cnotes Posts:33180 Followers:38
03/14/2012 06:37 PM


Wednesday, March 14

College funds: Wednesday's best NIT bets

Valparaiso Crusaders at Miami Hurricanes (-11, 135)

Miami reached the NIT quarterfinals a year ago before losing 79-64 to Alabama. The Hurricanes must shake off the disappointment of being left out of the NCAA field to go further this time around.

That will be tougher if leading scorer Durand Scott, declared ineligible Friday for receiving impermissible benefits, is not reinstated by the NCAA. Miami has wins over Florida State and Duke.

The Hurricanes probably needed one more victory to get an NCAA at-large bid, but they have the tools to make a long NIT run. Scott, if he returns, simply gives a balanced lineup another threat. Rion Brown, starting in Scott’s place against Florida State in the ACC quarterfinals, had 13 points and has averaged 10.4 over the last five games. Kenny Kadji, a 6-foot-11 forward, is second in scoring (12.3) and shoots 42.4 percent from 3-point range. The Hurricanes will need more from burly center Reggie Johnson, who is averaging just 7.0 points over the last eight games.

Horizon League regular-season champion Valparaiso, making its 11th postseason appearance in 17 years, is an efficient offensive team. The Crusaders are shooting 55.2 percent from inside the 3-point arc.

Pick: Over

Bucknell Bison at Arizona Wildcats (-8.5, 132)

Arizona saw its NCAA tournament hopes disappear when it fell to Colorado in the Pac-12 championship game. Now, the top-seeded Wildcats will have to regroup for their first-round NIT matchup with No. 8 seed Bucknell. Arizona is making its first NIT appearance since 1951.

The Bison were also a win shy of the NCAA tournament, but they suffered an 82-77 setback against Lehigh in the Patriot League final. The Wildcats are 0-3 all-time in the tournament and this will be the teams' first meeting.

After winning the Pac-10 title and advancing to the NCAA tournament’s Elite Eight last season, Arizona experienced a bit of a dropoff this season. The Wildcats finished fourth in the Pac-12, two games behind first-place Washington. A sluggish start, which included four non-conference losses, ultimately hurt the Wildcats, as did an ugly 87-80 loss at Arizona State in the regular-season finale.

Kyle Fogg averages a team-high 13.7 points for Arizona, which is 14-3 at home. Solomon Hill adds 12.9 points and a team-high seven rebounds per game.

Pick: Wildcats

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:33180 Followers:38
03/14/2012 06:39 PM


Wednesday, March 14

68 things bettors should know about the field of 68

Before you blindly pencil in Kentucky to win the national championship, remember these two things:

1. The Wildcats, the No. 1 overall seed and clear-cut favorite to win the NCAA tournament, have the worst record against the spread (12-20-1) of any team in the field of 68.

2. Since 1998, only two teams have won the national championship with a losing record against the spread: 2009 North Carolina (17-19 ATS) and 2004 UConn (16-18-1 ATS).

It’s easy to see why John Calipari’s young, but extremely talented bunch struggled to live up to the betting market’s expectations. The Wildcats were favored by a total of 532.5 points this year, an average of 16.3 points per game. No other team was favored by more than North Carolina’s 482 points. Kentucky was favored by 20 or more points nine times.

But the gap between the Wildcats and the rest of the field has narrowed, at least in oddsmakers’ eyes. The Las Vegas Hotel & Casino moved Kentucky from +180 (9/5) to +200 (2/1) after Big Blue slipped up against Vanderbilt in the SEC championship game. The Cats’ odds are even a little higher offshore.

Now, that we’ve scientifically proven without a doubt that Kentucky is not winning the national title, here’s everything else bettors should know to successfully handicap the madness.

Most NBA Talent

3. Kentucky: Anthony Davis (1) Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (2), Terrence Jones (11), Doron Lamb (35), Marcus Teague (38), Darius Miller (88).

4. North Carolina: Harrison Barnes (6), John Henson (9), Tyler Zeller (10), Kendall Marshall (19), James McAdoo (26), Reggie Bullock (65).

5. Kansas: Thomas Robinson (3), Tyshawn Taylor (31), Jeff Withey (94), Elijah Johnson (76)

6. Vanderbilt: Jeff Taylor (20), Festus Ezeli (34), John Jenkins (46)

7. UConn: Andre Drummond (4), Jeremy Lamb (12), Alex Oriakhi (91)

Best, Worst, Most & Least

8. Xavier has been the best bet in the NCAA tournament, going 10-3-1 ATS since 2005.

9. Gonzaga has been the worst best in the NCAA tournament, going 4-8 ATS since 2005.

10. New Mexico (22-8 ATS) has been the best bet in college basketball. No team has covered the spread in more than 24 games in a season since at least 1998.

11. Kentucky, as noted above, has the worst record against the spread of any team in the field. Duke, at 13-20 against the number, is next.

