cnotes Posts:24254 Followers:32
On 03/12/2012 10:27 PM in NCAA Basketball

Cnotes March Madness All You Need To Know And Best Bets !

Iona And BYU Bring Offense To First Four

If the last four conference tournament championships played on Sunday are any indication, this year's Big Dance will go to the 'dogs.

March Madness is finally upon us, and everyone has had time to voice their opinions about who was wrongly left out and who shouldn't have been included in the initial field of 68. That field started to come together Sunday afternoon when the ACC, SEC, Big Ten and Atlantic 10 concluded the conference tournament schedule with outright wins by four underdogs.

The SEC title game pitted top-ranked Kentucky as an 8-point favorite against Vanderbilt who posted a 71-64 victory behind Jeffery Taylor's double-double (18 points, 11 rebounds). Despite the loss, Kentucky was selected as the overall No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament and placed in the South Region awaiting the winner of Tuesday's clash between Mississippi Valley State and Western Kentucky (see below).

Another team to lose Sunday but still draw a No. 1 seed for the dance was North Carolina. The Tar Heels were laying six points to Florida State in the ACC Championship, and the Seminoles outscored UNC 33-15 from beyond the arc to win by an 85-82 count. North Carolina sits atop the Midwest Region and will meet the winner of Lamar-Vermont.

Ohio State was 2-point chalk against Michigan State in the Big Ten Championship, and the Spartans' 68-64 triumph helped them earn the No. 1 seed in the West Region. The Buckeyes were slotted in the 2-hole of the East Region where Syracuse drew the top seed.

The A-10 crown went to St. Bonaventure, a 67-56 winner over Xavier who was a 3½-point favorite. That victory for the Bonnies meant four teams from the conference – St. Bonaventure along with Temple, Saint Louis and Xavier – received tickets to the dance while serving as the death knell for six other bubble squads (Miami-FL, Seton Hall, Mississippi State, Drexel, Oral Roberts and Nevada).

All six of those teams made it to the NIT that tips on Tuesday; Oral Roberts will host Nevada in one of the Wednesday games in that bracket. Tuesday also marks the beginning of the NCAA Tournament with half of the First Four contests, and here's a quick glance at those matchups. Be sure to check back on the Don Best odds screen to catch updated spreads and totals.

(16) Mississippi Valley State vs. (16) Western Kentucky [-4½]
Dayton, OH – 6:40 p.m. (ET)

Sun Belt champion Western Kentucky capped an unexpected run through the conference tourney with a 74-70 win over North Texas last Tuesday. The Hilltoppers were 7-9 in league play during the season and enter the First Four with a 15-18 overall record, the first losing mark to make the NCAA's since Coppin State in 2008. Western Kentucky brings a winning record against the spread into the game, however, at 18-14 along with an 18-14 tendency to the 'over.'

Mississippi Valley State (21-12 SU, 1-7 ATS) breezed through the SWAC schedule at 17-1 before sweeping all three tournament games. The Delta Devils' only loss since the end of December was at Arkansas-Pine Bluff on March 1, and they are making their fifth appearance in March Madness (first since 2008).

(14) Brigham Young vs. (14) Iona [+2]
Dayton, OH – 9:10 p.m. (ET)

This opening-round matchup will feed into the West Region where (3) Marquette awaits the winner in Louisville on Thursday.

Iona made a surprise exit from the MAAC Tournament with an 85-75 loss to Fairfield in the semifinals. The Gaels (25-7 SU, 14-15-1 ATS) took the regular season title at 15-3, two games ahead of Loyola (MD) who bested Fairfield in the championship, 48-44, to claim the automatic bid.

Tim Cluess' squad is all about the offense; Iona paces the nation with 83.2 points per game and is second with a 50.4 percent shooting clip. Point guard Scott Machado leads the country averaging 9.9 assists per game and is third on the team in scoring (13.6 PPG).

Brigham Young finished third in the West Coast Conference during the regular season with a 12-4 mark. The Cougars (25-8 SU, 14-15 ATS) fell to Gonzaga in the WCC semis, and their first season in the league found them 1-2 vs. the Zags, 0-2 vs. conference champ Saint Mary's.

Offense is also the strength of Dave Rose's club. The Cougars are 13th nationally in scoring (78.2 PPG), and feature four players scoring in double digits led by senior forward Noah Hartsock's 16.7.

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:24254 Followers:32
03/12/2012 10:31 PM

Opening Round Angles

March 12, 2012

The 2012 NCAA Tournament has arrived and with it once final chance to pad our bankrolls for the season. To make that shining moment happen, let's take a look at how teams in this event have fared most recently in the past. Note all results are since 1991 unless noted otherwise.

NCAA TOURNEY - MOST RECENT TRENDS



#1 Seeds are 84-0 SU (48-35-1 ATS) vs. #16 Seeds
#2 Seeds are 80-4 SU (35-45-4 ATS) vs. #15 Seeds
Only TWICE since 1988 has a #12 Seed failed to beat a #5 Seed (5-7 SU & 8-4 ATS L3Y)
Favorites of 7 > pts who are 3-0 SU & ATS in their last 3 games are 14-28-1 ATS vs a foe off a SU win
Favorites of 20 > pts are 2-8 ATS vs. a foe off a SU win
Favorites of > 7 pts who scored 100 > pts in last Conference Tourney game are 11-2 ATS
Dogs of 4 > pts playing off a SU Conference Tourney win as a dog of 6 > pts are 7-27-1 ATS last 12 years
Dogs of 18 > pts off a DD ATS win are 5-1 ATS
Dogs off a SU tourney win in which they allowed 80 > pts are 2-11 ATS

Because it's my belief that success in handicapping this tournament is tantamount to breaking the action down into rounds, let's take a look at some of the more relevant Most Recent Trend results that have occurred in ROUND ONE games of late:

FIRST ROUND NOTES


#1 Seeds off BB SU wins who are favorites of < 25 pts are 12-2 ATS
#2 Seeds are 9-24-4 ATS vs foes off a SU win
#3 Seeds off a SU favorite loss are 32-1 SU & 24-8-1 ATS (10-2 L7Y)
#4 Seeds are 27-13 ATS as favorites of < 9 pts (11-4 L7Y)
#7 Seeds are 1-7 ATS vs. foes off BB SU losses
#9 Seeds are 0-4 ATS as favorites of > 2 pts

Conference Tournament Champs in this round

ACC: 3-0-1 ATS
Atlantic 10: 1-4 ATS
Big 10: 4-6 ATS
Big 12: 3-8 ATS
Big East: 5-1 ATS
Big West: 1-5 ATS
Colonial: 12-6 ATS
C-USA: 1-4 ATS
Horizon: 6-1 ATS
MAC: 6-2 ATS
Missouri Valley: 2-5 ATS
Mountain West: 3-11 ATS
Pac-12: 4-2 ATS
Sun Belt: 3-2 ATS
SEC: 1-3 ATS
WAC: 2-5 ATS
West Coast: 3-1 ATS

Best Team SU records in this round

Purdue: 13-0
North Carolina: 10-0
Kansas: 5-0
Wisconsin: 5-0
Kentucky: 18-1
Duke: 14-1
Cincinnati 10-1

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Worst Team SU records in this round

Clemson: 0-5
New Mexico St: 0-4
Creighton: 1-5

Best Team ATS records in this round

VCU: 4-0
Xavier: 6-1-2
NC State: 5-1
New Mexico: 5-1
West Virginia: 5-1
Purdue: 4-1

Worst Team ATS records in this round

Clemson: 0-5
Temple: 0-4
Creighton: 1-5
Notre Dame: 1-4

Best Conference ATS records in this round

Big 10: 6-1
Pac 12: 8-2
Horizon: 9-3
MAC: 9-3
Colonial: 8-4
Missouri Valley: 14-7

Worst Conference ATS records in this round

CUSA: 1-5
Big West: 1-4
Ivy: 3-11
Big 12: 2-7

If this is not enough to get your blood flowing then you may be seriously in need of a cardiologist. I'll be back next week with a look at Sweet 16 and Elite 8 Round action.

Now, let the games begin!

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:24254 Followers:32
03/12/2012 10:34 PM

Must-see matchups

March 12, 2012

Make sure you've got all the glitches worked out of your picture-in-picture.

If you don't have it, have your computer handy and keep a game streaming. In this day and age, there's no excuse for missing a great moment in the NCAA Tournament. Appreciate that you no longer have to suffer through a period where there's only one game on and cut-ins come too late, if at all, forcing you to watch after already having seen a score or heard about a dramatic finish. Oh, the humanity.

Fortunately, technology has come around, because with opening round games now part of the mix, there are even more quality matchups to look forward to in a 68-team field.

Here are the Top 10 matchups to keep an eye on before the weekend rolls around. The offerings are so good that UConn/Iowa State didn't make the cut.

10) No. 6 San Diego State vs. No. 11 N.C. State (Opening Line – N.C. State -1.5)

Steve Fisher has no Fab Five, Glen Rice or even Kawhi Leonard to throw out there, but his Aztecs still finished as co-champions of a Mountain West conference that's never been stronger. Versatile scorers Jamaal Franklin and Chase Tapley are capable of flourishing in the ACC, so N.C. State gets no break in this opener. After nearly toppling UNC in the ACC semis, the Pack's confidence has never been higher. N.C. State will have to utilize its size inside, but SDSU has chopped down bigger trees than C.J. Leslie and Richard Howell. Expect a nail-biter.

9) No. 8 Memphis vs. No. 9 Saint Louis (Opening Line – Memphis -3.5)

This rivalry dates back to pre-CUSA, when the two regularly hooked up in the oldest of the old school, Metro Conference. If Rick Majerus has his way, the programs will have higher-profile meetings down the road, as he's gone on record saying he expect to turn the Billikens into a perennial Top-10 team. Memphis has been at that level over the last decade and has the talent to make a real run in this tournament. Will Barton and Joe Jackson are elite level players and Wesley Witherspoon is shockingly playing like one. Majerus hopes to sabotage those hopes with stingy defense and a solid half court attack led by gritty forward Brian Conklin, whose job inside could be made easier if Tigers center Tarik Black's forearm is of any hindrance.


Tommy Amaker and Harvard hope to make some noise in the opening round. (Getty Images)

8) No. 4 Vanderbilt vs. No. 13 Harvard (Opening Line – Vanderbilt -6.5)

Kevin Stallings was emotional following his team's upset of Kentucky in the SEC Tournament final, but I'm more curious as to what expletive came out from under his breath when this pairing was announced. For Vandy's trouble of moving up a few seed lines, it earns a date with the smartest team in the field, a capable Harvard squad that spent its early days serving as Jeremy Lin's supporting cast and has since grown into the Ivy League's biggest puncher. The Crimson own wins over NCAA qualifier FSU as well as NIT-bound schools St. Joseph's and UCF. They aren't small, as Kyle Casey, Keith Wright and freshman Steve Moundou-Missi can all really play. The Commodores better not celebrate that first SEC title too long or they're destined for a short life span. Fortunately for Vandy, Stallings knows how challenging Tommy Amaker's Harvard team will be.

