College Basketball Betting: Weekly Big East Handicapping Report
by Dave Schwab - 2/4/2015
The Big East continues to try and remain relevant when it comes to talking about the major conferences in men's college basketball with a trio of teams in the latest AP Top 25 led by No. 7 Villanova. The Wildcats are currently 19-2 straight up with a 6-2 record in Big East play heading into Wednesday's home game against Marquette. BetOnline has listed them as heavy 15-point favorites to remain at the top of the heap with a win. No. 22 Butler remains hot with a SU four-game winning streak, and No. 24 Georgetown is set to face Providence on Wednesday as a seven-point favorite at home.
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The following is this week's Big East betting report with a closer look at a few teams to go with as well as go against right now along with my free pick of the week.
Big East Best Bets
The two hottest teams on the court in the Big East have also been the hot bets lately with Villanova and Butler combining for a perfect 5-0 run against the spread in the Wildcats' last two outings and the Bulldogs' last three games. Both teams have been fairly solid bets all season long with Villanova going 13-8 ATS and Butler posting a 15-7 mark ATS.
The Bulldogs have been especially profitable as of late with a 6-1 record ATS in their last seven games. They are coming off an impressive 85-62 victory against St. John's this past Tuesday as six-point favorites at home. The total has now gone "over" in five of their last seven games.
Another team that has been good to bettors lately is Providence. Despite falling to St. John's 75-66 last Saturday as three-point road underdogs, the Friars remain a healthy 6-3 both SU and ATS in Big East play.
Big East Bankroll Busters
I had been riding DePaul for most of the month of January after the Blue Demons posted a 5-3 SU record in their first eight conference games while going a perfect 8-0 ATS. However, the bloom may be off that rose with a 1-3 SU slide in their last four outings while covering in just one of their last three games. This may be just a blip in an otherwise very productive run, but DePaul could be a good team to go against in this Saturday's matchup against Butler.
Creighton continues to be a major disappointment this season with just one SU victory in its last 11 games while going a costly 3-8 ATS. The Bluejays have been able to even things out a bit with a 3-3 record ATS in their last six games, but I still believe that this is a good team to keep going against for the rest of the season. They will be on the road against Xavier on Wednesday as 14.5-point underdogs before taking on St. John's this Saturday at Madison Square Garden.
Big East Play of the Week
I am now two-for-two in my last two Big East picks with Georgetown covering as a 2.5-point road favorite in last Saturday's 67-40 romp over Creighton. This week I have zeroed-in on a matchup between Marquette and Seton Hall as my Big East "play of the week".
It has been a swift decline for the Golden Eagles in the Big East after a respectable 8-4 SU record in nonconference play. They have just two SU wins in conference play against seven losses while going 4-5 ATS. Marquette has lost its last five games SU heading into Wednesday's matchup against Villanova, and it has failed to cover in its last three. Part of the problem has been a scoring average of just 68.1 points per game while allowing 66.1 points at the other end of the court.
Seton Hall has been a tough bet in conference play with an even 5-5 record both SU and ATS, but the Pirates have already beaten Marquette this season on the road in a solid 80-70 victory as 3.5-point underdogs. They should open as three- or four-point favorites this time around at home against Marquette, which is a good thing considering that they are 8-2 ATS in 10 previous home games and 9-3 ATS this season as favorites. It also helps that the Pirates are simply the better overall team in this matchup behind junior guard Sterling Dibbs, who leads them in both points (17.1) and assists (4.0).
Stick with Seton Hall to pull off the season sweep while covering the spread against Marquette this Saturday.
Read more articles by Dave Schwab
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