12. Lehigh is best free-throw shooting team at 77.6 percent.

13. Cincinnati is the worst free-throw shooting team at 64.1 percent.

14. North Carolina is by far the best rebounding team, dominating teams on the glass by average of 10.8 rebounds per game. No other team in the field has a rebounding margin more than 8.7 (New Mexico State).

15. Virginia Commonwealth is the worst rebounding team. The Rams were outrebounded by 1.5 per game.

16. Mississippi Valley State commits the most fouls per game at 20.5. Davidson is a close second, committing 20.3 fouls per game.

17. Notre Dame commits the fewest fouls per game at 13.8.

18. Florida makes the most 3-pointers per game (9.9)

19. Alabama makes the fewest 3-pointers per game (4.0).

20. Kentucky has the highest scoring margin, beating opponents by an average of 19.2 points. North Carolina (16.1), Ohio State (16.1), Wichita State (15.3) and Syracuse (14.7) are next.

21. Western Kentucky has the worst scoring margin (-2.9).

22. Western Kentucky received the least amount of respect from oddsmakers. The Hilltoppers were an underdog by a total of 135 points this season, the most of any team in the field.

23. Florida produced the highest percentage of overs. Eighteen of 28 games (64.28%) involving the Gators eclipsed the total. Duke was next at 20/12, over/under (62.5%).

24. Gonzaga produced the highest percentage of unders. Twenty-one of 29 games (72.4%) involving the Zags stayed under the total. Notre Dame was next at 9/18 over/under (66.6%).

25. Iona averages the most points 83.3.

26. South Florida scores the least at 59.2.

27. Wisconsin allows the fewest points (52.9)

28. Iona allows the most points (72.6).

29. Purdue turns the ball over the least (8.7).

30. Florida State turns the ball over the most (16.3).

31. Memphis and Xavier have each produced 10 overs in NCAA tournament play over the last six years, the most of any team in the field.

32. Duke has produced the most unders in NCAA tournament play over the last six years, the most of any team in the field.

6 Notable Strength-of-Schedule Mismatches

33. South Dakota State (218) vs. Baylor (16)

34. Cincinnati (63) vs. Texas (11)

35. Gonzaga (137) vs. West Virginia (25)

36. Davidson (210) vs. Louisville (18)

37. Murray State (249) vs. Colorado State (62)

38. Saint Mary’s (168) vs. Purdue (14)

5 teams not at full strength

39. Duke: The Blue Devils might be without starting forward and third-leading scorer Ryan Kelly (foot) for at least their opening game against Lehigh.

40. Long Beach State: The 49ers managed to win their conference tournament without second-leading scorer Larry Anderson (knee). Anderson is questionable to play Thursday against New Mexico.

41. North Carolina: The Tar Heels played without Jon Henson (wrist) for most of the ACC tournament. It seems likely that Roy Williams would rest his team’s leading rebounder and third-leading scorer for at least their opener against the Lamar-Vermont winner.

42. Indiana: The Hoosiers lost point guard Verdell Jones to an ACL injury in the Big Ten tournament.

43. Virginia: A rash of injuries has left the Cavs with just seven scholarship players. Starting shooting guard Joe Harris, one of the seven, has been battling a bad wrist for the latter half of the season.

Odds & Ends

44. Will a No. 1 seed win the NCAA tournament? Yes -123 / No +105 (

45. Instead of taking just Kentucky to win the tournament at 2/1, you might as well take the entire SEC at the same odds at

46. Florida State is 33-19-1 ATS in March under coach Leonard Hamilton.

47. Underdogs went 1787-1733-73 ATS through the conference tournaments.

48. There were 1,769 overs and 1,788 unders through the conference tournaments.

49. Mississippi Valley State (2) and Long Beach State (3) had the toughest non-conference strength of schedules, according

50. Cincinnati had the easiest non-conference schedule (338).

51. Belmont and Montana enter the tournament on the longest winning streaks at 14.

52. No team is hotter than Memphis, though. The Tigers roared through the final stretch of their schedule, winning seven straight games by double figures.

53. The biggest snub of the NCAA tournament field – Play-by-play man Gus Johnson will not be calling any games this season. Johnson and CBS parted ways last year.

54. As of Tuesday, Baylor -7.5 (77%) was the top consensus pick among Covers users for second-round games.

best 2nd-round bets

55. Colorado St +4
56. New Mexico -4
57. Vanderbilt -6.5
58. Purdue -1
59. Missouri/Norfolk State Over 144.5
60. Michigan -6
61. UConn -1.5

Final Four

62. Vanderbilt
63. Michigan State
64. Kentucky
65. North Carolina

Final Two

66. Michigan State
67. North Carolina

National Champion

68. Michigan State

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:33180 Followers:38
03/14/2012 06:47 PM

NCAAB Best Bets in BOLD:


Wednesday, March 14

Game Score Status Pick Amount

Vermont 0 1st 20:00 Vermont +3 500
Lamar 0 Over 128.5 500

Manhattan - 7:00 PM ET[B] Albany +2 500

Albany - Over 144.5 500

Yale - 7:00 PM ET Fairfield -8.5 500
Fairfield - Over 124.5 500

Bowling Green - 7:00 PM ET Oakland -4 500
Oakland - Over 152.5 500

Minnesota - 7:00 PM ET Minnesota +3 500
La Salle - Over 137.5 500

Wofford - 7:00 PM ET Wofford +13 500
Pittsburgh - Over 129 500

Central Florida - 7:15 PM ET Drexel -7 500
Drexel - Over 123.5 500

Northern Iowa - 7:15 PM ET St. Joseph's -6.5 500
St. Joseph's - Under 131 500

Buffalo - 7:30 PM ET Buffalo -2.5 500
American U. - Under 134 500

Valparaiso - 7:30 PM ET Valparaiso +10.5 500
Miami - Florida - Under 135 500

Quinnipiac - 7:30 PM ET Quinnipiac +4 500
Pennsylvania - Over 131 500

North Dakota - 8:00 PM ET North Dakota +13 500
Drake - Over 133 500

Rice - 8:00 PM ET Louisiana-Lafayette +1 500
Louisiana-Lafayette - Over 140 500

Delaware - 8:00 PM ET Delaware +9 500
Butler - Over 132 500

South Florida - 9:00 PM ET South Florida +3 500
California - Under 115 500

Cal. State - Bakersfield - 9:00 PM ET Utah St. -10.5 500
Utah St. - Under 131 500

Bucknell - 9:00 PM ET Bucknell +8.5 500
Arizona - Over 132 500

North Dakota State - 9:00 PM ET North Dakota State +10 500
Wyoming - Over 123 500

Nevada - 9:15 PM ET Nevada +5.5 500
Oral Roberts - Over 137.5 500

Illinois St. - 9:30 PM ET Mississippi -6 500
Mississippi - Over 131.5 500

UC Santa Barbara - 10:00 PM ET Idaho +1 500
Idaho - Over 136 500

Cal St. Fullerton - 10:00 PM ET Cal St. Fullerton +7 500
Loyola Marymount - Over 147.5 500

Western Illinois - 10:00 PM ET Oregon St. -11.5 500
Oregon St. - Over 129.5 500 [/B]

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:33180 Followers:38
03/14/2012 06:49 PM


Wednesday, March 14

Game Score Status Pick Amount

Philadelphia - 7:00 PM ET Indiana +1 500
Indiana - Under 185 500

Portland - 7:30 PM ET Portland +5 500
New York - Under 200.5 500

Cleveland - 8:00 PM ET Milwaukee -5.5 500
Milwaukee - Over 204 500

L.A. Lakers - 8:00 PM ET L.A. Lakers -4.5 500
New Orleans - Under 180 500

Miami - 9:30 PM ET Miami +3.5 500
Chicago - Under 191.5 500

Detroit - 10:00 PM ET Detroit +4.5 500
Sacramento - Over 198 500

Utah - 10:30 PM ET Utah +5 500
Phoenix - Over 197.5 500

Atlanta - 10:30 PM ET L.A. Clippers -6 500
L.A. Clippers - Over 185 500

Boston - 10:30 PM ET Golden State +1 500
Golden State - Under 189 500

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:33180 Followers:38
03/14/2012 06:51 PM


Wednesday, March 14

Game Score Status Pick Amount

Colorado - 7:30 PM ET Buffalo -143 500
Buffalo - Under 5 500

Ottawa - 7:30 PM ET Montreal +112 500
Montreal - Over 5.5 500

Dallas - 8:30 PM ET Winnipeg -108 500
Winnipeg - Over 5.5 500

Columbus - 10:00 PM ET Edmonton -153 500
Edmonton - Over 5.5 500

Phoenix - 10:00 PM ET Phoenix +158 500
Vancouver - Over 5 500

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:33180 Followers:38
03/15/2012 10:22 AM

Venue Breakdown

March 14, 2012

While most of the NCAA tournament games will generally be played in unfamiliar venues and spacious arenas with mixed fan bases, Ii is worth taking a look at the travel required for teams and fan bases. Here is a brief look at some of the advantages and disadvantages presented by the selection committee this season.

Louisville, Kentucky

The Wildcats play in their home state but their opponent is also a Bluegrass State foe as Western Kentucky won Tuesday’s opening game. The winner will enjoy a huge advantage in the next game as Iowa State and Connecticut are both far from home in this grouping. Ames may not look that far on a map but it is 600 miles away, though that is a closer than the roughly 900 miles Connecticut fans have to travel. While Kentucky was expected to get a big location advantage the team most benefiting from the Louisville draw is West 6 seed Murray State. Only the top four seed lines are supposed to get location consideration yet Murray State will not have to leave Kentucky for its first game with Colorado State or a potential ‘round of 32’ game with 3 seed Marquette. Louisville is still over 200 miles from Louisville but it is nearly twice as far from Milwaukee, although Marquette was placed in the closest possible location. The disadvantage for Marquette won’t be so much in the distance traveled but in that all the Kentucky fans will surely adopt Murray State as their rooting interest.

Portland, Oregon

With the Pac-12 being pretty terrible this season the West region had a lot of trouble filling in teams that made sense. Portland was then left without a team seeded higher than a 4 seed and very few western teams. This might be an easy ticket as every team involved is facing a long trip. 4 seeds Indiana and Louisville will be at location disadvantages should they win their first games but it won’t be significant and 5 seeds Wichita State and New Mexico are also facing very significant travel. New Mexico and New Mexico State at least have the benefit of being closer to the Pacific time zone as 12 seed Long Beach State is the only team in that zone in this grouping. New Mexico has emerged as a trendy sleeper to knock off Louisville in the potential 4/5 match-up but don’t cite location advantage as a reason as being 1,300 miles away isn’t much better than being 2,300 miles away.

Albuquerque, New Mexico

There simply aren’t many short trips out west so while UNLV and Colorado both seem to be paired in a favorable venue it is a significant journey for both teams at nearly 500 miles for the Buffaloes and nearly 600 miles for the Rebels. 3 seed Baylor is playing nearly 700 miles from Waco so there is not much of an advantage for any team in that South region pod. The rest of the Albuquerque group seems to be leftover teams that didn’t do enough to earn preferential treatment as Wisconsin and Montana meet in a 4/13 game and Vanderbilt and Harvard meet in a 5/12 game. Badger fans are known to travel well but there may not be much of a draw for those games.

Greensboro, North Carolina

As usual Duke and North Carolina have earned favorable spots in Greensboro and it will be tough to envision too much support for any of the other teams in these pods. Notre Dame and Xavier meet in what would have been a full arena in game that would have played great for fans if it was in say Louisville but instead the victor will face a big location disadvantage in the next round if the Blue Devils get by Lehigh. North Carolina will draw the winner of what should be a great game between Creighton and Alabama in an 8/9 match-up. Tuscaloosa is over 500 miles away for Crimson Tide fans which is quite a bit closer than the 1,300 mile drive that some Creighton fans will make. Duke and North Carolina have certainly earned it with their great traditions but it is a bit unfair that almost every year they get to play NCAA tournament games an hour away from home. Selling tickets is more important than competitive balance so don’t expect it to change.

Columbus, Ohio

Michigan State ventures into enemy territory for its opening tournament games and it is a very reasonable four hour drive south for Spartans fans. Potential second game foes St. Louis and Memphis are considerably further away from Columbus but it is a manageable trip for both of those teams and their fans. The other group in Columbus is a mismatch of teams as San Diego State and NC State both will be far from home in a 6/11 game. In the 3/14 match-up Nashville is a bit closer to Columbus for the underdog Belmont but Georgetown is a reasonable 400 mile drive away. It shouldn’t be enough to sway the game but it is a rare location advantage for a 14 seed. In a grouping that should be dominated by Michigan State fans some of the other underdogs might have a slight advantage as those waiting for Michigan State’s late game Friday will certainly be pulling for Belmont and an upset.

Omaha, Nebraska

While bitter rivals Missouri and Kansas may not meet on the court in the near future they can fight it out in the stands in Omaha as those will be the main drawing teams in this grouping. Columbia is just over 300 miles to Omaha for a nice edge for Missouri for any of the potential games they will face with Florida and Virginia meeting in the 7/10 game. Kansas enjoys one of the closest to home venues in the tournament playing just over 200 miles away and they will draw Detroit in the first game and the winner of the St. Mary’s/Purdue game so a significant advantage will be enjoyed in both games. While Missouri won the Big XII tournament Kansas was dealt a more favorable spot moving forward as the Sweet 16 in the Midwest is in St. Louis while Missouri will need to win in Phoenix if they hope to make the Final Four.

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

It is rare to see Pitt absent from the NCAA tournament but the city will be hosting opening games on Thursday and Saturday. 1 seed Syracuse draws a favorable pairing although it is still a hefty 360 mile trip. Kansas State and Southern Miss will certainly be making much further journeys in a compelling 8/9 game. Ohio State should be the dominant force in the crowd in Pittsburgh playing just 180 miles away from Columbus. The foes for the Buckeyes don’t have to travel too far however as Loyola-Maryland is less than 250 miles away in Baltimore and things could be interesting in the second game should the Buckeyes advance as 10 seed West Virginia has the most favorable venue in the tournament in terms of distance outside of Duke and North Carolina. Pittsburgh may be hostile territory for the Mountaineers but they are playing just over an hour’s drive away from Morgantown, a significant edge over Gonzaga in the first game and perhaps a boost that could give them a little better shot at an upset should they get a chance at the Buckeyes.

Nashville, Tennessee

Cincinnati made a great run to the Big East final and they were rewarded with very favorable seeding in the Big Dance. The Bearcats not only got a 6 seed despite most projections for a worse placing, they also are in a very favorable venue in Nashville, just 270 miles away. Texas faces very long travel as does Florida State and St. Bonaventure so this may be an opportunity for Cincinnati to have success. In the other pod Michigan and Temple have long trips of similar distance for the potential 4/5 game. Temple will have a big location edge against its potential opponent but that could be softened a bit with California in South Florida playing Wednesday night in Dayton to cut the trip down. Athens is still a good 400 miles from Nashville but Ohio is technically facing a shorter trip to Nashville than favored Michigan, a game many have keyed in on as a possible upset.

