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2017 NFL Draft Prop Bets

The NFL Draft is back and bigger than ever and that means a few things: it’s Kiper, McShay, and Mayock SZN, it’s time to spend three days watching hundreds of 21-23 year olds have zero choice over their place of employment in their chosen profession, and it’s also time for prop bets.

I love the NFL draft. I love any non-military related draft if I’m being honest. I spent more time watching the WNBA draft a couple weeks ago than I did watching actual women’s college basketball all of last season. What can I say? I’m a sucker for watching someone’s dream come true in real time.

I’m also a sucker for watching Roger Goodell be a creepy, ginger weirdo.

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Last year I wrote this same blog. It went okay, ending up +1.55.

In case you don’t click the link, I’ll have you know that my first bet was having Laremy Tunsil go in the top 4.

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If I were a hack, I’d tell you that bet quickly went up in smoke.

This year the draft is outdoors because apparently this event hasn’t gotten ridiculous enough. Not to mention, it’s being held in Philly with all of those animals in attendance.

Should be fun.

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Deshaun Watson – Under 12.5 Pick (+110)

Of the teams with top 12 picks, you could conceivably see nine of them drafting a QB, some more likely than others. Two of those 12 picks are held by the Browns.

Trubisky is the somewhat heavy favorite to be the first QB drafted, but it’s far from a slam dunk and obviously there’s a good chance both of them go early.

With the high priority placed on the position, you have to feel like Watson or Trubisky could get picked at any time early in the first round as long as it’s not the Titans, Bengals, or Panthers. Wouldn’t be surprising at all to see a team move up to draft one of these guys either.

The best thing you can ask for if you’ve got this Watson ticket is Trubisky going in the first three picks. That’ll create some urgency and force teams to make a quick decision on Watson.

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Dalvin Cook – Over 26.5 Pick (+165)

I love Dalvin, so this is gonna be tough to pull for, but it seems like he’s been sliding recently. His combine numbers weren’t great and he also hasn’t been helped out by Christian McCaffrey’s rise.

The running back class is one of the deepest of the position groups, it’s pretty low priority, and there’s a thought that Dalvin could drop all the way to the second round.

It didn’t help him that the Raiders signed Beast Mode today.

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Christian McCaffrey – Under 8.5 Pick (+155)

Essentially it’s “Will the Panthers take McCaffrey with the 8th pick?” I spent 45 seconds looking at mock drafts and every single one of them had the Panthers drafting him.

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John Ross – Over 18.5 Pick (+100)

John Ross is absolutely electric, but WR isn’t a pressing need for a lot of teams and he’s probably #3 in the WR group behind Mike Williams and Corey Davis. On top of that, McCaffrey is a bit of a combo with his ability to play in the slot.

You can never count out a team to reach a bit on Ross because of his 4.22 40 speed, but it’s happened less since Al Davis died.

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Jabrill Peppers – 1st Round Pick (+150)

I know there’s a lot of questions about his position, if he’s really actually good at anything, and things of that nature, but I have a hard time seeing him fall out of the first round.

Picks 21-24 is probably the sweet spot for him as the picks stand now. If he’s not picked in that range, it might be time to start worrying.

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Solomon Thomas – #2 Overall Pick (+175)

Right now, it’s the 49ers in this spot. Who’s calling the shots now? John Lynch.

Lynch hasn’t spent any time in a front office before, so I have a hard time seeing him really being active making a big trade here. I’m not sure he’s comfortable enough yet to go for that.

From there, the 49ers need basically everything, so I’m guessing a guy who played safety is going to be more worried about the defense, especially due to the fact that this draft is stronger on that side of the ball when you’re looking at the top guys.

And where did John Lynch go to school? Stanford. Soloman Thomas? Stanford.

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Jamal Adams – #3 Overall Pick (+300)

The Bears have sucked for a while now at safety, although they suck most places on defense, so they could go anywhere on this side of the ball.

What could throw a real wrench in either of these plans is if someone trades up for Trubisky. Either team could take QB themselves, but it doesn’t seem like that’ll be the play. But once again, if someone takes Trubisky this early, it’s only good news for the Watson play.

Another wrench? Adams going second and Thomas going third, which would be a real freaking bummer, I gotta tell ya.

