Home College Basketball College Basketball Betting Articles Daily Expert NCAA Basketball First Half ATS Picks & Betting Predictions 3/12/2020

Daily Expert NCAA Basketball First Half ATS Picks & Betting Predictions 3/12/2020

Wanted to get our numbers up early, as I’ll be doing some travelling today, but will stop and update the articles, as for the time being, college hoops are the only game in town until the NBA decides what they’re going to do.

I can pretty much guess what the first half lines are going to be within a half-point on all the games, although as we’ve seen, even a half-point makes a big difference in first-half betting, so will update after the first-half numbers are out. Right now, it’s looking like one play, unless one of the lines comes out differently than I’m expecting.

Road TeamHome TeamLineProjected Margin
MarquetteSeton HallSeton Hall -2Marquette 1
Kent StateBall StateKent -.5Ball State 2
West VirginiaOklahomaWest Virginia -2West Virginia 4
MissouriTexas A&MMissouri -1.5Missouri 5
TempleSMUSMU -1.5SMU 2
East CarolinaMemphisMemphis -6.5Memphis 10
Long BeachIrvineIrvine -7Irvine 7
Cal DavisHawaiiHawaii -1Hawaii 1
BakersfieldRio Grande ValleyUTRGV -1Bakersfield 1

Marquette vs. Seton Hall: Seton Hall is favored by 2 in the first half of this one and I have Marquette leading by 1, so going to go ahead and take a shot on Marquette +2 in the first half. The betting public is all over Seton Hall in this one after they won both meetings during the regular season, but getting a third win may be a little more difficult. Despite being 13-5 in conference play, Seton Hall was -.3 in first half scoring margin. Marquette was -1.2 in conference scoring margin.

Bakersfield vs. UTRGV: Strange one here, as Rio Grande Valley is favored by 1 in the first half, which you would expect given their conference records. Bakersfield was 6-10 in conference play, but had a first half scoring margin of +.2. Rio Grande Valley was 9-7 in conference, but was -1.1 in first half scoring. Both teams are dismal away from home, but Bakersfield’s first-half scoring margin is much better, so will take a shot on Bakersfield +1 in the first half of this one.

END OF MARCH 12 PICKS

Another pass on Tuesday here, so still at 47-41-1 on the year and we’re getting our numbers posted now and will come back and take a look at some of the games on the schedule.

Road TeamHome TeamLineProjected Margin
Boston CollegeNotre DameNotre Dame -5Notre Dame 3
CaliforniaStanfordStanford -5.5Stanford 6
NebraskaIndianaIndiana -8Indiana 6
St. John'sGeorgetownSt. John's -2St. John's 3
DePaulXavierXavier -3.5Xavier 2
ManhattanSienaSiena -3.5Siena 5
Iowa StateOklahoma StateOklahoma State -3.5Oklahoma State 2
Kansas StateTCUTCU -.5TCU 1
GeorgiaOle MissOle Miss -2Georgia 2
VanderbiltArkansasArkansas -5Arkansas 3

St. John’s vs. Georgetown: This is an interesting one, as St. John’s is favored by 2 in the first half and I have them leading by three, as they’ve been a better first-half team than the Hoyas, even when Georgetown is healthy. The Hoyas have been outscored by 5.1 points in the first half of conference games compared to St. John’s at -2.1. Don’t like playing such as public team, but would give the lean to St. John’s in this one if I wanted to play the game.

Manhattan vs. Siena: Siena is favored by 3.5 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 5, so would give the nod to the favorite if I had to play this one. Siena is outscoring conference foes by 3.5 points in the first half, while the Jaspers are -.2, so not really a huge edge there, but Siena is a better shooting team. Still, not a great game from a wagering standpoint.

Georgia vs. Mississippi: This is much like the full game, where I have Georgia in front, but not by a big margin and hard to make it anything more than a lean. There isn’t  huge difference in the teams in terms of first half scoring margin in conference games, which should favor the underdog a little bit.

Vanderbilt vs. Arkansas: Arkansas is favored by 5 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 3, so would lean to the dog here. Arkansas was -1.4 in first-half conference scoring margin, while Vandy was -2.9, so just a 1.5 point difference there. Arkansas did wax Vandy by 20 during the season, but it was just a 6-point game in Arkansas at the half.

END OF MARCH 11 PICKS

No plays here Monday, so we’re still 47-41-1 on the season with our first half side plays. We’re looking at night games only tonight, and is often the case, will get the numbers posted and then come back to look at some of the games on the schedule.

Road TeamHome TeamLineProjected Margin
MarquetteSeton HallSeton Hall -2Marquette 1
Kent StateBall StateKent -.5Ball State 2
West VirginiaOklahomaWest Virginia -2West Virginia 4
MissouriTexas A&MMissouri -1.5Missouri 5
TempleSMUSMU -1.5SMU 2
East CarolinaMemphisMemphis -6.5Memphis 10
Long BeachIrvineIrvine -7Irvine 7
Cal DavisHawaiiHawaii -1Hawaii 1
BakersfieldRio Grande ValleyUTRGV -1Bakersfield 1

North Carolina vs. Virginia Tech: The betting public loves North Carolina in this one and you really can’t blame them as the Tar Heels took Virginia Tech to overtime earlier this season on the road while missing a couple of key players. North Carolina did lead by six at the break and I have them leading by 3, so the slightest of leans to the Tar Heels, but not one you really want to be playing.

Northeastern vs. Hofstra: Northeastern is the one of the sharp plays today, as Hofstra opened -1.5 and the full game line has dropped to 1 even though the Dutchmen are getting more than 80% of the wagers. Hofstra did win both meetings during the season and wouldn’t be surprised to see Northeastern turn the tables today after a pair of close losses. Still, there’s no real value on Northeastern in this one, but would lean that way if I had to play this one.

Illinois-Chicago vs. Northern Kentucky: Strange series here during the year as the road team thumped the home team in both meetings, with each winning by double-digits. Illinois-Chicago jumped out to a 43-18 halftime lead the last time these two met and think it will be a different story in this one, but no real interest in playing the game.

North Dakota vs. North Dakota State: Interesting one here, as each team won at home. North Dakota State is the better of the two teams, but it won’t be easy against their instate rivals, who do get credit for having a better AOPR, but State has a +4.5 halftime scoring margin compared to -1.1 for North Dakota. Would lean to the dog if I really had to play this one.

END OF MARCH 10 PICKS

We dropped both games here Sunday, losing an ugly one in Michigan and then having our chances with Illinois, but it wasn’t meant to be. Getting numbers posted now and then will come back and look at some of the games on the slate.

Road TeamHome TeamLineProjected Margin
Boston CollegeNotre DameNotre Dame -5Notre Dame 3
CaliforniaStanfordStanford -5.5Stanford 6
NebraskaIndianaIndiana -8Indiana 6
St. John'sGeorgetownSt. John's -2St. John's 3
DePaulXavierXavier -3.5Xavier 2
ManhattanSienaSiena -3.5Siena 5
Iowa StateOklahoma StateOklahoma State -3.5Oklahoma State 2
Kansas StateTCUTCU -.5TCU 1
GeorgiaOle MissOle Miss -2Georgia 2
VanderbiltArkansasArkansas -5Arkansas 3

A bit of a tough schedule here for Monday, so no official plays. Sometimes we can look at seven or eight games and come up with plays for all three articles and days like you can look at 13 games and not have more than a play or two.

Eastern Michigan at Kent State: This is much like the full game, where I’d lean to the underdog, but having a tough time pulling the trigger after they won by 21 at home as an underdog earlier in the year. That’s definitely one way to get the attention of a superior team, but Eastern Michigan does cause problems now and then for conference foes, just due to their style and defense. But that happens more often at home. A little surprised to see this one rated even at the half, but not a whole lot of interest in playing this one.

Purdue Fort Wayne vs. North Dakota: North Dakota is favored by 1 and I have them leading by 5, but another game that’s tough to pull the trigger on. Fort Wayne finished a game behind North Dakota in the conference standings, but had a better first-half scoring margin in conference games, not that either team was all that good. The home team won each game during the regular season and had at least a six-point lead at halftime.

San Francisco vs. Gonzaga: The Zags are favored by 7 and hard to predict how they’ll come out for this one. Gonzaga is pretty much assured a berth in the NCAA Tournament regardless of what happens in this one, while the Dons can take a huge step towards getting there with a win and will probably play with a little more desperation. San Francisco led at halftime in the two games between the teams this season, but Gonzaga is good enough to come out on fire and put this one away early. They really haven’t been pushed often this season. My numbers have this one a five-point game at the break, but want no part of San Francisco in this one.

END OF MARCH 9 PICKS

We moved to 47-39-1 on the season with our first-half college sides on Saturday and we’ll have two plays today, so we’ll get those and the numbers posted and then come back and look at a few others games in order to get these out quickly with a few early starts.

Road TeamHome TeamLineProjected Margin
MarquetteSeton HallSeton Hall -2Marquette 1
Kent StateBall StateKent -.5Ball State 2
West VirginiaOklahomaWest Virginia -2West Virginia 4
MissouriTexas A&MMissouri -1.5Missouri 5
TempleSMUSMU -1.5SMU 2
East CarolinaMemphisMemphis -6.5Memphis 10
Long BeachIrvineIrvine -7Irvine 7
Cal DavisHawaiiHawaii -1Hawaii 1
BakersfieldRio Grande ValleyUTRGV -1Bakersfield 1

Michigan at Maryland: The Terps are favored by 2 in the first half and I have Michigan leading by a point, so going to go ahead and take Michigan +2 in the first half. It’s obviously a big revenge game for Maryland, who lost to the Wolverines both games a year ago, but Michigan has proven itself to be a better first-half team this season. Michigan has a conference scoring margin of +1.4, while Maryland is -1.5. Another set of numbers I use for the first half, has Michigan 3.4 points better on a neutral court.

Iowa at Illinois: Illinois is favored by 2 in the first half and I have them leading by 4, so will take a shot on the home team in this one. Illinois lost at Iowa earlier this season after grabbing a 31-30 halftime lead, so have to expect Illinois to come out and try and put some distance between the two teams early on. Iowa is -1.6 in the first half in scoring margin when it comes to conference games, while Illinois is +1.8. I have Illinois 2 points better on a neutral court with my other numbers and think that playing at home with revenge will be beneficial.

Ohio State at Michigan State: Michigan State is favored by 3.5 and I have them leading by 2, but can’t really pull the trigger on the Buckeyes here, as they simply haven’t been a very good team on the road, getting outscored by 1.2 points away from home, while Michigan State has a scoring margin of +8 at home. Will just stay away from this one.

END OF MARCH 8 PICKS

A split with these plays last night and that was the highlight of the evening, as we fell to 47-39-1 for the season. We’re getting some numbers posted and then will come back with a look at some of the games on the schedule.

Road TeamHome TeamLineProjected Margin
Boston CollegeNotre DameNotre Dame -5Notre Dame 3
CaliforniaStanfordStanford -5.5Stanford 6
NebraskaIndianaIndiana -8Indiana 6
St. John'sGeorgetownSt. John's -2St. John's 3
DePaulXavierXavier -3.5Xavier 2
ManhattanSienaSiena -3.5Siena 5
Iowa StateOklahoma StateOklahoma State -3.5Oklahoma State 2
Kansas StateTCUTCU -.5TCU 1
GeorgiaOle MissOle Miss -2Georgia 2
VanderbiltArkansasArkansas -5Arkansas 3

Hawaii at Northridge: For the second straight game Hawaii is getting a little bit of backing and they did get the job done the first time. Northridge is favored by 1 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 2, so the slightest of leans to the home team. Hawaii is outscored by .3 points in the first half of conference games, while Northridge is a +1.6 in the first half of conference games. Northridge is 4-2 ATS on the season in revenge games at home this season.

UC Davis at Riverside: not the most enticing game on the schedule for Saturday, where Riverside is favored by 2.5 in the first half and I have them leading by 2. While neither team exactly tears it up in conference play, both teams do have positive scoring margins in the first half. With Riverside winning the first meeting between the two, would give the slightest of leans to the road dog here.

Sacramento State at Portland State: The Vikings are favored by 2 in the first half of this one and I have Portland State leading by 3, so will take a shot on PSU -2 in this one. Sacramento State won the first meeting of the season and were able to dictate the pace of the game, as the score was 27-23 at the half and the Hornets went on to a 66-55 victory. The Vikings should have a bigger influence on the game here and the Vikings are 6-1 revenging a road loss this season, so think they’ll come out strong in this one. Portland State is +3.7 in first-half scoring margin of Big Sky Conference games, while Sacramento State is +1.

 

END OF MARCH 7 PICKS

No plays with this article for Thursday and we’ll take a look at the games on the East coast (Metro Atlanta and Ivy League) for Friday. Since we were idle on Thursday, we’re still 46-38-1 on the season with these plays. As we frequently do, I’ll get the numbers posted and then back and take a look at some of the games for tonight.

Road TeamHome TeamLineProjected Margin
MarquetteSeton HallSeton Hall -2Marquette 1
Kent StateBall StateKent -.5Ball State 2
West VirginiaOklahomaWest Virginia -2West Virginia 4
MissouriTexas A&MMissouri -1.5Missouri 5
TempleSMUSMU -1.5SMU 2
East CarolinaMemphisMemphis -6.5Memphis 10
Long BeachIrvineIrvine -7Irvine 7
Cal DavisHawaiiHawaii -1Hawaii 1
BakersfieldRio Grande ValleyUTRGV -1Bakersfield 1

Going to have two plays for today, as I like the first half wagers a little better than the full game plays.

Niagara at Canisius: Canisius is favored by 3 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 6, so will go ahead and take a shot on the home team in this one. Niagara defeated Canisius by three points earlier this season and Canisius has a much better first-half scoring margin in conference games. The one thing Canisius hasn’t done well this year is play as a favorite, as they’re 0-8 on the season, which is somewhat reflected in our projections, as we have Canisius leading by 6 at the half and winning the game by 6, so they’ve been a better first-half team this season.

Fairfield at Manhattan: Manhattan is favored by 2.5 and I have them leading by three points, but no real interest in laying points with the Jaspers, who aren’t a very good team, but then again, neither is Fairfield. The Jaspers have been decent (3-1 ATS) about avenging a loss so far this season, and would lean that way if I had to play the game.

Yale at Dartmouth: Yale is favored by 3.5 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 2, so going to take a shot on Dartmouth +3.5 in this one. Yale won by 18 points earlier this season and Dartmouth is a decent home team. Yale does have Harvard tomorrow and that game will likely determine the Ivy League, so can’t blame Yale if not too terribly excited for this one.

END OF MARCH 6 PICKS

We won both of our plays here on Wednesday to move to 46-38-1 on the season and have a large number of games on today’s slate with the late starting times, so getting the numbers up now and will come back with the standard look at the games.

Road TeamHome TeamLineProjected Margin
Boston CollegeNotre DameNotre Dame -5Notre Dame 3
CaliforniaStanfordStanford -5.5Stanford 6
NebraskaIndianaIndiana -8Indiana 6
St. John'sGeorgetownSt. John's -2St. John's 3
DePaulXavierXavier -3.5Xavier 2
ManhattanSienaSiena -3.5Siena 5
Iowa StateOklahoma StateOklahoma State -3.5Oklahoma State 2
Kansas StateTCUTCU -.5TCU 1
GeorgiaOle MissOle Miss -2Georgia 2
VanderbiltArkansasArkansas -5Arkansas 3

Tough slate of games today, so no official plays, but we’ll take a look at a few of the more interesting ones on the schedule.

Weber State at Idaho: The Vandals were a go to team for us earlier this season, but it’s starting to look like dropping some close decisions have finally started taking their toll on Idaho, as they’ve been getting thumped recently.  In their last five games they’ve been outscored by 19.2 points in just the first half. Weber State has been no bargain in the first half themselves, especially on the road where they get outscored by more than 10 points. Hard to make a call in this one, but would probably lean to Idaho if I had to choose the lesser of two evils in this one.

Cal Poly at Long Beach: Long Beach is favored by 2.5 in the first half and I have them leading by 4, so would lean to the home team if I really had to play this one. It is a revenge game for the home team and Cal Poly has been atrocious on the road this season.

Northern Arizona at Portland State: Another game where I’d lean to the home team if I had to play it, as Portland State has a first-half scoring margin of +3.8 in conference games, while the Lumberjacks are -1.9. The Vikings are a much better team at home, so wouldn’t be surprised to see them jump out to a big lead, something they did in Arizona, but the Lumberjacks stormed back in the second half to take the victory.

END OF MARCH 5 PICKS

 

These plays have hit a brick wall after a nice run, as we dropped to 44-38-1 on the first half sides, as Monroe failed to get the job done in what I thought was a pretty solid situation for them. Running a little late, so getting the numbers posted and then following back with a look at some of the games.

Road TeamHome TeamLineProjected Margin
MarquetteSeton HallSeton Hall -2Marquette 1
Kent StateBall StateKent -.5Ball State 2
West VirginiaOklahomaWest Virginia -2West Virginia 4
MissouriTexas A&MMissouri -1.5Missouri 5
TempleSMUSMU -1.5SMU 2
East CarolinaMemphisMemphis -6.5Memphis 10
Long BeachIrvineIrvine -7Irvine 7
Cal DavisHawaiiHawaii -1Hawaii 1
BakersfieldRio Grande ValleyUTRGV -1Bakersfield 1

Georgetown at Creighton: Creighton is favored by 7 in the first half of this revenge game and I have them leading by 11, so will go ahead and take Creighton -7 in this one. The Hoyas shot better than 50% from the field in the first meeting between the two, when they came away with an 83-80 victory and think Creighton will bounce back after a dismal game with St. Johns and the previous loss to the Hoyas.

Villanova at Seton Hall: Seton Hall is favored by 2 and I have the Wildcats leading by a point, so would give the slightest of leans to the road team in a revenge situation here. Villanova is a little bit better of a first half team than the Pirates, as Villanova has a first half scoring margin of +2 in conference games, while Seton Hall is -.2. The public is on Villanova a little bit in this one, so that makes it a little harder to pull the trigger.

Pittsburgh at Georgia Tech: Georgia Tech is favored by 3 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 5, but will go ahead and take the Yellow Jackets in this revenge game. Georgia Tech is a +2.3 in the first half of conference games, while the Panthers are -3.6, so the Jackets should be close to 6 points on a neutral court as there isn’t a huge difference in AOPR.

END OF MARCH 4 PICKS

We’ve hit a wall with these plays, which dropped to 44-37-1 last night, as Baylor played a bit of an uninspired game and couldn’t get much of anything going against Texas Tech. We’ll have one play tonight.

Road TeamHome TeamLineProjected Margin
Boston CollegeNotre DameNotre Dame -5Notre Dame 3
CaliforniaStanfordStanford -5.5Stanford 6
NebraskaIndianaIndiana -8Indiana 6
St. John'sGeorgetownSt. John's -2St. John's 3
DePaulXavierXavier -3.5Xavier 2
ManhattanSienaSiena -3.5Siena 5
Iowa StateOklahoma StateOklahoma State -3.5Oklahoma State 2
Kansas StateTCUTCU -.5TCU 1
GeorgiaOle MissOle Miss -2Georgia 2
VanderbiltArkansasArkansas -5Arkansas 3

Appalachian State at Monroe: Appalachian State is favored by 1 here and I have Monroe leading by 3, so will take a shot on Monroe in this spot. Appalachian State is 7-8 on the road, where they are getting outscored by 3.6 points for the season, while Monroe is 7-7 at home and has a scoring margin of +3.9 in the first half. In conference play, the Mountaineers are 10-9 but are outscored by 4.0 points, while Monroe is just 5-14 but have been outscored by just 1.3 points, so Monroe is playing tough in the first half, although the final 20 minutes are a different story, as they are outscored by 4.5 points. Appalachian State has a positive scoring margin in the second half, but will take Monroe in this one.

Marquette at DePaul: Marquette is favored by 2 in the first half and I have them leading by the same margin, but would give the slightest of leans to the home team if I wanted to play this one. I have Marquette 3.1 points better on a neutral court in the first half, and think DePaul will give a decent showing in a revenge spot. Don’t like DePaul quite enough to make a play, however.

Tennessee at Kentucky: The Wildcats are favored by 4.5 and I have them leading by 4, so would take a shot on the Vols if I had to make a play in this one. Tennessee has a first half scoring margin of +1.2 in SEC play, while Kentucky is +2.7 in conference games. Home court advantage for the ‘Cats should be nullified a little bit by the Vols playing with revenge.

Texas at Oklahoma: This is much like the game directly above, where if I absolutely had to play it, would look towards the road dog seeking revenge. The Sooners are -.4 in the first half of conference games, while Texas is -.7, so not a huge difference there and again, the fact that the away team is playing with revenge should offset the home court advantage slightly.