7) No. 8 Creighton vs. No. 9 Alabama (Opening Line – Alabama -1.5)

Somewhere, Tony Mitchell will be somewhere watching with conflicted emotions. The athletic wingman suspended by head coach Michael Grant in February would love to be out there with his Crimson Tide teammates, but if he were, he'd have to deal with Doug McDermott. Creighton's 6-foot-8 star forward is a matchup nightmare due to his excellent footwork and supreme skill, leading his father's team to a Missouri Valley Tournament title. As the lynchpin of a veteran Blue Jays squad that has burly senior Gregory Echenique to throw JaMychal Green, don't sleep on the MVC squad being able to hang right with one of the SEC's most athletic squads. Since it won't be Mitchell, undersized freshman Levi Randolph will see a lot of McDermott, offering no grace period in his first postseason game.

6) No. 6 UNLV vs. No. 11 Colorado (Opening Line – UNLV -4.5)

The Mountain West has been thumping its chest that it had a much better year than the Pac-12, an argument that has been magnified by Colorado State getting an at-large bid ahead of regular season champ Washington. The Buffs won the conference tourney in their first year after arriving from the Big 12 thanks to double-double machine Andre Roberson and freshman swingman Spencer Dinwiddie, but will have to be on their toes to keep from getting hammered by the highly-regarded Runnin' Rebels. If UNLV gets rolling, it could deliver another black eye to the Pac-12 in a season filled with them. If it shoots itself in the foot with turnovers and missed free throws, they might wind up as one of the tournament's biggest disappointments. Mix in the conference drama and you've got great television.

5) No. 5 New Mexico vs. No. 12 Long Beach State (Opening Line – New Mexico -5)

Casper Ware opened the eyes of many pros who were trying to stay sharp out in L.A. summer leagues during the NBA lockout. Clearly, his confidence took off, since he rode the momentum to his second Big West Player of the Year award and often dwarfed opposing guards. So, yeah, Kendall Williams and Demetrius Walker need to be concerned. All of the Lobos should be, because second-leading scorer Larry Anderson is coming back after sitting out the conference tournament and Dan Monson is certainly capable of finding a few weaknesses in the Mountain West champs. Considering the Beach has battled Kansas, North Carolina, San Diego State, Louisville, Xavier, Pitt and Kansas State, this moment won't be too big for them.

4) No. 7 Notre Dame vs. No. 10 Xavier (Opening Line – Notre Dame -2.5)

At one point this season, Xavier looked like a Final Four team. In short spurts, they exhibited similar brilliance in the A-10 Tournament, but couldn't handle Andrew Nicholson in the final. Notre Dame, the ultimate overachievers, again took off after losing its leading scorer, coming together following the early-season loss of Tim Abromaitis. It will be hard to guess who shows up here, but two of the oldest Catholic universities in the country are certain to put on a great show. Watching Tu Holloway and Mark Lyons square off against younger up-and-comers Eric Atkins and Jerian Grant is worth the price of admission alone.

3) No. 6 Cincinnati vs. No. 11 Texas (Opening Line – Cincinnati -2.5)

The Bearcats reached the Big East Tournament final and have been far more consistent offensively down the stretch, winning nine of their last 12. Will having to wait until Friday to get into the mix quell that momentum? Texas is certainly formidable and carries in a healthy cogniscience of its mortality since it nearly missed the dance altogether. The Longhorns, among the last teams in, pack a lethal go-to scorer in J'Covan Brown and plenty of big bodies up front that can bang with Yancey Gates, so this game should be extremely competitive.

2) No. 7 Gonzaga vs. No. 10 West Virginia (Opening Line – West Virginia -1)

No need to ask where the beef is. Robert Sacre doesn't see the likes of Deniz Kilicli very often and neither are into the feeling out thing. Look for them to bang their husky 6-10 frames into one another like sumo wrestlers from the jump. It will be up to talented sophomore Elias Harris to keep the Big East's scorer and rebounder, Kevin Jones, from giving the Mountaineers a pulse. It's worth noting that tape of them going up against one another in such a huge game will be must-watch material for every NBA scouting department. Bob Huggins and Mark Few, too? This might not be one of the crispest games of the early rounds, but could be one of the most hotly-contested. The coaches demand it.

1) No. 5 Wichita State vs. No. 12 VCU (Opening Line – Wichita State -5.5)

With people openly wondering who steps up as this tournament's Butler or VCU, Wichita State gets to volunteer by beating last year's surprise Final Four crasher. Shaka Smart lost a few key pieces, but has reloaded with a deep team that throws the kitchen sink at you nightly, pressuring and defending while thriving from the perimeter. The Shockers are similar, only that they have gotten even more out of that recipe this season than the reloading Rams have. There's a reason Wichita State, with Toure' Murry potentially serving as the 2012 Joey Rodriguez, is the highest-rated mid-major in the field. VCU, which played in the First Four last year and was almost left out, could care less what the committee thinks. The Rams won their way via the Colonial Athletic tournament and have their sights set on shocking the world again. This game is what the NCAAs are all about. Broaden your horizons.

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:24254 Followers:32
03/12/2012 10:37 PM

Bracket Analysis

March 12, 2012

**Who can cut down the nets in New Orleans?**

I’ve identified 12 teams that are capable of winning six in a row in the NCAA Tournament. Kentucky and Syracuse have the best chances and before the injury to John Henson, I would have lumped North Carolina in there with the ‘Cuse and UK.

But Henson’s wrist injury kept him out of most of the ACC Tournament and it was evident how much his absence impacted the Tar Heels, who barely got past N.C. St. in the semifinals and lost to FSU in the finals. (We’ll know more about Henson’s wrist later this week.)

Our next tier of teams consists of Missouri, Kansas, Ohio St., Michigan St. and Vanderbilt. I’ve been hyping the Commodores for several weeks and tweeted that they were a great future play at 75/1 on March 1. Those odds aren’t anywhere to be found now.

Kevin Stallings’ bunch won a 71-64 decision over UK in Sunday’s SEC Tournament finals. The Commodores hooked up their backers as eight-point underdogs, cashing money-line tickets for a plus-350 return at the Las Vegas Hilton (risk $100 to win $350).