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Alabama Players Selected in First Round – Over 4.5 (-140) – 2u

It’s a lot of juice to give up, but I have no idea how this isn’t going to happen.

Jonathan Allen, OJ Howard, and Marlon Humphrey are absolute locks. Reuben Foster is a 99% lock, with the only hitch being the slightest chance that playing the “do you know who I am?” game with the piss-cup lady at the combine turned everybody away. Cam Robinson is probably the least first-round worthy, but still very first-round worthy and he’s the best OT in a weak OT class, which is a high priority position in the league.

 

 

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NFL Futures Bonanza

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If you’ve read this blog for any significant amount of time, you know I’m a sucker for future bets. I like game lines as much as the next guy, but you’ve never really lived until you hit Mike Budenholzer for NBA Coach of the Year at +7500. I guarantee you I was happier than Budenholzer himself when that announcement broke. Electric moment.

Betting on the NFL week-to-week gets pretty difficult. There’s no other spreads out there that get worked as much an NFL line and I don’t find a ton of value in them. However, I’m here today to make a pick on every single category listed in the NFL Futures category on sportsbook.ag. They’re the most organized on the web and they probably put out more than anybody else.

QB Specials

Russell Wilson Passes for Over 4,500 Yards +800

Russell Wilson is now engaging in sexual intercourse again. And it’s with Ciara. That’s gotta give a man some newfound confidence. He threw for just over 4,000 a year ago, a career high. Each year of his career, he’s increased his number of pass attempts and yards. His 68% completion percentage and 34 passing TDs in 2015 were both career highs. Doug Baldwin, Jermaine Kearse, and Tyler Lockett are all back at WR and Jimmy Graham is back at TE after having an injury-shortened debut season with the Seahawks. At 8-to-1, it’s a pretty reasonable bet that Wilson will continue his upward trend and hit this mark in his fifth season.

Season Specials

Any Player to Have a 99 Yard Pass Play in Any Game +800

There have been 11 in the 50 seasons since the merger. At that rate, that means there’s a 22% chance that it happens in a season. But since the game has changed from the “3 yards and a cloud of dust” era, there’s been five in the past 14 seasons (36%). That ratio is a lot closer to 2 or 3-to-1, than it is the 8-to-1 that it’s listed at. In addition, we haven’t had one since 2011. Listen, there’s no real rhyme or reason why it’s going to happen this year, but it’s kinda like a volcano. You don’t know exactly when it’s going to erupt, but you know it’s supposed to erupt soon. And if you’re not buying any of that (don’t blame you), would you rather root for 99 yard touchdowns or not root for 99 yard touchdowns?

Most Interceptions

Earl Thomas +2500

The guy with the best odds is last year’s leader, Marcus Peters at +900. No one has led this category two years in a row since Everson Walls in ’81 and ’82. This category is kind of a crapshoot, but I promised you picks, so picks you’ll get. To narrow it down, I used a couple of factors. One, I wanted to pick a safety. I think corners are easier to avoid throwing at. Two, I wanted to pick a guy on a good team that would face more situations where teams are desperately passing at the end of games. So I landed on Thomas. He’s played every game in his six-year career and he has 21 career interceptions, reaching five in a single season on three separate occasions.

Most Sacks

Carlos Dunlap +2000

Dunlap is in his seventh season with the Bengals. He’s recorded 49 sacks over his first six years and after recording 4.5 sacks in his second season, he’s been climbing in numbers every year. He had 13.5 last season. I look for guys with durability and he hasn’t missed a game the past three seasons. You really can’t go wrong with the top three guys on the board – JJ Watt, Khalil Mack, and Von Miller – and they still have decent odds, but I prefer to take guys up in the four figure range.

Most Touchdowns

Eddie Lacy +4000

Big comeback year for Fat Eddie. He averaged 12 total touchdowns over his first two years before dipping to five a season ago, when he became Fat Eddie. After an offseason spent with that psycho P90X guy, he’s back in shape and had a good preseason. The underrated element of Lacy’s game has been his pass-catching. He’s caught 97 balls in his three seasons and scored six touchdowns off of them. I think another element that helps him out is Jordy Nelson coming back this year. That should ignite an often stagnant offense in 2015 and allow for more scoring opportunities for everyone.