END OF MARCH 3 PICKS

We’ve dropped three straight here, as Kansas didn’t play until the second half, which happened to us frequently at the beginning of the season. Just three games with the standard halftime lines, so will get the numbers up and then come back for a decent look at each one of the games on the schedule.

Road TeamHome TeamLineProjected Margin
MarquetteSeton HallSeton Hall -2Marquette 1
Kent StateBall StateKent -.5Ball State 2
West VirginiaOklahomaWest Virginia -2West Virginia 4
MissouriTexas A&MMissouri -1.5Missouri 5
TempleSMUSMU -1.5SMU 2
East CarolinaMemphisMemphis -6.5Memphis 10
Long BeachIrvineIrvine -7Irvine 7
Cal DavisHawaiiHawaii -1Hawaii 1
BakersfieldRio Grande ValleyUTRGV -1Bakersfield 1

North Carolina State at Duke: Duke is favored by 7, which is what I have them leading by, so not too interested in taking the Blue Devils here, although that would be the way I’d lean if I had to make a choice. Duke’s home scoring margin is +12.5 points, while the Wolfpack are -.9 on the road, so wouldn’t be shocked to see the Blue Devils come out strong.

Texas Tech at Baylor: Baylor is favored by 4 in the first half and I have them leading by 9, so going to take a shot on the Bears in this one even though it’s a revenge game for Tech. Baylor bounced back strong after their loss to Kansas and think they’ll do so once again in this one. The money on Texas Tech, which is keeping the full game line at 7.5 isn’t really anything out of the ordinary in Baylor games, as the Bears have gotten wagered against quite a few times this year. Even though the Raiders are a decent team, they’re just 2-5 ATS when playing a team they lost to at home in the first meeting over the past 2.5 seasons, so will go ahead and take the better team overall in this one.

Idaho State at Weber State: As much as I love the Big Sky Conference, there’s no denying this is an ugly game. Weber is favored by 3, which is a little unusual for a 6.5-point full game favorite, so somebody likes Idaho State a little bit, but I have Weber leading by 3 and will sit this one out.

END OF MARCH 2 PICKS

We dropped our last two here to fall to 44-35-1 for the season, as Sacramento State started out strong, but then hit a lull in the middle of the first half. Just one play for today.

Road TeamHome TeamLineProjected Margin
Boston CollegeNotre DameNotre Dame -5Notre Dame 3
CaliforniaStanfordStanford -5.5Stanford 6
NebraskaIndianaIndiana -8Indiana 6
St. John'sGeorgetownSt. John's -2St. John's 3
DePaulXavierXavier -3.5Xavier 2
ManhattanSienaSiena -3.5Siena 5
Iowa StateOklahoma StateOklahoma State -3.5Oklahoma State 2
Kansas StateTCUTCU -.5TCU 1
GeorgiaOle MissOle Miss -2Georgia 2
VanderbiltArkansasArkansas -5Arkansas 3

Towson at Northeastern: Northeastern is getting a little play in this one, as the line has moved from Northeastern -4 to -5 even though the road team is getting 70% of the wagers. Northeastern is favored by 3 in the first half and I have them leading by 2, but will respect the line move and just stay away from this one.

Wichita at SMU: A little surprised SMU is getting two-thirds of the full-game wagers in this one and as a result, the Mustangs are favored by a half-point for the first half and I have Wichita leading by 2, as the Shockers get an advantage for strength of schedule, something that has happened against SMU frequently this season. Could be a pretty decent game and would lean to the road team if I had to play it, but will stay away.

Virginia Tech at Louisville: Virginia Tech has gotten a little play on the full-game line, but I have Louisville leading this one by 11 at the break, so will go ahead and take the Cardinal -6.5 in this spot. Virginia Tech has been a bit of a slow-starting team this season, as they have a first-half scoring margin of -5.8 in conference games, while Louisville is a +5.3 for first half scoring margin in conference. Think Louisville jumps off to a fast start here in the first meeting of the year between the two teams. Louisville is coming off a loss.

Colorado at Stanford: Stanford is favored by a half-point and I have them leading by 3, so a lean to the Cardinal, but will just let the total wager go in this one and not wager on the first-half line. It’s a revenge game for the Cardinal, who squandered a double-digit halftime lead at Colorado in the first meeting of the year between the two, so expecting them to come out strong in this one.

END OF MARCH 1 PICKS

Major disappointment out of the Washington Huskies on Friday, as we fell to 44-34-1 with our first half side plays. Really believed the Huskies would give a good showing after losing at Washington State earlier in the season, but they came out flat against their instate rivals on Senior Night and got what they deserved in the end.

Wanted to get the numbers posted and will come right back with our standard look at the games and any plays for the day.

Road TeamHome TeamLineProjected Margin
MarquetteSeton HallSeton Hall -2Marquette 1
Kent StateBall StateKent -.5Ball State 2
West VirginiaOklahomaWest Virginia -2West Virginia 4
MissouriTexas A&MMissouri -1.5Missouri 5
TempleSMUSMU -1.5SMU 2
East CarolinaMemphisMemphis -6.5Memphis 10
Long BeachIrvineIrvine -7Irvine 7
Cal DavisHawaiiHawaii -1Hawaii 1
BakersfieldRio Grande ValleyUTRGV -1Bakersfield 1

Utah State at New Mexico: Still a little strange seeing the Lobos as such large home underdogs, but Utah State is favored by 4.5 in the first half of this one, in which is the first meeting of the year between the two teams. I have Utah State leading by 8 at the break, so would give the slightest of leans to the road team here. Utah State has a +7 scoring margin in the first half of their conference games, while New Mexico is -2.6. The last two games between the teams have been fairly close at the half, with the scor tied once and Utah State leading by three points in the other game.

Arizona at UCLA: The Bruins are getting bet pretty well for the full game with more than 70% of the early wagers coming in on the home team. The Wildcats will be without Josh Green for this one and it’s hard to tell if Arizona carried their home loss to Oregon with them against USC, so probably best to just stay away from this one.

Montana at Sacramento State: The Hornets are favored by 1 in the first half of this one and I have Sacramento State leading by 3, so will come back with Sacramento State in this one. Montana won the first game between the two teams 52-50, although Sacramento State had the lead at halftime. Montana isn’t quite the same team on the road, as they’re just 5-10 straight-up away from home and 12-1 at home, while Sacramento State is 10-3 straight-up at home this year and has a first-half scoring margin of +9.2 when they’re in front of the home fans, so will take Sacramento State in a bit of a revenge game.

END OF FEB. 29 PICKS

We moved to 44-33-1 on our first half sides on Thursday, although it was the only win of the three plays, as part of a 1-2 night. Considering these plays were 22-25 at the beginning of the month, obviously happy to see them pick it up and what was our worst play for much of the season is right up there with the others. Just one play tonight and then we’ll come back and look at a few of the other games, but like to get the numbers up around 11 a.m. since that’s what some of you are waiting for.

Road TeamHome TeamLineProjected Margin
Boston CollegeNotre DameNotre Dame -5Notre Dame 3
CaliforniaStanfordStanford -5.5Stanford 6
NebraskaIndianaIndiana -8Indiana 6
St. John'sGeorgetownSt. John's -2St. John's 3
DePaulXavierXavier -3.5Xavier 2
ManhattanSienaSiena -3.5Siena 5
Iowa StateOklahoma StateOklahoma State -3.5Oklahoma State 2
Kansas StateTCUTCU -.5TCU 1
GeorgiaOle MissOle Miss -2Georgia 2
VanderbiltArkansasArkansas -5Arkansas 3

Washington State at Washington: The Cougars are getting hard on the full game, with close to 80% of the wagers coming in on Wazzu, but going to go against the grain in this one and take the Huskies -5.5 in the first half, and you can find -5 at a few places due to the move in the full game line. The Cougars thumped the ‘Dawgs in Pullman and prolonged Washington’s losing skid, but this is a huge game for Washington. No team wants to lose to their instate rivals twice in a season and the Huskies showed signs of life last game against an inferior opponent and that’s also the case in this one. Despite their dismal conference record, Washington outscores conference foes by 1.9 points in the first half, while WSU is outscored by 5.6 points in the first 20 minutes. The Cougars are going to run into a fired up squad tonight and think UW comes out strong and tries to take Washington State out of the game early with their defense.

Wright State at Northern Kentucky: Northern Kentucky is favored by 2 in the first half and I have Wright State leading by one, but want no real part of the road team in this one, in what should be a fun game between two decent teams. Wright State has been strong in the first half, as evidenced by their conference scoring margin of +9.6 compared to the +1.8 of Northern Kentucky, but think the home team gives a decent showing in this one.

Harvard at Columbia: Harvard is favored by 4.5 in this spot and I have them leading by 3 in a game where I wanted to take Columbia, but will most likely end up just sitting it out. Columbia gave Harvard a battle in the first meeting, where the Crimson escaped with a four-point win as 14.5-point favorites, but Harvard could have been looking ahead towards Princeton a little bit in that one. The first game could very well have Harvard a bit more focused for this one. Despite being just 1-9 in Ivy League action, Columbia is outscored by just 2.1 points in the first half, while Harvard’s 7-3 conference mark sees them outscore foes by 1.9 points, so things could be a bit close in the early going of this one.

END OF FEB. 28 PICKS

We’re 43-33-1 with these plays after Wednesday and one play for Thursday. As we often do, we’ll list the play and then I’ll come back with a look at several other games on the slate, but like to get the numbers up for anybody who wants to use them in their own handicapping.

Road TeamHome TeamLineProjected Margin
MarquetteSeton HallSeton Hall -2Marquette 1
Kent StateBall StateKent -.5Ball State 2
West VirginiaOklahomaWest Virginia -2West Virginia 4
MissouriTexas A&MMissouri -1.5Missouri 5
TempleSMUSMU -1.5SMU 2
East CarolinaMemphisMemphis -6.5Memphis 10
Long BeachIrvineIrvine -7Irvine 7
Cal DavisHawaiiHawaii -1Hawaii 1
BakersfieldRio Grande ValleyUTRGV -1Bakersfield 1

Montana State at Sacramento State: Sacramento State is favored by 3 in the first half and I have the Hornets leading by 6, so will take a shot on the home team in this one. Sacramento State fell behind 37-28 at halftime when the two teams met earlier this year and the Hornets should come out with an emphasis on defense and getting off to a better start in this one. The Bobcats are 8-8 in the Big Sky Conference but are getting outscored by 2.8 points in the first half of conference games, while Sacramento State is 7-10 in Big Sky play, but do outscore foes by .6 points in the first half, so think being at home with revenge, the Hornets are the right side here and will lay the three points.

Pacific at Loyola Marymount: As is the case with the full game, this is a spot where I really wanted to take the home team, but the line is a little too cheap for my liking here. I have the Lions leading by 3 at the break and they’re getting .5 points, but it’s a little hard to pull the trigger on a team that is getting outscored by 3.6 points in the first half of conference games. Despite Pacific’s record, they’re getting outscored by .9 points in the first half, so would lean to the home team but no interest in making them a play.

Rio Grande Valley at Bakersfield: Another game where I’d give the lean to the home team, but not quite enough to make them a play. Bakersfield lost on the road to UTRVG earlier this season after building a five-point halftime lead but fell apart in the second half. Both teams have somewhat pronounced performances at home and away, as Rio Grande Valley takes a pretty big hit in their numbers when they travel, while Bakersfield is a little better in front of the home fans.

Oregon State at Oregon: Once again, a case of leaning to the home team, but not real eager to lay that many points here, although you could make a fair case for the Ducks, who have a scoring margin of +2 in the first half of conference games, while the Beavers are -3 in the first half in conference. The Beavers have won the last three meetings between the two and think the Ducks might take out some frustration on Oregon State in this one.

END OF FEB. 27 PICKS

We moved to 42-33-1 with our first half side plays on Tuesday with Georgia Tech and have just one play for Wednesday. We’ll get the article up and give the one play, then I’ll come back and we’ll look at a few other games, which we do on occasion if we’re running a bit late.

Road TeamHome TeamLineProjected Margin
Boston CollegeNotre DameNotre Dame -5Notre Dame 3
CaliforniaStanfordStanford -5.5Stanford 6
NebraskaIndianaIndiana -8Indiana 6
St. John'sGeorgetownSt. John's -2St. John's 3
DePaulXavierXavier -3.5Xavier 2
ManhattanSienaSiena -3.5Siena 5
Iowa StateOklahoma StateOklahoma State -3.5Oklahoma State 2
Kansas StateTCUTCU -.5TCU 1
GeorgiaOle MissOle Miss -2Georgia 2
VanderbiltArkansasArkansas -5Arkansas 3

Maryland at Minnesota: The Gophers are favored by a half-point in the first half and I have them leading by 4, so going to go ahead and take a shot on Minnesota in this one. Even though Maryland has a better record and is a better team, the Gophers have made the most of the first half and are a decent-starting team. Maryland has just a scoring margin of +.3 in the first half of conference games, while the Gophers are a -.3 in Big Ten games, and Minnesota is much better at home, while the Terps take a bit of a drop-off when they take to the road.

New Mexico at Air Force: Air Force is favored by 1.5 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 2, so not really quite enough for a play in this one, although it is a decent revenge spot for Air Force. Both teams have negative scoring averages in conference play.

Northridge at Long Beach: Will give the nod to Long Beach in this one, but not really enamored with the fact that the home team is such a public play in this spot, as Northridge opened -1 and the line has switched with Long Beach getting close to two-thirds of the wagers in the game. It was closer to 90% earlier in the morning, so not sure if it was the anti-public betting crowd who made their presence felt or just some people who happened to like the visiting team in this one.

Boise State at UNLV: The Rebels are -1.5 and I have them leading by 3, but not really sure what to expect out of Las Vegas in this one. They did hand San Diego State its first loss of the season last time and did it on the road, so definite potential for a letdown here, but they did lose to the Broncos, so a bit of revenge could keep them focused for this one.

END OF FEB. 26 PICKS

Still 41-33-1 with these plays for the season as we didn’t have anything for Monday’s small slate. Running a few minutes behind and since some of you like to use the numbers for your own handicapping, I’ll get those posted and then we’ll come right back with our plays for the day.

Road TeamHome TeamLineProjected Margin
MarquetteSeton HallSeton Hall -2Marquette 1
Kent StateBall StateKent -.5Ball State 2
West VirginiaOklahomaWest Virginia -2West Virginia 4
MissouriTexas A&MMissouri -1.5Missouri 5
TempleSMUSMU -1.5SMU 2
East CarolinaMemphisMemphis -6.5Memphis 10
Long BeachIrvineIrvine -7Irvine 7
Cal DavisHawaiiHawaii -1Hawaii 1
BakersfieldRio Grande ValleyUTRGV -1Bakersfield 1

Clemson at Georgia Tech: Georgia Tech moved from -1 to -1.5 on the first half, as the full-game number climbed from -2 to -2.5 and I have the Yellow Jackets leading by 1, but will go ahead and take Georgia Tech -1.5 in this one. The Tigers take a pretty big hit when they take to the road, as their scoring drops from 31.9 to 27.8 points, while the Clemson defense allows an extra 1.9 points when they take to the road. Georgia Tech doesn’t show a huge improvement at home, as their scoring is even at home, but they are a decent first-half team. The Jackets have beaten Louisville and Virginia Tech in their last two games at home and a first half scoring margin of +1.3 compared to Clemson’s -.3. The tigers thumped Georgia Tech here by 23 points last season and think the Yellow Jackets come out hard for this one.

Nevada at Wyoming: This is one of those games where the numbers lose a little bit of their meaning due to the situation. Nevada is favored by 4 and I have them leading by 7, but really want no part of the Wolfpack in this one. Nevada is coming off three straight hard-fought wins – won by a combined 11 points – and has San Diego State on tap and are now playing a team it already defeated, but Wyoming gave a good effort, losing by just one on the road. This is the final home game of the season for the Cowboys, so they’ll be playing inspired and looking for a good showing in front of the home fans, so will stay clear of this one and see how it plays out.

END OF FEB. 25 PICKS

We’re back to the usual four-game schedule of college basketball games for Monday and none of the first-half plays make our criteria, so we’ll look at the games and have a couple of leans, but that’s going to be it. We did win this play Sunday to move to 41-33-1, but dropped both first-half totals, as we ended up 2-2 in college hoops for the day.

Road TeamHome TeamLineProjected Margin
Boston CollegeNotre DameNotre Dame -5Notre Dame 3
CaliforniaStanfordStanford -5.5Stanford 6
NebraskaIndianaIndiana -8Indiana 6
St. John'sGeorgetownSt. John's -2St. John's 3
DePaulXavierXavier -3.5Xavier 2
ManhattanSienaSiena -3.5Siena 5
Iowa StateOklahoma StateOklahoma State -3.5Oklahoma State 2
Kansas StateTCUTCU -.5TCU 1
GeorgiaOle MissOle Miss -2Georgia 2
VanderbiltArkansasArkansas -5Arkansas 3

West Virginia at Texas: The Mountaineers are favored by 3 at the half and I have them leading by a pair, so you could probably make a slight case for the Longhorns, who were completely trounced when they traveled to West Virginia earlier this season. Texas can match West Virginia defensively, at least in the first half stats, but West Virginia a higher-scoring team even though Texas has the edge in shooting percentages. West Virginia has a first half scoring margin of +3 in conference games, while Texas is a -.7, but a bit of that has to do with the 45-20 halftime lead West Virginia had against Texas in the first meeting of the year.

Louisville at Florida State: The Seminoles are favored by 1.5 in the first half and I have it even, but Louisville does have a few players listed as questionable for this one, although only Steven Enoch’s absence would have much of an impact. The Seminoles did jump out to a 39-32 lead in Louisville on their way to upsetting the Cardinals, so wouldn’t be a surprise to see Louisville make a point to come out strong in this one. They do have better first half numbers than Florida State, but the Seminoles are especially tough at home.

Nebraska at Illinois: Illinois is favored by 7.5 and I have them leading by 10, so the number suggest the home team in the first meeting of the year between the two schools. Nebraska has dropped 11 straight , while the Illini just snapped a four-game losing skid.

Oklahoma State at Kansas: The Jayhawks are favored by 8 in the first half, which is the same margin I have them leading by. The question here is how Kansas gets out of the gate, following their win at Baylor on Saturday. The biggest halftime margin we’ve seen the past four games between the two is five points, with that happening when Kansas won at Oklahoma State earlier this season, along with last year’s game in Oklahoma State when the Cowboys led by five at the half, before Kansas outscored Oklahoma State by 10 in the second half.

END OF FEB. 24 PICKS

We moved to 40-33-1 with our first half side plays on Saturday and for Sunday, we’ll look at the 3 p.m. and later games, along with a few of the bigger early matchups on the day. Tomorrow, it’s back to the four-game schedule we’ve been seeing.

Right now the first half side lines are up and we’re still waiting for the totals.

Road TeamHome TeamLineProjected Margin
MarquetteSeton HallSeton Hall -2Marquette 1
Kent StateBall StateKent -.5Ball State 2
West VirginiaOklahomaWest Virginia -2West Virginia 4
MissouriTexas A&MMissouri -1.5Missouri 5
TempleSMUSMU -1.5SMU 2
East CarolinaMemphisMemphis -6.5Memphis 10
Long BeachIrvineIrvine -7Irvine 7
Cal DavisHawaiiHawaii -1Hawaii 1
BakersfieldRio Grande ValleyUTRGV -1Bakersfield 1

Wichita State at Cincinnati: The Bearcats are favored by 2 in the first half and I have this one even in what is a revenge game for the Shockers, who lost at home a couple of weeks ago by an 80-79 final in a game that saw both teams shoot the ball pretty well. The Bearcats led by 6 at the half, so I’d expect Wichita State to come out strong here. These teams typically play pretty close, with four of the last six games seeing a halftime lead of three points or less, so would probably give the lean to the road team here if I really wanted to play the game.

 Green Bay at Oakland: Oakland is getting a little sharp action on the full-game line in this one and are favored by 1.5 where I have them leading by 3. Green Bay did win the first meeting between the two in a series that has seen the team leading at the half, lose three of the last four games.

Maryland at Ohio State: The Buckeyes are favored by 1.5 here and I have them leading by 4 at the half, so will go ahead and take Ohio State in this spot. The Buckeyes have been a little bit better of a first half team, having a first half scoring margin of +5.3, while Maryland is +2.3 in the first half. The Terps are 15-0 at home this season and 7-4 on the road, while the Buckeyes are 13-2 at home. For a team that is 12-3 in conference play, Maryland doesn’t have the first half scoring margin that you would expect, as the Terps are +.8 in the first half of Big Ten Conference games, while the Buckeyes, who are just 7-8 in conference, have a scoring margin of +.7. With the Buckeyes being at home in a revenge situation, think Ohio State is the right side of this one. You can get Ohio State -1 at BetOnline but I’ll use the 1.5, which is the number at 5Dimes, whose line I use on a pretty consistent basis.

