Free Football and Basketball Picks for Weekend by Handicapper Doug Upstone
We have a variety pack of NBA, college basketball and NFL Playoffs to cover this weekend. Take a minute to review all the betting trends, our free picks and predictions (172-139-3 of late) to see what we are thinking about today. See you back here next week.
NBA - (573) NEW ORLEANS at (574) L.A. LAKERS 10:35 ET ESPN
In the second of two NBA games on ESPN, the total blew up from 221.5 to 225.5. This has to do with New Orleans ranked 27th in points allowed at 116.4 PPG and the Los Angeles permitting 112.2 PPG in their past five contests, which is up from season average of 105 PPG. Both teams average just over 112 PPG, which gets us really close to the adjusted number but going to going against the line movement for NBA picks. As we found, the Lakers are 17-6 "Under" as a home favorite of 6.5 to 12 points and the Pelicans have surrendered under 102 PPG in their last six outings.
Betting Trend - 67% backing Over
Doug's Doc's Take - Play Under
After looking nearly invincible, Ohio State is 2-2 in their last four tries, falling at Minnesota and to West Virginia on a neutral floor. This has spooked those placing college basketball picks, and they dropped the Buckeyes like a bad habit from -11 to -7. The other aspect for such a drop is Wisconsin has won and covered three straight after losing four of five and appear to be back in sync. Nonetheless, Ohio State is a different team in Columbus at 9-0 SU and 8-1 ATS, with the Badgers 1-5 SU and 2-4 outside Madison. The Buckeyes were a reach at double digits, but at touchdown, why not?
Betting Trend - 74% backing Ohio State
Doug's Doc's Take - Ohio State covers
CBB - Saturday - (605) CREIGHTON at (606) BUTLER 12:00 ET FS1
We start college hoops on Saturday with a Big East battle of 12-2 Creighton (8-5 ATS) vs. #11 Butler (13-1 SU and 9-4 ATS). Butler wants to control the tempo and make opposing teams have to go against their salty defense that concedes just 53.6 PPG. Creighton, on the other hand, likes to scoot, running up and down the floor and averages one tick short of 80 PPG. Though the Bulldogs are really tough at Hinckle Fieldhouse, Creighton has more scoring options and I'd just lean at -6 and not higher.
Anticipated Line - Butler by 6 to 8 points
Doug's Doc's Take - Lean Butler (-6 or lower)
CBB - Saturday - (635) FLORIDA STATE at (636) LOUISVILLE 2:00 ET ESPN2
Two ranked ACC clubs collide before football starts in the NFL. Florida State is No. 18 in the latest polls and is 12-2 (7-7 ATS), with its usual deep squad that can mix and match with opposing teams. Louisville is No. 7 at 10-2, but they have crushed basketball bettors at 3-9 ATS. It's become very apparent that forward Jordan Nwora is the key to Cardinals. When he's on his game, Louisville is hard to beat. When he's off and drifting mentally, the other scoring options are limited. Backing the Cards to make free throws late for the cover at home.
Anticipated Line - Louisville by 3 to 5 points
Doug's Doc's Take - Lean Louisville
NFL - Saturday - (141) BUFFALO at (142) HOUSTON 4:35 ET ESPN
With the total jumping from 39.5 to 44 for NFL odds, you would have thought Buffalo found a way to clone Jim Kelly in his prime for the Bills. Most handicappers and other presumed experts about the NFL were saying "Under" when the total climbed to 41, let alone the current figure. With Buffalo 8-0 Under vs. teams with a completion percentage of 61% or higher and 8-1 Under as an underdog this season, going again grain in this one to start the NFL Playoffs.
Betting Trend - 53% backing Under
Doug's Doc's Take - Play Under
NFL - Saturday - TENNESSEE (143) at (144) NEW ENGLAND 8:15 ET CBS
The total in this AFC encounter was elevated from 41.5 to 44.5, and one could make a good case for this. Though New England's offense has not been up to previous standards, they still finished at 26.2 PPG, which was 7th in the NFL. Since Ryan Tannehill took over for Marcus Mariota, Tennessee has averaged over 30 PPG. Though the Patriots defense has been super all year, in the last five games in permitting 21.6 PPG, compared to 10.6 PPG before this. Scratch the Titans last game when Houston has offensive backups playing, Tennessee has allowed 25.3 PPG in their previous six contests. With the Pats s 19-6 Over at home after gaining six or more yards a play in two consecutive games, backing the Over for NFL picks.
Betting Trend - 63% backing Over
Doug's Doc's Take - Play Over
NFL - (145) MINNESOTA at (146) NEW ORLEANS 1:05 ET FOX
The Vikings and Saints total climbed like the popularity of the Netflix movie "The Irishman", going from 46 to 49.5. It would seem this has more to do Drew Brees than Kirk Cousins, based on big-game performances. In New Orleans last seven games, all under Brees, the Saints have averaged 36.2 PPG. However, these two teams are permitting a combined 40.2 PPG this season. While acknowledging the previous two meetings have reached the 50-point barrier and beyond, the defenses have the talent and the knowledge to slow the other down and Minnesota is 19-10 Under as a road underdog.
Betting Trend - 88% backing Over
Doug's Doc's Take - Play Under
Public Consensus Record (since 12/1/2019) - 51% to 79% - 11-9 ATS
Public Consensus Record (since 12/1/2019) - 80% or Higher - 4-1 ATS
Line Movement Direction Record (since 12/1/2019) - 14-11 ATS
Doug Upstone is the newest handicapper at Doc's Sports and he brings years of experience with him. Doug has 21 documented No. 1 titles and finished in the Top Ten 80 other times in a distinguished career. Doug as a professional handicapper/writer, has written for various well-known sports betting websites and several of the football newsletters you have read before.
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