Most Receiving Yards

Amari Cooper +3000

I also liked Keenan Allen at the same number, but for all of the balls that Allen catches, he only averages about 10-11 yards per catch and the Chargers added Travis Benjamin (big play guy) in the offseason. Cooper had 1,070 receiving yards last year in his rookie season and is by far the top option in the offense. He eclipsed the 1,000 yard mark and he only caught 72 balls (14.9 ypc). The reason I like him to go up in numbers this year is the fact that he was targeted 130 times. Drops were a problem for him often last year, but you’d expect him to rectify that this season. In addition, it’s another year with Derek Carr and you’d expect the chemistry to be even better.

Most Rushing Yards

Doug Martin +1500

It’s been boom or bust for the Muscle Hamster through his first four years in the league. He’s book-ended two seasons where he didn’t reach 500 rushing yards with two seasons where he eclipsed 1,400 yards. Health has been the key and there are no signs of trouble heading into the season. He’s got largely the same O-line in front of him again this year and in Year 2 of Jameis Winston you would expect increased production from the passing game, allowing for better running lanes for Martin.

Most Passing Yards

Russell Wilson +5000

Kind of an insane number when you think about the fact the leader the past three seasons hasn’t reached 5,000 yards and it’s only 8-to-1 for Wilson to reach 4,500. He’s a durable guy. If you’d like to diversify, I also like Blake Bortles at +2500.

Next Coach Fired

Gus Bradley +1300

I want to be behind the Jags. I really do. But Bradley has won 12 games in three seasons and the schedule sets up for a quick hook if the Jags feel it’s necessary. They open with the Packers, then they go across the country to play at San Diego before taking on the Ravens at home. Week 4 is against the Colts in London before a bye week. If they’re 1-3 or 0-4 at that point, I could see Shahid Khan pulling the trigger.

Make Playoffs

Seattle Seahawks – No – +300

This one’s hard because there’s not many with decent value that are in the “Yes” category. If you want to take one with a decent sized longshot, you’re better off just taking them to win their division. So I picked a “No”. I realize this goes against my Russell Wilson and Earl Thomas picks. Whatever. The defense only seems to be slipping. They keep losing guys because they can’t afford them after their rookie contracts. Bruce Irvin is now gone. Beastmode is gone from the offense now and their O-line is still questionable with their pass protection.

Super Bowl Winning Division

AFC South +1500

Longest odds of any division. This is a stupid bet no matter what division you pick. I could go into a long explanation with math and numbers and shit, but how about I just say don’t do it.

Offensive Rookie of the Year

Derrick Henry +1800

The answer is probably Ezekiel Elliott at +110, but we don’t pick favorites here. Just like the MVP, QBs and RBs are pretty much the only people that usually win these things. Dak is gonna be cannibalized by Zeke. Carson Wentz is probably gonna stink this year and possibly forever. I’ll take Henry for the Titans. He’s the backup to DeMarco Murray, who’s probably going to get hurt and/or stink, so Henry might get the head job.

Defensive Player of the Year

Kwon Alexander +15000

Dunlap is +10000 and Thomas is +6000 and I won’t give them again, so here, take my homer pick in Alexander. The Bucs have three players of the 50 guys with odds and Mike Smith takes over as DC. He may not be good as a HC, but he can coach a defense and there’s a chance the Bucs have an elite defense this year. Alexander had 93 tackles in 12 games as a rookie.

Coach of the Year

Bill O’Brien +4000

Big odds for O’Brien, which surprises me. If Brock Osweiler is good, couldn’t you see the Texans going like 12-4 with how shitty their division is? You’re right, he’s not good and Houston is perpetually 8-8. Whatever.

MVP

Eli Manning +3000

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Super Bowl Possible Matchups

Giants vs. Steelers +9000

This is so stupid. I can’t believe people make actual bets on this.

Division Winners

NFC East – Giants +195

Whoops, took a favorite.

NFC North – Vikings +380

The Packers were not nearly good enough to be this big of favorites, regardless of who’s QB for the Vikings.

NFC South – Falcons +775

Panthers are definitely winning.

NFC West – Rams +1500

The Hard Knocks teams are always awesome, everyone knows that.

AFC East – Bills +800

I just want to root for T-Mobile and the Ryan brothers.

AFC North – Bengals +190

Do people forget how good Andy Dalton was before he got hurt last year?

