YTD: 98-107-5 (Everything I knew in the nonconference apparently has gone to shit with the calendar turning to 2020 and a disaster betting year to start)
Seton Hall -4
NC State +7
Illinois State +11.5
Mississippi State -5
Butler at Seton Hall (-4.5/135.5)
Simply put, Seton Hall is back home and needs to kick someone's ass. They got embarrassed at Providence and now are just .5 game up on Creighton in the Big East standings. Willard came out and straight up called out some his players for not practicing hard and that being the problem. Good news is they already have the win at Butler earlier this year and they do match up well against Butler. They won that game by 8 with Powell getting 29. Part of what makes Butler so good - outside of Kamar Baldwin - is the versatile wings. Seton Hall has that plus they have one of the best defenders in the country to throw out Baldwin. Give me the home team.
Pick: Seton Hall -4.5
Duke at NC State (+7/152)
I refuse to believe that Duke isn't due for a let down here at some point. They had 3 emotional games in a row and then blew out Notre Dame at home over the weekend. NC State is not really a great team despite Markell Johnson being a damn good college guard. That's the reason I think NC State can keep it close at home. Duke thrives on forcing turnovers this year - top 50 in the country on that side. NC State is just as good at not turning it over. We'll play the Dennis Smith type spot here for State.
Pick: NC State +7
Wofford at UNC-Greensboro (-9.5/136)
Low key the SoCon is super fun again with the top-4 of Furman, ETSU, UNC-Greensboro and Wofford. Those 4 teams all happen to play each other tonight. We're going to stick with Wofford here going to UNC-Greensboro and the next IT guy that will be hired from a mid-major in Wes Miller. These two played a 2OT game at Wofford earlier this year - Wofford won. This is still a Wofford team that wants to launch threes - even with Mike Young and Fletcher Magee gone. UNC-G actually struggles to defend the 3pt line. They are sub-200 nationally in that category. Hit shots and cover. That simple.
Pick: Wofford +9.5
Illinois State at Loyola (-11.5/132)
This is strictly a play spot. Loyola is coming off beating UNI in the biggest win of the season. Now comes in an Illinois State team that was profitable for us in November. The reason I like Illinois State here outside of a letdown spot play? They make you use more clock than anyone else in the country based on their defense. We want limited possessions in this game with getting double digits.
Pick: Illinois State +11.5
Indiana at Minnesota (-6.5/135.5)
We're closing in on must win games for both teams - but really Archie Miller. I think he needs more time at Indiana, but Indiana fans get restless that they just haven't been relevant in years. That said, both teams have fallen to the bottom-4 of the Big 10 and I do think that Indiana's defense will finally show up forcing someone other than Daniel Oturu to beat them. There also are free points to be had for Indiana with Minnesota being so bad on the defensive glass and IU being decent offensive rebounding.
Pick: Indiana +6.5
South Carolina at Mississippi State (-5/144.5)
The fighting Brandon Walkers won on a tip over the weekend and that was MUCH needed as they are trending towards the bubble. That said the best player on the floor in this game is Reggie Perry for Mississippi State. I know South Carolina is known for uglying it up, but that's fine for Miss. State. There is only one team in the country that fouls more than South Carolina. That's plenty of free throws coming at home for Mississippi State. Make enough and cover.
Pick: Mississippi State -5