I have four other teams that have the talent and are capable of winning it all, but they are less likely to do so before the eight other aforementioned squads. This quartet is composed of Baylor, Florida, UConn and Michigan.

The Bears have as much talent as anybody in America, but I question their chemistry, shot selection and committment to get stops defensively. The Gators can beat anyone when they’re draining 3-pointers galore, and they have hit more treys than any team in the country.

The problem for UF is a lack of depth on the interior, but its draw of facing second-seeded Missouri is a plus. The Tigers play a similar style and don’t have a dominant front line. Plus, I give Florida the head-coaching advantage when looking at Billy Donovan and Frank Haith, and I think UF will be able to handle Mizzou’s vaunted pressure defense.

As for Michigan, it has one of the best point guards in America (Trey Burke), a great role player and senior leader (Zack Novak), an explosive scorer (Tim Hardaway Jr.), an excellent rebounder and post defender (Jordan Morgan) and an outstanding head coach.

As for the defending national champs, they seemed to regain their swagger at the Big East Tournament and losing to Syracuse might have been a blessing in disguise. Sure, UConn won five games in five days at MSG last year and fatigue didn’t catch up with it in the NCAAs, but I’m not sure that would’ve been the case again.

With Andre Drummond and Alex Oriakhi in the lane, the Huskies can cause problems for Kentucky and Anthony Davis. Jeremy Lamb is a lottery pick who can destroy opponents when he gets hot.

UConn’s guards are the wild cards. Ryan Boatright and Shabazz Napier are immensely talented, but Boatright gets too dribble-happy at times and should feed the big men more often. Napier is a terrific on-the-ball defender and can produce buckets in bunches, but his shot selection often leaves a lot to be desired.

But make no mistake, UConn is the last team John Calipari wanted to see in an 8/9 game in UK’s bracket.

Some might wonder why I’m not as bullish on teams like FSU, Duke, Georgetown and Marquette. I do think the Seminoles have an excellent shot at getting to the Elite Eight, but they go through too many scoring droughts to win six straight.

Duke’s head coach and 3-point shooting makes them a tough out, but the Blue Devils don’t have quality inside play or senior leadership. Finally, I’m not sure if Marquette or Georgetown is even going to get out of the first weekend.

**Committee Questions**

--Now that we’ve moved to 68 teams, it’s hard to feel for the ‘snubbed squads’ and I’m not sure many have valid cases this year. The only team I can really feel for is Drexel, which won 19 in a row before losing a nail-biter to VCU in the Colonial finals in Richmond without a key player (Derrick Thomas) that was suspended and will return for the postseason. But then again, the Dragons could’ve scheduled better. They went 4-3 against RPI Top 100 teams but faced just seven.

--Let’s not feel sorry for Seton Hall. If you want to go dancing, don’t lose to DePaul by 28 points in your regular-season finale.

--And please – PLEASE!!! – don’t lose any sleep over Mississippi St. being left out. The Bulldogs played themselves out with a plethora of lackluster efforts down the stretch and their SEC Tournament loss to Georgia sealed their fate.

--Tennessee certainly had the look of an at-large team over the last six weeks, but it’s difficult to overcome losses to Oakland, Charleston and Austin Peay. Also, a win over Ole Miss in the SEC Tournament was a must-have, and the Vols came up short in overtime.

--Now let’s talk about some questionable seeds. Florida should’ve been a No. 5 seed with wins over third-seeded FSU (by 18), Vandy and two wins over Alabama. Five of UF’s 10 losses came to teams in the RPI’s top six with only one of those defeats coming at home. I thought VCU had a shot at being in the 8/9 game but instead got a No. 12 seed. Vandy wins the SEC Tournament by dropping top-ranked Kentucky and yet is just a No. 5 seed and must travel to Albuquerque to play on Thursday. Creighton deserved better than an eighth seed, as I felt it would be in a 6/11 matchup.

--I’m ok with So. Miss getting a bid, but a No. 9 seed? I thought the Golden Eagles should’ve been one of the last 3-4 teams to get an at-large bid.

**B.E.’s Bonus Nuggets**

--Best First-Round Games:
1-Purdue vs. Saint Mary’s
2-VCU vs. Wichita St.
3-UConn vs. Iowa St.
4-Alabama vs. Creighton
5-West Va. vs. Gonzaga
6-Louisville vs. Davidson
7-New Mexico vs. Long Beach St.
8-San Diego St. vs. N.C. St.
9-Michigan vs. Ohio
10-Georgetown vs. Belmont

--Five double-digit seeds most likely to get to Sweet 16:
1-VCU
2-N.C. St.
3-Xavier
4-West Va.
5-Davidson

--My pre-tourney Power Rankings:
1-Kentucky
2-Syracuse
3-North Carolina (IF Henson ready to play; otherwise UNC in 7-10 range)
4-Missouri
5-Kansas
6-Michigan St.
7-Vanderbilt
8-Ohio St.
9-Baylor
10-Florida
11-Michigan
12-Florida State
13-UConn
14-VCU
15-Louisville
16-Saint Mary’s
17-Creighton
18-Marquette
19-New Mexico
20-Wisconsin

**Indiana left out due to Verdell Jones’ injury.

--I've been harping on what a huge disappointment Xavier has been for months. However, now that the Musketeers have made the Tournament and the expectations have subsided, perhaps they're ready to make a nice push? After all, Tu Holloway is extremely motivated to play well after the worst game of his career in last year's first-round loss to Marquette. And Xavier's draw looks manageable from my vantage point.

--The four No. 1 seeds for the NIT are Tennessee, Washington, Seton Hall and Arizona.

--I can't help but wonder if Mississippi St. head coach Rick Stansbury is going to taste a pinkslip if/when Mississippi St. falls in the NIT.