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:33180 Followers:38
03/15/2012 10:25 AM

Thursday Afternoon Games

March 14, 2012

The second round of the NCAA Tournament begins on Thursday with a full card of 16 games to wager on. We'll take a look here at the eight day contests, including three Big East teams taking the court (Syracuse, Marquette, and Louisville). The day begins in Louisville with one of the nation's biggest surprises looking to keep up their magical season.

[11] Colorado State vs. [6] Murray State (-4, 135 ½) - 12:15 PM EST

The Racers enter the tournament with a resounding 30-1 record, while claiming both the Ohio Valley regular season and conference tournament titles. Murray State is roughly a four-hour drive from KFC Yum Center in Louisville, where the Racers' second round game takes place against Colorado State. The Rams claimed an at-large berth out of the Mountain West at 20-11, as CSU cashed in seven of its final eight games of the season. Colorado State won only two of its nine games away from Ft. Collins in MWC play, including losses at Boise State and TCU. Murray State's lone loss came to Tennessee State in early February, as the Racers compiled a 9-3 ATS record as a single-digit favorite this season.

[9] Southern Miss vs. [8] Kansas State (-5, 133 ½) - 12:40 PM EST

In one of the more intriguing matchups on Thursday, the Wildcats and Golden Eagles will play for the right to likely take on top-seeded Syracuse in the third round. K-State handled Missouri twice, while also knocking off Baylor in Waco as 7 ½-point underdogs. Frank Martin's club put together a 7-9 ATS ledger in the favorite role, while failing to cover in the 3-5 pointspread range against West Virginia, Texas, and Oklahoma. Southern Miss didn't cash tickets in its final seven games of the season, even though six of those contests came in the 'chalk' role. The Golden Eagles did push the pace with a 10-2 'over' run the final 12 games, while scoring at least 75 points six times.

[13] Davidson vs. [4] Louisville (-7 ½, 138 ½) - 1:40 PM EST

This will be a rough wake-up call for the Wildcats and Cardinals, who tip things off at 10:40 AM local time at the Rose Garden in Portland. Louisville grabbed the Big East tournament crown with an ugly victory over Cincinnati, capping off a run of four wins in four days. The Cardinals are in the Big Dance for the sixth straight season, while trying to win their opening game after losing the last two against Cal (2010) and Murray State (2011). Davidson captured the automatic berth after winning the Southern Conference title, as the Wildcats finished 19-2 in conference play. Four seasons after making a run to the Elite Eight, Davidson's signature victory this season came at Kansas as 13-point 'dogs, avenging the loss to the Jayhawks that preventing the Wildcats from going to the Final Four in 2008. The Wildcats fell to Wichita State, Vanderbilt, and Duke in non-conference play, but all three games finished 'over' the total.

[13] Montana vs. [4] Wisconsin (-9, 118 ½) - 2:10 PM EST

The first game in Albuquerque isn't a sexy one by any stretch, as the grind-it-out Badgers battle Montana. Wisconsin fell to eventual Big 10 champ Michigan State in the semifinals of the conference tournament, but Bo Ryan's team has won 12 of their past 16 games. However, the Badgers aren't profiting over the last 20 contests by posting a 7-13 ATS mark, while going 2-5 ATS the last seven games as a favorite. Montana is back in the tournament for the first time since 2010 as the Grizzlies claimed the Big Sky title, while winning each of its final 14 games. The signature non-conference victory for Montana came against Long Beach State, who is a 12-seed in the West Regional. The Grizzlies own a 15-5 ATS record in their previous 20 lined games, while three of the non-covers came as double-digit favorites.

[14] BYU vs. [3] Marquette (-6) - 2:40 PM EST

The Cougars pulled off a historic tournament triumph by overcoming a 25-point deficit in Tuesday's 78-72 rally over Iona as two-point favorites. BYU makes the short trip from Dayton to Louisville as the Cougars take on a Marquette squad that finished the season at 25-7. The Golden Eagles were a profiting machine early January by posting a 12-5 ATS mark, while going 6-2 ATS in this stretch as a single-digit favorite. BYU took advantage in its first season as a member of the West Coast Conference by compiling a 26-8 record, including a 13-5 conference ledger. The Cougars are in the midst of a 2-5 ATS run, which includes the comeback victory against Iona, while going 1-5 ATS as an underdog this season.

[16] UNC-Asheville vs. [1] Syracuse (-15, 147) - 3:10 PM EST

The Orange is the top seed in the East Regional, but Jim Boeheim's team will be without its center Fab Melo for the entire tournament due to eligibility issues. Syracuse should take care of business against a UNC-Asheville club that claimed the Big South title with a victory over VMI in the conference championship game. The Bulldogs average 81 points per game, while busting the 80-point mark eighteen times this season (including a six-game stretch during conference play). Syracuse lost only two games all season against Notre Dame and Cincinnati, as the Orange struggled down the stretch covering numbers by putting together a 2-7 ATS record the last nine games.

