Take The Points With Davidson As Your NCAA Basketball Pick vs. Richmond

LT Profits Sports Group

Monday, January 25, 2016 4:50 PM GMT

Monday, Jan. 25, 2016 4:50 PM GMT

Two of the best offenses in the Atlantic 10 meet when Davidson visits Richmond Monday and the points seem worth taking for our NCAA basketball picks in a potential instant classic.  

 

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Free NCAA Basketball Pick: Davidson +6½
Best Line Offered: at WagerWeb

 

If you like offense, you will probably enjoy what should be a tight matchup between two of the better offenses in the Atlantic 10 Monday night when the Davidson Wildcats (11-6, 4-11-1 ATS) pay a visit to the Richmond Spiders (10-7, 6-7 ATS) at the Robins Center in Richmond, VA at 7:00 ET in a game televised nationally on NBC Sports Network.

The point spread at Heritage has Davidson as a road underdog for this contest with the current line at +6½ on the NCAA Basketball odds board at odds of -105.

 

Both Teams Average Over 80 Points
Davidson enters this contest 3-3 in Atlantic 10 play, but the Wildcats are 0-3 on the road compared to 3-0 back home. The offense is not to blame for those road losses though as Davidson is averaging an even 80.0 points away from home this season, not far off its overall scoring average of 81.7 points that ranks 28th in the country. And the good news here is that while the Davidson defense has not been good, Richmond’s defense has been just as bad.

The Spiders have a very similar profile averaging 80.2 points, although Richmond was the losing NCAA Basketball pick at home in overtime 94-89 vs. VCU in its last game to fall below .500 inside the conference with a 2-3 record. That last game was nine days ago on Saturday, January 16th, thanks to the winter storm over the weekend pushing this game back a couple of days.

 

Wildcats Do Not Beat Themselves
Davidson comes off of a 24-8 season that was so impressive that the Wildcats earned an at-large berth in the NCAA Tournament despite losing by 20 points to VCU in the Atlantic 10 Tournament. Davidson finished an amazing eighth in the county in offensive efficiency thanks to this well-coached team rarely beating itself under Bob McKillop, ranking second in the nation in offensive turnover percentage at just 14.1 percent.

Fast forward to this year and unbelievably, the Wildcats have done an even better job of ball protection, this time leading the country in turnover percentage at a scant 13.1 percent vs. a national average of 18.4 percent! That has led to the team getting nice looks near the basket as evidenced by the 51.6 percent two-point shooting, and given that the Richmond defense does not apply much pressure, the Wildcats should be able to run their offense here relatively unabated.

Now admittedly, the Davidson defense has been non-existent at times with that unit ranking 281st in defensive efficiency, but this is one game where that might not hurt the Wildcats as much as it usually does with the Richmond defense not being much better, so as long as Davidson continues to execute offensively, this seems like a relatively generous point spread getting this many points.

 

Richmond Achilles Heel Is Foul Line
Like Davidson, Richmond was another bubble team last year except that the Spiders landed on the wrong end of the bubble, setting for an NIT bid where they lost to the Miami Hurricanes in the quarterfinals. Richmond seems better offensively this season however as it seeks a return to the Big Dance, but the defense has taken a major step backwards and having seven losses already is not exactly conducive to an NCAA invite.

The Spiders have improved to 14th in the country in offensive efficiency this season after ranking 101st in that category last year, but Richmond has taken on more of a Davidson identity with that offensive improvement coming with a price, with that being a defensive efficiency ranking falling from 46th last season all the way down to a dismal 249th this year.

That should serve to make this an entertaining game with both teams scoring at will vs. defensive offering little resistance, which in itself is enough of a reason to take the points with Davidson in what figures to be a tight battle all the way. But yet another reason to like the underdogs is that the Richmond Achilles Heel of free throw shooting could come back to bite the Spiders in a close game.

Richmond is 315th in the land in free throw shooting at just 64.4 percent, while comparatively Davidson ranks a spiffy 15th nationally in foul shooting at an impressive 75.6 percent.

 

Rising Up vs. Good Teams on Road
Finally, Davidson may not be the greatest road team in the world overall but the Wildcats have tended to rise up vs. better teams from a betting standpoint when travelling, going a lucrative 22-7 ATS in their last 29 road games vs. teams with winning home records. Meanwhile, Richmond is 1-4 ATS in its last five games vs. teams with winning straight up records.

We see both offenses having success here vs. a couple of suspect defenses, so look for Davidson to continue its road ATS success by at the very least taking this game down to the final buzzer if not pulling the outright upset visiting Richmond on Monday night.

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