AFC South – Titans +725

When the division is terrible, you take the one with the longest odds…unless they’re starting Carson Wentz and have a HC that literally everyone thinks shouldn’t be a head coach.

AFC West – Raiders +280

The video is Chris Berman being obnoxious (himself) for two seconds.

AFC Champion

Texans +1800

NFC Champion

Redskins +2000

Super Bowl Champion

Bengals +2000

Boy, that got repetitive.

 

NBA Exact Game Series Prices Picks

Exact game series prices are probably my favorite way to play the NBA Playoffs. One, they’re basically a short-term future and futures are the best. That’s why I’ve enjoyed playing the golf tournaments so much. Additionally, you can hedge off of them as the series goes on. And finally, any form of gambling makes the first round of the NBA Playoffs actually entertaining. The entire Eastern Conference is essentially meaningless and the West doesn’t really matter until the second round.

Before writing this, I wanted a better idea of the recent trends of how series finished over the past five years. There’s been 75 series played since 2011, here’s the breakdown of how many games were needed to complete them.

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As you can see, it’s just as likely for a series to finish in six as it is four OR seven. Each of the past five years, six game series have at least tied for the most common series length.

Whenever you look at these prices, they’re usually slanted towards teams clinching at home. Obviously this is a common line of thinking when you’re breaking down a series, but is it backed up by the numbers? Here’s the breakdown on where teams clinched the series since 2011.

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As you can see, it’s not very overwhelming. In fact, over the past three years, teams have clinched on the road 23 times, compared to 22 at home. This is another avenue to find more value.

Let’s get into it.

(2) Toronto Raptors vs. (7) Indiana Pacers

5 Games Raptors Win +160
7 Games Raptors Win +300
6 Games Raptors Win +400
4 Games Raptors Win +600
6 Games Pacers Win +600
7 Games Pacers Win +1000
5 Games Pacers Win +1500
4 Games Pacers Win +3000

Season Series: 3-1 Toronto

And here’s our first example of prices being slanted towards a team clinching at home.

This Raptors group hasn’t experienced success yet in the playoffs, losing in the first round the past two seasons, including getting swept by the Wizards last year as a four seed. Obviously that provides some cause for concern, but the Hawks were in a similar situation last year and got to the ECF. However the Hawks had been the lower seed the three straight years they couldn’t advance out of the first round.

Toronto had the advantage in the season series over the Pacers, but they also swept the Wizards during the season last year so who knows. I will say, one of those games was pretty recent and the Raptors didn’t play Lowry, DeRozan, Scola, or Carroll and still won by 13 at home.

Carroll isn’t fully healthy, but he’s only played 26 games all year, so he hasn’t been much of a factor all year. Obviously they could use him against Paul George.

I think this is a perfect opportunity to bet on a six-game series. I think the Raptors will break through this year because they’re clearly better than the Pacers at three starting positions and the power forward spot is either a wash or a slight advantage to the Pacers. I expect Indiana to scratch out a couple of games because of George, a better bench, and a better coach.

The Pick: Raptors in Six +400

(1) Golden State Warriors vs. (8) Houston Rockets

4 Games Warriors Win -350
5 Games Warriors Win +140
6 Games Warriors Win +1000
7 Games Warriors Win +2500
7 Games Rockets Win +10000
6 Games Rockets Win +15000
5 Games Rockets Win +50000
4 Games Rockets Win +150000

Season Series: 3-0 Golden State

There’s really no sense in breaking this down. In the WCF last year, it went five. I’m probably not going to play this myself, but I guess hope that it happens again.

The Pick: Warriors in Five +140

(4) Atlanta Hawks vs. (5) Boston Celtics

7 Games Hawks Win +300
5 Games Hawks Win +350
6 Games Celtics Win +400
6 Games Hawks Win +400
7 Games Celtics Win +500
4 Games Hawks Win +1000
5 Games Celtics Win +1000
4 Games Celtics Win +1800

 Season Series: 3-1 Atlanta

The biggest knock against the Celtics in the playoffs is that they don’t have a true star player, but the Hawks don’t really have one either, so that doesn’t really come into play in this series. Last year the Celts got swept by the Cavs in round one while the Hawks made the ECF before they also got swept by the Cavs.

