15* Conference USA GAME OF THE NIGHT on Rice +20
Memphis vs. Rice,
01/16/2013 19:00 EDT,
Score: 77 - 51
Point Spread: +20/-105 Rice
The Rice Owls are showing perhaps their best value of the season as a 20-point home underdog to the Memphis Tigers. While Rice is off to just a 3-12 start this season, I believe that former UCLA coach Ben Braun has this program headed in the right direction.
The Owls do have some impressive showings this season as big underdogs where they covered the spread. They lost at Temple 63-67 as a 26-point underdog, and they fell at Texas 41-57 at Texas as an 18-point dog, covering the spread in each contest.
Off five straight losses and three straight non-covers, the price is right to back the Owls tonight. Meanwhile, the Tigers are way overvalued due to their current six-game winning streak. They have some unimpressive performances in the role of the big favorite this year.
Memphis beat Samford 65-54 as a 26-point home favorite, beat Austin Peay 83-65 as a 28-point home favorite, beat Lipscomb 62-56 in a non-lined home game, beat Oral Roberts 72-57 in a non-lined home game, and topped East Carolina 67-54 as a 15-point home favorite. The Tigers failed to beat all five of these inferior opponents at home by more than 18 points, which is why I believe Rice is a great bet at home tonight as a 20-point dog.
The Tigers are 2-10 ATS versus terrible teams - outscored by their opponents by 8+ points/game since 1997. The Owls are 16-6 ATS in home games after failing to cover the spread in 3 or more consecutive games since 1997. Braun is 29-11 ATS after failing to cover the spread in 3 or more consecutive games in all games he has coached since 1997.
The home team is a perfect 7-0 ATS in the last 7 meetings, which dates back to 2006. The Tigers are 0-4 ATS in their last 4 meetings at Rice. Bet Rice Wednesday.