[12] Long Beach State vs. [5] New Mexico (-4, 137) - 4:10 PM EST

The Lobos are one of the hottest ATS teams as of late by covering 12 of their last 14 games, while taking home the title of the Mountain West tournament. New Mexico will have its hands full against Long Beach State, who won both the Big West regular season title and tournament championship at 25-8. The 49ers picked up 18 victories in 19 tries against conference foes, including a 7-2 ATS run down the stretch. New Mexico finished a perfect 7-0 SU/ATS as a favorite of five points or less this season, including wins over tournament teams UNLV, San Diego State, and New Mexico State.

[12] Harvard vs. [5] Vanderbilt (-5 ½, 122 ½) - 4:40 PM EST

Two of the brainier schools in the tournament meet up at the Pit in New Mexico for an intriguing matchup between the SEC and the Ivy League. The Commodores upset top-ranked Kentucky to claim the SEC tournament crown as 7 ½-point underdogs, 71-64. Vandy has dropped its opening game in the NCAA tournament in the last three tries, including a three-point loss to Richmond last March. The Crimson finished off a spectacular season with a 26-4 mark and their first appearance in the Big Dance since 1946, when the field was composed of only eight teams. Harvard stumbled to a 3-8 ATS finish, but all 11 of those games came in the 'chalk' role. The Commodores closed the season at 8-3 ATS, including covers against Kentucky and Florida.

Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:33180 Followers:38
03/15/2012 10:30 AM

UNLV And Colorado Cap First Day Slate

Welcome to The Pit and our first stop on Thursday's pod tour. Albuquerque will ship one team off to the East Regional next week in Boston and another down to the South Regional in Atlanta.

It's appropriate – or lucky timing, take your pick – to mention the East side of the bracket in our first report. Syracuse drew the No. 1 seed in that regional after a solid 31-2 campaign (16-16 against the spread), but will now be without center Fab Melo for the NCAA's due to an academic suspension. A quick call from a 'Cuse friend started with, "Stick a fork in our ass, we're done."

Assuming the Orange can at least advance to the Sweet 16 without their big man, Wisconsin or Vanderbilt figure to be the first real beneficiaries of facing a Melo-less Syracuse squad. The 7-footer missed three games earlier this year for the same reason, including the only regular season defeat at Notre Dame (Jan. 21). Most expect Wisconsin and Vanderbilt to meet in Albuquerque this Saturday to decide a Sweet 16 slot in Boston next week, and a potential match with 'Cuse.

Here's a quick glance at Thursday's Albuquerque pod; spreads and totals listed per the Don Best Odds screen on Tuesday around the cocktail hour.

(4) Wisconsin vs. (13) Montana
TIP-OFF: 2:10 p.m. (ET) TNT
SPREAD: Wisconsin -9
TOTAL: 118
PREVIEW: Early market correction moved the Wisconsin Badgers down a point from the opening 9½-10, which is certainly interesting. Even more fascinating has been the total, up three points from the start. It should always been an eyebrow-raising moment when a total in a Badgers game goes up.

Montana has pretty much been an ATM machine all season. The Grizzlies (17-9-1 ATS) have run into a little dry spell the last five (2-3 ATS), but that's tempered with missing a 19-point cover by a single point. The Grizzlies won the Big Sky regular season crown at 15-1 before taking tourney honors as well, and arrive at The Pit with a 14-game win streak.

The 'over' was also profitable on Montana during the season at 15-11, and strangely enough, that's the way games have been going for Wisconsin lately. Seven of the Badgers' last nine have jumped the scoreboard hurdle, and only two of their last 13 NCAA Tournament games have failed to reach the 120-point line.

(5) Vanderbilt vs. (12) Harvard
TIP-OFF: 4:40 p.m. (ET) TNT
SPREAD: Vanderbilt -5½
TOTAL: 122½
PREVIEW: Harvard finally broke its dry spell, and the reward is to face a very talented and hopped-up Vanderbilt. How well Kevin Stallings brings his Commodores off the big upset win over Kentucky last week, and how well Tommy Amaker prepares the Crimson for their first game in 12 days, and the school's first dance in 66 years, are the proverbial two sides of the coin.

So far, college basketball bettors seem to like Harvard. Vanderbilt opened as 6½-7 point chalk before the spread shortened at least a point at most shops.

Few teams played a tougher schedule than the Commodores. The Crimson also met a tough slate, beating a very good Florida State team on a neutral court as well as a solid Loyola Marymount crew in a true road test. Still Harvard hasn't faced a big guy since a loss at UConn in early December, and they'll have to quickly adjust to Vandy who has played Kentucky three times in the last month.

(3) Baylor vs. (14) South Dakota State
TIP-OFF: 7:27 p.m. (ET) truTV
SPREAD: Baylor -7½
TOTAL: 140½
PREVIEW: The South Dakota State Jackrabbits have a lot to be proud of as they make their first trip ever to the NCAA Tournament. Scott Nagy's bunch arrives after an exciting overtime win over Western Illinois in the Summit League title game, and riding an 8-game win streak as part of an 11-1 close to the campaign.

The problem is, they will be facing Baylor and its stud Perry Jones III who appears ready to put on a show and make his case for the upcoming NBA Draft.

Jones is going to need help, and the Bears' biggest foe this season has been themselves. The Jackrabbits have some big bodies to throw in the mix, and Baylor will have to control the glass and not let SDSU win the physical battle inside.

(6) UNLV vs. (11) Colorado
TIP-OFF: 9:57 p.m. (ET) truTV
TOTAL: 133½
PREVIEW: The final tip on Day 1 should be the best matchup in Albuquerque, if not the entire first full day. UNLV certainly knows the way to The Pit, having played the Lobos on this floor in MWC action and winning two of the last three games vs. New Mexico here. Colorado enters on a high having just completed a 4-game sweep in the Pac-12 tourney, and will be looking to stick around at its first dance since 2003.

It will be interesting to see how the crowd pans out for this game. Will locals on hand get behind the Buffaloes since they're used to rooting against the Runnin' Rebels? UNLV wasn't a great team away from Sin City this year to begin with, winning just five of 11 true road dates with a poor 2-9 ATS. The Rebels dropped their tourney openers each of the last two years as an 8-seed, and are seeking their first NCAA tourney win since advancing to the Sweet 16 in 2007 as a 7-seed.

The spread has been widened a point from the opener to UNLV -5 as of Tuesday evening. The Rebels closed on a 3-10 ATS string (8-5 'under'). The Buffaloes are 6-7 ATS since the end of January (10-3 'under').


Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:33180 Followers:38
03/15/2012 10:32 AM

Louisville And Indiana Headline Portland Pod

Portland's Rose Garden will be the site for an interesting mix that is expected to end this Saturday with a pair of 4/5 matchups to feed the Sweet 16. However, as they say in many of those retirement fund commercials, "Past performance does not guarantee future results."

We begin with the Big East champ, Louisville, throw in a pair of clubs from New Mexico, last year's Final Four darling VCU, this year's mid-major hopeful Wichita State, an Indiana program that is trying to turn itself around, plus very solid and upset-minded Long Beach State and Davidson teams. At stake are one opening in Atlanta's South Regional and another in the West Regional at Phoenix.

Here's a quick glance at Thursday's Portland pod; spreads and totals listed per the Don Best Odds screen on Tuesday evening.

(4) Louisville vs. (13) Davidson
TIP-OFF: 1:40 p.m. (ET) TBS
SPREAD: Louisville -7½
TOTAL: 138½
PREVIEW: Louisville rescued a 2-5 close to the regular season with a 4-0 stretch both straight up and against the spread to win the Big East Tournament. Ironically, that push put them in the same 4/13 matchup as a year ago when the Cardinals lost to Morehead State as 9½-point chalk.

Davidson was the class of the Southern Conference, winning both the regular season and conference tourney titles, the later with a double-overtime win over Western Carolina. The Wildcats had the big upset vs. Kansas in December, but could've improved their seeding with a better showing at home in a Bracket Busters game vs. Wichita State (17-point loss as 3-point 'dogs).

There has been some early movement on the total, up from the early 136 figure.

(5) New Mexico vs. (12) Long Beach State
TIP-OFF: 4:10 p.m. (ET) TBS
SPREAD: New Mexico -4
TOTAL: 137
PREVIEW: We've also seen an early boost to this total that opened at 133 and has been pushed up a full four points. Some of that movement might be due to Long Beach State upgrading senior guard Larry Anderson (14.0 PPG) to probable for the contest after he missed the Big West Tournament with a sprained right knee. The flip side to Anderson's offense returning is he was voted the conference's top defensive player this season.

New Mexico's season has been a tale of several scorching streaks interrupted by 2-game losing skids. The Lobos reeled off a 13-game winning run (10-1 ATS) only to drop consecutive contests to UNLV and San Diego State, rebounded to avenge both of those setbacks during a 7-game stretch of victories (7-0 ATS), imploded on the road at TCU and Boise State and begin the dance with five straight wins and covers.

(5) Wichita State vs. (12) Virginia Commonwealth
TIP-OFF: 7:15 p.m. (ET) CBS
SPREAD: Wichita State -6½
TOTAL: 134
PREVIEW: Shaka Smart has Virginia Commonwealth on a 17-1 roll (9-7-2 ATS) and ready to show last year wasn't a fluke. The Rams will face a Wichita State crew that is eager to prove their semifinals defeat in the Missouri Valley Tournament was a fluke, with the Shockers on an equally strong run at 17-2 (11-7-1 ATS).

There is a little bit of a revenge angle in this game for Wichita State. The Shockers hosted the Rams in a Feb. 2011 Bracket Busters battle, and VCU got the win in Wichita as 9-point 'dogs, 68-67, probably the victory that put Virginia Commonwealth into last year's Field of 68.

(4) Indiana vs. (13) New Mexico State
TIP-OFF: 9:45 p.m. (ET) CBS
SPREAD: Indiana -6
TOTAL: 154
PREVIEW: Yet another total that has ballooned after opening at 151. The Hoosiers and Aggies each ended the season with very slight 14-13 'over' leans, and both come in 3-2 'under' their last five.

Indiana will be the first ranked team that New Mexico State has met this season, so there's a huge disparity in the overall level of talent each school is used to facing after the Hoosiers faced four ranked Big Ten teams twice each. There should still be some interesting matchups however, starting with freshman Cody Zeller from Indiana against New Mexico State senior Hamidu Rahman down in the post. Christian Watford and Wendell McKines will be another key battle.


Always remember the 3 G's Girls,Golf, Gambling not in any particular order......:2thumbs:
cnotes Posts:33180 Followers:38
03/15/2012 10:34 AM

Gonzaga Faces West Virginia In Pittsburgh Pod

Rather than splitting the Pittsburgh pod between two regions, all Iron City games will involve teams competing in the East quadrant of the bracket. It should make for an interesting blend of fans, to say the least.

Start with two squads from the Big East coming to town, No. 1 seed Syracuse and No. 10 West Virginia. Both should bring a strong contingency of fans, but there should still be plenty of ticket buyers from the Pittsburgh area who will always cheer for whoever is playing the Orange and Mountaineers.

Also on hand is Ohio State out of the Big Ten. The Buckeyes are seeded second in the East Regional and fit in the same category as 'Cuse and WVU, meaning a lot of Buckeyes supporters will be on hand along with plenty of locals firmly behind Loyola (MD).

Here's a quick glance at Thursday's Pittsburgh pod; spreads and totals listed per the Don Best Odds screen as of Wednesday morning.

(8) Kansas State vs. (9) Southern Miss
TIP-OFF: 12:40 p.m. (ET) truTV
SPREAD: Kansas State -5
TOTAL: 133½
PREVIEW: It's been a mixed bag for Frank Martin and Kansas State. The Wildcats toppled Missouri two times and also beat Baylor in Waco, but inexplicably fell to Oklahoma twice and begin play on Thursday just 5-7 against the spread their last 12.

Southern Miss has beaten four teams in the dance, taking down New Mexico State twice, and is 8-4 vs. squads that made it to either the NCAA or NIT tournaments. The Golden Eagles come into this game on an even worse ATS trail than K-State, however, with Southern Miss backers 1-9 playing the college basketball odds.

The schools met in Manhattan, KS a little more than three years ago, and Kansas State waltzed to a 74-55 win as 6½-point chalk.

(1) Syracuse vs. (16) UNC-Asheville
TIP-OFF: 3:10 p.m. (ET) truTV
SPREAD: Syracuse -15
TOTAL: 147
PREVIEW: The big story here is Syracuse center Fab Melo being ruled ineligible for the tournament, no doubt a big part of the reason the spread has dropped from its -17 starting point. There has also been an increase in the total after opening at 144.

Melo's absence shouldn't cause any trouble for this game, but Jim Boeheim's bunch will face stern tests after Thursday. The Orange barely survived in the Big East opener against UConn before falling 71-68 to Cincinnati in the semis as 8-point favorites, and are just 4-10 ATS since mid-January.

(7) Gonzaga vs. (10) West Virginia
TIP-OFF: 7:20 p.m. (ET) TNT
SPREAD: Gonzaga -1
TOTAL: 133
PREVIEW: This game has shifted a point either way after beginning as a pick 'em, while the total has bounced up a bucket after the initial 131.

Gonzaga is making its 14th consecutive appearance in the NCAA Tournament, and it's the third straight year the Bulldogs will face at least one Big East team in the event. Mark Few's troops were big winners for 'under' bettors all season at 21-6, and closed 11-3 below the total.

West Virginia will be traveling about 1,900 fewer miles than the Zags for this game, and went 8-8 away from Morgantown this year (also 8-8 ATS). The Mountaineers stumble into the dance having won just five of their last 13 games (4-9 ATS).

(2) Ohio State vs. (15) Loyola-MD
TIP-OFF: 9:50 p.m. (ET) TNT
TOTAL: 129½
PREVIEW: There has been a little movement worth mentioning on the total that opened in the 131-131½ range. The dip fits Loyola-Maryland's strong 'under' record this season, but smacks in the face of Ohio State's closing 6-1 'over' trend that missed a perfect 7-0 mark by a point in the Big Ten Championship vs. Michigan State this past Sunday.

Thad Matta and the Buckeyes are looking for their third consecutive trip to the Sweet 16 where they've been dismissed from the dance the past two years. The Greyhounds, meanwhile, are appearing in the NCAA Tournament for just the second time in school history, and first since 1994, and hit the floor Thursday 12-3 since a loss to Iona in mid-January (11-4 ATS).


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