Free College Basketball Picks: Long Beach State at Michigan Odds
by George Monroy - 11/20/2013
The No. 14-ranked Michigan Wolverines may have one of the hardest schedules in the nation. Besides facing a talented Long Beach State squad on Thursday night, the team is expected to play five Top-25 squads this season, which includes two matchups against the No. 1-ranked team in the nation—the Michigan State Spartans. The Wolverines are looking to test themselves against a tough schedule of opponents and hope to erase the memory of season’s heart-breaking national title game loss to the Louisville Cardinals—a game in which they led at half time.
The Long Beach State 49ers have a tough schedule of their own, and they will face three Top-25 teams within the first month of the season. The 49ers have made the NCAA Tournament only twice in the last seven years and have not advanced past the first-round since 1973. The team is hoping to improve on last year’s 19-14 record, but starting out the season with one win in four tries is not the best way to achieve that goal. Let’s take a closer look at Thursday night’s matchup between the 49ers and Wolverines and figure out which side of the game has the most value to bet on.
Long Beach State at Michigan Betting Story Lines
Michigan started out the college basketball season with two dominant victories over Massachusetts Lowell and South Carolina State. The team then faltered a bit against a very good Iowa State team and lost by seven points. The Wolverines were led by guard Nik Stauskas, who scored 20 points and added six rebounds and two assists in the loss. The team had two other players score in double-figures, with Glenn Robinson III having a solid night with 12 points, seven rebounds, one assist and four steals.
The Wolverines are sitting at the top of the Big Ten conference standings with a 2-1 record. The team has the same ATS record as their SU record and has had only one posted total, which went “under”. Michigan is averaging 77 points, 40 rebounds and is shooting .733 percent from the free throw line. Sophomore forward Mitch McGary played for the first time this season against Iowa State after missing the first two games of the year due to a lower-back injury. McGary is expected to be the major focal point of the Wolverines offense, but he managed only nine points in his debut.
Long Beach State opened up the season with a 12-point win and then proceeded to drop their next three games—one of them an embarrassing 34-point loss to the Arizona Wildcats. The team has only covered one spread and is currently sitting on a 1-3 ATS record. The 49ers have gone under in two of three posted totals heading into Thursday’s matchup against the Wolverines.
Long Beach State is averaging only 65 points per game with 39 rebounds and 12 assists. A few very concerning areas are the team’s shooting percentages. The 49ers are shooting a horrendous .230 percent from the three-point line, .377 from the field and .634 from the free throw line. The team does have two double-digit scorers in Mike Caffey and Dan Jennings, but they are struggling to produce offense from any other players.
Long Beach State at Michigan NCAA Odds and Key Trends
Michigan opened as a 15.5-point favorite over the underdog 49ers squad. The vig was set a -110 for both side of the game, and the total was unavailable at the time this article was published. Long Beach State is 3-13 ATS over their last 17 nonconference games and is 1-10 ATS against teams with a .600 record or better. The team is also 0-4 during their last five overall games.
The Wolverines are 5-1 ATS during their last six neutral-site games and 5-2 ATS over their last seven overall matchups. Michigan has won five of their last seven nonconference games but is 3-7 ATS in games against teams with a .400 record or worse. The “over” is 8-2 during Michigan’s last 10 Thursday games.
Free College Basketball Picks: Long Beach State at Michigan Predictions
Long Beach State has struggled to produce offense over the first four games of the year and is shooting poorly from all parts of the court. Last season the team played four Top-25 opponents and managed to lose by less than 16 points only once. Expect the Wolverines to get back on track after an unexpected loss on Sunday. Michigan is one of the most talented teams in the nation and will be looking to put that on display Thursday night. Take the Wolverines minus the points.
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