END OF FEB. 23 PICKS

We won our two first half plays last night to move to 39-33-1, which is good to see after being under .500 for quite a bit of the season. Some big games today, so we not only have our standard look at the 9 p.m. and later games, we’ll also list some of those other games that people have interest in and then come back and give our plays for the day.

Road TeamHome TeamLineProjected Margin
Boston CollegeNotre DameNotre Dame -5Notre Dame 3
CaliforniaStanfordStanford -5.5Stanford 6
NebraskaIndianaIndiana -8Indiana 6
St. John'sGeorgetownSt. John's -2St. John's 3
DePaulXavierXavier -3.5Xavier 2
ManhattanSienaSiena -3.5Siena 5
Iowa StateOklahoma StateOklahoma State -3.5Oklahoma State 2
Kansas StateTCUTCU -.5TCU 1
GeorgiaOle MissOle Miss -2Georgia 2
VanderbiltArkansasArkansas -5Arkansas 3

Gonzaga at BYU: The Zags are -2.5 in the first half and I have the Cougars leading by 1, so will lean to the home team in this one, but not confident enough to make them a regular play. The Bulldogs completely waxed BYU the first time they met, leading by 7 points at the half and then turning it on in the second half to win going away, so obviously a huge rematch for BYU. The Zags have gotten off to a couple of slow starts recently, so not really sure what to expect out of them in this spot. If they play the way the did against San Francisco in the first half of this one, they could find themselves trying to dog out of a hole during the second half. The Bulldogs are better on a neutral court, but are used to visiting hostile arenas, as it’s always a big game for the home team when the Zags come to town.

UC Davis at Santa Barbara: Santa Barbara is favored by 4 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 6, so will take a shot on the revenge-minded home team in this one. UC Davis won the first meeting between the two teams nine days ago and did so by jumping out to a 36-24 halftime lead. Think UCSB will come out hard in this one and try to put UC Davis in a hole early, so will take the Gauchos in this one.

Houston at Memphis: Decent game here, where Houston is favored by 1.5 in the first half and I have the Cougars leading by 1, so if I had to have a wager on this one, it would probably be with the home dog. The Tigers are a much better team at home and they have the Cougars a battle in the conference tournament last year, but fell three points short at the end. This is the first meeting of the year between the two schools this season.

END OF FEB. 22 PICKS

We had to settle for a push last night with our first half side play and not stand at 37-33-1 for the season. Am posting all of the numbers and then coming right back behind with a look at some of the games and our plays. We’ll have two plays for the day.

Road TeamHome TeamLineProjected Margin
MarquetteSeton HallSeton Hall -2Marquette 1
Kent StateBall StateKent -.5Ball State 2
West VirginiaOklahomaWest Virginia -2West Virginia 4
MissouriTexas A&MMissouri -1.5Missouri 5
TempleSMUSMU -1.5SMU 2
East CarolinaMemphisMemphis -6.5Memphis 10
Long BeachIrvineIrvine -7Irvine 7
Cal DavisHawaiiHawaii -1Hawaii 1
BakersfieldRio Grande ValleyUTRGV -1Bakersfield 1

Canisius at Quinnipac: Quinnipac is favored by 1 in the first half of this one and the raw numbers have Canisius leading by 3 points, so am going to take a shot on the road dog in this one and take Canisius +1. Quinnipac won the first meeting of the year by going into Canisius and putting on a shooting clinic, hitting 61.1% of its field goals and 53.6% of their 3-point attempts. Still, Canisius did have the lead at halftime before things fell apart in the second half and Quinnipac turned in a 90-73 victory. Have to expect Canisius to come out hard in their one and while they’re pretty poor on the road, they’re much more effective in the first half. Even with a 3-12 straight-up record away from home, Canisius is just outscored by .2 points. Quinnipac has a better conference record, but Canisius has a first half scoring margin about four points better than the home team.

VCU at St. Louis: VCU is favored by 1 and I have this one all even at the half, but will take a shot on St. Louis +1 in this spot. VCU has a huge switch between being home or away and while VCU has a scoring margin of +4.3 in the first half, that becomes -4.9 when they take to the road. St. Louis has a +6.6 scoring margin when they’re at home. Even though VCU is getting hit hard for the full game, think the Billikens should give a strong effort in the first half.

END OF FEB. 21 PICKS

Managed to get there with Kansas State on Wednesday to move to 37-33 on the season and just one play for this Thursday.

Road TeamHome TeamLineProjected Margin
Boston CollegeNotre DameNotre Dame -5Notre Dame 3
CaliforniaStanfordStanford -5.5Stanford 6
NebraskaIndianaIndiana -8Indiana 6
St. John'sGeorgetownSt. John's -2St. John's 3
DePaulXavierXavier -3.5Xavier 2
ManhattanSienaSiena -3.5Siena 5
Iowa StateOklahoma StateOklahoma State -3.5Oklahoma State 2
Kansas StateTCUTCU -.5TCU 1
GeorgiaOle MissOle Miss -2Georgia 2
VanderbiltArkansasArkansas -5Arkansas 3

Northern Arizona at Idaho: The Vandals were waxed in the first half by Portland State last last time they took the court, which has slanted their first half numbers a little bit. Northern Arizona is favored by 1.5 and I have the Vandals leading by 2, but a little hesitant to take Idaho here, as the Vandals are a better play on the road, where they typically are getting more points and don’t show any drop-off between home and away performances. If I had to play the game, I’d most likely look at Idaho, but am just going to stay away from this one.

Grand Canyon at Seattle: Not real sure what to think of this one, as Grand Canyon is getting more than 80% of the full game wagers, which doesn’t appear to make a lot of sense. I have Seattle leading by 6 and they’re favored by a pair in a revenge game, and both teams have conference scoring margins of +3. Lean to the home team, but the last four meetings between these two have seen halftime leads of 3 points or less, so the line could come into play here and I’ll stay away.

Montana State at Portland State: Portland State won the first meeting by a point in Bozeman and I really wish they hadn’t, as this would have been an ideal situation for them. My numbers have the Vikings leading by 10, but Portland State is another team who sees its home court advantage slightly inflated due to games against the likes of Portland Bible and Puget Sound. Still, the Vikings are particularly strong in the first 20 minutes, but not eager to lay points against a Montana State team looking to make amends for the home loss.

Loyola Marymount at St. Mary’s: St. Mary’s is favored by 8 here and I have them leading by 6, but am going to take a shot on the road underdog in this spot, although I was hoping for 8.5 or 9. This one is similar to last night’s play in that we’re taking a road underdog who plays decent defense and has already lost at home to a team. St. Mary’s defeated Loyola by 11 points earlier this year and the difference was the first half, as St. Mary’s led by 22 at halftime. Have to believe that Loyola will make an effort to come out stronger in this one. St. Mary’s picked-up its 20th win last game and that’s always a bit of a goal for teams, so could see a little bit of a letdown here from the home team.

END OF FEB. 20 PICKS

A split with our two plays here last night to move to 36-33 on the season. Definitely a little frustrating as these plays should be doing a little better since the oddsmakers are basically locked into numbers, which is typically half of the full-game line. When full-game lines or higher you’ll see the first-half spread increase to more than half, as it’s expected the favored team may play their bench in the second half or let up a little bit. Just one game today, as it’s really not the greatest card from a handicapping perspective. As usual, we’ll look at the 9 p.m. and later games.

Road TeamHome TeamLineProjected Margin
MarquetteSeton HallSeton Hall -2Marquette 1
Kent StateBall StateKent -.5Ball State 2
West VirginiaOklahomaWest Virginia -2West Virginia 4
MissouriTexas A&MMissouri -1.5Missouri 5
TempleSMUSMU -1.5SMU 2
East CarolinaMemphisMemphis -6.5Memphis 10
Long BeachIrvineIrvine -7Irvine 7
Cal DavisHawaiiHawaii -1Hawaii 1
BakersfieldRio Grande ValleyUTRGV -1Bakersfield 1

Kansas State at Texas Tech: Texas Tech is -6.5 for the first half and I have them leading by 3, so going to take a shot with Kansas State in this one. The Wildcats aren’t a bad first half team all things considered. Despite their 9-16 record they’re only outscored by .2 points in the first half and even with a dismal 1-11 road record, Kansas State is outscored by 2.7 points, which is pretty much right there with their -2.8 in the first half of conference games, where they are 2-10 straight up. The Red Raiders are 16-9 and outscore foes by 2.1 points in the first half and are better at home, where they outscore teams by 5.1 points, although they opened the season with home games against the likes of Long Island, Eastern Illinois and Bethune Cookman. In conference games, Texas Tech is +2.0 in the first half. Texas Tech won the first meeting between the two, jumping out to a big lead early and then holding off a big rally by the Wildcats to win going away. Think Kansas State will come out stronger in this one so will take a shot on the road team.

South Carolina at Mississippi State: Mississippi State is favored by 3 and I have South Carolina leading by one, but a game I’m not really excited with, as South Carolina is about 2.5 points worse in the first half of road games and Mississippi State is about the same better in home games. The Bulldogs have played a tougher schedule, but with both teams coming off big wins; South Carolina defeated Tennessee 62-61 and Mississippi State won at Arkansas 78-77, not sure how either will come out for this one and will just pass.

Tulsa at Houston: The other game I gave some thought to was this one, where the Cougars are favored by 6 and I have them leading by 8. A huge revenge game for Houston, but the price is a little too steep for my blood and Tulsa does play good enough defense to keep things close for a while, at least.

END OF FEB. 19 PICKS

We’re 35-32 with these plays so far this season and will have two plays for Tuesday, as we get back to the regular routine after taking the easy way out on Monday. But sometimes passing is the best route to take and it was a bit nice to have a stress-free evening for a change, since the next one will probably be well down the road.

Road TeamHome TeamLineProjected Margin
Boston CollegeNotre DameNotre Dame -5Notre Dame 3
CaliforniaStanfordStanford -5.5Stanford 6
NebraskaIndianaIndiana -8Indiana 6
St. John'sGeorgetownSt. John's -2St. John's 3
DePaulXavierXavier -3.5Xavier 2
ManhattanSienaSiena -3.5Siena 5
Iowa StateOklahoma StateOklahoma State -3.5Oklahoma State 2
Kansas StateTCUTCU -.5TCU 1
GeorgiaOle MissOle Miss -2Georgia 2
VanderbiltArkansasArkansas -5Arkansas 3

Kent at Eastern Michigan: Kent State is favored by 1.5 in the first half and I have Eastern Michigan leading by 6, so will go ahead and take the home dog in this one. Even though Kent has a 17-8 record, their first half scoring margin is just +1.3 and they’ve taken care of business in the second half with a +6.8 scoring margin. On the road, Kent is 6-6 straight-up and has a -3.8 first half scoring margin and while they are 7-5 in conference play, the Golden Flashes are -1.3 in first-half scoring. Eastern Michigan has an overall first half scoring margin of +2.6 and they’re +1.6 in the second half. At home, Eastern Michigan is +8.0 in the first half, although a little of that has to do with playing teams like Concordia, and in conference games, EMU is -2.5, which gives Kent a 1.2 point advantage on a neutral court, but EMU is a better home team, so taking a shot on the dog in this one.

Northwestern at Maryland: Maryland is favored by 7.5 in the first half of this one and I have the Terps leading by 4. The Wildcats aren’t a very good team, but they do come to play hard and that’s all you can ask for out of a team who is going through a tough time. Even with a 6-18 overall record, Northwestern has a positive scoring margin in the first half at +.3 and they do take a little bit of a drop-off on the road where they are even despite a 2-9 record. Northwestern is just 1-13 in conference play, but is outscored by just 2.2 points in the first half. Maryland is coming off a huge win at Michigan State and has Ohio State on tap, so can’t see them overly excited to play this one after defeating Northwestern by 11 points on the road this season. The Wildcats did jump out to a huge halftime lead, 40-26, but Maryland stormed back in the second half. Maryland has a scoring margin of +2.9 for the season and are better at home, with a +7.1, but in conference play the Terps are even, although they are 11-3. Will take a shot on Northwestern +7.5 in this one.

END OF FEB. 18 PICKS

We moved to 35-32 with these plays on Sunday, as California did enough at the end to get the 1.5-point cover for us. We’re faced with a minuscule slate of games for Monday, so we’ll take a look and see if there isn’t anything we can uncover to help you with the games, since many people will at least want something on the televised games.

Road TeamHome TeamLineProjected Margin
MarquetteSeton HallSeton Hall -2Marquette 1
Kent StateBall StateKent -.5Ball State 2
West VirginiaOklahomaWest Virginia -2West Virginia 4
MissouriTexas A&MMissouri -1.5Missouri 5
TempleSMUSMU -1.5SMU 2
East CarolinaMemphisMemphis -6.5Memphis 10
Long BeachIrvineIrvine -7Irvine 7
Cal DavisHawaiiHawaii -1Hawaii 1
BakersfieldRio Grande ValleyUTRGV -1Bakersfield 1

Xavier at St. Johns: Xavier is favored by 1 and I have St. John’s leading by a point, but a little hard to back the Red Storm with Mustapha Heron out of the line-up, as he is a solid 3-point threat. It is a revenge game for St. Johns and can see this one pretty close at the break, but no interest in making a play here in the 6:30 p.m. game.

North Carolina at Notre Dame: The Irish are favored by 2 and I have this one even, so would give the slightest of leans to the Tar Heels if I absolutely had to play this one. Though North Carolina has a 3-11 conference record they do have a better conference scoring margin than the Irish, who are 6-8 in conference games. North Carolina doesn’t take a huge drop when they take to the road, as their first half scoring margin goes from +1 overall to -1 on the road, while the Irish go from +2.1 to +5.9 at home, although some of that comes from a couple of easy non-conference games. Notre Dame led by one at half in the first meeting and think we could see another close one here.

Iowa State at Kansas: The Jayhawks are favored by 9 and I have them leading by 10, but no interest in backing Kansas here, as they won the first meeting by 26, although that was a big revenge game for the Jayhawks. Now, the Jayhawks have a huge revenge game on tap against Baylor, and not sure how much they’ll be looking towards that one, especially with Tyrese Haliburton done for the year for the Cyclones. Too many question marks in this one, as Kansas could roll if they’re focused on this one.

Idaho at Portland State: If there’s any question if too much sports betting warps your thought process, this game is a bit of a giveaway, as I’ve been looking forward to this one for several days now. This is essentially a battle of the first half heavyweights. We’ve taken Idaho several times with success in the first half and have been on Portland State once, but both of these teams are much better in the first 20 minutes than they are in the second half. The Vandals have a scoring margin of +2.1 in the first half and -6.0 in the second half, while Portland State is +4.0 in the first half and -2.5 in the second half. My numbers have PSU leading by 5 and they’re favored by 5, so no interest in playing the game, but am interested to see how it all plays out.

END OF FEB. 17 PICKS

Did drop this one on Saturday, as Sacramento State was outscored 18-8 over the final 6:52 of the first half, so we fall to 34-32 with the first-half sides. A few games with differences between our numbers and the first half lines, so will see if we can get back on track.

Road TeamHome TeamLineProjected Margin
Boston CollegeNotre DameNotre Dame -5Notre Dame 3
CaliforniaStanfordStanford -5.5Stanford 6
NebraskaIndianaIndiana -8Indiana 6
St. John'sGeorgetownSt. John's -2St. John's 3
DePaulXavierXavier -3.5Xavier 2
ManhattanSienaSiena -3.5Siena 5
Iowa StateOklahoma StateOklahoma State -3.5Oklahoma State 2
Kansas StateTCUTCU -.5TCU 1
GeorgiaOle MissOle Miss -2Georgia 2
VanderbiltArkansasArkansas -5Arkansas 3

Memphis at UConn: The Huskies are favored by 2 and the numbers have Memphis leading by a pair, but don’t really want anything to do with the Tigers in this revenge game for UConn. Memphis is a completely different team on the road, as they score 5.6 fewer points and allow 4.7 more in the first half. Memphis has a .5 scoring margin advantage in conference games compared to UConn, but the Huskies led by 1 at halftime at Memphis before falling apart in the second half.

Missouri State at Indiana State: Missouri State State is getting a little respect on the full game line and I’m hesitant to go with Indiana State in this spot. They led by 8 at halftime at Missouri State on their way to the win, but don’t see them shooting 54% for the game and 61% from 3-point range in this one. Indiana State is unbeaten at home, however, but the betting in this one will just have me stay clear.

Denver at Omaha: Omaha is favored by 5 and I have them leading by 8 in a big revenge game after they were thumped in Denver, but Denver is playing better and playing hard. Despite going 0-6 straight-up in their last six games, Denver is 5-1 against the spread, so they’re getting undervalued by also battling. Denver did have a solid offensive game the first meeting, hitting 54.5% from the field and were 11 of 20 on 3-pointers, while Omaha was just 36.2% from the field and 28.6% from 3-point range. Wouldn’t be shocked to see Omaha come out hard in this one, but not really anxious to put money on it, either.

Arizona State at California: The Sun Devils are favored by 2.5 in this one and I have them leading by 2, but am going to take a shot on California +2.5 in this one. Arizona State is coming off a decent win at Stanford and aren’t quite the same team away from home as they are in Tempe. The Bears are 10-5 at home for the season and 0-9 away from home, while the Sun Devils have posted a 6-5 record away from home and have a first-half scoring margin of -5.1 on the road, while Cal is -.6 at home. The Bears are coming off a drubbing at the hands of Arizona and believe they’ll bounce back a bit in this one and expect them to come out strong, so will be on the home dog in this spot.

END OF FEB. 16 PICKS

We moved to 34-31 with these plays on Friday in what was a bit of an odd night, primarily for the reason that all three of our plays were on 7 p.m. games and were finished when we’re normally just getting settled in for the games. Being Saturday, we’re back to our usual of looking at the late games, so will see what we can come up for today. We’ll look at some of the games with bigger differences between our number and the line and why we’re passing all of them but one.

Road TeamHome TeamLineProjected Margin
MarquetteSeton HallSeton Hall -2Marquette 1
Kent StateBall StateKent -.5Ball State 2
West VirginiaOklahomaWest Virginia -2West Virginia 4
MissouriTexas A&MMissouri -1.5Missouri 5
TempleSMUSMU -1.5SMU 2
East CarolinaMemphisMemphis -6.5Memphis 10
Long BeachIrvineIrvine -7Irvine 7
Cal DavisHawaiiHawaii -1Hawaii 1
BakersfieldRio Grande ValleyUTRGV -1Bakersfield 1

Cal Poly at Fullerton: Fullerton is favored by 4 and I have them leading by one, but a little hesitant to take the Mustangs in this spot, as it is a revenge game for Fullerton and Cal Poly does take a pretty big drop-off on the road, where they are 0-14 straight-up. Not that Fullerton’s any world beater at home, but too many question marks here and I’ll stay away.

Idaho State at Montana: The Grizzlies are favored by seven and I have them leading by four in a game where Idaho State is getting some full-game action, with 65% of the wagers, which I agree with. Still, always tough to go against Big Sky teams at home and the fact Idaho State gave Montana a game when they met earlier this season could be a little wake-up call for the Grizz.

Eastern Washington at Portland State: The Vikings are favored by 1 and I have them leading my Eagles by 6 at the break, although Eastern is 6-1 straight-up after a loss and they fell apart at home against Idaho last time on the court. The Eagles won by two points in Cheney this season, but not really sure what to expect from either team here and the Eagles are getting a little sharp money, so will stay clear.

Northern Colorado at Sacramento State: The full-game line is starting to drop a little here, but the first-half line is still holding at Northern Colorado -2. I have the Hornets leading by two at the break, so will take a shot on Sacramento State +2 in this one after they lost by 19 at Northern Colorado earlier this year. Northern Colorado is 7-6 straight-up on the road this season and have a scoring margin of -.8 in the first half, while Sacramento State is 9-2 at home and have a +9.8 scoring margin, which is inflated a little bit due to competition. In Big Sky Conference games, Northern Colorado is +3.7 in the first half and Sacramento State is +1.5 and it was a 33-30 game at the half in the first meeting before Northern Colorado turned it on in the second half.

END OF FEB. 15 PICKS

We moved to 33-31 with these plays on Thursday, although it was a 2-2 night in college hoops when all was said and done. A fair number of games, but not really a great handicapping night, so we’ll limit all three articles to one play.

