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YTD: 53-39-4 (please keep winning, please keep winning)
Over 146.5 St. Joe's/Temple
Under 139.5 UConn/Louisville
Some things: This week actually kinda sucks in terms of games with the start of finals and Christmas break. It's one of the problems with college hoops where they don't get to take advantage with football on a break and load up some awesome games. That said, we'll still be betting when we find games we like and put into a blog. These lines come from PointsBet, today around 2:30pm when I'm working on the blog. If there's any drastic news that changes something I'll update the blog or post something on my Twitter (barstoolreags). Let's hoop and get rich.
We're going back to the Philly 5 for our first bet. Did you know both of these teams are playing incredibly fast? That's in large part to coaches Billy Lange (SJU) and Aaron McKie (Temple) taking over this year with NBA backgrounds. Did you also know that Temple is dead last in the country in defense 3PA/FGA, meaning they will give up the most looks from three than any team in the country. St. Joe's wants to launch threes, especially Ryan Daly. At the same time SJU has one of the worst defenses in the country and this Temple roster has talent. I know it's a rivalry game so that's a little different and we got burned a bit on the Nova/SJU over, but we have to go with numbers.
Pick: Over 146.5
What was supposed to be the game of the night now looks a whole lot different with Texas Tech on a 3-game losing streak. We don't know the status of Jahmiu's Ramsey just yet and that's important. Texas Tech is a bit weird where the offense is relying on a top-40 recruit, you just don't see that too often. Now, Chris Clarke is getting better and Davide Morretti is experienced, but they have to go up against Chris Mack's pack-line defense. On the other hand I do know what to expect from Louisville and even after the big time win against Michigan I don't expect a let down.
Pick: Louisville -6
Nothing about UNI will get you excited. They play slow, they don't have a great win - they do have a neutral court win over South Carolina and played WVU to a 5 point game. But we're taking them on the road. Why? UNI wants to control tempo and limit possessions. I'm a big fan of taking points with a team that can do that, who also happens to be a top-100 team. Colorado is fine offensively, nothing to write home about, that's the other reason we're taking the points here though I wish I jumped on it when it was at 10.
Pick: UNI +8.5
Hear me out, everyone missed on Butler in the preseason and I have no idea why. They were projected to finish in the bottom 3 of the Big East, they may finish top-3. They have a veteran point guard in Kamar Baldwin. They have versatility. They have guys like Jordan Tucker and Bryce Nze on the wing. Sean McDermott can shoot the hell out of the ball. I do really like this Baylor team, but they are banged up still with Tristan Clark not healthy and I like this matchup a bit more for Butler because of that. There's also the fear of a letdown for Baylor after holding off Arizona on Saturday. I'll take the points.
Pick: Butler +5.5
I don't have a great feel at this game so we're going with what makes sense here a bit. The under. UConn struggles to score, ranking 241st in the country in effective field goal percentage. On the flip side they do a great job defending and even with IU being decent offensively this year, that should balance out, right? Especially in MSG, right? I'm not too worried about 3pt shooting in this game because that's not what either of these teams want to do. It's more a fact of slowing down transition points and making the other one work for buckets. After giving up 84 to Wisconsin and Archie being a defensive guy, I expect that to be drilled in the last few days.
Pick: Under 139.5