The teams had identical records and power ratings don’t separate them by much. Boston has a clear advantage in the backcourt, while Atlanta has the edge down low in terms of scoring options. The Hawks are awful at rebounding and that could be the difference in the series.

The reason the first five options are so similar is because you’re basically just guessing. I’ll take the one with the best odds.

The Pick: Celtics in Seven +500

(3) Oklahoma City Thunder vs. (6) Dallas Mavericks

5 Games Thunder Win +120
4 Games Thunder Win +130
6 Games Thunder Win +400
7 Games Thunder Win +600
6 Games Mavericks Win +2500
7 Games Mavericks Win +4000
5 Games Mavericks Win +10000
4 Games Mavericks Win +25000

 Season Series: OKC 4-0

This one is tough. OKC is about as good of a three seed as you’ll find and they – as much as I love Dirk – have by far the two best players in the series. The Mavericks probably overachieved with this roster and not having Chandler Parsons limits their ability to keep up with the Thunder.

Dallas does have a better, more experienced coach and a deeper bench to work with, though. There’s a chance Dirk gets red hot one game and carries them to a win.

OKC has had fourth quarter issues and a couple of the games with Dallas this year were one-possession contests.

There’s not much value in the top two options and it’s conceivable that the Mavs sneak in a couple games due to Carlisle magic.

The Pick: Thunder in Six +400

(1) Cleveland Cavaliers vs. (8) Detroit Pistons

5 Games Cavaliers Win +120
4 Games Cavaliers Win +250
6 Games Cavaliers Win +350
7 Games Cavaliers Win +400
6 Games Pistons Win +1500
7 Games Pistons Win +2000
5 Games Pistons Win +5000
4 Games Pistons Win +10000

Season Series: 3-1 Detroit

I wouldn’t put too much stock in the season series. One of those Piston wins was in the last game of the season when both teams sat their starters.

Detroit’s had a nice season, but the Cavs are quite a bit more efficient offensively and better defensively, as well. However, I think the Pistons actually match up pretty well and I think you have to give Van Gundy the edge over Lue, who’s coaching his first playoffs and is probably a downgrade over the guy Cleveland fired who made the Finals in his first season and was leading the East midway through his second.

This series could get pretty unwatchable if Cleveland resorts to Hack-a-Drummond, but could be decent if Kyrie and Reggie Jackson guard each other because they’re both great offensive players and couldn’t guard a dead body.

The Pick: Cavs in Six +350

(3) Miami Heat vs. (6) Charlotte Hornets

7 Games Heat Win +250
5 Games Heat Win +350
6 Games Hornets Win +350
6 Games Heat Win +400
7 Games Hornets Win +500
4 Games Heat Win +1000
5 Games Hornets Win +1000
4 Games Hornets Win +1800

Season Series: 2-2 Tie

Probably the series in the East I’m most looking forward to, although Hawks-Celtics is a close second. And just like that series, this one features two teams with the exact same record.

You may remember before the NCAA Tournament that I was high on the Hornets. I like the Heat also, but when it comes to playoff basketball – especially with these two – the game slows down some and the difference really just comes down to who can make more shots. For all the analytics and advanced stats, that’s all that ends up mattering often times.

I like the Hornets in that scenario. They’re already the better perimeter shooting team before you factor in injuries and Chris Bosh and Tyler Johnson both being gone for the Heat just further accentuates that advantage. Nic Batum has been in and out of the lineup for Charlotte, but he’s expected to play. We’ve all seen since his college days how much Kemba lives for the big shots. Of course Wade and Dragic are on the other side, but their drive-heavy and Joe Johnson has looked washed at times here towards the end of the season.

Down low, I think Al Jefferson can get his against Hassan Whiteside. Marvin Williams and Luol Deng probably cancel each other out and I like Charlotte’s bench more.

It’s going to be a great series, but I’ll take the road team in seven.

The Pick: Hornets in Seven +500

(2) San Antonio Spurs vs. (7) Memphis Grizzlies

4 Games Spurs Win -400
5 Games Spurs Win +160
6 Games Spurs Win +800
7 Games Spurs Win +2500
7 Games Grizzlies Win +15000
6 Games Grizzlies Win +20000
5 Games Grizzlies Win +50000
4 Games Grizzlies Win +200000

 Season Series: 4-0 San Antonio

Wouldn’t actually bet this because the Grizzlies have so many injuries that they’re basically a D-League team. I guess I’ll hope that Memphis can pull one out.