Road TeamHome TeamLineProjected Margin
Boston CollegeNotre DameNotre Dame -5Notre Dame 3
CaliforniaStanfordStanford -5.5Stanford 6
NebraskaIndianaIndiana -8Indiana 6
St. John'sGeorgetownSt. John's -2St. John's 3
DePaulXavierXavier -3.5Xavier 2
ManhattanSienaSiena -3.5Siena 5
Iowa StateOklahoma StateOklahoma State -3.5Oklahoma State 2
Kansas StateTCUTCU -.5TCU 1
GeorgiaOle MissOle Miss -2Georgia 2
VanderbiltArkansasArkansas -5Arkansas 3

Columbia at Dartmouth: Dartmouth is favored by 3 and I have them leading by 6, but as mentioned in the full-game sides article, it’s difficult to pull the trigger on a team than has lost every Ivy League game they’ve played so far. Columbia isn’t much better, bringing a 1-5 conference record into this one, but will stay away.

Rider at Siena: Siena is favored by 2.5 and I have them leading by 6, but Siena’s defense makes this one a little tough to play, as they allow 2.6 more points than foes allow in the first half. Rider has gotten the slightest bit of sharp action on the full game number, so no need to force a play on this one.

Davidson at St. Bonaventure: St. Bonnies is favored by 2 and I have Davidson leading by 1 in what should be a pretty decent game and it will have a little additional interest in being televised tonight. I did use Davidson for the full-game, so not really anxious to use them in this spot, as well. Davidson has gotten blown out a few times on the road, but think they’ll make a decent showing tonight, but don’t want more than one bet tied to them.

Manhattan at Iona: Iona is favored by 2 in this one and I have them leading by 5, so will take a shot on the home team in this one. Manhattan is 3.6 points worse on the road compared to their overall numbers and has a scoring margin of +1.6 in conference games, while Iona is a decent first-half team. They haven’t shown a lot of improvement when they’re home, but have played just seven home games so far this season. The Gaels are coming off a pair of impressive road wins and they were drubbed by 23 points when they played Manhattan last, so think they’ll show up ready to go in this one.

END OF FEB. 14 PICKS

Dropped to 32-31 with these plays last night, as part of an ugly 1-3 effort and we’ll have one play for tonight. Getting the plays out now and then coming back and adding a little more detail and looking at a couple of the other games.

Road TeamHome TeamLineProjected Margin
MarquetteSeton HallSeton Hall -2Marquette 1
Kent StateBall StateKent -.5Ball State 2
West VirginiaOklahomaWest Virginia -2West Virginia 4
MissouriTexas A&MMissouri -1.5Missouri 5
TempleSMUSMU -1.5SMU 2
East CarolinaMemphisMemphis -6.5Memphis 10
Long BeachIrvineIrvine -7Irvine 7
Cal DavisHawaiiHawaii -1Hawaii 1
BakersfieldRio Grande ValleyUTRGV -1Bakersfield 1

Chicago State at Bakersfield: It’s hard to convey just how bad Chicago State is, as Ken Pomeroy has them ranked No. 353 out of 353 college basketball teams. Chicago State averages 28.1 points in the first half of games, but allow 41 points in the first 20 minutes. The scoring margin drops even lower for Chicago State in their road games, where they score 25.3 points and allow 43. Bakersfield is no powerhouse, but they do have a scoring margin of +4 in the first half when they’re at home and they’re a +1.4 overall, so wouldn’t be a surprise to see Bakersfield grab a big double-digit lead at the half in this one. I also have a play going in the total here, and am not really eager to have two wagers tied into a game involving the worst college basketball team around, so I’ll just stay away from the first-half side in this one.

Southern Utah at Sacramento State: This one is even for the first half and I have  Sacramento State leading by one and think they could well be the right side of this one. Sacramento State much better at home and Southern Utah slightly worse on the road, so a lean to the home team.

Idaho at Eastern Washington: The Eagles are favored by 8 in the first half of this one and I have it a bit closer, with EWU leading by 3, so will go ahead and take another shot on the Vandals in the first half. Idaho is a team we’ve used several times in the first half due to their propensity to play well in the first half and fall apart in the second half. Eastern won in Moscow, Idaho earlier this season, so not expecting them to come out with a lot of intensity and will take the road dog here.

END OF FEB. 13 PICKS

Running a few minutes behind, as usual, this time thanks to a computer who thought this morning would be a great time to run 45 minutes worth of updates, but nothing you can but grin and bear it. We’ll look at the 9 p.m. and later games for today and have one play, as we moved to 32-30 with these plays last night.

Road TeamHome TeamLineProjected Margin
Boston CollegeNotre DameNotre Dame -5Notre Dame 3
CaliforniaStanfordStanford -5.5Stanford 6
NebraskaIndianaIndiana -8Indiana 6
St. John'sGeorgetownSt. John's -2St. John's 3
DePaulXavierXavier -3.5Xavier 2
ManhattanSienaSiena -3.5Siena 5
Iowa StateOklahoma StateOklahoma State -3.5Oklahoma State 2
Kansas StateTCUTCU -.5TCU 1
GeorgiaOle MissOle Miss -2Georgia 2
VanderbiltArkansasArkansas -5Arkansas 3

Michigan at Northwestern: This actually could be a pretty good game for a bit, but think that Michigan might pull away a little bit late, or at least that’s the way the numbers are pointing, but I like Northwestern +3 in the first half of this one. Michigan is a solid team in the first half, as they score 3.6 more points than foes allow, while holding them to 4.1 fewer points than they score, but the Wildcats aren’t a bad first-half team themselves. Northwestern scores 1.4 more points than foes allow and limit teams to 2.8 fewer points than they score and the Wolverines take a fair step backwards when they take to the road.

Iowa State at Oklahoma: This projection doesn’t take into consideration that Haliburton is done for the season for Iowa State and the Cyclones weren’t a very good team with him in the line-up. Still, want to wait a game or two and see how Iowa State responds to his loss, but a big revenge game for the Sooners in this spot.

Clemson at Pittsburgh: Decent game here, where the Panthers are favored by 1.5 in the first half and I have it even. Would lean to the Tigers if I made to make a play here, as Clemson has shown to be a little bit better of a first-half team so far.

Nevada at UNLV: The Rebels are favored by a half-point in the first half of this one and I have the Wolfpack leading by a pair, but no interest in taking Nevada in this one. The Rebels can play defense at home and believe they will come out hard in this one.

END OF FEB. 12 PICKS

We’ve been alternating between wins and losses with this one the past few days and we fell to 31-30 last night in an absolute stinker, as Texas Tech was on fire from 3-point range and TCU completely stunk it up. Decent slate of games for Tuesday, so will see what we can come up with.

Road TeamHome TeamLineProjected Margin
MarquetteSeton HallSeton Hall -2Marquette 1
Kent StateBall StateKent -.5Ball State 2
West VirginiaOklahomaWest Virginia -2West Virginia 4
MissouriTexas A&MMissouri -1.5Missouri 5
TempleSMUSMU -1.5SMU 2
East CarolinaMemphisMemphis -6.5Memphis 10
Long BeachIrvineIrvine -7Irvine 7
Cal DavisHawaiiHawaii -1Hawaii 1
BakersfieldRio Grande ValleyUTRGV -1Bakersfield 1

North Carolina at Wake Forest: North Carolina is favored by 1 and I have them leading by a point in what could be a decent spot for Wake Forest. The Tar Heels coming off a demoralizing loss to Duke last time out and it could take them a little while to get their feet underneath them. You know the Wake Forest crowd will be pumped up for this game, so would lean to the home team in this one but will most likely stay away from the contest.

Oklahoma State at Kansas State: The public is backing Kansas State pretty good for the full game and the Wildcats are favored by 2 in the first half and I have this one all even. This is a game the Cowboys have been waiting for all season, as they lost by 41 the last time these two teams met a year ago. Oklahoma State is a better first half team than they are in the second half and think they have a pretty good shot to keep this one close in the first 20 minutes. For the season, Oklahoma State is actually a plus team in road scoring margin, while Kansas State is even overall. This should be a decent game and will take the Cowboys, who I have as being the better overall team for the first half.

Missouri at LSU: LSU is favored by 6 for the first half and I have them leading by the same margin, but I think you could make a decent case for the home team in this one, as Missouri takes a huge step backwards when on the road in the first half, while LSU is pretty much what you expect from a home team. For the season, Missouri is 3-8 ATS on the road for the full game and are getting outscored by 6.8 points in the first half, while LSU has a +7.5 scoring margin at home. A strong lean to LSU here but will stick with the one game.

END OF FEB. 11 PICKS

We managed to sneak in there with the cover in our first-half side play, but still fighting an uphill battle with a 31-29 record with these plays so far. Just four games for Monday, so not the greatest card, but we’ll look at each game in a little more detail than we normally can when we’re trying to run down 15 games.

Road TeamHome TeamLineProjected Margin
Boston CollegeNotre DameNotre Dame -5Notre Dame 3
CaliforniaStanfordStanford -5.5Stanford 6
NebraskaIndianaIndiana -8Indiana 6
St. John'sGeorgetownSt. John's -2St. John's 3
DePaulXavierXavier -3.5Xavier 2
ManhattanSienaSiena -3.5Siena 5
Iowa StateOklahoma StateOklahoma State -3.5Oklahoma State 2
Kansas StateTCUTCU -.5TCU 1
GeorgiaOle MissOle Miss -2Georgia 2
VanderbiltArkansasArkansas -5Arkansas 3

Florida State at Duke: The Blue Devils are favored by 4.5 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 6, but a bit hard to take Duke in this spot. Coming off their win at North Carolina, if there’s a letdown, it’s more likely to be at the start of the game than in the second half. The Seminoles do have a bit of revenge on their minds from last year and both games last year were within a point at the break, so tough to lay that many points in the first half of this one.

Portland State at Northern Colorado: Portland State is getting some full-game action in this one, but Northern Colorado is favored by 5 in the first-half of this one. My overall numbers have it even, but the Vikings are about four points worse on the road, while Northern Colorado is about 7 points better at home, which is more than they receive credit for as far as the calculations go. Throw in revenge for Northern Colorado and this is one I’d just stay away from.

Baylor at Texas: The Bears are favored by 3.5 in the first half and I have them leading by three, so too close to the number in this one. It is a revenge game for the Longhorns and both teams can play defense. Baylor is solid both at home and on the road.

TCU at Texas Tech: The Red Raiders are favored by 6 in the first half of this revenge game and I have them leading by 2, so going to take a stab on TCU +6. One thing the Horned Frogs do is play defense at home or on the road and points might be a little tough to come by here. Both teams have negative scoring margins in conference play and both are pretty even in first-half scoring compared to what their foes allow and both are better than average on defense. The Red Raiders are coming off a road win at Texas, something that doesn’t come easily.

END OF FEB. 10 PICKS

We dropped this one on Saturday to fall to 30-29, as these have been our Achilles’ heel in college hoops so far this season and have been under .500 for the majority of the year, thanks to a few bad breaks and a few poor picks, such as Arizona last night. As usual, we’ll look at a few of the games where we have bigger differences between our projections and the spreads, but will have just one play for the day.

Road TeamHome TeamLineProjected Margin
MarquetteSeton HallSeton Hall -2Marquette 1
Kent StateBall StateKent -.5Ball State 2
West VirginiaOklahomaWest Virginia -2West Virginia 4
MissouriTexas A&MMissouri -1.5Missouri 5
TempleSMUSMU -1.5SMU 2
East CarolinaMemphisMemphis -6.5Memphis 10
Long BeachIrvineIrvine -7Irvine 7
Cal DavisHawaiiHawaii -1Hawaii 1
BakersfieldRio Grande ValleyUTRGV -1Bakersfield 1

Valparaiso at Loyola: This one scares me a little bit in part due to Valpo getting a little action in the full game. Loyola won earlier this year but had a 30-6 free throw advantage in the game. Even accounting for some Valparaiso fouls towards the end of the game, that shouldn’t happen. Huge revenge game for Valpo and they may get the benefit of some calls they didn’t get the first meeting, so will just stay away from this game.

St. Peter’s at Monmouth: Monmouth is favored by 2.5 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 5 in this one. Monmouth is getting 75% of the full-game wagers in this one, but you have to wonder how many bets that really is. Let’s face it, not many people woke up this morning excited for this game. Monmouth is a much better home team than they are on the road, going 8-0 at home and 5-9 elsewhere. St. Peter’s has been playing well in conference and has a better conference scoring margin than Monmouth, although it’s just .7 points, but will take a shot on the home team in this one, as they’re five points better in the first half at home, while St. Peter’s is about four points worse on the road.

Wichita State at Houston: Houston is favored by 3 in this one and I have them leading by a pair in a game I wanted to take Wichita, but probably will stay away. The Shockers lost at home to Houston after falling behind by 10 at the break, so expecting them to come out hard in this one, but Wichita State is just 4-3 on the road this season and has played the vast majority of its games at home. The Shockers are +2.7 in scoring margin at the half in conference games, while Houston is +8.3 and have been especially tough on defense. Lean to the road dog, but that’s probably it in this one.

END OF FEB. 9 PICKS

Won our play here Friday to get up to 30-28 on the season and we’ll look at the 12 games that start at 10 p.m. or later tonight, with the big one being the game between Gonzaga and St. Mary’s. Since running behind a little bit, I’m posting the plays now and then will come right back and we’ll take a look at some of the other games, as we usually do.

Road TeamHome TeamLineProjected Margin
Boston CollegeNotre DameNotre Dame -5Notre Dame 3
CaliforniaStanfordStanford -5.5Stanford 6
NebraskaIndianaIndiana -8Indiana 6
St. John'sGeorgetownSt. John's -2St. John's 3
DePaulXavierXavier -3.5Xavier 2
ManhattanSienaSiena -3.5Siena 5
Iowa StateOklahoma StateOklahoma State -3.5Oklahoma State 2
Kansas StateTCUTCU -.5TCU 1
GeorgiaOle MissOle Miss -2Georgia 2
VanderbiltArkansasArkansas -5Arkansas 3

UCLA at Arizona: The Wildcats are favored by 7 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 10, so will go ahead and take a shot on Arizona -7 in this one. The Wildcats had a decent lead against USC and squandered a lot of it away, so think they’ll come out hard in this one after having to listed to an unhappy coaching staff over their second-half performance against the Trojans.

USC at Arizona State: Wanted to pull the trigger on the Sun Devils in this one but can’t quite to it, as I have them leading by 4 points against a first half line of 1.5 points. The team are pretty even if you look at the stats, although ASU does get credit for having played a slightly tougher schedule. The comeback rally that fell short against Arizona could take a little bit out of USC and think that’s most likely to happen at the beginning of the game, but am hesitant to play this one, as the coaches could be on the Trojans to come out strong.

Gonzaga at St. Mary’s: This is looking like it could be one exciting game, but things don’t always pan out the way you think they will. The Zags are favored by 3 in the first half and I have them leading by a pair. When the teams played her last year the Zags were favored by 9.5 and only led by two points at the half, while St. Mary’s had the halftime lead when the two teams met in the conference tournament, so St. Mary’s know they can play with Gonzaga. St. Mary’s is getting a little bit of action for the full game and it’s a hard one to play, as it’s within a point of my projection, but if I had to play the game, would give the slightest of leans to the home underdog in the first half.

Grand Canyon at Cal Baptist: Cal Baptist is favored by 3.5 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 7, so if I was going to play it would probably just follow the numbers with the home favorite. Grand Canyon is getting the majority of full-game wagers in this one, but as far as the first half goes, Cal Baptist scores more than their foes have allowed and allows slightly fewer points than opponents have averaged, while Grand Canyon is slightly below average in both.

END OF FEB. 8 PICKS

 

A 2-1 day here yesterday to move to 29-28 on the season and today we have the usual assortment of Friday games, which typically involves the Ivy League, some other smaller Eastern teams and a couple of games involving teams from the bigger conferences.

We’ll look at the games that have some bigger differences from our projections compared to the line and why or why not we’re on a particular game or passing it altogether.

Road TeamHome TeamLineProjected Margin
MarquetteSeton HallSeton Hall -2Marquette 1
Kent StateBall StateKent -.5Ball State 2
West VirginiaOklahomaWest Virginia -2West Virginia 4
MissouriTexas A&MMissouri -1.5Missouri 5
TempleSMUSMU -1.5SMU 2
East CarolinaMemphisMemphis -6.5Memphis 10
Long BeachIrvineIrvine -7Irvine 7
Cal DavisHawaiiHawaii -1Hawaii 1
BakersfieldRio Grande ValleyUTRGV -1Bakersfield 1

Harvard at Yale: Harvard is getting some play in this one on the full-game line, as Yale opened 6.5 and the line dropped to 5, although it has climbed back up to 5.5 in the past couple of minutes. I have Yale by 7, but this is one of those games I’ll most likely stay away from, due to the full-game line movement and this is also one of those games that has a big difference from Ken Pomeroy’s projection. As much as I rely on Pomeroy for my AOPR numbers, as I’ve mentioned before, when they are big difference between his projection and the line, the bettors are usually right more often than not. This one is an early start.

Canisius at Rider: Rider is favored by 4 in this revenge game and I have Canisius leading by 1, so will go ahead and take the road underdog in this one. Canisius is one of those teams who tend to play better in the first half than they do in the second half. Despite a 4-7 conference record, Canisius has a +1.3 scoring margin in the first half. Rider is 6-5 in conference play but is outscored .9 points in the first half. Canisius is just 3-10 straight-up on the road, but usually battle for the first 20 minutes, as they’re outscored by just .3 points, while Rider is 6-1 at home with a +1.9 scoring margin.

Maryland at Illinois: Easily the best game of the day, Illinois is favored by 1.5 and I have them leading by 4. Normally would just skip over this one, but I know some of you will be looking to bet it. Maryland is 18-4 on the season, but just 5-4 away from home and are outscored by 3.4 points in the first half, while Illinois is 12-1 at home and has a scoring margin of +9.7 in the first half. Both teams are 8-3 in conference, but Maryland is -1.7 in the first half, while Illinois is +2.4 in the first half in conference games. Will pass due to the overall projection being within three points of the line, but it’s much easier to make a case for the Illini in this one than Maryland. If I absolutely had to play it, would lean to the home team.

South Alabama at Troy: South Alabama is favored by 2.5 and I have Troy leading by a point, but this is one of those you really have no interest in playing. The defenses are pretty comparable when you look at the stats even though Troy allows more points, primarily because their offense is so bad, shooting 40.4%. One reason for that is they launch nearly 26 3-pointers a game and that will be the deciding factor here. If the Trojans hit a couple they have a good chance of making this a game, but I’ll just pass on this one.

END OF FEB. 7 PICKS

 

We won both plays here on Wednesday to get back to .500, bringing the record to 27-27 on the season, which is still the worst of our three college basketball plays. We’ll look at a few more games than usual tonight, as we’ll start with the 9 p.m. games and go through the slate of regular games and have three plays.

Road TeamHome TeamLineProjected Margin
Boston CollegeNotre DameNotre Dame -5Notre Dame 3
CaliforniaStanfordStanford -5.5Stanford 6
NebraskaIndianaIndiana -8Indiana 6
St. John'sGeorgetownSt. John's -2St. John's 3
DePaulXavierXavier -3.5Xavier 2
ManhattanSienaSiena -3.5Siena 5
Iowa StateOklahoma StateOklahoma State -3.5Oklahoma State 2
Kansas StateTCUTCU -.5TCU 1
GeorgiaOle MissOle Miss -2Georgia 2
VanderbiltArkansasArkansas -5Arkansas 3

Southern California at Arizona: The wildcats are favored by 5.5 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 11, so will take a shot on Arizona -5.5 coming out of the gate. The Trojans aren’t a bad first-half team, as they score +2.4 more points than their opponents allow and surrender .2 points more than opponents average. Arizona scores 5.3 more first half points than foes allow and also allow 4.9 fewer points than their foes have averaged. The Trojans score and allow 34.5 points on the road, while Arizona has a first-half scoring margin of +12.5 points at home. Southern Cal defeated Arizona 78-65 the last time the teams played in March and also during the regular season, so a definite revenge game for Arizona and will lay the points.

Idaho at Montana State: The Bobcats are favored by 4.5 in this spot and I have it all even at the half, so will go ahead and take a shot on the Vandals +4.5. Idaho is a strange team in that they’re a pretty decent first-half squad. Despite being 6-15 on the season, Idaho has a +1.5 scoring margin in the first half of games. The Vandals are just 2-8 straight-up on the road but do have a +2.1 scoring margin in the first half away from home. For the season, the Vandals score .2 fewer points than foes allow, but hold teams to 1.3 fewer points than they average. Montana State is -1.3 points in the first half overall and +.6 in first-half scoring margin at home. Think the Vandals can keep this one close and stay within the first-half spread.