--And in case you were wondering, both Mississippi St. and Northwestern were just No. 4 seeds in the NIT.

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:24254 Followers:32
03/12/2012 10:40 PM

UConn opens 2012 NCAAs versus Iowa St.

9 seed CONNECTICUT HUSKIES (20-13)

vs. 8 seed IOWA STATE CYCLONES (22-10)


NCAA Tournament - Second Round
Tip-off: Thursday, 9:00 p.m. EDT – Louisville, KY
Line: Connecticut -2½

The defending national champions begin their quest for repeat title on Thursday night when Connecticut meets Iowa State in a Second Round NCAA matchup in Louisville.

Both teams have played pretty well down the stretch. UConn is 5-1-1 ATS in its past seven games, nearly beating Syracuse twice, losing by just two points and three points to the Orange. Iowa State has beaten both Kansas and Baylor during a strong season-ending, 12-game run (8-4 SU, 9-2-1 ATS). Can the underdog Cyclones pull out the victory on Thursday night? For the answer, check out the College Basketball Three at Three Pass for picks covering all the big games in college basketball each weekday.

Hall-of-Famer Jim Calhoun is an impressive 16-1 in NCAA Tournament openers as UConn’s head coach. His team's offense has been erratic this season, but the Huskies usually are tough defensively. They allow just 64.1 PPG on 38.4% FG, blocking 6.9 shots per game. Sophomore F/G Jeremy Lamb (17.7 PPG, 4.9 RPG) is the top scorer, but he needs to be more assertive in the offense. He did not score in the second half of the team’s last game against Syracuse, but he came up big last March with 16.2 PPG on 58% FG in the NCAA Tournament. You never know what to expect from PG Shabazz Napier (12.7 PPG, 5.8 APG) who has attempted 3, 4, 18, 2, 18 and 17 shots in his past six games. Napier shot very poorly in the 2011 NCAAs, scoring just 5.0 PPG on 28.6% FG. The talented freshman Drummond is coming off a strong performance against Syracuse, producing 14 points, 10 rebounds and three blocks. This three-star FoxSheets trend also sides with the Huskies:

CONNECTICUT is 8-0 ATS (+8.0 Units) in road games after covering 4 or 5 of their last 6 against the spread over the last 2 seasons. The average score was CONNECTICUT 68.5, OPPONENT 59.1 - (Rating = 3*).

Iowa State is an excellent three-point shooting team, making 8.9 threes per game on a healthy 38% clip. Scott Christopherson (12.5 PPG) is the marksman at 45% and he has been on a roll with 19.8 PPG in his past six games. But the heart and soul of the Cyclones is sophomore F Royce White who leads the team in points (13.1 PPG), rebounds (9.2 RPG), assists (5.1 APG), steals (1.2 SPG) and blocks (0.9 BPG). He’s averaging 16.0 PPG, 9.0 RPG and 5.7 APG in his past three games. White’s one weakness is foul shooting, as he shoots a dreadful 49% from the line. Senior G Chris Allen is the team’s third double-digit scorer (11.8 PPG), but he is in a shooting slump over his past four games, making just 31% FG. This strong FoxSheets trend also likes the Cyclones to emerge victorious.

Play Against - Neutral court teams as a favorite or pick (CONNECTICUT) - after scoring 55 points or less, with four starters returning from last season. (45-19 over the last 5 seasons.) (70.3%, +24.1 units. Rating = 2*).

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:24254 Followers:32
03/12/2012 10:41 PM

VCU takes on Wichita State Thursday


12 seed VCU RAMS (28-6)

vs. 5 seed WICHITA STATE SHOCKERS (27-5)


NCAA Tournament - Second Round
Tip-off: Thursday, 7:15 p.m. EDT – Portland, OR
Line: Wichita State -5½

VCU tries to make another long run in the NCAA Tournament, which starts with a matchup against a tough Wichita State team on Thursday night in Portland.

The Rams are catching fire in March again as they have won 17 of their past 18 contests, including a three-game run through the Colonial Athletic Association to begin the month. The Shockers are also hot, going 19-2 since the 2012 calendar year began. But instead of winning the Missouri Valley as the conference’s top seed, WSU was stunned by 12-point underdog Illinois State in the MVC semifinals. Can VCU make another deep run in the NCAA Tournament? For the answer, check out the College Basketball Three at Three Pass for picks covering all the big games in college basketball each weekday.

VCU allows a mere 59.8 PPG on 42.3% FG this season, which helps to compensate for an offense that shoots very poorly (41.0% FG, 33.7% 3-pt FG). Senior swingman Bradford Burgess is the leading scorer (13.3 PPG), but he has shot terribly all season at 36.4% FG. He was a key part to the Rams success in last year’s NCAAs, averaging 15.7 PPG and 7.0 RPG in the six games. Sophomore F Juvonte Reddic (10.6 PPG, 6.8 RPG) was scoring 13.6 PPG during a five-game stretch, but was held to four points on 2-of-5 FG in the win over Drexel in the CAA Championship game. But the main reason that VCU was able to beat the Dragons was due to the play of junior G Darius Theus (8.6 PPG), who lit them up for 16 points, five assists and five steals. This three-star FoxSheets coaching trend also sides with the Rams:

Shaka Smart is 27-9 ATS (75.0%, +17.1 Units) versus good defensive teams - shooting pct defense of <=42% after 15+ games as the coach of VIRGINIA COMMONWEALTH. The average score was VIRGINIA COMMONWEALTH 70.8, OPPONENT 63.5 - (Rating = 3*).