The Pick: Spurs in Five +160

(4) Los Angeles Clippers vs. (5) Portland Trail Blazers

5 Games Clippers Win +160
7 Games Clippers Win +300
6 Games Clippers Win +400
4 Games Clippers Win +550
6 Games Blazers Win +700
7 Games Blazers Win +800
5 Games Blazers Win +2000
4 Games Blazers Win +4000

Season Series: 3-1 Los Angeles

Our best chance to see a good series in the first round of the West. Obviously the big X-Factor is how effective Blake Griffin can be. He’s played five games since Christmas and he’s been okay, but certainly not near the level he played at the end of last season.

The Blazers are without Meyers Leonard as they have been for the past month. They’ve been fine without him, but I think his absence will be a bigger deal playing a series against a frontcourt as good as the Clippers. He’s one of their better rebounders and that’s an area Portland would have an advantage over LAC if both teams were fully healthy. With Leonard gone and Griffin back, that could swing the other way.

Obviously the point guard position provides the most intriguing matchup. Lillard has never done all that well against the Clippers, though. He’s averaging 21.4 PPG for his career, but only 16.5 in 15 games against the Clips. It wasn’t much better this year, averaging 7 less PPG against LAC than he has the entire season.

The second guard spot will be as big of a factor likely. McCollum and Crabbe are the second and third leading scorers for Portland while Redick and Crawford are third and fourth for LA. Those guys could put up some big numbers because none of them will be able to guard each other.

Ultimately, I think the difference will be down low for the Clippers. Jordan and Griffin at 75% are still better than Mason Plumlee and Noah Vonleh. Portland has the biggest home advantage in the league and I would definitely expect them to hold their own at the Moda Center.

The Pick: Clippers in Six +400

Picks of the Day: CBB and NBA 3/12

11-8 yesterday. 29-25-1 on the week. 2H winners St. Joseph’s and Michigan State. Loser was UC Irvine. It was a winning day, but it kind of felt like a loser after holding Kansas, Cal, and UMass first half tickets.

Little secret today: It’s your boy’s birthday. If the gambling gods have any heart, it’s gonna be a huge day.

CBB

UL Lafayette (+2) over Little Rock – First Half

Michigan State (-6) over Maryland – 2 Units

VCU (-4) over Davidson – First Half

Louisiana-Monroe (+2.5) over Arlington

Seton Hall (+6.5) over Villanova

Oregon (-1.5) over Utah

NBA

NUGGETS (-1) over Wizards


CBB YTD: 309-276-16 (52.8%)

NBA YTD: 95-85-1 (52.7%)

Total YTD: 404-361-17 (52.8%)

Above .500 days: 35

.500 days: 22

Below .500 days: 24

 

Picks of the Day: CBB and NBA 3/11

5-5-1 yesterday. 18-17-1 on the week.

CBB

Illinois (+11) over Purdue

George Washington (+0.5) over St. Joseph’s – First Half

Tennessee (+3) over LSU – First Half – 2 Units
Tennessee (+5) over LSU

Old Dominion (-2) over Western Kentucky – First Half

Ohio State (+8) over Michigan State – First Half

UMass (+7) over VCU – First Half

UNC (-4) over Notre Dame – First Half – 2 Units
UNC (-7) over Notre Dame

Kansas (-6) over Baylor

Nebraska (+5) over Maryland – First Half

Cal (+2) over Utah

NBA

HORNETS (-4) over Pistons


CBB YTD: 299-268-16 (52.7%)

NBA YTD: 94-85-1 (52.5%)

Total YTD: 393-353-17 (52.7%)

Above .500 days: 34

.500 days: 22

Below .500 days: 24

Picks of the Day: CBB and NBA 3/10

5-5 yesterday. 13-12 on the week.

