Take Northeastern ATS To Upset NC St. As Your NCAA Basketball Pick

LT Profits Sports Group

Tuesday, December 29, 2015 6:04 PM GMT

Northeastern already has one road upset at Miami and they look like dangerous underdogs again visiting NC St. in Raleigh Tuesday. Don't miss our odds analysis & the NCAA basketball pick.

 

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Free NCAA Basketball Pick: Northeastern +6½
Best Line Offered: at BetOnline

 

There is potential for an upset in what is the non-conference finale for both teams Tuesday night as the Northeastern Huskies (8-4, 4-5 ATS) of the CAA look like dangerous underdogs when they pay a visit to the NC State Wolfpack (9-3, 5-4 ATS) of the ACC at PNC Arena in Raleigh, NC at 7:00 ET in a game available on ESPN3.

 

The point spread at BetOnline has Northeastern as a road underdog for this contest with the current line at +6½ with odds of -110.

 

Already Won in Miami
NC State is off to a 9-3 start, but this is a team that does not blow you away in any area while ranking 69th in the country in offensive efficiency and 94th in defensive efficiency, and the Wolfpack have just one win over a team ranked in the top 100 on the Pomeroy Ratings, and that victory required overtime over 81st ranked LSU on a neutral court in Brooklyn. And NC State already lost to a CAA team here in Raleigh, losing to William & Mary back on opening night.

Now, the Pack might be facing one of the other of the top two teams in the CAA along with William & Mary and another Pomeroy 100 team to boot with Northeastern ranked 89th. Furthermore, the Huskies were already the upset winning NCAA Basketball pick on the road vs. an ACC team once this season, and that win came over a ranked opponent at that over the then 15th ranked Miami Hurricanes in Coral Gables on Thanksgiving weekend.

 

Three-Point Shooting Key
The Huskies seem to have the perimeter shooting here to at the very least take this game down to the final buzzer if not match the earlier upset in Miami, especially vs. a weak NC State perimeter defense. Northeastern is averaging 8.5 made three-point baskets per game while ranking 53rd in the country in three-point percentage at 38.5 percent, and that seemingly makes for a dream matchup vs. a Wolfpack team ranked 286th in three-point defense at 37.7 percent!

In case you are wondering, it is not as if the Huskies shot well vs. a cream puff schedule either as their non-conference SOS is ranked a very respectable 59th according to Pomeroy, and of their four losses, three were by six points or less, meaning they would have covered this posted line of +6½, and the lone blowout loss came at the hands of top ranked and undefeated Michigan State 78-58.

Comparatively, NC State has faced a soft non-conference slate ranked 265th in SOS and yet the Wolfpack have shot the ball poorly. To wit, while Northeastern is 77th in the nation in effective field goal percentage at 52.4 percent, NC State is 265th at 46.6 percent.

 
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Sweet 16 Run Last Year
The Wolfpack come off of a season where they finished 22-14 and advanced all the way to the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament, first beating LSU and then upsetting top-seeded Villanova before losing to Louisville. And considering that team started only one senior, the prospects seemed bright for bigger things this season until junior and leading scorer Trevor Lacey took Coach Mark Gottfried by surprise by declaring for the NBA Draft.

Also, Kyle Washington transferred to Cincinnati, leaving the Wolfpack with only three scholarship forwards, and one of those returnees Lennard Freeman, who was the team’s leading rebounder last season, is coming off of the bench right now while being eased back in the lineup while recovering from a leg injury. So for the second straight season, NC State is very young ranking 306th in the land in experience at 1.26 years per player.

That inexperience has been reflected by the struggles of the offense, which almost proved costly in a 58-52 escape when the Pack last played last Tuesday over a poor NC Greensboro team ranked 285th overall on Pomeroy, with the Wolfpack shooting 40.4 percent from the field overall including 27.3 percent beyond the arc. They will need a better performance following a week off here to probably avoid an upset.

 

Stepping Up to the Challenge
Finally, Northeastern is now an amazing 14-3 ATS in its last 17 games vs. teams with winning straight up records, as well as 4-0 ATS in its last four vs. the ACC. Meanwhile, NC State is just 8-17 ATS in its last 25 home games vs. teams with winning road records.

Whether or not Northeastern is capable of duplicating its outright upset of Miami the last time it ventured into ACC territory may be up for debate, but at the very least these points do seem worth taking visiting NC State on Tuesday.

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