Unlike VCU, Wichita State can score in bunches (77.7 PPG, 15th in nation) because it is a tremendous shooting team from all spots on the floor, making 48.5% FG (13th in nation), 37.3% threes and 75.1% free throws. Despite the gaudy numbers, Illinois State held the Shockers to 34.9% FG in their season-ending loss. Senior G Joe Ragland (13.4 PPG, 3.4 APG) had a game-high 17 points (5-of-9 FG) as the only starter that shot better than 50% from the floor. Senior C Garrett Stutz leads WSU in points and rebounds (13.5 PPG, 8.0 RPG), but is coming off a foul-plagued MWC Tournament. He scored just 6.0 PPG on 6-of-13 FG in his 19.5 MPG. This strong FoxSheets trend also likes the Shockers to win and cover.

WICHITA STATE is 9-1 ATS (90.0%, +7.9 Units) in road games after covering 2 of their last 3 against the spread over the last 2 seasons. The average score was WICHITA STATE 74.2, OPPONENT 60.8 - (Rating = 2*).

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:24254 Followers:32
03/12/2012 10:43 PM

Colorado tries to keep rolling against UNLV

11 seed COLORADO BUFFALOES (23-11)

vs. 6 seed UNLV RUNNIN’ REBELS (27-5)


NCAA Tournament - Second Round
Tip-off: Thursday, 9:55 p.m. EDT – Albuquerque, NM
Line: UNLV -5

After a shocking four wins in four days in the Pac-12 Tournament, Colorado moves onto the NCAAs where sixth-seeded UNLV awaits.

The Buffaloes averaged only 59.8 PPG in their four conference tourney wins, but held all four opponents below 43% FG. Colorado is playing well, but this is the same team that got blown out by 14+ points in five separate Pac-12 games. The high-flying Rebels average 76.7 PPG (24th in nation) and have beaten great teams. But they are also 3-11 ATS in non-home games this year. Can Colorado keep its win streak alive? For the answer, check out the College Basketball Three at Three Pass for picks covering all the big games in college basketball each weekday.

Colorado took great care of the basketball during its Pac-12 run, with less than 10 turnovers in each of the four contests. It also received huge performances from sophomore F Andre Roberson (11.6 PPG, 11.1 RPG), who was one rebound shy of posting double-doubles in all four games, averaging 14.8 PPG and 10.3 RPG. Senior G Carlon Brown leads the Buffs in scoring (12.6 PPG) and has six straight games of 13+ points. This includes his 15.8 PPG in the four-game Pac-12 tourney run. This team doesn’t shoot particularly well from behind the arc (34.3%), but freshman G Spencer Dinwiddie is deadly from downtown, making 44% of his threes this season, including 4-of-4 in the Pac-12 Championship win over Arizona. This three-star FoxSheets trend also sides with the Buffs:

UNLV is 1-9 ATS (10.0%, -8.9 Units) in road games after playing 2 consecutive games as favorite this season. The average score was UNLV 72.3, OPPONENT 69.6 - (Rating = 3*).

The Rebels are a team that can play with anybody, beating North Carolina earlier in the year. PF Mike Moser averages a double-double (14.1 PPG, 10.6 RPG) and SF Chace Stanback (12.7 PPG) has the ability to take over games with a 46.4% accuracy rate from three-point range and 15 games of at least 15 points this year. Feeding these two frontcourt players is the guard tandem of Oscar Bellfield (5.3 APG, 9.8 PPG) and Anthony Marshall (12.1 PPG, 5.1 RPG, 4.6 APG, 1.5 SPG) who can dominate a game in many different ways. Marshall kept his team in the game in its MWC tourney loss to New Mexico, scoring 19 points, while Bellfield had 13 points, six assists and just one turnover. This strong FoxSheets trend also likes the Rebels to win and cover.

UNLV is 61-36 ATS (62.9%, +21.4 Units) after playing 2 consecutive home games since 1997. The average score was UNLV 73.9, OPPONENT 68.8 - (Rating = 1*).

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:24254 Followers:32
03/12/2012 10:45 PM

Gonzaga faces WVU Thursday in Pittsburgh


10 seed WEST VIRGINIA MOUNTAINEERS (19-13)

vs. 7 seed GONZAGA BULLDOGS (25-6)


NCAA Tournament - Second Round
Tip-off: Thursday, 7:20 p.m. EDT – Pittsburgh, PA
Line: Even

Gonzaga makes the long flight to Pittsburgh to face a team that is very familiar with the Steel City, the West Virginia Mountaineers.

As the spread would indicate, these are two very evenly matched basketball teams. But over the past five games, Gonzaga has looked to be the superior team, scoring 76.4 PPG on 48% FG, while WVU is scoring a pathetic 62.6 PPG on 37% FG. Defensively, the Bulldogs have limited these past five opponents to 63.2 PPG on 38.5% FG, while WVU has allowed its opponents to shoot at a 48% clip in this same time frame. But the Mountaineers will have more a virtual home game playing so close to campus. Which team will prevail on Thursday night? For the answer, check out the College Basketball Three at Three Pass for picks covering all the big games in college basketball each weekday.

West Virginia should have five or six more victories this year, but it just can’t win close games, as six of its past seven losses have been by six points or less. The offense has been brutal in the past two games in particular, scoring 58.5 PPG on just 32.5% FG. The Mountaineers revolve around Kevin Jones who led the Big East in both scoring (20.1 PPG) and rebounding (11.1 PPG) this season. Jones has been relying on his jumper a bit too much lately, going 4-of-24 from three-point land in his past six contests, including 1-of-8 in the Big East quarterfinal loss to UConn. Jones has scored at least 12 points in every game this season, and is averaging 21.7 PPG and 12.3 RPG in his past three contests. WVU has another dynamic scorer in Darryl “Truck” Bryant (17.2 PPG) whose poor decision-making down the stretch has certainly cost his team dearly. For the season, he has 89 assists and 78 turnovers, which is not the ratio you want from the guy handling the ball so much. He’s had a total of just five assists in his past four games. But the talented senior guard has done a great job driving the lane and getting to the free-throw stripe, going 34-of-41 FT (83%) in his past three contests. Another key to this team is keeping junior C Deniz Kilici (10.7 PPG, 5.4 RPG) on the court. He fouled out of the UConn loss, marking his eighth straight game of 3+ fouls. He has scored just 6.4 PPG on 36.6% FG in his past five contests. This three-star FoxSheets trend also sides with the Mountaineers:

WEST VIRGINIA is 23-6 ATS (+16.4 Units) in a post-season tournament game since 1997. The average score was WEST VIRGINIA 71.9, OPPONENT 67.9 - (Rating = 3*).

