College Basketball Betting: Hot or Not Handicapping Report
by Dave Schwab - 2/27/2012
This is the final week of the NCAA men’s basketball regular season and one last chance for the top teams in the nation to pad their overall resume before the start of next week’s conference tournaments. Selection Sunday for this year’s NCAA Tournament is less than two weeks away and while the overall picture for this season’s 68-team field is fairly clear, a lot can happen between now and then.
There are a number of teams that continue to impress with their play on the court, but this ‘hot and not’ list is more concerned with a team’s recent and overall performance against the spread. Here is a rundown of a few teams that have caught our eye in both a good and bad way through this past weekend’s games.
Who is Hot
The No. 6 Michigan State Spartans 62-34 romp over Nebraska as a 17.5-point home favorite this past Saturday not only secured at least a share of the Big Ten regular season title, it raised their record ATS to 6-1 in their last seven games and to 18-8 overall. The Spartans are now 24-5 SU overall and 13-3 straight up in conference play. They are 11-3 ATS at home this season with the total going 8-6 in the 14 games. On the road, Michigan State is 7-5 ATS with the total staying ‘under’ in seven of 12 games.
One of the most profitable teams from the mid-majors all season long has been the Atlantic 10’s Saint Joseph’s Hawks. Their stunning 82-72 victory over Temple this past Saturday as 2.5-point home underdogs raised the Hawks overall record to 19-11 SU and 18-8 ATS. They are now 9-3 ATS at home and 9-5 ATS at home. The total has stayed under in eight of the 12 home games, but has gone ‘over’ in eight of 14 games on the road. St. Joe’s recent form has remained profitable with a 6-2 ATS record in its last eight games.
The third team on this week’s list is the SEC’s Tennessee Volunteers. The majority of the season has been a rough go of it for Tennessee with a 16-13 record SU and an 8-6 SU record in conference play, but the Vols have been able to turn things around as of late with six victories in their last seven games both SU and ATS. The Volunteers are now 5-7 ATS on the road, but a highly profitable 11-2-1 ATS at home. The total has stayed under in 15 of 26 games overall, but has gone over in five of their last seven.
A few other teams that deserve an honorable mention this week are the New Mexico Lobos out of the Mountain West at 22-6 SU and 17-8 ATS, the Summit League’s South Dakota State Jackrabbits at 24-7 SU and 16-6-1 ATS, and the Manhattan Jaspers from the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference at 20-11 SU and 19-10 ATS.
Who is Not
The team at the top of this week’s list is the George Mason Patriots out of the Colonial Athletic Association. They have a sterling overall record of 23-8, but are just 10-18 ATS. To make matters worse, the Patriots are 5-2 SU in their last seven games but just 2-7 ATS in their last nine. George Mason is 6-9 ATS at home and 4-9 ATS on the road. The total has gone 13-14-1 overall, but it has gone over in four of its last six games.
The Horizon League’s Butler Bulldogs have barely kept their heads above .500 all season long, but might once again be peaking at just the right time with five SU wins in their last six games. The problem is they have stayed well below .500 ATS with an overall record of 9-17-2. They have been equally as costly no matter where they play with a 4-8-1 record ATS at home and 5-9-1 ATS record on the road. The total has gone ‘over’ in three of Butler’s last four games and is now 14-13-1 overall.
A few dishonorable mentions go out to two of the top teams in the nation; the No.1 Kentucky Wildcats out of the SEC and the ACC’s No.4 Duke Blue Devils. The Wildcats’ current winning streak has reached 20 games and they are 28-1 SU, but they are 10-17-1 ATS overall and have failed to cover in their last three games. The Blue Devils are 25-4 SU and 13-16 ATS. They have been especially costly at home at just 5-10 ATS.
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