CBB

Northwestern (+4) over Michigan

UAB (-3) over Western Kentucky – First Half

Illinois (+6) over Iowa – First Half

UC Santa Barbara (-4) over UC Davis – First Half

San Diego State (-7) over Utah State

Old Dominion (-1.5) over Louisiana Tech

New Mexico (-2) over Nevada – First Half

Wisconsin (-7) over Nebraska

Seton Hall (-2.5) over Creighton

UC Riverside (+8) over Long Beach State

NBA

SPURS (-13) over Bulls


CBB YTD: 294-264-15 (52.7%)

NBA YTD: 94-84-1 (52.8%)

Total YTD: 388-348-16 (52.7%)

Above .500 days: 34

.500 days: 21

Below .500 days: 24

Picks of the Day: CBB and NBA 3/9

4-1 yesterday. 8-7 this week.

CBB

Minnesota (-5) over Illinois – First Half

The Gophers are a mess. They only have one scholarship guard left. The two guards they’re starting just scored 20 points on 31 shots against Rutgers in a 23-point loss. They also had four assists and nine turnovers. In case you missed that, they just lost to Rutgers by 23 and it really wasn’t even that close.

San Jose St. (+4) over Colorado St. – First Half

The Spartans are a really young team that’s been progressively getting better all year. They should have a lot of confidence after beating Boise State to finish off the regular season. Colorado State’s been a disappointment all year. Their defense is so poor that anyone can stick with them.  These two played two tight ones this year.

Duquesne (-4) over La Salle – First Half
Duquesne (-7) over La Salle  – 2 Units

La Salle has won a couple games lately, but they’re still terrible and they haven’t won a game against a Division-1 opponent away from their home building. Duquesne just broke an eight game losing streak by beating St. Joseph’s on the road. The losing streak is obviously concerning, but they didn’t have the benefit of playing any of the league’s worst teams in that stretch. They’re at their best against bad teams – no, that’s not the case for every team – including a 27-point win over the Explorers in their only meeting.

Marquette (-3.5) over St. John’s – First Half – 3 Units
Marquette (-6.5) over St. John’s

The Johnnies are the Johnnies. Marquette’s been playing pretty well lately – Butler game excluded – and for such a young team, they’re pretty good on the road. We’ve also got the perfect storm of a team that’s significantly better in the first half against one of the worst first half teams in the country. It is somewhat of a home game for St. John’s, but they’ve been blown out multiple times in the Garden this year.

NBA

76ERS (+10) over Rockets

Philly has covered three straight in the series and they’ve lost the past two by a total of three points. Houston is at their worst when they’re playing the worst teams in the league. Philly is 16-7-1 ATS against the West this year. The Rockets are 7-15 ATS against the East and they’re 15-23 ATS as a favorite.


CBB YTD: 289-260-15 (52.6%)

NBA YTD: 94-83-1 (53.1%)

Total YTD: 383-343-16 (52.8%)

Above .500 days: 34

.500 days: 20

Below .500 days: 24

Picks of the Day: CBB and NBA 3/8

4-6 yesterday.

This happened.

Then this happened.

They were down five with four minutes to go at the time it happened. Chattanooga made three of those free throws. The spread was five. ETSU lost by six. The Mocs shot 18 more free throws and made 20 more. Such a frustrating game because the Bucs outplayed them in virtually every area but the free throw line.

CBB

I have no idea why that tweet says 2H. It’s the first half line.

Gonzaga (-2) over Saint Mary’s – 2 Units

The old adage of how difficult it is to beat the same team three times in the same season. I was wrong about the Gaels last night. They came out ready to go and pasted Pepperdine from the jump. I like the way the Zags look right now though. They made the plays they needed to last night against a tough BYU team and I think they use their experience to leave no doubt and seal their fate with a conference championship.

North Dakota St. (+6) over South Dakota St.

Jackrabbits have looked tight in their first two games so far. The Bison had a hell of a comeback last night against IPFW and I’m sticking with them. The surprise suspension to their leading scorer, Paul Miller, made it a little close for comfort. He’s expected to be back in the lineup tonight.

NBA

Spurs (-9) over TIMBERWOLVES

San Antonio is 9-0 SU and 7-2 ATS coming off a loss. For being a pretty old team, they’re 8-5 ATS on the second game of a back-to-back. For being a pretty young team, the Wolves are 5-7 ATS on the second game of a back-t0-back and they’re 17-25-1 ATS coming off a loss. They’ve only covered 11 of their 32 home games. The Spurs are the best road team in the league and they’re also the best team against the bottom-barrel teams in the league.