The Zags were once the Cinderella darlings of the NCAA Tournament, but they have not enjoyed much success as a greater seed, going 4-8 ATS in this role since 1999. They are 4-10 ATS (29%) in the NCAAs since 2005. Gonzaga has also struggled outside of Spokane this season, going 4-9 ATS in non-home games. But the Bulldogs are a well-rounded team with an ever-improving freshman backcourt of Kevin Pangos (13.8 PPG) and Gary Bell Jr. (10.0 PPG). They also have big bodies in the paint with 7-footer Robert Sacre (11.7 PPG, 6.3 RPG) and athletic 6-foot-7 junior Elias Harris (13.1 PPG, 8.7 RPG) who can score from anywhere. Harris is also an able defender and will probably be matched up on WVU’s star Kevin Jones. The Zags are so tough to guard because they shoot very well from downtown (38% 3-pt FG) with three marksmen shooting over 40% from behind the three-point arc in Bell Jr. (47.4%), Pangos (40.5%) and Harris (40.3%). This three-star FoxSheets coaching trend also likes Gonzaga to prevail.

Bob Huggins is 3-14 ATS (17.6%, -12.4 Units) in road games vs. teams who are called for 3+ less fouls/game than their opponents after 15+ games as the coach of WEST VIRGINIA. The average score was WEST VIRGINIA 63.6, OPPONENT 70.6 - (Rating = 3*)

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:24254 Followers:32
03/12/2012 10:47 PM

NCAA tournament opening lines show up offshore first

The Madness has begun.

Less than two hours after the NCAA tournament bracket was revealed, BetOnline.com posted opening pointspreads for 36 first and second-round NCAA tournament games.

The offshore sportbook, like it’s done throughout the season, was first to market with lines and saw a flurry of instant action that lit up Twitter and caused pointspreads to move dramatically in some cases.

The lines came out a little too quick in one case: No. 13 seed New Mexico State opened up as 4.5-point favorite over Indiana.

“Obvious typo,” BetOnline.com brand manager Dave Mason tweeted later. The Hoosiers are now 6.5-point favorites over the Aggies of New Mexico State.

Meanwhile in Las Vegas, bettors were lined up at the Wynn sportsbook, when director John Avello posted the first NCAA tournament lines in Nevada at approximately 6 p.m. PT. (See his openers below).

“They were all waiting for me when I came out to post the sheets,” said Avello, a longtime Vegas oddsmaker, who’s been setting odds on Selection Sunday for years. “We had good early action.”

Good and balanced, added Avello on his way out of the office.

While lines were popping all over the place offshore, there was very little early movement at the Wynn. In fact, an hour after Avello hit the button the Michigan State-Long Island spread was the only one that had moved more than one point.

“I had two numbers in my head on that game – 18.5 and 20,” said Avello, who watched Long Island play in the Northeast Conference tournament. “They can score and rebound. I have a tendency to lean toward the underdog, so I went with 18.5. An hour later, it’s at 20.”

Pete Korner, owner of the odds service the Sports Club, sent out suggested totals on all opening round NCAA tournament games. But most sportsbooks did not have totals up as of 10 p.m. ET, Sunday.

The highest total Korner sent out was 157 on the play-in game between BYU and Iona; the lowest was 120 on Montana-Wisconsin.

"Totals are much tougher than the spreads," Korner told Covers Sunday afternoon. "We have to decide the pace of play in those 1-16 games, which are likely blowouts."

Opening NCAA tournament lines at the Las Vegas Wynn

Tuesday
Mississippi Valley State vs. Western Kentucky -3.5
Iona vs. BYU -2

Wednesday
Lamar vs. Vermont -2.5
South Florida vs. California -3

Thursday
UNC-Asheville vs. Syracuse -18
Southern Miss vs. Kansas State -6.5
Loyola-Maryland vs. Ohio State -17.5
West Virginia vs. Gonzaga -1
South Dakota State vs. Baylor -8
Colorado vs. UNLV -5
Harvard vs. Vanderbilt -8.5
Montana vs. Wisconsin -11.5
Connecticut -1 vs. Iowa State
Colorado State vs. Murray State -4
Virginia Commonwealth vs. Wichita State -7
New Mexico State vs. Indiana -7.5
Long Beach State vs. New Mexico -4.5
Davidson vs. Louisville -8.5

Friday
Lehigh vs. Duke -12.5
Xavier vs. Notre Dame -3
Alabama vs. Creigton -1
St. Bonaventure vs. Florida State -6.5
Texas vs. Cincinnati -3
Ohio vs. Michigan -6
LIU-Brooklyn vs. Michigan State -18.5
St. Louis vs. Memphis -3.5
Belmont vs. Georgetown -4
North Carolina State vs. San Diego State -1
St. Bonaventure vs. Florida State -6.5
Texas vs. Cincinnati -3
Ohio vs. Michigan -6
Norfolk State vs. Missouri -22
Virginia vs. Florida -3.
Detroit vs. Kansas -16
Purdue vs. Saint Mary’s PK

Odds courtesy of BetOnline.com.