Pacific at San Francisco: San Francisco is favored by 4.5 in this spot and I have them leading by 8, so will go ahead and take the Dons -4.5 here. Pacific scores 2.3 fewer points in the first half than their foes have allowed, while holding teams to 4.2 fewer points than they average, while San Francisco scores 3.5 more points than teams allow and limit teams to 2.5 fewer points than they average. For the season, Pacific has a -3.4 scoring margin in the first half away from home, while San Francisco is +5 overall and a little better at home, with a +5.6 margin at home. They have played the two top dogs of the conference, Gonzaga and St. Mary’s at home and lost both games, which is one reason why their home rating isn’t significantly better than their overall average.

END OF FEB. 6 PICKS

Still just 25-27 with these plays, so have a little bit of work to get back on the right side of things. We’ll take a look at a few of the games where we have some differences between the first half line and our projection.

Northern Iowa at Valparaiso: Northern Iowa is just favored by 1.5 in this one and I have them leading by 9, as Valpo is getting hit hard on the full-game line. One reason Valpo may be getting bet a little bit here is that Northern Iowa was 12 for 22 on 3-pointers in a 10-point win and you certainly don’t expect to see that happen twice. But Northern Iowa does shoot close to 40% on 3-pointers for the season and Valpo doesn’t defend the 3-pointer very well. Valparaiso is 8-1 at home this season and just 4-10 away from home, but still going to take a shot on Northern Iowa -1.5 in this one and hope they come out harder than they did at home, when they trailed by six at the half before making a big rally in the second half.

Temple at Memphis: Memphis is favored by 4 in the first half and I have them leading by 7, so going to go ahead and take a shot on the Tigers in this one. Memphis scores 4.6 more points in the first half than their opponents allow, while the Owls score 1.1 fewer points. Temple does allow .6 fewer points on defense than their foes average, but Memphis allows 2.6 fewer points. Wit the Tigers being 11-2 at home, think they have a good chance to grab an early lead here and take it to halftime.

North Carolina State at Miami: The Wolfpack are favored by 1.5 in the first half and I have the Hurricanes leading by 2, but don’t really want any part of Miami in the first half, as they’ve been a better second half team for some reason. NC State scores 4.6 more points in the first half than their foes allow, while allowing .3 fewer points defensively, while Miami scores 1.4 more points than their foes have allowed and allow .3 more points. I can see this one going either way in the first half and am in no rush to bet this one.

UNLV at Utah State: Utah State is favored by 6 and I have them leading by 9, but the Rebels haven’t been all that bad of a first-half team this season. The Rebels are a slight positive team on offense, meaning they score more than their foes allow, while also being a positive team on defense. Utah State is also a positive team in both, but not real eager to lay points against the Rebels in the first half, where they play a little better for the most part.

END OF FEB. 5 PICKS

Ugly day on Monday, we we fell to 24-27 with these plays after getting back to within a game of .500 but then dropping the last two. Probably forced the issue on Kansas Monday, but the Jayhawks came out poorly and got killed on the boards early, not fixing that until the second half.

As usual, we’ll look at the late games Tuesday, with the hopes that we can find something worthwhile and spend a few more minutes looking at each game.

Oklahoma at Texas Tech: Texas Tech is favored by 5 in the first half of this one and my overall numbers have it a lot closer, with Tech leading by a point. The Sooners haven’t been quite the same team on the road this season, as their first-half numbers are about 3.7 points worse and the Red Raiders are about 2 points better at home, so a game I’ll just stay clear of.

Xavier at DePaul: This one is even in the first half and I have DePaul leading by three at the break. Both teams beat up on foes in non-conference games, but it’s been a completely different story since the games began to count, as Xavier is just 3-6 in conference play and DePaul is 1-8 in conference games. Strangely, DePaul actually has a positive scoring margin in the first half on conference games despite their 1-8 record, so would probably lean that way, but most likely will just pass on this one.

Air Force at Nevada: Nevada is favored by 5.5 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 10, so will go ahead and take the Wolfpack in this one. One of the reasons Air Force has had a little bit of success this season is that they’ve been able to dictate the pace of some games and get teams who aren’t used to playing a transition game, running a little bit. Air Force doesn’t run up-and-down the court, but plays slightly faster than the league average, which if you’re not used to doing, is a little bothersome. But now they’re going against another team that likes to push the pace even more than they do and the Falcons have had trouble when playing foes who like faster-paced, higher scoring games. Nevada fits that description. The Wolfpack are just as good as Air Force on offense, but are much better on the defensive side of things and should be able to score some points. Air Force is a -.4 in first half scoring in relation to what their foes have scored and allowed, while Nevada is 5.1 points better. With Air Force 3-8 on the road and 3-7 in conference play and the Wolfpack 9-2 at home and 6-5 in conference games, will be on the home team here.

END OF FEB. 4 PICKS

Running a bit late, so we’ll get right to it, where we have just five games on the regular schedule, which are the ones who have first-half lines available.

North Carolina at Florida State: The Seminoles are favored by 5 in the first half and the overall numbers have them leading by the same margin, so this one will be a quick pass. The home and away numbers give Florida State a bigger advantage, while the conference games scoring also calls for the Seminoles to lead by five, so it looks like a pretty good number.

Eastern Washington at Northern Arizona: The Lumberjacks are favored by a half-point and the overall numbers call for them to be leading by four and the home and away numbers give NAU a bigger projected margin, although EWU did play a few tough road games at the likes of Gonzaga and Washington, which took a toll on their numbers. The conference numbers have NAU to be leading by two and surprisingly, both teams have negative scoring averages despite having winning conference records.

Baylor at Kansas State: Baylor is favored by 3.5 and the overall numbers have them leading by 4, so not a whole lot happening in this one. Home and away numbers are calling for this one to be even at the half, but the Bears get a 6-point edge when looking at just conference games, so will just sit back and pass on the first half side.

Texas at Kansas: The Longhorns are getting bet pretty hard on the full-game line, getting nearly three-quarters of the wagers, and the Jayhawks are favored by 8 in the first half, which seems a bit high, but the overall numbers have Kansas leading by 13. Home and away numbers push the projected margin up to 17, while the conference scoring averages have Kansas by 8, so will go ahead and take a shot on Kansas -8 in this spot.

Idaho at Sacramento State: Sacramento State is favored by 6 and my overall numbers have them leading by the same margin. Home and away numbers are calling for a 13-point lead, another one that’s a bit misleading due to the non-conference schedules, while the conference only numbers are calling for a seven-point lead. Would lead that way, but tough to pull the trigger in this one.

END OF FEB. 3 PICKS

Our lone win in college hoops came here yesterday, but it was still part of an ugly 2-4 day in basketball overall, as we dropped the other three college plays and had a split in the NBA. We’re just 24-25 with these plays, which haven’t fared quite as well as they did last season, so will see if we can get back to .500, something we haven’t been able to do on a couple of previous attempts.

Miami at Pittsburgh: This is a game where I’d really like to take the Hurricanes, as Pittsburgh is favored by 3.5 and I have it even, but the Panthers get a 6-point nod when looking at home and away numbers and they’re also getting a slight bit of action for the full game. Miami gets an AOPR nod in this one, but will just stay away.

Rider at Monmouth: Monmouth is favored by a half-point and I have them leading by 4, but the full-game betting has me a little leery of this one, as Monmouth opened as 1.5-point favorites for the full game and the line has held firm despite 80% of the wagers coming in on the home team. Monmouth is 7-0 at home this season, so a little surprised the line isn’t a shade higher in this one.

LaSalle at Duquesne: Late money is starting to come in on Duquesne in this one, as the full-game number just jumped to 9.5 after opening at 8.5 and seeing 56% of the wagers come in on the home team. The first-half number is still holding at 4.5 and I have Duquesne leading by 3. Strangely, if you look at home and away numbers, the margin is actually a little bit closer. But there’s been a huge difference in these teams in conference play, as LaSalle is 1-7 in conference play and Duquesne is 5-3, so will pass on this one.

Marist at Canisius: Canisius is favored by 3.5 in this one and I have them leading by 9, which becomes 10 points if you look at the home and away numbers. The teams are pretty comparable in terms of overall record and conference record, but have to think the home teams gets the job done in this one, so will go ahead and take a shot on Canisius and lay the 3.5 points.

Siena at St. Peters: St. Peter’s is still favored by a half-point even though Siena has now flopped to become a one-point favorite on the full-game line and I have Siena leading this one by 2. Siena did win a low-scoring game last month, taking a 61-58 home victory and Siena is getting some sharp action on the full-game line, becoming the favorite after opening as a 1-point dog and getting 36% of the wagers. Both teams come into this one on three-game winning streaks.

END OF FEB. 2 PICKS

We won last night, but still just 23-25 on the season with these plays, which haven’t gotten untracked so far this season. Lines were a little bit late coming out on the evening games, as the sportsbooks are known to do from time to time. There appears to be no rhyme or reason on why that’s the case certain days, but nothing we can really do about it, as we’re at their mercy for the most part, but competition among sportsbooks helps in this case.

Grand Canyon at New Mexico State: We have a pretty big differential here between the line and our number in this one, so will go ahead and take the favorite in this spot for our play today. Grand Canyon is actually a little bit better of a team on the road, but New Mexico State shows a huge improvement at home and even with Grand Canyon posting better away numbers, New Mexico State is projected to lead by 18 by using the home and away numbers. New Mexico State is undefeated in conference play and that should give them a little bit of incentive in this one, which otherwise could be a little bit of a flat spot.

St. Mary’s at BYU: This is a definite revenge game for the Cougars, who fell in overtime at St. Mary’s in a nationally televised game, but the number is a little steep even though I have BYU leading by six points at the break. I would lean to the Cougars, who have also played a tougher slate of games than St. Mary’s, but unless it was a game I absolutely had to play, would just stay clear of this one.

Eastern Washington at Sacramento State: An interesting game, although I may be a little partial to it, since my Eagles are playing. These two teams played twice last year and there were distinct differences in the outcomes, with the road teams taking care of business by being able to dictate the pace of the game. In the game at Sacramento, Eastern Washington came away with a 94-92 victory in a game that was fairly low-scoring in the first game, while Sacramento State went to Cheney, Wash., and pulled out a 59-56 victory in a game that was tied at the half. Sacramento State is playing well and I’d lean towards them in this spot, but will just stay clear and enjoy the game.

END OF FEB. 1 PICKS

 

Loyola fell apart in the last minutes of the first half last night, getting outscored 8-1 in the final 2:30 to knock us down to 22-25 on the season with these plays, which is getting a little frustrating.

We’ll have a new look for tomorrow but spent time handicapping instead of building templates, so on to Friday’s slate.

Harvard at Penn: Penn is favored by a half-point here and I have them leading by four with the overall numbers. The home and away numbers are more pronounced towards the Quakers, so with Penn getting some sharp action for the full game, will take a shot on Penn -.5 in the first half of this early start at 5 p.m.

Akron at Kent: Kent is favored by 1.5 here and I have Akron leading by 3 with the overall numbers, but Akron is a bit of public play today, so will stay away with the home and away numbers calling for Kent to squeak out the cover.

Bowling Green at Buffalo: Buffalo is favored by 2.5 and my overall numbers have them leading by just a point. The home and away numbers are calling for a 7-point Buffalo lead.

Columbia at Yale: Yale is favored by 8.5 and I have them leading by 12, but not really interested in bucking the full-game move on Columbia.

Sienna at Iona: Iona is favored by a half-point and I have this one all even at the break. Iona does get a 6-point nod with the home and away numbers and the Gaels are getting a little full-game action.

Dartmouth at Princeton: Princeton is favored by 3 and I have them leading by 2 with the overall numbers and by four with the home and away stats, so an easy pass in this one.

Marist at Niagara: Niagara is favored by 3 and I have them leading by 6 with both the overall and home and away numbers.

Fairfield at Rider: Rider is favored by 3.5 and I have them leading by 2 with the overall numbers. The home and away numbers are calling for a 6-point Rider lead at halftime.

Manhattan at St. Peter’s: St. Peter’s is favored by 1.5 and I have them leading by a point at halftime. The home and away numbers are a little more favorable to St. Peter’s, but no interest in this one.

Cornell at Brown: Brown is favored by 4.5 and I have them leading by 8, but Cornell getting a lot of full-game action and will just sit and watch this one.

Quinnipac at Canisius: Canisius is favored by 2.5 in this one and I have them leading by 6. Quinnipac getting the majority of the full-game wagers, so will stay away from this one.

VCU at Rhode Island: This one is even and I also have it all knotted up at the half, with Rhode Island getting the edge with the home and numbers, but VCU is getting a lot of wise guy play and a pass.

Northern Kentucky at Green Bay: Northern Kentucky is favored by 1.5 and I have them leading by 2 with the overall numbers. Green Bay gets the edge with the home and away numbers

Wright State at Milwaukee: Wright State is favored by 3.5 and I have them leading by 5 in a spot I wanted to take Milwaukee, but will respect the numbers and just pass.

Oakland at Detroit: Detroit is favored by 1 and I have them leading by the same margin in a game where Oakland is getting some full-game action.

END OF JAN. 31 PICKS

We won with this one last night, but still an uphill battle with a 22-24 mark, as we need to string a few together. Decent slate of games today and you’ll see a new look with this article in the next day or two, which I think you’ll enjoy and get more from the article.

UCSB at Northridge: UCSB is favored by 1 in the first half of this one and I have the Gauchos leading by a point, which is a little surprising as the full-game numbers have Northridge winning by 6. Will stay clear of this one.

San Francisco at San Diego: San Francisco is favored by 3 in the first half of this one and are one of three teams I circled overnight as a possible play here. I have the Dons leading by 6, but the bookmaker’s reluctance to move the full game line to 6 until just recently implies a little money on the home team.

Portland at St. Mary’s: St. Mary’s is favored by 11 in this spot and I have them leading by the same margin. Home and away numbers add a couple of points to St. Mary’s, but that’s about it.

Irvine at UC Davis: Irvine is favored by 2.5 and my overall numbers have them leading by 4. Home and away numbers are calling for Davis to have the lead at halftime.

Fullerton at Cal Poly: Fullerton is favored by 1.5 in the first half here and I have Cal Poly leading by three at the break. Lean to the Mustangs in this spot, but with Cal Poly as a full-game wager, going to stay clear of this one.

Loyola Marymount at Pacific: Pacific is favored by 3 in a game that the full-game betting indicates a little smart money on Loyola. I have this one even and with the home and away numbers calling for just a one-point Pacific lead, will take Loyola +3 in this spot.

Long Beach at Riverside: Riverside is favored by 4 in the first half and I have them leading by 3. Home and away numbers call for a double-digit lead, so will stay away from this one.

Montana at Portland State: Portland State is favored by a half-point and I have them leading by 4, but not really interested in this one due to Montana’s record in the Big Sky Conference.

Gonzaga at Santa Clara: The Zags are favored by 9 in the first half and I have them leading by 10. The home and away numbers are calling for it to be fairly close, so will just stay away from this one.

Colorado at UCLA: Colorado is favored by 2.5 and I have the Buffs leading by 2, so pretty close to the number. The home and away numbers are calling for the Bruins to lead by 3.
Oregon State at Stanford: Stanford is 3.5 in this one and I have them leading by 7, but the full-game action on the Beavers will keep me away.

END OF JAN. 30 PICKS

These plays are still the thorn in the side regarding college basketball, as we’re 21-24 after last night’s win with Miami. A bit tough for today, so will go with just the one game.

South Carolina at Arkansas: Arkansas is favored by 4 and I have them leading by 7, although Joe does help open things up on the inside a little bit. If he doesn’t go South Carolina may have a little more success on defense. Will just stay away from this one.

Marquette at Xavier: Xavier is favored by 1.5 here and I have Marquette leading by 2. Home and away numbers would have Xavier by 4 and the home team is seeing a little sharp action on the full game wagers, so an easy pass in this one.

Indiana at Penn State: Penn State is favored by 3 and I have them leading by 6 but the full game betting will just keep me away from this one after giving PSU a decent look.

Cal Baptist at Utah Valley: Utah Valley is favored by a half-point in this spot and I have Cal Baptist leading by one. Utah Valley is projected to lead by 3 using home and away numbers, so will stay clear in this spot.

Baylor at Iowa State: Baylor is favored by 2 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 3, so a little too close to the number. Iowa State getting some action on the full game wager and a better home team, so a quick pass in this one.

Louisville at Boston College: Louisville is favored by 7 in the first half and I have them leading by 6. The home and away numbers call for Louisville to be leading by 4, but can’t quite pull the trigger on the Eagles in this one.

San Diego State at New Mexico: The Aztecs are favored by 5.5 in this one and I have them leading by 10. The home and away numbers, which are generally pretty favorable to the home teams, have San Diego State leading by 6, so will take the Aztecs -5.5 in this one.

Nevada at Colorado State: Colorado State is favored by 2 in this one and I have it even at the break. CSU gets a 5-point projection with the home and away numbers.

San Jose State at Boise State: Boise State is favored by 9 in the first half and I have them leading by 8, so nothing happening in this one. The Broncos get a huge home court edge and I have them by 19 with the home and away numbers.

Arizona State at Washington State: Arizona State is favored by 1.5 in this spot and I have them leading by a pair. The home and away numbers call for Washington State to have an 8-point lead, so will stay away from this one.

END OF JAN. 29 PICKS

Flat out ugly pick here Monday, as Idaho came out and stunk the place up. Nothing to do about that but look to do better the next day, so we’ll see what we can come up.

Florida State at Virginia: Even though the full-game line is even, the Seminoles are favored by a half-point on the first half line and I have them leading by a point. Looking at home and away scoring would call for Virginia to lead by a pair, so not quite the difference you see in many games with home and away scoring stats.

Purdue at Rutgers: Rutgers is favored by 1.5 here, which is half of the full game line, and I have Purdue leading by a point with the overall numbers. Using home and away stats calls for a seven-point Rutgers lead, so will stay away from this one.

Virginia Tech at Miami: Virginia Tech is favored by 1.5 in the first half of this one and I have Miami leading by 2 with the overall numbers. Using home and away numbers calls for a larger margin and I’ll go ahead and take the Hurricanes in this spot. Miami with a huge AOPR advantage, so even though VT has better stats, the numbers are calling for the ‘Canes to win.

Ohio at Northern Illinois: Northern Illinois is favored by 1.5 and I have them leading by a point. Home and away numbers are calling for NIU to be leading by three points, so a slight increase in their margin.

Georgia at Missouri: Missouri is favored by 2.5 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 5 at the break. Home and away numbers are calling for the Tigers to roll, as I they have Missouri leading by 20.

Fresno at Air Force: Air Force is favored by 1.5 in the first half and I have Fresno leading by a point. Home and away numbers have Air Force leading by 4.

Auburn at Mississippi: Auburn is favored by 2.5 in the first half and I have them leading by five, but ‘Ol Miss gets a three-point nod when looking at the home and away numbers, so one to stay away from.

Pittsburgh at Duke: Duke is favored by 9 points and I have the Blue Devils leading by 12. The home and away numbers are calling for an 18-point Duke advantage.

Butler at Georgetown: Georgetown is favored by a half-point and I have Butler leading by four points, although the Hoyas get the nod by a point when looking at the home and away numbers.

Utah State at Wyoming: Utah State is favored by 7.5 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by nine points. The home and away numbers are calling it closer, with Utah State leading by three points.

END OF JAN. 28 PICKS

We managed to get there with our first-half play on Northern Iowa on Sunday, but still are just 20-23 with these plays, which stands out compared to our other two college plays, which have gone a combined 55-40-3. Part of it has been choosing the wrong team for a first half play or full game play, while there have also been some bad picks thrown in there, along with some teams who are bucking their first half versus second half trends.

North Carolina at North Carolina State: The Wolfpack is favored by 3 and I have them leading by 2 in the overall numbers, although that jumps up to 6 if we look at home and away numbers. But the home and away numbers do have a little more value when used for totals, as opposed to side predictions. If we were to use just conference numbers, I’d have NC State leading by a point, so a game I’ll stay away from.

Sacramento State at Northern Arizona: The Lumberjacks are favored by 1 in this spot and my overall numbers have it even. The home and away numbers have NAU by 12, although the Lumberjacks did beat up on a few teams at home, so that number may be of out whack slightly. The conference only numbers have Sacramento State leading by five points, so will stay clear of this one.

Wisconsin at Iowa: The Hawkeyes are favored by 3 and my overall numbers have them leading by the same margin, so this one will be a quick pass, as the overall numbers carry the most weight of any of the projections. I have Iowa by seven using home and away numbers, but the conference numbers have Iowa leading by just a point.

Kansas at Oklahoma State: Kansas is favored by 4 and my overall numbers have them leading by five, as do the home and away numbers and conference numbers. That margin or error is pretty slim, however, so just going to stay away from the side in this one.

Northern Colorado at Eastern Washington: This one is even and my overall numbers have the Eagles leading by 2 and that climbs significantly using home and away numbers, where my Eagles are predicted to lead by 15, although that’s in part due to EWU scheduling a couple of teams they had no business playing and beating up on. Will stay away from this one.

Southern Utah at Idaho: Southern Utah is favored by 4.5 and the largest margin I have with the three numbers is Southern Utah by 3, so will take the Vandals +4.5 in this spot.

END OF JAN. 27 PICKS

For the second time in three days our first-half play went down the drain, as our team didn’t show up to play until the second half, as well fell to an unsightly 19-23 with the side plays. Last night, it was ASU who went against the stats and stunk it up early, before mounting an impressive second-half comeback to knock off Arizona, but it didn’t matter for our wager, as full-game sides continue to out-perform the first half plays.

Michigan State at Minnesota: The Spartans are favored by 1.5 and I have them leading by one, so a little too close to the number. MSU a slightly better road team, while Minnesota quite a bit better at home.

Fordham at St. Louis: St. Louis is favored by 8.5 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 11, but a slight reverse line move for the full game line will just keep me away from this one.

Xavier at Creighton: Creighton is favored by 2.5 in this spot and I have them leading by 11, but another case where the full-game odds will keep me away from the favorite due to another slight reverse move towards the underdog.

Loyola-Chicago at Northern Iowa: Northern Iowa is favored by 2 in this spot and I have them leading by 7. Last year’s games were both decided by a point, with Loyola winning both. Will take a shot on Northern Iowa -2 in a revenge situation.

Missouri State at Drake: Drake is favored by 2.5 and I have them leading by 3, so nothing really happening here. Drake is undefeated at home this season.

San Diego State at UNLV: San Diego State is favored by 3.5 and I have them leading by 6, but no interest in the Aztecs here, with UNLV attracting a lot of sharp money for the full game.

Evansville at Valparaiso: Valpo is favored by 7 and I have them leading by 6, so no edge in this one. Valpo is a much better home team, however, going 6-1 and 4-9 away from home.

UCLA at Oregon: The Ducks are favored by 6.5 and I have them leading by 7, but the Bruins are getting some sharp money for the full game and aren’t a bad road team.

Stanford at California: More of the same here, as Cal is getting a little full-game action. Stanford is favored by 4 in the first half and I have them leading by 7, but no interest in the road team.

Ohio State at Northwestern: Ohio State is -3.5 in this spot and I have them leading by 3, so too close to the number for my liking.

END OF JAN. 26 PICKS

We’ll take a look at the first-half sides in this one, where we’ve dropped the last couple, as college hoops haven’t been kind to us the past few nights, although a few times it’s been a matter of choosing the wrong team for the first-hlf line compared to the full game.

Washington at Colorado: Colorado is favored by 4 in the first half and I have them leading by a pair. Washington doesn’t take a huge drop on the road, while the Buffaloes are a solid team at home.

Montana State at Idaho State: This one is even and I have Idaho State leading by 3 at the break. Decent spot for Idaho State, with Montana State stealing a win at Weber State last game out and ISU falling to Montana by 3.

St. Mary’s at Loyola Marymount: St. Mary’s is favored by 5.5 and I have them leading by just 2, but St. Mary’s is several points better on the road and Loyola actually has worse stats at home, so a quick pass.

Montana at Weber State: Montana is favored by a point and I have them leading by 3, as the Grizzlies have had a tendency to play a little better in the first half and Weber has been a better second half team.

Arizona at Arizona State: Interesting one here, as Arizona is favored by 2.5 and I have them leading by 4, but the Wildcats show a huge home vs. away discrepancy in their numbers. Arizona moves from +7.4 points overall to -2.8 on the road, while the Sun Devils move from +.8 to +7.6 at home, so taking a shot on ASU +2.5 in this one.

Pacific at Gonzaga: Gonzaga is favored by 12.5 and I have them leading by 14. Pacific allows fewer points on the road for the full game, but does allow a couple more first-half points away from home.

Colorado State at Utah State: Utah State is favored by 4.5 and I have them leading by 7. CSU shows the typical drop-off away from home, while Utah State a strong home team, so can see making a case for the home team.

Seattle at Bakersfield: Bakersfield is favored by 1 and Seattle does have a steep drop-off on the road, while Bakersfield a much better home team. I have Bakersfield leading by 2 in this one.

Cal Poly at Irvine: Irvine is favored by 9.5 in the first half and I have them leading by 10, so no real edge. Cal Poly allows 3.7 more points on the road, while Irvine scores 6 more points at home.

Riverside at UCSB: Santa Barbara is favored by 3 and I have them leading by 4. Riverside takes a bigger than normal drop-off away from home.

UMKC at Cal Baptist: Cal Baptist is favored by 3.5 and I have them leading by 5, but with the full-game move on UMKC, one to stay away from.

END OF JAN. 25 PICKS

We fell to 19-21 with the first-half side plays on Thursday, as Houston never got untracked until the second half. Somewhat small card for Friday, so we’ll get to it.

Kent State at Buffalo: Buffalo is favored by 2 in the first half and I have them leading by 3.

Yale at Brown: Yale is favored by 2.5 in this one and I have them leading by 2. Brown is getting some smart money for the full game line.

Fairfield at Quinnipac: Quinnipac is favored by 2 in the first half and I have them leading by the same margin, so nothing happening in this one.

Marist at Siena: Siena is favored by 6 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 8.

Canisius at Iona: Iona is favored by 1.5 in a game in which it looks like the Gaels are getting some sharp money for the full-game line. I have Canisius leading by a point at the break and Iona leading by one if we use solely home and away numbers, so just going to stay clear of this one.

St. Peter’s at Rider: Rider is favored by 3.5 in the first half of this one and I have them taking a five point lead into the locker room at halftime. That margin grows a little bit if you look at home and away numbers.

Niagara at Monmouth: Monmouth is favored by 4 in the first half of a game where they’re attracting a little sharp money. Even though I have Monmouth winning the game by five, I also have them leading by 5 at the half, which becomes 9 if using home and away numbers, so will go against the public here and take a shot on Monmouth -4.

Wisconsin at Purdue: Purdue is favored by 2 in the first half and I have them leading by 4.

Marquette at Butler: Butler is favored by 3 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 4 at the break.

Northern Kentucky at Wright State: Wright State is favored by 2 in the first half of this one and I have Northern Kentucky leading by a point. Wright State has equally as impressive numbers, but the road team does get credit for having played a tougher schedule.

END OF JAN. 24 PICKS

We’ll jump to our first-half side plays, which are still laboring with a 19-20 record after winning both games last night.

Tennessee State at Austin Peay: Austin Peay is favored by 4.5 and I have them leading by 6, which is pretty close to the number and not a whole lot of margin for error, so will stay clear of this one.

Montana State at Weber State: Weber State is favored by 1.5 and I have this one tied at the break, so another easy pass in this spot.

Montana at Idaho State: Montana is favored by 3 in the first half and I have this one even. Montana is playing well and Idaho State is a solid defensive team at home, so could be a decent game.

Seattle at Grand Canyon: Grand Canyon is favored by 1 in the first half and I have Seattle leading by 2, but Seattle takes a pretty steep drop when they take to the road, while Grand Canyon doesn’t really have the type of home court advantage you’d like to see from a team.

Connecticut at Houston: The Huskies are getting a little bit of action for the full game and Houston is favored by 4.5 for the first half of this one. I have the Cougars leading by 11 and will take Houston -4.5 in this spot. UConn takes a bit of a drop on the road, while Houston is just slightly better at home, but the projection is large enough to make the Cougars the play for today.

BYU at Pacific: BYU is favored by 3.5 and I have them leading by 8, but they could be without Childs and have a few other injury concerns. BYU is also about 4 points worse away from home and Pacific is roughly 3 points better at home, so will just stay clear.

Portland at Loyola Marymount: Loyola is favored by 3.5 and I have them leading by 6, but Loyola has actually played a little worse in the first half of home games.

Utah Valley at Bakersfield: Bakersfield is favored by 3 in this one and I have them leading by 6.

Pepperdine at Santa Clara: Santa Clara is favored by 2 in the first half and I have them leading by the same margin.

Washington State at Colorado: Colorado is favored by 7.5 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 9, so a quick pass.

Cal Poly at Riverside: Riverside is favored by 4.5 and I have them leading by 4 in this one.

END OF JAN. 23 PICKS

Strange night last night, as we won our two side plays for full-games, but dropped both side plays for the first half. Anyway, a few gremlins with the site this morning, so we’ll get right to it.

Creighton at DePaul: DePaul is favored by 1 and I have Creighton leading by 4, but they take a huge hit on the road so no interest here.

Boston College at Pitt: Pitt is favored by six in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 4, so no interest in this game.

Rutgers at Iowa: Iowa is favored by 2.5 and I have them leading by 3, so nothing in this one.

Northern Iowa at Southern Illinois: Northern Iowa is favored by three in the first half and I have them leading by 6.

Fresno State at Colorado State: The line here is Colorado State -2.5 and I have them leading by 1 at the break.

Alabama at Vanderbilt: The Crimson Tide are favored by 5 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 6.

Memphis at Tulsa: Memphis is favored by 2 and I have them leading by 6 at the break, although Tulsa is a tough team at home.

Northridge at UCSB: UCSB is favored by 4.5 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 7.

Chicago State at Cal Baptist: Cal Baptitst is favored by 14.5 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 20. Chicago State is a few points worse in the first half, while Cal Baptist is a better home team, but they did roll up the score on some pretty weak foes. The problem is Chicago State is one of those weak foes, as Ken Pomeroy has them No. 353 out of 353 teams, so going to take the home team in this one even though it’s a huge number for 20 minutes.

Irvine at Long Beach: Irvine is favored by 5 and I have them leading by 6..

Fullerton State at UC Davis: UC Davis is favored by 2.5 here and I have them leading this one by 5.

UNLV at Nevada: Nevada is favored by 2.5 and I have them leading by 6, but the Rebels a much worse team on the road, so will take a shot on the Wolfpack and lay the points in this one.

END OF JAN. 22 PICKS

We came through with the half-point cover last night with our side play, but are still facing a bit of an uphill climb with the first-half side plays, which are now 17-18 and we’ll have two plays tonight. We’ll begin with the 8 p.m. games.

Texas Tech at TCU: Texas Tech is favored by 1.5 in the first half and I have TCU leading by 4, so will take the home underdog out of the gate here. Tech is -2.7 points on the road and the Horned Frogs are a point better at home. TCU has played a little better in the first half of games this season.

Oklahoma State at Iowa State: Iowa State is favored by 2.5 and I have them leading by a pair.

Wake Forest at Clemson: The tigers are favored by 5 in the first half and I have them leading by 8, so will take Clemson in this spot, as Wake takes a -3.6 dip in the first half away from home, while the Tigers are about 4.0 points better at home.

VCU at St. Joe’s: The Rams are favored by 7 in the first half of this one and I have VCU leading by 6.

Miami at Duke: The Blue Devils are favored by 10, which is the same margin I have them leading by, so nothing in this one.

St. John’s at Marquette: Marquette is favored by 4.5 in this one and I have them leading by six points.

Nebraska at Wisconsin: The Badgers are favored by 8.5 in this one and I have them with a 10 point lead at the break.

Mississippi at Tennessee: Tennessee is favored by 4 in the first half and I have them leading by 5 points.

Texas A&M at Missouri: Missouri is favored by 5 in this one and I have them leading by 11, but A&M is actually a better road team than home team, so will stay clear.

San Jose State at New Mexico: New Mexico is favored by 6.5 and I have them leading this one by 4.

Air Force at Utah State: Utah State is favored by 7 and I have them leading this one by 13, but could be a flat spot, coming off Boise State and having Colorado State up next.

Wyoming at San Diego State: San Diego State is favored by 13.5 and I have them leading by 15.

END OF JAN. 21 PICKS

Our lone college basketball play of the day will be the first half sides, even though it might be a little bit of a reach. For the most part, just taking it easy with the six games that we have on today’s slate and worry about Tuesday, when we have many more games to choose from.

Charlotte at Old Dominion: Old Dominion is favored by 2 in the first half and I have this one all even at the half. Old Dominion is projected to lead by 7 at the break if we use home and away scoring stats, but with each of the two numbers leaning to different teams, will just stay away from this one.

North Carolina State at Virginia: The Cavaliers are favored by 2.5 in the first half of this one and I have Virginia leading by 3, so really no room for error with this projection. The Wolfpack have been poor defensively on the road so far this season, so I’d have Virginia by a bigger margin using home and away numbers, but no real interest in this one.

Texas at West Virginia: The Mountaineers are favored by 4.5 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 7, but have to respect the full-game line movement here, which has Texas draw a little bit of money. Another game that I’ll just stay clear of.

Rice at North Texas: North Texas is favored by 7 in this one and I have them leading by 14 and will go ahead and North Texas in this spot, as it’s the largest difference between any of our numbers and the margin increases if we look at just home and away numbers. North Texas isn’t necessarily the highest-scoring team around, which could make it interesting.

Oklahoma at Baylor: Baylor is favored by 6 in the first half and I have them leading by 8, so we’re pretty close with our projection in this one. Baylor is a little better at home, but another game I’ll just stay clear of.

Weber State at Portland State: Portland State did us in a few nights ago and gave thought to taking them again, but will stay clear of this one due to the full-game money that came in on Weber. PSU is favored by 1.5 and I have them leading by 7, but another one I’m in no hurry to play.

END OF JAN. 20 PICKS

A split last night and still just 15-18 on the year with these plays, taking a two-point loss with Portland State and seeing Irvine cruise to the cover.

Davidson at Fordham: Davidson is favored by 4.5 in the first half and I have them leading by 8. The gap does close to four points by looking at home and away numbers.

Minnesota at Rutgers: Rutgers is favored by 3.5 in the first half and I have this one even in the first half with the overall numbers, but does climb to 7 using just home and away numbers.

Siena at Niagara: Siena is favored by 1.5 and I have Siena leading by 5 at the break and by four points if we use home and away numbers.

Rider at Canisius: Rider is favored by a half-point in this one and I have Canisius leading by six, which climbs to 7 with home and away numbers, so will take the home team in this spot.

Iona at Marist: The Gaels are favored by 3.5 in the first half of this one and I have Iona leading four, which drops to 3 with home and away numbers, so we’re straddling the spread in this one.

Loyola Chicago at Illinois State: Loyola Chicago is favored by 2 and I have them leading this one by two, although I’d have Illinois State on the basis of home and away numbers.

Drake at Southern Illinois: Southern Illinois is favored by a half-point and I have them leading this one by 3, although they’re a better home team and the margin jumps up a fair amount.

South Dakota State at South Dakota: South Dakota is favored by a half-point in this one and I have it even. Using home and away numbers would call for the home team to be leading by 9, but SD State played some tough teams on the road, against the likes of USC, Arizona and Indiana, which distorts their away scoring average a little bit.

Boston College at Wake Forest: Wake Forest is favored by 3 and I have them leading this one by two at the break.

East Carolina at Cincinnati: The Bearcats are favored by 9.5 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 14 and that climbs using home and away numbers, but a possible flat spot for Cincinnati here, coming off Memphis and then having six straight games against decent teams.

California at UCLA: The Bruins are favored by 4.5 and I have them leading by 6.

END OF JAN. 19 PICKS

The first-half totals have been good, while the first-half side plays have labored some, with another half-point loss last night. Haven’t checked it, but am pretty certain our first half plays would be doing better as full-game plays, while the teams we’ve lost with have most likely been decent second half plays, as well. Still, would like to get these moving in the right direction a little bit.

Georgia at Miss State: Miss State is favored by 3.5 and I have them leading this one by 3 so a quick pass here.

Utah at Arizona State: The Sun Devils are favored by 3.5 and I have ASU leading this one by a single point.

Idaho at Montana: Montana is favored by 7.5 in the first half of this one, which is a bit on the high side, as I have the Grizzlies by 4, but Montana is playing pretty well right now and wouldn’t want to go against them at home, where they can be extremely tough in the Big Sky Conference.

Pacific at Santa Clara: Not a bad game here, and Santa clara is favored by 2, which is the same margin I have them leading by.

San Diego at Portland: San Diego is favored by a half-point and I have Portland leading by a pair.

Riverside at Irvine: Irvine is favored by 5.5 in the first half of this one and I have the Anteaters leading by 8. With Irvine a better team at home, will take a shot on the home favorite in this one.

New Mexico State at Seattle: NM State is favored by 2 and I have them leading by 6 in the overall numbers, but Seattle is about 6 points better at home and they’re 7-2 at home compared to 10-9 overall.

BYU at Gonzaga: The Bulldogs are favored by 7.5 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 3. The Cougars are about 3.8 points in the first half on the road.

Utah State at Boise State: Utah State is favored by a point in this one and I have Utah State leading by 3 at the break.

Idaho State at Portland State: Portland State is favored by 4 in the first half here and I have the Vikings leading by 6, but going to go ahead and take a shot on PSU here. Idaho State is roughly five points worse on the road in the first half, while Portland State is close to 7 points better at home.

END OF JAN. 18 PICKS

We’re still struggling a little bit a little bit with the first-half side plays, so will see if we can’t get untracked a little bit with those, which stand at 14-16 for the season.

Siena at Canisius: Siena is favored by a half point and I have Canisius leading by two, so pretty close to the line with that one. Canisius does a little better with the home and away numbers, but with the overall numbers pretty close will stay clear.

Fairfield at Iona: Iona is favored by 3 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by the same three point margin, which climbs to 5 with home and away numbers.

Rider at Niagara: Rider is favored by 3.5 in the first half of this one and I have Niagara leading by a pair. Niagara still gets a two-point nod if we use the home and away numbers, so will take a shot on the home underdog in this one and take Niagara +3.5.

Dayton at St. Louis: Would like to take St. Louis in this one but the numbers disagree, as Dayton is favored by 4 in the first half and my overall numbers have them leading by 7. Home and away numbers are also calling for a 7-point margin of victory.

Furman at Wofford: A couple of teams with drastically different performances depending if they are home or away, Furman is favored by 1.5 and I have them leading by 7 at the break with the overall numbers. Using home and away numbers, however, calls for Wofford to be leading by three points.

Wisconsin at Michigan State: The Spartans are favored by 5 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by four with the overall numbers. Michigan State is projected to be leading by eight points with the home and away numbers, however.

Brown at Yale: Yale is favored by 6 and I have them leading by 7 and that numbers really climbs when looking at home and away numbers, as I have Yale leading by 17. Brown is getting some money on the full-game line, so I’ll end up staying away from this one.

Michigan at Iowa: Iowa is favored by 2.5 in the first half and I have Michigan leading by a point with the overall numbers. Using home and away numbers calls for Iowa to be leading by seven, so another one I’ll just stay away from.

END OF JAN. 17 PICKS

Coming off a 1-2 overall day, as Kansas State let me down both in the first-half and on the side, as the Wildcats didn’t play the first 10 minutes or the last 10 minutes of the game. Dayton did sneak out the half-point cover for us on the first-half line, so a split here and 0-1 on the full game play.

Lost some of my work this morning due to a computer issue, so we’ll look at fewer games than usual today, but a couple of decent possibilities out there.

Texas at Oklahoma State: Oklahoma State is favored by 2 in the first half and I have them leading by six, so will take the Cowboys -2 out of the gate. Texas scores -2.6 fewer points on the road and allows 2.1 more, while Oklahoma State is 1.1 points better at home, so a little bit of an edge there.

Iowa State at Baylor: Baylor is favored by 4.5 in the first half and I have them leading by 8, but a little leery of the Bears with Iowa State getting some sharp money on the full-game line. I’ll just stay away from this one.

Xavier at Marquette: Marquette is favored by 1.5 and I have them leading this one by 5 points at halftime.

Bradley at Missouri State: Missouri State is favored by a point and I have Bradley leading by 1 at the break, so not a whole lot happening with this one.

Valparaiso at Northern Iowa: Northern Iowa is favored by 6 in the first half and I have them leading by 12, so will take Northern Iowa here. Valpo is close to 3 points worse on the road and the Panthers a little bit better at home, so will just follow the numbers in this one.

South Dakota at North Dakota State: North Dakota State is favored by 3.5 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by a pair, so will just stay clear of this one.

North Dakota at South Dakota State: South Dakota State is favored by 4 and I them leading by a point, due to North Dakota getting a decent AOPR advantage in this one. A game I’ll just stay away from.

St. John’s at Providence: Providence is favored by 3 points in the first half and I have them leading by 3. St. John’s is just 2-3 on the road this season and Providence gets the AOPR nod, but the line was a bit higher than I anticipated based on the records of the teams.

Notre Dame at Georgia Tech: It’s more of the same here, as 8-8 Georgia Tech is favored over 10-6 Notre Dame. Tech is favored by a half-point and I have them leading this one by a pair.

END OF JAN. 15 PICKS

No college totals today, so we’ll just have the two sides articles. After running all the numbers for the late games and not having any totals qualify, I went back and checked the earlier starts and we didn’t get the home vs. away differences we look for, so we’ll move onto the first-half sides, which are still our worst performing of the three college hoops articles, checking in with a 13-14 mark.

UCF at Tulane: The Green Wave are favored by a half-point and I have this one even, so way too close for comfort.

Akron at Northern Illinois: Akron is favored by 1 in the first half and I have them leading by 2.

VCU at Dayton: Dayton is favored by 4.5 in the first half and I have the Flyers leading by nine, so going to go ahead and take Dayton -4.5 in this spot.

Texas Tech at Kansas State: Texas Tech is favored by 2 in the first half of this one and I have the Wildcats leading by 3, so will take Kansas State +2 in this spot.

Iowa at Northwestern: Iowa is favored by 3 in the first half and I have them leading this one by 3.

DePaul at Villanova: Villanova is favored by 5.5 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 7.

TCU at West Virginia: West Virginia is favored by 4.5 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 8.

Kansas at Oklahoma: Kansas is favored by 3.5 in the first half and I have the Jayhawks leading by 12, but hard to go against an Oklahoma team that is undefeated at home.

Virginia Tech at Wake Forest: Virginia Tech is favored by 1.5 and I have them leading by a point.

Maryland at Wisconsin: The Badgers are favored by 2 and I have them leading this one by 4 at the break.

Missouri at Miss State: Mississippi State is favored by 1.5 and I have Missouri leading by a point.

Wyoming at Nevada: Nevada is favored by 8 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 11.

San Diego State at Fresno State: San Diego State is favored by 3.5 and I have them leading by 4.

END OF JAN. 14 PICKS

Strange night on Tuesday, where we went 2-1 with all of the games decided by two points or less. We split in college hoops and then won the total in the NBA game, as the Thunder went under the total despite playing overtime, one night after we lost with them in ugly fashion. Running a bit late, so will get right to it and we’ll start with some of the later college basketball games.

Kansas at Iowa State: Iowa State getting hit hard by the sharps today, as we’ve seen the full-game line come tumbling down in a reverse move. Kansas is favored by just 2 in the first half and I have them leading by 9, although that drops to 3.6 when using home and away numbers.

George Washington at St. Louis: St. Louis is favored by 6 and I have them leading by 9.

Fort Wayne at Western Illinois: Fort Wayne is favored by 1.5 and I have Western Illinois leading by 4, although they don’t really have much of an advantage playing at home, so will stay away.

Omaha at North Dakota: North Dakota is favored by 1.5 in the first half and I have them leading by 6, so going to take North Dakota here, as Omaha has been pretty brutal on the road this season.

UCF at SMU: SMU is favored by 4 in the first half and I have leading by 3, so too close for comfort in this one.

Seton Hall at Xavier: Decent game here, as Xavier is favored by 1.5 in the first half and I have them leading by a point.

Illinois at Wisconsin: Wisconsin is favored by 2.5 and I have them leading here by 2.

Oklahoma at Texas: The Longhorns are favored by 1.5 in this spot and I have them leading by a point.

Duke at Georgia Tech: Duke is favored by 7 in the first half and I have them leading this one by 9.

South Dakota State at Denver: South Dakota State is favored by 4 and I have them leading by 8, although that number comes down a bit when looking at solely home vs. away numbers.

UNLV at Boise: Boise State is favored by 3 in the first half and I have them leading by 5.

San Diego State at Wyoming: The Aztecs are favored by 10 in the first half, which is the same margin I have them leading by.

END OF JAN. 8 PICKS

We’ve been alternating winning and losing days the past week, going 2-3 overall last night, with none of the losses particularly close. Thankfully there isn’t a “crappy pick” surcharge, as a 15-point loss is no different than a half-point loss, but it does gnaw at you a little bit when you’re completely off on a game, as was the case last night.

Providence at Marquette: We’re seeing a huge reverse move on the full-game line here, so a little hesitant with the first-half line, as Marquette is favored by 3 and I have the Warriors leading by 6.

Miami at Louisville: Louisville is favored by 7 in the first half and I have them leading by 7 at the break. Interestingly, I have Louisville leading by just six if we were to use simply home and away numbers, as neither team shows much difference in their play regardless of location and the ‘Canes are actually a little better away from home.

Virginia at Boston College: Virginia is favored by 5 in the first half and I have this one even. Points are going to be hard to come by here, so will take a shot on Boston College +5 for the first half.

Ohio State at Maryland: Maryland is favored by 1.5 in the first half and I have the Buckeyes leading by 3, although both teams have huge home vs. away tendencies. Using those numbers would give Maryland an 8-point lead, so will just stay away from this one.

Toledo at Kent State: Kent State is favored by 2 and I have Toledo leading by a point at the break. Another game, where the home and away splits are more pronounced, as I’d have Kent leading by 10 using just those numbers.

Tennessee at Missouri: Missouri is favored by 2.5 and I have them leading by 3.

Florida at South Carolina: The Gators are favored by 2 and I have Florida leading by 6 in another game where there really isn’t much of a difference in home vs. away stats, as I’d have the Gators by the same 6-point margin using home vs. away stats, so will take the Gators -2 in this spot.

Rider at Quinnipac: Rider is favored by 1 in the first half and I have them leading by the same margin.

Penn State at Rutgers: Penn State is favored by a half-point and I have this one even, giving a slight nod to Rutgers if we were to use home vs. away numbers.

END OF JAN. 7 PICKS

The big blight on our college basketball picks has been our first-half plays, which fell to 8-11 last time out, as we’ve had a few bad picks and a couple of 1-point losses that have been too much to overcome so far.

Lafayette at Appalachian State: Appalachian State is favored by 4.5 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 7, which climbs slightly if we look at just home and away numbers.

Monroe at Coastal Carolina: Coastal Carolina is favored by 4 in this one and I have them leading by a pair. If we use home and away numbers the margin increases a little bit to 9, although the strength of schedule also changes, so using home and away numbers tends to work a little better for totals than sides.

Georgia Southern at Little Rock: Little Rock is favored by 1.5 in the first half of this one and I have Georgia Southern leading by 4 and that becomes even using home vs. away numbers.

South Alabama at Arlington: Arlington is favored by 3.5 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 10, so going to take Arlington in this spot even though our first-half total plays is also in the same game. Arlington stretches out a little bit to lead by a larger margin by looking at home vs. away numbers.

Troy at Texas State: Texas State is favored by 5.5 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 8, although that margin doubles when using just home vs. away numbers.

Georgia State at Arkansas State: Georgia State is favored by 2 in the first half and I have them leading by 11, although that number drops to 7 when looking at just home vs. away numbers.

West Virginia at Oklahoma State: West Virginia is favored by a half-point and I have Oklahoma State leading by 1 and they’re a little bit better at home, where those numbers have them leading by 5.

END OF JAN. 6 PICKS

Decent slate of games for Friday, so we’ll get after it and the typical Saturday in store.

Toledo at Ball State: Ball State is favored by a point and I have them leading by 1.

Wright State at Oakland: Wright State is favored by 2 and I have Oakland leading by 3, primarily due to strength of schedule differences.

Illinois-Chicago at Green Bay: Green Bay is favored by 3 and I have them leading by 10.

St. Peter’s at Iona: Iona is favored by 5 in the first half and I have them leading by 10.

Quinnipac at Marist: Quinnipac is favored by 3 on the road and I have them leading this one by 4.

Monmouth at Siena: Siena is favored by 3 and I have them leading this one by 6.

Manhattan at Canisius: Canisius is favored by 3 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 12, so will go ahead and take Canisius -3 in this spot.

Northern Kentucky at Detroit: Northern Kentucky is favored by 3 and I have them leading by 4 at the break. Northern Kentucky with much better stats, but Detroit has played a much tougher slate.

Fairfield at Niagara: Fairfield is favored by 1.5 and I have the home team leading by a point.

Wisconsin at Ohio State: The Buckeyes are favored by 4 and I have them leading by 5.

Delaware at Drexel: Delaware is favored by 1 in the first half and I have them leading by 4.

UCF at Houston: Houston is favored by 5.5 in the first half and I have them leading by 7.

Rutgers at Nebraska: Rutgers is favored by 2 in the first half and I have them leading by 3 but if we used simply home and away numbers, I’d have Nebraska leading.

IUPUI at Milwaukee: Milwaukee is favored by 5 and I have them leading by 3.

Kent State at Bowling Green: Bowling Green is favored by a half-point and I have them leading by 5.

Georgetown at Seton Hall: Seton Hall is favored by 3 and I have them leading by 3.

Temple at Tulsa: Temple is favored by 1.5 and I have them leading by 7.

END OF JAN. 3 PICKS

Have gone back-and-forth with our first-half side plays, as we’re just 8-9 so far, so will get right to it.

St. Joes at Richmond: Richmond is favored by 7 in the first half and I have them leading by 7.

Fordham at VCU: Virginia Commonwealth is favored by 11.5 in the first half and I have them leading by 14, but will go ahead and take the Rams here, as Fordham plays about six points worse in the first half when they’re away from home compared to their overall numbers, while VCU is the exact opposite and plays six points better at home.

St. Louis at Duquesne: Duquesne is favored by 1.5 in the first half and I have St. Louis leading by a point.

UTSA at FAU: Florida Atlantic is favored by 2 points in the first half of this one and I have them leading by three points at the break.

Towson State at Charleston: Charleston is favored by 3.5 in the first half of this one and I have them leading a point.

Elon at Northeastern: Northeastern is favored by 8 in the first half and I have them leading by 4, but Elon’s offense takes a 5.5-point hit when they’re on the road compared to overall average.

Minnesota at Purdue: Purdue is favored by 4 in the first half and I have them leading by 5.

Rhode Island at Brown: Rhode Island is favored by 4.5 and I have them leading by five.

Georgia State at Appalachian State: Appalachian State is favored by one in the first 20 minutes and I have Georgia State leading by one at the break.

UAB at Charlotte: Charlotte is favored by one in this spot and I have them leading by four at the break.

Georgia Southern at Coastal Carolina: Coastal Carolina is favored by a half-point and I have them leading by a pair.

Rice at Marshall: Marshall is favored by 4.5 and I have them leading by 7.

North Texas at Western Kentucky: Western Kentucky is favored by 1.5 here and I have North Texas leading by three at the break.

William & Mary at Hofstra: Hofstra is favored by four in the first half and I have them leading by four points.

Oregon State at Utah: The Utes are favored by 1 in the first half and I have them leading by three points.

Oregon at Colorado: The Ducks are favored by a half-point in this one and I have Oregon leading by two points at the break.

END OF JAN. 2 PICKS

Somewhat small slate of games for this New Year’s Eve, so we’ll look at some of the later-starting games. We’re coming off an 0-2 day, losing the total with a crappy pick and catching a bad beat with our half-point loss on the side play, as a 12-point lead with 1:40 remaining turned into a 6-point halftime lead when Milwaukee dunked at the buzzer following an offensive rebound of a missed 3-pointer.

Miami, Fla. at Clemson: Clemson is favored by 1 in the first half and I have the Tigers leading by 4 points.

Riverside at Air Force: Air Force is favored by 2 in the first half and I have them leading by 2 at the break, so nothing happening in this one.

Evansville at Missouri State: Missouri State is favored by 4 in the first half and I have this one a 6-point lead for the home team.

Georgetown at Providence: This one could be a pretty decent game and the Hoyas are favored by a half-point in the first half, as they opened an underdog and are now favored to win the game. I have the Hoyas leading by one at the half.

Boston College at Duke: The Blue Devils are favored by 13.5 in the first half and I have them leading Boston College by 10 points.

Drake at Bradley: Bradley is favored by 1.5 points in the first half, as the full-game line has moved from Bradley -5 to Bradley -2.5 and I have Bradley leading by five points at intermission.

Rider at Wisconsin: The Badgers are favored by 7.5 in the first half and I have them leading by 15, so going to go ahead and lay the points with Wisconsin here. Wisconsin has played a much tougher schedule than Rider and has better stats, as Rider doesn’t play as well when they’re away from home.

Butler at St. John’s: Butler is favored by 2.5 points in the first half and I have them leading by three. Using strictly home or away stats, I’d have St. John’s leading by a point at the half.

END OF DEC. 31 PICKS

We’re still just 7-8 with our college basketball first-side play, so will try to get back to .500 today, as we take a look at some of the games on the slate.

Wisconsin Green Bay at Northern Kentucky: The first-half line here has Northern Kentucky favored by 2.5 and I have them leading by 5. Green Bay has some ugly road numbers, but they’ve played some pretty solid teams away from home this season.

Austin Peay at Georgia: The Bulldogs are favored by 7 in the first half of this one and I have Austin Peay leading by 2, but that’s based on overall numbers, not home and away and Austin Peay is a much lower-scoring team when they’re away from home.

St. Bonaventure at Buffalo: Buffalo is favored by 1.5 in this one and I have them leading by 4. The Bonnies have played a tougher schedule and are getting a little full-game action so will just stay away from this one.

Mass at Akron: Akron is favored by 5 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 5 at the break.

Northeastern at James Madison: Northeastern is favored by 1.5 in this one and I have it even.

Wisconsin-Milwaukee at Wright State: Wright State is favored by 6.5 in the first half and I have them leading by 7, but will go ahead and take the home team in this spot. Even though we have just a half-point advantage, Milwaukee is roughly 4.8 points worse when they’re away from home. Wright State is about 2.8 points better in the first half at home.

Northern Arizona at Montana State: Montana State is favored by 2 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by a point.

Eastern Washington at Idaho State: The Eagles are favored by 4 in the first half of this one and I have Eastern Washington leading by a pair.

Detroit at Gonzaga: The Zags are favored by 18.5 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 20.

Sacramento State at Montana: The Grizzlies are favored by three in the first half and I have this one even.

END OF DEC. 30 PICKS

Fresno State fell apart in the second half once again, although this time they managed to get the first-half cover for us last night. Still, we’re just 6-8 with these plays so far, the worst of the three articles.

Appalachian State at NC State: The first half line in this one sees the Wolfpack favored by 7.5 and I have them leading by 8 at the break.

Tenn Tech at Ole Miss: The Rebels are favored by 13 in the first half of this one and overall numbers would have them leading by 2, but Tennessee Tech much worse on the road.

UC Davis at New Mexico: New Mexico is favored by 7.5 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 9.

Bakersfield at Texas Tech: Another game where you have to look at the home and away splits to get the true story, as Texas Tech is favored by 11.5 and I have them leading by 1, but Bakersfield goes from a +2.4 overall to -5.4 on the road, while Tech also three points better at home.

Rhode Island at Middle Tenn: Rhode Island is -3 in the first half and I have them leading by 7, which is a little strange as the full-game numbers like Middle Tenn.

FAU at USF: The Bulls are favored by 4.5 in the first half and I have FAU leading by one in another case of a team taking a nosedive on the road.

South Dakota at Western Illinois: South Dakota is favored by 2.5 and I have this one even.

ND State at Denver: ND State is favored by 4.5 and I have them leading by 5.

Harvard at California: Harvard is favored by 2 and I have the Bears leading by a point at the break.

UCSB at Lafayette: Santa Barbara is favored by 1.5 points for the first half and I have them leading by 3.

Western Michigan at Michigan State: Still no line out on the first half of this one and I have the Spartans leading by 15.

Tulsa at Kansas State: Kansas State is favored by 4 and my overall numbers have them leading by 6, so going to take the Wildcats here. Kansas State is 2.6 points better at home, while Tulsa’s numbers are worse on the road, even though they’ve played just three away games so far.

North Dakota at Oregon State: The Beavers are favored by 7.5 in the first half and I have them leading by 4.

Richmond at Alabama: Alabama is favored by 3.5 and I have them leading by 4.

END OF DEC. 29 PICKS

The dreaded half-point loss last time out, as Fresno diddled around at the start of the game and fell behind early, as we dropped to 5-8 with these plays, so need to get things going here.

Cal Poly at San Diego State: San Diego State State is favored by 15 in the first half and I have them leading by 17, so nothing really happening in this one.

Wilmington at Delaware: Delaware is favored by 7 in the first half and I have them leading by nine, even though the full-game projection was just Delaware by 2. Wilmington has been a different team on the road so far this season.

Niagara at Syracuse: Syracuse is favored by 12.5 and I have them leading this one by 16.

Belmont at Western Kentucky: Western Kentucky is favored by 1 and I have them leading at the break by four.

Seattle at Saint Marys: Saints Marys is favored by 11 in the first half of a game that has seen Seattle get the majority of the wagers on the full-game line, but I have the home team leading by 14 at the break here.

Oral Roberts at BYU: The Cougars are favored by 8 in the first half and I have them leading by 11, after making an adjustment for Oral Roberts and their downturn on the road.

Pepperdine at San Jose State: Pepperdine is favored by 4.5 on the road in the first half and I have San Jose State leading by 2, as the Spartans score some strength of schedule points. San Jose State can pop up with good effort now and then, which makes getting involved in their games a bit tough.

Riverside at Fresno: Fresno State is favored by 4.5 for the first half of this one and even though the Bulldogs let me down last time, will come right back with them, as I have them leading by 12. Fresno fell apart at the end of the game against San Francisco, losing an 8-point lead with 1:44 left, so think they’ll come out and play hard from the opening tip here.

Northern Arizona at Montana: Montana is favored by 4 in the first half and I have them leading by that margin.

END OF DEC. 28 PICKS

Our first half side plays have been pretty up-and-down with our teams doing better for the full game than in the first half. Part of that is still due to lack of games played and a bit first half in one or two games will distort the numbers a little bit, but we should be OK as the season goes on. We’re 5-7 so far, as our last two plays have covered the full game, but not the half.

Canisius at Siena: The Saints are favored by 3.5 in the first half and are up to 7 for the full game and I have Siena leading by seven points at the break in the overall numbers and by 16 if we look at home and away numbers, which aren’t quite as accurate right now, as there are still some disparities in the AOPR of teams depending upon location.

Long Beach State at Seattle: Seattle is favored by 2.5 at the break and this is one of the games where I get conflicting opinions depending on the numbers used. The overall numbers have Long Beach State leading by a point, which is due to the 49ers having played a decent schedule, but the home and away numbers have Seattle leading by 6.

Georgia Southern at Georgia: The Bulldogs are favored by 4.5 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by four points and that climbs to 16 if we use home and away numbers.

Georgia State at SMU: The Mustangs are favored by 4 in the first half and are 8-point favorites for the full game, so it makes sense to see a 4 or 4.5 in the first half. SMU is getting a little bit of wise guy play, but both sets of numbers have Georgia State leading by 3. Wanted to take Georgia State here, but the full-game betting has me a little leery.

San Francisco at Fresno State: San Francisco is favored by a half-point and my overall numbers have Fresno leading by 1 and the margin climbs to 10 points if we look at home and away numbers. Will go ahead and take a stab on the Bulldogs here as an anti-public play, as the Dons are getting 75% of the full-game wagers and my numbers have Fresno getting the win.

END OF DEC. 23 PICKS

The majority of games on today’s slate are early ones, but we’ll take a look at some of the games that start at 4 p.m. EST and later.

Fullerton at Loyola Marymount: Loyola is favored by 3.5 in the first half and I have them leading by 15, as despite their losing record, they’ve played much better in the first half than they have in the second half. Both teams have played pretty comparable schedules, so will go ahead and take a shot on the home team in this one and hope to see the first-half play of the Lions continue.

Charlotte at East Carolina: Charlotte is favored by 1 in the first half and I have them leading by 5, but Charlotte is about four points worse on the road and the Pirates are a little better at home.

Missouri-Kansas City at South Dakota: South Dakota is favored by 4 in the first half and I have Kansas City leading by a point, but this is another game where the road team is about four points worse away from home and the home team has better numbers.

Yale at Clemson: Clemson is favored by 2.5 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 2.

Riverside at San Jose State: Riverside is favored by 1.5 in the first half and I have San Jose State leading by a point.

Xavier at TCU: Decent game here, where the Horned Frogs are favored by 1 in the first half and I have Xavier leading by a point at the break.

Citadel at NC State: North Carolina State is favored by 14.5 in the first half and I have them leading by 9, although Citadel is scoring seven fewer points in the first half when they’re on the road compared to their overall average.

Florida Atlantic at Mercer: Mercer is favored by 1 and I have Florida Atlantic leading by three points at the break. This one follows a common theme this morning, as FAU scores quite a bit less away from home and Mercer has played better defense when they’re the home team.

UTEP at Hawaii: This one is technically a tournament game and I’ll usually stay clear of those, but this is a home game for Hawaii no matter how you look at it. Hawaii is favored by 1 in the first half and I have them leading by 1.

END OF DEC. 22 PICKS

A number of college basketball games without first-half totals right now, so we’ll take a look at sides, which are just 5-5 after Duke managed to pull out the first-half cover last night.

James Madison at Fordham: Fordham is favored by 1.5 and my overall numbers have James Madison leading by 7 at the break. But running home and away numbers would give a two-point advantage to Fordham, so a game I’ll just stay away from.

SMU at Georgia: Georgia is favored by 2.5 over SMU, which is coming off its first loss of the season last time out, as SMU’s soft schedule may be catching up to the Mustangs a bit. I have the Bulldogs leading by 3 in the overall numbers and by 8 in the home and away numbers.

Furman at Mercer: Furman is favored by 4.5 and I have them leading by 15 with the overall numbers, but just by 3 when looking at the home and away figures.

Irvine at Illinois-Chicago: Irvine is favored by 2.5 and I have them leading by 9 with the overall numbers and by 8 with the home and away numbers.

Northern Colorado at South Dakota: South Dakota is favored by .5 and I have them leading by 1 with the overall numbers and by 14 just looking at home and away numbers, but south Dakota has played some poor teams at home so far.

North Dakota State at Marquette: North Dakota State is getting bet pretty good in the full-game, but Marquette is still favored by 7 in the first half. I have Marquette leading by 12 in the overall numbers and by 13 in the home and away numbers and will take a shot on Marquette -7 here, having played a much-tougher schedule.

IUPUI at Fresno: Fresno State is favored by 7.5 and I have them leading by 4 on the overall numbers and by 17 in the home-away numbers.

Akron vs. Tulane: Akron is favored by 3 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 4, but have Tulane leading by 2 when looking at just the away games for both teams.

Liberty at Towson: Liberty is favored by 3.5 and I have them leading by a pair with both sets of numbers in what should be a low-scoring half.

Drexel vs. Quinnipac: Drexel is favored by .5 and I have them leading by 3 and by 1 point.

END OF DEC. 20 PICKS

A split last night with our two games, losing a tough one by a point in the Illinois State game, as Illinois-Chicago went on a 10-3 run to close the first half, and having an easy time with the total in the Georgia Tech game.

We’ll take a look at a few of the games on tonight’s slate.

Northeastern at Detroit: Northeastern is favored by 3 in the first half and I have them leading by 5. Northeastern actually has slightly better numbers when they’re away from home, while Detroit has played a little better at home, but have only had two home games up to this point.

William & Mary at St. Joe’s: William & Mary is favored by a half-point in this one and I have them leading by two. William & Mary has scored less and allowed more when they’re away from home, while St. Joe’s has worse overall numbers in front of the home fans.

Eastern Kentucky at Marshall: Marshall is favored by 6.5 in the first half and I have them leading by 3, but Eastern Kentucky has been terrible on the road this season, while Marshall doesn’t show the improvement at home you’d like to see.

Texas-Arlington at Georgia State: Arlington has played a tough schedule so far and Georgia State is favored by 1.5 in this one, while I have them leading by 4. Arlington has the traditional home and away stats, scoring less and allowing more away from home, while Georgia State has scored more and allowed less in front of the home fans. Georgia State has a decent AOPR, but Arlington’s is quite a bit higher.

Texas State at Georgia Southern: Georgia Southern is favored by 1 and I have Texas State leading by 4, although Texas State scores 8 fewer points in the first half when they’re the away team, while Georgia Southern scores 6 more and allows 4 fewer.

Wofford at Duke: Duke is favored by 10.5 and I have them leading by 14, so am going to go ahead and take Duke in this one. Wofford is coming off a huge win over a banged-up North Carolina team and that will certainly get the attention of the Blue Devils. Wofford has a first-half scoring margin of -5.6 on the road compared to +3.7 overall and Duke is slightly better at home. Wofford lost by 19 at Butler and Missouri earlier this year.

END OF DEC, 19 PICKS

A few pretty big slates on tap the next few days, so we’ll look at some of the games on the schedule.
Will get records all updated tomorrow, as running behind again, which is typically the case when running the different numbers for college hoops, as it’s a bit more time consuming than I’d like.

Western Carolina at Xavier: Xavier is favored by 8 in the first half and I have them leading by 11. Western’s offense has been consistent, but tails off on the road, while Xavier is the traditional home team in that they score more and allow less.

DePaul at Cleveland State: DePaul is favored by 9 in the first half and I have them leading by 10. The Blue Demons have played well on the road, but just have three away games to their credit.

Ball State at Georgia Tech: Georgia Tech is favored by 2.5 in the first half and I have them leading by 4.

Tennessee State at Indiana State: Indiana State is favored by 5 in the first half and I have them leading by 6. Indiana State has played just two home games so far.

Illinois Chicago at Illinois State: Illinois State is favored by 3 in the first half and I have them leading by 10. Illinois Chicago hasn’t been that bad on the road, while Illinois State has played tougher foes and is better a home a little, so will take a shot on Illinois State -3.

Canisius at Buffalo: Buffalo is favored by 4.5 in the first half and I have them leading by 8. Buffalo is coming off a puzzling home loss to Army.

Niagara at St. Bonnies: St. Bonaventure is favored by 8.5 in the first half and I have them leading by 8.

St. Peters at UConn: The Huskies are favored by 12.5 in the first half and I have them leading by 15. UConn is coming off a tough loss to Indiana and might have a hard time getting up for this one, which is my only concern.

East Tenn State at LSU: LSU is favored by 5.5 and I have ETS leading by a pair, but ETS a much better home team and they’ve played some weak foes.

Tennessee at Cincinnati: Tennessee is favored by a half-point and I have the Bearcats leading by 2.
Richmond at Old Dominion: Richmond is favored by 2 and I have them leading by 1. Old Dominion won both games last year.

VCU at College of Charleston: VCU is favored by 2.5 and I have them leading by 3.

END OF DEC. 18 PICKS

Coming off a fairly ugly weekend, so will look to get back on track here.

Mercer at Wilmington: Wilmington is favored by .5 points in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 9, so going to go ahead and take Wilmington right out of the gate. Both teams are in the midst of losing streaks, but Wilmington with a bit tougher competition played.

Valparaiso at Charlotte: Charlotte is favored by 2 in the first half and I have them leading by 5. Charlotte has a couple of nice home wins, but also an ugly home loss to NC-Ashville.

Marist at Rider: Rider is favored by 8 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 12.

Marshall at Morehead State: Morehead is favored by 1 and I have them with a four-point lead at the break.

Southern Miss at Texas Tech: Texas Tech is favored by 13.5 in the first half, which seems a little on the high side, especially if Jahmi’us Ramsey is unable to go. The Golden Eagles have played some weak teams, however, and will just stay clear.

Northern Illinois at Pitt: Pittsburgh is favored by 6.5 in the first half and I have them leading by three.

Eastern Illinois at Western Illinois: Eastern Illinois is favored by 1 and I have this one even. Western Illinois is playing better lately and this could actually be a decent game.

Montana State at North Dakota State: North Dakota State is favored by 4 in the first half and I have them leading by 1.

Evansville at Jacksonville State: Evansville is favored by 2 in the first half and I have Jacksonville State leading by 3. Jacksonville State’s stats at home, in particular, are a bit distorted after defeating Brescia by a 125-55 margin.

UCSB at Idaho State: Santa Barbara is favored by 4 in the first half of this one, while I have Idaho State leading by 8. Idaho State has only played seven games so far this season and have outscored Montana Western and West Coast Baptist by a combined 182-91, which certainly has affected their stats.

Loyola-Marymount at UC Davis: Loyola is favored by .5 in the first half and I have them leading by 10, but UCD has played better at home in its two games, while Loyola is about five points worse in the first half on the road.

END OF DEC. 16 PICKS

Just 3-3 with our first half side plays so far and we’ll look at some of the evening games here for Saturday.

Drake at Dayton: Dayton is favored by 9.5 in the first half and I have them covering that number pretty easily with a 20-point halftime lead, so will take Dayton -9.5 right out of the gate.

New Mexico State at New Mexico: This one could be a decent game and the home team is favored by a pair and I have the two teams tied at the break.

Evansville at Green Bay: Green Bay is favored by 1.5 in the first half and I have them leading by 7. This is just the third home game for Green Bay.

Bakersfield at Idaho: The road team is favored by 3 in the first half of this one and I have Bakersfield leading by 1, so not much margin for error. The Vandals haven’t been pretty at home and have some ugly stats that would be worse if not for games against Evergreen State and Walla Walla.

Stanford at San Jose State: Stanford is favored by 10 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 8. Stanford has just two games away from home so far, but they did beat Oklahoma and lose by 1 to a solid Butler team.

Western Michigan at Manhattan: Manhattan is favored by 2.5 in this one and I have Western Michigan leading at the break, but Manahattan has just two homes games so far and can’t really put a lot of trust in the numbers yet.

Georgia at Arizona State: ASU is favored by 2 in the first half and I have the Sun Devils leading by 9. Georgia hasn’t been impressive away from home, but the Sun Devils have some lackluster efforts at home against weaker foes.

Eastern Illinois at Wisconsin-Milwaukee: Milwaukee is favored by 1.5 in the first half and I have this one tied. Not so sure Eastern is as good as their numbers as they’ve padded the stats against a few bad teams.

Northern Colorado at Wyoming: Northern Colorado is favored by 3 and I have them ahead by 11 at the break, bu Northern Colorado is another who has beaten up some poor teams and probably not as good as the numbers suggest.

NAU at Utah Valley: Utah Valley is favored by 4 in the first half and I have the Lumberjacks leading by 10, but NAU has been thumping teams like Sagu American Indian and Benedictine.

Cal Davis at San Diego: San Diego is favored by 4.5 in the first half and I have them leading by 8.

Fresno at Cal Poly: Fresno is favored by 4.5 and I have them leading by 5 at the break.

Gonzaga at Arizona: Arizona is favored by 1.5 at the half and I have it even.

St. Mary’s at California: St. Mary’s is favored by 4.5 and I have this one even.

END DEC. 14 PICKS

Have slumped a little bit with the first-half side plays, as we fell to 2-3 last time, but are 4-1 with our full-game college sides, so no real complaints. Just a couple of games on today’s schedule, so will see what we can do here.

Austin Peay at West Virginia: The Mountaineers are favored by 9.5 in the first half of this one, which is a little bit on the high side conserving the full-game spread is 15.5, so I expected 9, although I have West Virginia leading by 11 at the break. That may be a little misleading when you factor in home and away performances, as Austin Peay goes from a first-half margin of +1.2 to -4.7 when they’re away from home and the Mountaineers go from +6.1 to +12 when they are at home. West Virginia is coming off a loss to St. John’s so I’d expect them to come out hard, and wouldn’t be surprised to see them leading by double-digits at the break, but still a pretty steep number.

Iowa at Iowa State: Iowa State is favored by 2.5 in the first half of this one and both my projections have the Cyclones leading by more than that, but things don’t always go as planned in rivalry games. Iowa State did win at home against Iowa last year and pushed the -6 line, but the Hawkeyes did have the lead at halftime, only to see Iowa State storm back in the second half. Both teams have over a week off after this one, so should be pulling out all the stops in what could be a pretty decent game to watch.

Northern Iowa at Grand Canyon: Northern Iowa is favored by 3 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 8 on the home vs. away numbers and by 15 on the overall numbers, which I’ll admit is likely a bit on the high side, with NIU scoring close to four fewer first-half points away from home. The Panthers do play tough defense regardless of location and there isn’t much difference in the number of points they allow. Grand Canyon has some bad home losses this season, losing to Davenport and Purdue-Fort Wayne, while needed overtime to defeat a pretty sad Mount St. Mary’s team. Always tough to lay points on the road, but will take Northern Iowa in this one.

END OF DEC. 12 PICKS

We suffered our first losing day of the season to fall to 9-3 overall with our college basketball plays and now have just a couple of games on Monday’s schedule before things get back to normal on Tuesday.

We’re 2-2 with our first-half side plays, losing on Sunday when Northern Kentucky didn’t show up until the second half, winning by 21 and easily covering the full-game spread.

Columbia at Duquesne: This one is an interesting game, at least from a handicapping perspective, as Duquesne brings an undefeated record into the contest, while the Lions are just 3-7 straight-up. Columbia has played a tougher schedule, but Duquesne absolutely throttled Princeton last month in its lone game with an Ivy League School.

Despite being 4-0 at home on the season, Duquesne actually has a negative scoring margin in the first half at home and have played better in the first half on the road. Overall, Duquesne has a +1.1 first-half margin, although that drops to -1.2 at home.

The Lions have played eight of their 10 games away from home and while they’ve had a couple of soft games, against the likes of Binghamton and Central Conn State, they’ve also faced Virginia, St. John’s and Wake Forest.

Columbia is a -2 in the first half over and that drops down to -3 when they’re on the road, which really isn’t that bad of a difference considering they’re toughest games have been away from home.

I have the Lions leading by a point at the break, so will go ahead and take Columbia +6.5 in the first half of this one.

Minnesota at Iowa: The Hawkeyes are favored by 3 in the first half of this one and I have the Gophers leading by a point at the break, although Minnesota’s away numbers are quite a bit worse than their overall numbers. But Minnesota has just two road games to their credit so far this season, against Butler and Utah, so you really can’t tell a whole lot from that.

The Hawkeyes don’t show much difference between their home and away performances, so one to stay away from.

END OF DEC. 9 PICKS

We moved to 2-1 with our first-half side plays on Saturday and now have a fairly small slate of late games for this Sunday.

Northwestern at Purdue: Purdue is favored by 7.5 in the first half and I have them leading by 14 at the break. I’m not entirely sold on the situation for the Boilermakers, however, as there’s bound to be a little bit of a letdown after the thumping they just handed Virginia.

Denver at UCLA: The Bruins are favored by 11 in the first half of this one and I have UCLA leading by 7, but Denver doesn’t inspire a lot of confidence away from home, where they’re 1-5 and play a fair amount worse than they do at home.

Buffalo at DePaul: The Blue Demons are favored by 5 points in the first half and that’s what I have them leading by, so one to stay away from.

North Dakota at Eastern Washington: Eastern Washington is favored by 4.5 in the first half and I have them leading by 9 at the break. Eastern’s home stats are distorted due to their 82-point victory over Portland Bible to open the season.

Eastern Kentucky at Northern Kentucky: Northern Kentucky is favored by 8 in the first half and I have them leading by 14. Eastern Kentucky pulled the upset last year in the first meeting and Northern waxed them in the rematch and believe Northern’s coaches are reminding the team what happen last year, so I’d expect them to come out hard, so will go ahead and take Northern Kentucky -8 in the first half of this one.

Gonzaga at Washington: The Bulldogs are favored by two in the first half of this one and I have them leading by four.

Rutgers at Michigan State: The Spartans are favored by 8.5 in the first half in this spot and I have them leading by 15. The Spartans are usually pretty solid after a defeat.

Seton Hall at Iowa State: The Cyclones are favored by 1 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by two in the quick rematch between the two teams.

END OF DEC. 8 PICKS

We suffered our first loss of the college basketball season on our first-half side play Friday and a bit tougher of a card today, as we’ll look at a few of the evening games.

SEMO at Drake: Drake is favored by 7 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 8 at the break.

Morehead State at Illinois State: Illinois State is favored by 4 in the first half of this one and I have them leading by 3, so no real room for error in this one.

Georgetown at SMU: The Mustangs are favored by 2 in the first half of this one and I have the Hoyas leading by a pair at the break.

Cleveland State at Kent State: Kent State is favored by 10.5 in the first half of this one and I have the Golden Flashes leading by 11, so another one pretty close to the number.

Missouri at Temple: The Owls are still favored by in the first half of this one even though a big reverse line move on Missouri has knocked the full-game number to Owls -3. I have Temple leading by 10, but will respect the line move and just stay clear.

Colorado State at Boise State: Boise State is favored by 3.5 and I have them leading by 9.

Little Rock at North Texas: North Texas is favored by 2.5 here and I have the Mean Green leading by 11 and will take North Texas in this one.

Arkansas at Western Kentucky: The Razorbacks are favored by a half-point and I have them leading by one.

Fresno at Utah State: Utah State is favored by 7.5 and I have them leading by 1 at the break.

Hawaii at Oregon: The Ducks are favored by 11 in the first half and I have them leading by 14.

Colorado at Kansas: Kansas is favored by 5.5 and I have them leading by 14 at the break.

END OF DEC. 7 PICKS

Small slate of games today and tomorrow the usual Saturday debacle. Will most likely have all of the evening games around this time tomorrow morning and possibly some of the bigger day games depending on time.

Iowa at Michigan: The Wolverines are favored by 4 in the first half and I have them taking it to Iowa early, but a little hesitant to back the boys in blue due to the reverse line move on the full game, so will just stay away.

Tenn-Martin at Central Michigan: Central Michigan is favored by 6.5 in the first half and I have them leading by nine at the break, so nothing much in this one.

Providence at Rhode Island: The Rams are favored by 1 in the first half even though we’ve seen the full game line drop down to even. I have Rhode Island leading by five at the half in this one.

Duke at Virginia Tech: Duke is favored by 4 in the first half and I have them leading by 6 at the break, so nothing in this one.

Dartmouth at South Florida: Another game where a full-game reverse line move has me a little hesitant to pull the trigger in this one, as South Florida is favored by 4 and I have Dartmouth leading by a pair.

Chicago State at Tennessee State: Tennessee State is favored by 12.5 in the first half and I have them leading by 19. Chicago State has had a couple of tough road games, while Tennessee State with several blowouts at home, so the home vs. away numbers might be a little distorted here and will just stay clear.

Pittsburgh at Louisville: Louisville is favored by 7.5 in the first half and I have them leading by 12, so will stay away.

Idaho State at Pepperdine: Pepperdine is favored by 8 in the first half of this one and I have Idaho State leading by a pair, but with ISU as a full-game wager will stay away from this one.

USC at TCU: The Horned Frogs are favored by 2.5 in the first half and I have them leading by 6.

North Dakota at Montana: Montana is favored by 3.5 in the first half and I have the Grizzlies leading by 7.

Northridge at Portland State: The first-half line here has Portland State favored by 3 and I have the Vikings leading by 10 and will go ahead and take a shot on PSU in this one.

END OF DEC. 6 PICKS

We’re back for another season of college basketball and will look to duplicate our success of last year’s first-half plays, which were better than expected, but that’s no guarantee for this season, as this football season shows for me. If you remember, our first plays were essentially born out of stinking it up in totals, starting off 0-4 and then finding a first-half total that I liked and we were off and running.

Might be jumping the gun a little bit in terms of the number of games played and having a decent statistical base to draw on, but you have to get started at some point. There are just halftime lines on five of the six games, with no number on the Howard at Hampton game.

Louisiana Tech at Mississippi State: Mississippi State is favored by 4.5 in the first half and both teams have shown a tendency to get off to decent starts, although Tech hasn’t been nearly as good on the road in the first half as they have elsewhere. This is just their fourth away game of the season, so I’ll stay away from this one where I have Miss State leading by one at the break.

Oklahoma at North Texas: The Sooners are favored by 3 (-115) in the first half of this one and Oklahoma has had an early tendency to be a second-half team. Despite having a 6-1 overall, Oklahoma trails by 1.4 points at the half on average. The Sooners haven’t played many true away games, they trail by 1.5 points at the break but are 3-1 on the road. North Texas is pretty much the opposite in that despite being 3-5 for the year, the Mean Green leads by 2.3 points and the break and is a little better than that at home. You know North Texas is going to come out fired up for this one and can see them keeping it close for a while, so will take North Texas +3 for our play here.

Furman at Auburn: Auburn has been a solid first team this season and is favored by 7, while I have them leading by 5 in a game that is too close for my liking. Furman hasn’t been bad in the first half, but Auburn is a big climb in class.

Northern Illinois at St. Mary’s: St. Mary’s has moved to an 8-point favorite in the first half and I have them leading by 4, so one I’ll just stay clear of.

South Dakota State at Montana State: Another game where I can see the home team playing a decent first half, the Bobcats are favored by .5 at home. I have Montana State leading by a pair at the intermission.

 

 

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