CBB YTD: 286-259-15 (52.5%)

NBA YTD: 93-83-1 (52.8%)

Total YTD: 379-342-16 (52.6%)

Above .500 days: 33

.500 days: 20

Below .500 days: 24

Picks of the Day: CBB and NBA 3/7

6-1 yesterday. Finished 56-47-1 for the week. Pretty small slate today, but today begins the greatest two week stretch of the basketball season and the only two weeks of the year I consistently express child-like excitement. It’s a great slate of CBB games tonight if you’re not a blue blood whore.

CBB

Hartford (+11.5) over STONY BROOK – First Half – 2 Units
Hartford (+18.5) over STONY BROOK

If you look at power ratings (I use KenPom and TeamRankings), Hartford has actually ranked 55 spots higher than Stony over each of their last five games. Stony lost two of their last three to close out the regular season. They have the benefit of playing the America East tournament at home, but they were also pretty unimpressive beating UMBC in their opening game last week, who went 3-13 in league play. It was an even game most of the way until the Seawolves pulled it out late.

Hartford’s a better first half team than they are second and they’ve got to be feeling good after beating Albany on the road in round one four days after they had lost at Albany by 16. They’ve had a couple recent injuries to guys who played big minutes that actually appear to have helped them out. It’s not all that surprising given how inefficient those two guys were offensively. Stony beat them twice soundly earlier this year, but as I mentioned, these are two different teams right now.

North Dakota State (+2.5) over IPFW

The public is heavy on the Mastodons, but IPFW is one of those teams that shoots a ton of threes that you’re better off fading when it comes to single-elimination tournaments. They make a high percentage (40.8), but I think NDSU is the team to knock them off because of how well they defend the perimeter. They led the league in defending the three and are 39th in the country. It’s a neutral site game, but it’s up in South Dakota, which is obviously closer for Bison fans and they’ve got pretty good fan support. They’ve also won the Summit tournament the past two seasons. They had a disappointing regular season, but none of the top seeds want to play this team. They split the series with IPFW this year, cruising at home and taking them down to the wire in Fort Wayne.

Pepperdine (+4) over Saint Mary’s – First Half

Saint Mary’s is a young team that has a ton of pressure on them right now to play well. They’ve had a great season, but they’re not locked in to the tournament. I think that showed up in their last regular season against Grand Canyon at home and on Saturday against LMU. Now they have to play a Pepperdine team that’s beat them twice this year. I’m seeing another slow start for the Gaels tonight.

East Tennessee State (+5) over Chattanooga – 3 Units

I’ll miss the Southern Conference. It’s been a real moneymaker down the stretch between riding Western Carolina and ETSU and fading Mercer. Tonight’s the last opportunity and I like the Bucs here. I’m tempted to take the money line at +190. The Mocs just feel like a team that was expected to run the league this year, but are trying to hold on for dear life down the stretch. ETSU had a disappointing year last year, hired Steve Forbes (who was on Bruce Pearl’s staff at Tennessee and Gregg Marshall’s the past couple years at Wichita State) and have gotten progressively better all year. They’ve won 10 of their last 11. Of course that loss was to Chattanooga. But I think they’ve just been a much better team than the Mocs lately and don’t see much reason for them to be a five-point dog on a neutral court.

NBA

HORNETS (-5) over Timberwolves – First Half

Guess who has the highest power rating in the NBA over their last ten games. Warriors? Spurs? Thunder? Cavs? Raptors? Nope. Nope. Nope. Nope. Nope. It’s the Charlotte Hornets. They also have the third largest home advantage. They’re also a good first half team and Minnesota is not. The Wolves started off the year by covering a bunch of games on the road, but that’s dwindled lately.

Bucks (+7) over BULLS

I don’t care who it is, the Bulls should not be giving seven to anybody right now. Sure, they just beat Houston by 8, but the Rockets are a top-five team in total dysfunction. They’re also 10-20 ATS after a win. They’re 9-15 ATS as a home favorite. And they’re 13-24 ATS against the East. The Bucks are on a back-to-back, but they’re actually 10-5 ATS this year on the second game. And they’re 21-14-1 ATS after all losses this season.


CBB YTD: 282-255-15 (52.5%)

NBA YTD: 93-81-1 (53.4%)

Total YTD: 375-336-16 (52.7%)

Above .500 days: 33

.500 days: 20

Below .500 days: 23