Tuesday

Mississippi Valley State vs. Western Kentucky -6
Iona vs. BYU -1.5

Wednesday

Vermont vs. Lamar -3.5
South Florida vs. California -3

South

Kentucky vs. Miss/Valley State, Thursday
Iowa State (-1.5) vs UConn, Thursday

Wichita State (-5.5) vs. VCU, Thursday
Indiana (-5.5) vs. N. Mexico State, Thursday

Baylor (-9) vs. S. Dakota St, Thursday
UNLV (-2.5) vs. Colorado, Thursday

Notre Dame (-3) vs. Xavier, Friday
Duke (-12) vs. Lehigh, Friday

Midwest

North Carolina vs. Lamar/Vermont, Friday
Creighton (-2) vs. Alabama, Friday

Temple vs. California/South Florida, Friday
Michigan (-6) vs. Ohio, Friday

San Diego State (pick 'em) vs. North Carolina State, Friday
Georgetown (-5) vs. Belmont, Friday

Saint Mary's vs. Purdue (-1), Friday
Kansas (-15) vs. Detroit, Friday

East

Syracuse (-16) vs. UNC Asheville, Thursday
Kansas State (-5.5) vs. So. Miss, Thursday

Vanderbilt (-5.5) vs. Harvard, Thursday
Wisconsin (-8.5) vs. Montana, Thursday

Florida State (-5.5) vs. St. Bonaventure, Friday
Cincinnati (-1.5) vs. Texas, Friday

Gonzaga vs. West Virginia (-1), Thursday
Ohio State (-17) vs. Loyola MD, Thursday

West

Michigan State (-16.5) vs. LIU Brooklyn, Friday
Memphis (-3) vs. Saint Louis, Friday

New Mexico (-4) vs. Long Beach St, Thursday
Louisville (-8) vs. Davidson, Thursday

Marquette vs. BYU/Iona, Thursday
Murray State (-2) vs. Colorado State, Thursday

Florida (-3.5) vs. Virginia, Friday
Missouri (-21) vs. Norfolk State, Friday

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:24254 Followers:32
03/12/2012 10:49 PM

NCAA Tournament: Best Round 1 betting trends

The 2012 NCAA Tournament has arrived and with it a final chance to pad our bankrolls for the season.

To make that shining moment happen, let’s take a look at how teams in this event have fared most recently in the past. Here are notes from the 2012 PLAYBOOK NCAA Tournament guide. Note all results are since 1991 unless noted otherwise.

NCAA TOURNEY – MOST RECENT TRENDS

• No. 1 seeds are 84-0 SU (48-35-1 ATS) vs. No. 16 seeds

• No. 2 seeds are 80-4 SU (35-45-4 ATS) vs. No. 15 seeds

• A No. 12 seed failed to beat a No. 5 seed (5-7 SU & 8-4 ATS last three years) only twice since 1988.

• Favorites of seven or more points who are 3-0 SU & ATS in their last 3 games are 14-28-1 ATS vs. foes off a SU win.

• Favorites of 20 or more points are 2-8 ATS vs. a foe off a SU win

• Favorites under 7 points who scored 100 points or more in their last conference tourney game are 11-2 ATS.

• Underdogs getting four or more points playing off a SU conference tourney win as a dog of six or more points are 7-27-1 ATS last 12 years.

• Dogs getting 18 or more points off double-digit ATS wins are 5-1 ATS.

• Dogs off a SU tourney win in which they allowed 80 or fewer points are 2-11 ATS.

Because it’s my belief that success in handicapping this tournament is tantamount to breaking the action down into rounds, let’s take a look at some of the more relevant and most recent trend results that have occurred in round one games:

FIRST ROUND NOTES

• No. 1 seeds favored by fewer than 25 points off back to back SU wins are 12-2 ATS.

• No. 2 seeds are 9-24-4 ATS vs. foes off a SU win.

• No. 3 seeds off a SU favorite loss are 32-1 SU & 24-8-1 ATS (10-2 last seven years).

• No. 4 seeds are 27-13 ATS when favored by fewer than nine points (11-4 last seven years).

• No. 7 seeds are 1-7 ATS vs. foes off back to back SU losses.

• No. 9 seeds are 0-4 ATS when favored by fewer than two points.

Conference tournament champs in this round (numbers all ATS)

ACC: 3-0-1, Atlantic: 10 1-4, Big Ten: 4-6, Big 12: 3-8, Big East: 5-1, Big West: 1-5, Colonial: 12-6, C-USA: 1-4, Horizon: 6-1, MAC: 6-2, Missouri Valley: 2-5, Mountain West: 3-11, Pac-12: 4-2, Sun Belt: 3-2, SEC: 1-3, WAC: 2-5, West Coast: 3-1

Best team records (SU) in this round

Purdue: 13-0, Maryland: 10-0, N Carolina: 10-0, Kansas: 5-0, UCLA: 5-0, Wisconsin: 5-0, Kentucky: 18-1, Duke: 14-1, Cincinnati 10-1

Worst team records (SU) in this round

Clemson: 0-5, New Mexico State: 0-4, Creighton: 1-5

Best team ATS records in this round

VCU: 4-0, Xavier: 6-1-2, NC State: 5-1, New Mexico: 5-1, West Virginia: 5-1, Purdue: 4-1, Washington: 4-1

Worst team ATS records in this round

Oregon: 0-6, Clemson: 0-5, Massachusetts: 0-4, Temple: 0-4, Tennessee: 1-7, Creighton: 1-5, Notre Dame: 1-4

Best conference ATS records in this round

Big Ten: 6-1, Pac-12: 8-2, Horizon: 9-3, MAC: 9-3, Colonial: 8-4, Missouri Valley: 14-7

Worst conference ATS records in this round

CUSA: 1-5, Big West: 1-4, Ivy: 3-11, Big 12: 2-7

If this is not enough to get your blood flowing then you may be seriously in need of a cardiologist. I’ll be back next week with a look at Sweet 16 and Elite Eight round action.

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs: