Temple Owls at Louisville Cardinals Free College Basketball Picks, Odds and Predictions
by George Monroy - 2/27/2014
Temple Owls (7-19, 2-12 AAC) at Louisville Cardinals (23-4, 12-2 AAC)
NCAA Basketball: Thursday, February 27, 2014 at 9:00 p.m. EST (KFC Yum! Center)
The defending National Champion Louisville Cardinals might be one of the most underrated squads in the AP Top 25. Louisville has one of the most efficient offenses in the nation, is ranked seventh in the AP poll, yet all the chatter surrounding this year’s title favorites revolve around Florida, Syracuse, Arizona, and even Wichita State. Rick Pitino’s team has been left on the backburner when it comes to media attention this season. The Cardinals will have a chance to make a statement over the next two weeks as the team closes out the year against three of the top five teams in the AAC.
Thursday’s matchup will be Temple’s fifth straight game against an AP Top 25 team and second against Louisville in a two-week span. The Owls season is essentially over as the team is sitting in last place in the AAC with only two conference wins. Temple, however, will look to play the role of spoiler when it visits Louisville in one of its final games of the season. Let’s take a closer look at the matchup with picks, predictions and analysis.
Louisville Cardinals at Temple Owls Betting Story Lines
Louisville is coming off a huge win over the No. 11 and AAC-leading Cincinnati Bearcats last Saturday. The matchup was a back-and-forth affair that ended with a one-point victory for Louisville when Russ Smith hit a last-second, 18-foot jumper with two seconds left in the game. The win helped Louisville catapult up the AP rankings and into the Top 10 for the first time since early in the season.
The Cardinals have not been a spectacular ATS team this season and currently sit on a 14-11 ATS record, but they have managed to cover four of their last five matchups and seven of their last 10 overall games. Louisville is ranked in the Top 45 in points per game, rebounds, assists and field goal percentage. The squad has four double-digit scorers and is being led by the 17.5 points, 3.4 rebounds and 4.5 assists from Smith.
Temple has only one win during the month of February, albeit an impressive one against SMU 10 days ago. The squad is coming off a three-point overtime loss to No. 22 Memphis over the weekend and has four more games left on its schedule. Temple guard Will Cummings had a monster game with 24 points, six rebounds, and six assists, and he nearly led the Owls to another upset victory over a ranked team.
Temple is 10-13-1 ATS this season and has covered only two of its last seven matchups. The squad is being led by Dalton Pepper’s 17.2 points, 5.1 rebounds and 2.3 assists, but it struggles with its shooting percentage from the field and is the 144th-ranked rebounding team in the nation.
Louisville Cardinals at Temple Owls NCAA Betting Odds and Key Trends
Louisville opened as a 22.5-point favorite over the underdog Owls at BetOnline. Louisville is 5-1 ATS in its last six games against teams with losing SU records and 4-1 ATS in its last five overall games. The squad is also 4-1 ATS in its last five against the AAC and 10-4 ATS in its last 14 games following an ATS loss. Louisville has gone “over” in four of its last five Thursday games.
Temple is 2-5 ATS in its last seven overall games and 0-6 during its last six Thursday games. The team is also 1-3-1 ATS in its last five road games and has the same mark in its last five matchups following an ATS win. Temple has gone “under” in four of its last five Thursday games.
Louisville Cardinals at Temple Owls Free College Basketball Picks and NCAA Betting Predictions
Louisville beat Temple by 24 points the last time these two teams met a few weeks ago. The Owls have lost three games since then, while the Cardinals have won three. Louisville shoots an excellent percentage from the field, spreads the ball around on offensive, and most importantly grabs rebounds. Take Louisville minus the points. The No. 7 team in the nation is focused and ready to head into the NCAA Tournament on a tear.
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