only 32.1 total rebounds per game which ranks 29th in the country, but they're facing a good rebounding team in St. Joseph's so this will be a point of contention tonight.

 

St. Joseph's Hawks
The Hawks are averaging in allowing 67.2 points per game while shooting 44.3% from the field, and allowing 67.2 points per game on 39.5% shooting from the field. On the season, they are 17-6-1 overall against the spread, and 6-5-1 at home. This team had six of their top seven players returning from last season, and it is shown with a solid 21-4 record so far this year. They have been playing extremely good basketball the past month and only have a couple blemishes in Atlantic 10 play, a close loss to a very good VCU team, and a home loss to a decent St. Bonaventure team in which one of their players had a career night. This game against first place Dayton is huge for them tonight. Offensively, they are good but not great, and rank in the top part of the country in most categories. They control tempo and rebound the ball very well averaging 39.6 total boards per game which ranks 39th in the country. Where they are really good is on the other side of the ball, defensively. St. Joseph's ranks 10th, 13th, and 21st in the country in opponent three point shooting percentage, opponent shooting efficiency, and overall opponent shooting percentage. The only negative aspect would be the that they allow other teams quite a few attempts per game, but Dayton isn't a team that pushes tempo so this shouldn't be a problem tonight.

This a great defensive matchup tonight, and for one of your NCAA basketball picks, I recommend backing the home team in St. Joseph's. Dayton has been the class of the Atlantic 10 so far this season, but I like for the Hawks to get a solid win tonight. Head coach Phil Martelli will have them fired up and ready to take on the ranked Flyers.

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