|Date||Match Up||Rating||Score||Result||Profit||Lead Time||Analysis|
|11-26-13||Brigham Young v. Wichita State -3||Top||62-75||Win||100||10 h 12 m||Show|
20* BYU/Wichita State ESPN 2 No-Brainer on Wichita State -3
Rarely will you get the opportunity to back Wichita State as such a small favorite the rest of the season. I'm going to take full advantage tonight and back them in the CBE Hall of Fame Classic Final in Kansas City, MO tonight against BYU.
Remember, this is a Wichita State team that made it to the FInal Four last year before bowing out to eventual champion Louisville by a final of 72-68. The Shockers returned plenty of talent from that team to make another run in 2013. Cleanthony Early (13.9 ppg, 5.4 rpg), Ron Baker (8.7 ppg) and Tekele Cotton (6.5 ppg) all return, as do several other key role players.
Wichita State has opened 6-0 this season and has yet to be tested. All six of its wins have come by 14 points or more, including a 77-54 road win over Tulsa as a 6-point favorite, and a 90-72 victory over DePaul last night as an 8-point favorite. Early (14.8 ppg, 7.3 rpg), Baker (14.0 ppg, 3.8 apg) and Cotton (11.0 ppg, 4.0 rpg) have all stepped up their games this season. Also, returnee Fred VanVleet (13.2 ppg, 5.8 apg) has done a tremendous job of running the offense at point guard.
BYU is a talented team, but it is nowhere near as good as the Shockers this season. The Cougars caught Iowa State in a huge letdown spot off a big win over Michigan previously, and they couldn't get the job done at home, falling 88-90. They also struggled as a 7-point favorite against Texas last night, winning by a final of 86-82. The Longhorns are certainly down this season, so that win was far from impressive.
Wichita State is 12-1 ATS versus up-tempo teams averaging 62 or more shots per game since 1997. BYU is 1-9 ATS as a neutral court underdog of 3 points or less since 1997. The Shockers are 17-4 ATS as a neutral court favorite of 6 points or less since 1997. Bet Wichita State Tuesday.
|11-26-13||Golden State Warriors v. New Orleans Pelicans OVER 204||Top||102-101||Loss||-110||8 h 58 m||Show|
20* NBA TOTAL OF THE WEEK on Warriors/Pelicans OVER 204
The books have set the bar too low tonight in this contest between the Golden State Warriors and New Orleans Pelicans. I look for a shootout between these teams given the circumstances tonight.
Golden State will be without its two best defenders in center Andrew Bogut and small forward Andre Iguodala. I fully expect the Pelicans to take advantage and put up a big number offensively in this one.
The Pelicans have been playing in several high-scoring games since getting back stretch big man Ryan Anderson, who is second on the team in scoring (18.8 ppg). They feature six players who are averaging double-digits in points this season and will be a force to be wreckoned with offensively now that Anderson is back.
In fact, the Pelicans are averaging 108.4 points per game and giving up 103.8 points per game in their last five contests overall. They are combining with their opponents for an average of 212.2 points per game during this stretch.
Both teams like to go up-tempo. Golden State ranks 9th in the league in pace at 99.0 possessions per game, while New Orleans is 13th in the league in pace at 97.3 possessions per contest. I look for that pace to be increased even more now that the Warriors are without their top two defenders in Iguodala and Bogut.
New Orleans is 14-3 to the OVER when playing four or less games in 10 days over the past three seasons. The OVER is 5-1 in Warriors last six games when playing on two days' rest. The OVER is 6-0 in Pelicans last six games overall. The OVER is 4-1 in the last five meetings between these teams in New Orleans. Roll with the OVER in this game Tuesday.
|11-26-13||Brooklyn Nets v. Toronto Raptors UNDER 191||102-100||Loss||-110||6 h 11 m||Show|
15* NBA Tuesday Total DOMINATOR on Nets/Raptors UNDER 191
The Brooklyn Nets are in a world of hurt right now offensively. They are without two of their best players in Brook Lopez and Deron Williams, which will make points very hard to come by until they return. The Nets are already only averaging 95.4 points per game overall and 93.6 on the road. In their last three games, the Nets are only averaging 89.7 ppg.
Both Toronto and Brooklyn like to play at slow paces. Toronto ranks 25th in the league in pace at 95.2 possessions per game, while Brooklyn is 21st in pace at 96.0 possessions per contest. I look for the Raptors to control the pace in this one playing at home and keep is at a snail's pace.
That has been the case in recent meetings between the Nets and Raptors played in Toronto. They have combined for 180, 182, 165, and 182 points in their last four meetings in Toronto, all of which have gone UNDER the total. That's an average of 177.3 combined points per game, which is roughly 14 points less than tonight's posted total of 191.
The UNDER is 5-1 in the last six meetings in Toronto. The UNDER is 25-9 in Nets last 34 games vs. a team with a losing record. The UNDER is 24-11 in Raptors last 35 home games vs. a team with a losing road record. Brooklyn is 15-2 to the UNDER as a road underdog of 6.5 to 9 points over the past three seasons. Take the UNDER in this game Tuesday.
|11-26-13||Oakland +7.5 v. Western Michigan||88-99||Loss||-110||7 h 53 m||Show|
15* CBB Tuesday Undervalued Underdog on Oakland +7.5
You would be hard-pressed to find a team that has played a more difficult schedule in the early going than Oakland. They opened the season with four straight road games against North Carolina (61-84), UCLA (60-91), California (60-64) and Gonzaga (67-82). They have also played LA-Lafayette (75-84) and St. Francis-NY (62-68) on a neutral court. They have been an underdog in all six contests, and they have opened 0-6.
Due to this 0-6 start, the Grizzlies are way undervalued right now. This is a team that returned four starters from last year and will be improved as the season progresses and the schedule gets easier. Travis Bader (22.1 ppg last year) and Duke Mondy (12.0 ppg, 5.1 apg, 3.0 spg) are back to lead the way. Bader (21.5 ppg) is off to a fast start, while Corey Petros (10.0 ppg, 7.3 rpg), Tommie McCune (9.5 ppg, 4.0 rpg) and Kahlil Fielder (8.7 ppg, 5.2 apg) have all stepped up their games this season.
Western Michigan is getting way too much respect from oddsmakers in this one. It has opened 3-2 this season with its only wins coming against New Mexico State (70-64), Tennessee State (63-52) and Alabama A&M (73-69). It also has losses to North Dakota State (74-83) and Hawaii (68-78). As you can see, the Broncos only have one win on the season by more than 6 points.
This is a Broncos squad that lost three of their top five scorers from a year ago in Darius Paul (10.5 ppg, 5.7 rpg), Nate Hutcheson (10.1 ppg, 4.7 rpg) and Brandon Pokley (8.9 ppg), who averaged nearly 30 points combined between them. Shayne Whittington and David Brown are solid players, but they are being asked to do too much. This team doesn't have near the balance that Oakland offers.
Oakland is 17-6 ATS when playing its 2nd road game in three days since 1997. The Grizzlies are 23-10 ATS in road games when playing with one or less days rest since 1997. The Grizzlies are 7-2 ATS in their last nine games vs. a team with a winning S.U. record. The Broncos are 2-7 ATS in their last nine games vs. a team with a losing S.U. record. Take Oakland Tuesday.
|11-26-13||Western Michigan +36.5 v. Northern Illinois||14-33||Win||100||7 h 52 m||Show|
15* WMU/NIU MAC PLAY OF THE DAY on Western Michigan +36.5
The betting public has been all over Northern Illinois this season, especially over the last several weeks. The betting public wants nothing to do with a 1-10 Western Michigan squad. When oddsmakers realize this, they are forced to set a number higher than it should be to try and get even money on both sides. There
|11-25-13||Stanford v. Houston +11.5||86-76||Win||100||9 h 26 m||Show|
15* CBB Monday GAME OF THE NIGHT on Houston +11.5
The Houston Cougars returned three starters and three of their top four scorers from a team that went 20-13 last season. They are TaShawn Thomas (16.9 ppg, 9.8 rpg), Danuel House (12.4 ppg, 4.9 rpg) and Jherrod Stiggers (8.1 ppg).
All three players have made a significant contribution en route to a perfect 5-0 start this season for the Cougars. House (17.8 ppg, 6.2 rpg), Thomas (16.8 ppg, 11.6 rpg, 4.6 bpg) and Stiggers (10.4 ppg, 3.2 rpg) have all upped their games in 2013. Plus, Baylor transfer L.J. Rose (12.2 ppg, 5.6 apg) has made an imprint as well.
Stanford returned a ton of experience from last season, but that's not necessarily a great thing for a team that went just 19-15 last year and missed the NCAA Tournament. In its only real test this season, Stanford failed, losing 103-112 at home to BYU. While the Cougars haven't really been tested yet, four of their five victories have come by double-digits.
The Cougars are scoring 77.6 points per game and shooting 49.3% from the field, while limiting opponents to 65.0 points and 39.7% shooting. The Cougars are a perfect 7-0 ATS after allowing 30 points or less in the first half of two straight games over the past three seasons. The Cardinal are 4-10 ATS in their last 14 games following a S.U. win. Roll with Houston Friday.
|11-25-13||San Francisco 49ers v. Washington Redskins +6||Top||27-6||Loss||-110||9 h 14 m||Show|
20* 49ers/Redskins ESPN Monday No-Brainer on Washington +6
The Redskins put together a big run at the end of last season by winning their final seven games to capture the NFC East Title. With the division as wide open as ever, they still have to feel like they have a shot with another big finish in 2013. They only trail the Philadelphia Eagles by 2.5 games for first place within the division.
Washington has fallen victim to a pretty tough schedule thus far as six of its first 10 games have been on the road. It is 2-2 at home with its only losses coming to the Eagles and Lions by a combined 13 points. It has played well in its last two home games, beating both Chicago (45-41) and San Diego (30-24). San Francisco
|11-25-13||New Orleans Pelicans +10 v. San Antonio Spurs||93-112||Loss||-106||9 h 43 m||Show|
15* NBA Western Conference ANNIHILATOR on New Orleans Pelicans +10
The San Antonio Spurs are getting too much respect from the books tonight due to their 12-1 start, which includes a 126-96 home victory over Cleveland last time out. The public perception of this team is as high as it's going to get this season, and now is the time to fade the Spurs because of it.
New Orleans still has a pretty low public perception due to its mediocre 6-6 record on the season. However, it has been playing its best basketball of late, winning three straight coming into this one. A big reason for the Pelicans' resurgence has been the return of stretch big man Ryan Anderson, who is averaging 19.3 points and shooting 61.9% from 3-points range in his past three contests. Now, they will be playing on two days' rest since their 104-100 victory over Cleveland on Friday.
This is a big lookahead spot for San Antonio, which will travel to face Oklahoma City on Wednesday. Overlooking the Pelicans has been nothing new for the Spurs as this has been a very closely-contested series. All four meetings between the Spurs and Pelicans last year were decided by 7 points or less with New Orleans going a perfect 4-0 ATS. They only lost 102-106 and 94-99 in their two trips to San Antonio last season, and they were nowhere near as talented last year as they are in 2013-14.
Plays against home teams (SAN ANTONIO) - horrible foul drawing team - attempting <=21 free throws/game, in November games are 73-27 (73%) ATS over the last five seasons. The Pelicans are 8-2 ATS in their last 10 Monday games. San Antonio is 2-5 ATS in its last seven vs. Western Conference foes. Take the Pelicans Monday.
|11-25-13||Denver Nuggets v. Dallas Mavericks -5.5||Top||110-96||Loss||-108||8 h 12 m||Show|
20* NBA Monday No-Doubt Rout on Dallas Mavericks -5.5
This is a home-and-home situation between the Dallas Mavericks and Denver Nuggets. After losing in Denver 100-102 on Saturday, I fully expect the Mavericks to get their revenge in blowout fashion at home tonight.
Dallas is a perfect 7-0 straight up and 5-2 against the spread at home this season. It is outscoring opponents 111.4 to 102.0 at home this season, or by an average of 9.4 points per game. Denver is 1-4 on the road this year, giving up 104.4 points per contest away from home.
The Nuggets are 24-47 ATS in road games versus explosive offensive teams that are scoring 103 or more points per game since 1996. The Mavericks are 26-10 ATS versus up-tempo teams who average 83 or more shots per game over the past two seasons.
Dallas is 10-1 ATS after allowing 60 or more points in the first half of last game over the past two seasons. The Mavericks are 40-18 ATS in their last 58 games following a loss. The Nuggets are 1-7 ATS in their last eight road games vs. a team with a winning home record. Take the Mavericks Monday.
|11-25-13||Phoenix Suns +12 v. Miami Heat||92-107||Loss||-103||7 h 12 m||Show|
15* NBA Monday Undervalued Underdog on Phoenix Suns +12
The Phoenix Suns are the most underrated team in the entire league. This is just another prime example of that as the Suns are catching double-digits against the Miami Heat, who are notorious for playing to the level of their competition. I have no doubt Miami will take Phoenix too lightly tonight, just as about every other team in the league has this season.
Phoenix is 7-6 this season and has been competitive in almost all of its losses. In fact, all six of its losses have come by 7 points or less, including four by 3 points or fewer. That includes impressive road losses at Oklahoma City (96-103), San Antonio (96-99) and Portland (89-90), which are three of the best teams in the league.
Jeff Hornacek is doing a tremendous job of getting Phoenix to play together as a team. These guys absolutely love playing together, because they share the basketball so well. Miami is overvalued due to its six-game winning streak coming in, which includes an unimpressive 101-99 home victory over Orlando last time out.
Hornacek is a perfect 9-0 ATS as an underdog as the coach of Phoenix. Eric Spoelstra is 30-47 ATS as a favorite over 10 or more points as the coach of Miami. The Suns are 7-0 ATS in their last seven road games. The Heat are 0-5 ATS in their last five home games vs. a team with a losing road record. Roll with the Suns Monday.
|11-25-13||Minnesota Timberwolves +7 v. Indiana Pacers||84-98||Loss||-115||7 h 20 m||Show|
15* NBA Monday Non-Conference KNOCKOUT on Minnesota Timberwolves +7
The Indiana Pacers are getting way too much respect from oddsmakers right now due to their 12-1 start. There's no question this is one of the best teams in the league, but the Pacers have benefited from an easy schedule more than anything.
Indeed, only two of Indiana's 12 wins have come against teams with winning records. Those were against Chicago (6-5) and Memphis (6-5), who are both down from last season.
Minnesota is 8-7 this season against a brutal schedule. Only two of its seven losses have come against teams with losing records, and those were against Cleveland (92-93) and Washington (100-104) by a combined 5 points. The Timberwolves have only lost two games all season by more than 4 points.
Plays against home favorites (INDIANA) - top caliber team - outscoring their opponents by 9+ points/game against opponent after allowing 105 points or more are 30-4 (88.2%) ATS over the last five seasons. The Timberwolves are 28-11 ATS in their last 39 games following a SU loss of more than 10 points. Bet Minnesota Monday.
|11-24-13||Massachusetts v. Clemson||Top||62-56||Loss||-100||16 h 52 m||Show|
20* UMass/Clemson ESPN 2 No-Brainer on Clemson PK
The Clemson Tigers came into the 2013-14 season way undervalued after going just 13-18 in head coach Brad Brownell's first season last year. The Tigers had to transition from Oliver Purnell's up-tempo style to Brownell's motion offense, and there was no question it was going to take some time.
Well, Clemson appears to be hitting on all cylinders to open the season this year. It has started 5-0 with five straight blowout victories over Stetson (71-51), Delaware State (58-37) South Carolina (71-57) Temple (72-58) and Davidson (85-64). The Tigers returned five of their top seven scorers from last season, and all five have made significant contributions in the early going.
K.J. McDaniels, the top returning scorer, has averaged 18.8 points, 6.2 rebounds and 4.0 blocks per game to lead the charge. Rod Hall (10.8 ppg, 3.8 apg), Jordan Roper (10.4 ppg, 3.4 rpg, 3.6 apg), Demarcus Harrison (9.8 ppg) and Adonis Filer (4.8 ppg) have all upped their games this season from last year. Jaron Blossomgame (5.4 ppg, 5.2 rpg, 1.6 bpg) has made a solid contribution thus far as well.
There's no question that UMass is improved from last season as well with four starters back. Like Clemson, it has opened 5-0 this season as well. Unlike Clemson, it has had to sweat out a few games, while the Tigers have won every game this season by 14 points or more. The Minutemen survived scares against LSU (92-90) at home, and Nebraska (96-90) on a neutral court.
With free throws being more important this season due to increased foul calls, it's certainly worth pointing out that the Tigers have been cashing in their free throws at a deadly rate this season. They are making a ridiculous 80.4% of their free throws thus far. That could come in handy if this game is close down the stretch, though I don't expect it will be.
I'm going to side with the better defensive team in this one. Clemson is giving up just 51.4 points per game on 33.9% shooting. It is playing great defense without fouling, putting opponents on the line an average of only 16 times per game. UMass is allowing 77.4 points per game on 41.4% shooting. It is putting opponents on the line an average of 22 times per contest.
This will essentially be a home game for Clemson as it will be played inside TD Bank Arena in Charleston, South Carolina. UMass is 0-8 ATS in its last eight neutral court games with a line of +3 to PK. Clemson is 7-0 ATS in road games after a non-conference game over the past two seasons. The Tigers are 6-0 ATS in road games in November games over the past two seasons. Clemson is 4-0 ATS in its last four non-conference games. These four trends combine for a perfect 25-0 system backing the Tigers. Bet Clemson Sunday.
|11-24-13||Indianapolis Colts v. Arizona Cardinals -3||11-40||Win||100||36 h 44 m||Show|
15* Colts/Cardinals Late-Afternoon ANNIHILATOR on Arizona -3
The Arizona Cardinals are one of the most underrated teams in the league. They continue to get no respect from oddsmakers this week as only a 3-point favorite over the Indianapolis Colts, who are one of the most overrated teams in the league. I'll take advantage and back Arizona at home as it rolls to a blowout victory over the Colts.
The Cardinals come in playing their best football of the season. They have won three straight overall with home victories over the Falcons (27-13) and Texans (27-24), along with a road victory over the Jaguars (27-14). Carson Palmer threw for over 400 yards last week and appears to be hitting his stride as the offense tries to keep up with the excellent play of the defense.
Arizona is giving up just 21.2 points and 324.9 yards per game to rank 9th in the league in total defense. This stop unit has really dug its teeth in during their 3-game winning streak. The Cardinals have held their last three opponents to 45.0 yards per game on the ground and 267.0 yards per game overall.
It's easy to see that Indianapolis is nowhere near as good as its record would indicate. It ranks 13th in the league in total offense at 349.9 yards per game, and 24th in total defense at 365.0 yards per game. As you can see, it is getting outgained by 15.1 yards per game. That is a number more indicative of a team that would be 4-6 right now rather than 7-3. However, the Colts have simply been fortunate in close games for a second straight year.
After going 9-1 in games decided by a touchdown or less last season, the Colts have gone 5-1 in such games this season. The good news is that I don't believe this game will be close at all as the Cardinals win going away. That being said, there's no question that these records in close games come close to evening out over time, and the Colts aren't going to continue being this fortunate for long. That's especially the case now that they are without leading receiver Reggie Wayne for the rest of the season, and the offense hasn't been nearly as effective without him.
Arizona is 4-1 at home this season. The Cardinals are 24-9 ATS in their last 33 home games vs. good passing teams that average 235 or more yards per game. Arizona is 40-23 ATS in its last 63 games versus poor defensive teams that allow 5.65 or more yards per play. The Cardinals are 6-0 ATS versus poor defensive teams that allow 5.65 or more yards per play in the second half of the season over the past three seasons. Bet the Cardinals Sunday.
|11-24-13||Chicago Bulls v. Los Angeles Clippers UNDER 194.5||82-121||Loss||-110||11 h 42 m||Show|
15* NBA Sunday Total DOMINATOR on Bulls/Clippers UNDER 194.5
The Chicago Bulls are in a world of hurt right now offensively. They are without two of their top four scorers in Derrick Rose (15.9 ppg) and Jimmy Butler (11.2 ppg). Rose tore his meniscus, while Butler is out for at least another couple weeks with a toe injury. The offense is going to really struggle for a while without these two.
Los Angeles is a very tired team right now. The Clippers will be playing the dreaded 4 games in 5 days situation Sunday, and they'll really be tired considering this is an afternoon game. That fatigue will hurt them more on offense than it will on defense. Los Angeles will not be looking to push the tempo because it will be too tired to do so. This will be a half-court game and I expect both teams to struggle shooting the basketball today.
Chicago's strength is its defense, which is giving up just 90.5 points per game on 40.4% shooting this season. The Bulls rank 3rd in the league in defensive efficiency, allowing just 93.6 points per 100 possessions. The Bulls already played at a slow pace, ranking 19th in the league with 96.6 possessions per game. That pace will certainly get slower in their first game without Rose this season. He's basically the only one on their team capable of running the fast break, which was already a rare occurrence for the Bulls.
These teams played twice last season in low-scoring affairs, both of which came without Rose as well. Los Angeles beat Chicago 101-80 at home on November 17, 2012 for 181 combined points. The Clippers also won on the road on December 11, 2012 by a final of 94-89 for 183 combined points. I look for a similar low-scoring affair this time around as well as these teams don't combine to sniff 190 points, let alone 194.5.
Plays on the UNDER on all teams where the total is between 190 and 199.5 points (LA CLIPPERS) - explosive offensive team - scoring 103+ points/game on the season, on Sunday games are 44-19 (69.8%) over the last five seasons. Chicago is 9-1 to the UNDER versus teams who average 9 or more steals per game over the past two seasons. The UNDER is 7-3 in Clippers last 10 games playing on 0 days rest. Take the UNDER in this game Sunday.
|11-24-13||San Diego Chargers +5 v. Kansas City Chiefs||Top||41-38||Win||100||33 h 40 m||Show|
20* AFC West GAME OF THE MONTH on San Diego Chargers +5
|11-24-13||Tampa Bay Buccaneers +9.5 v. Detroit Lions||24-21||Win||100||33 h 39 m||Show|
15* NFC GAME OF THE WEEK on Tampa Bay Buccaneers +9.5
The Buccaneers have showed a ton of pride over the past couple of weeks by beating Miami (22-19) and Atlanta (41-28) at home. They have shown that they are not going to pack it in, and would love nothing more than to play the role of spoiler going forward. There
|11-24-13||Carolina Panthers v. Miami Dolphins +5||Top||20-16||Win||100||33 h 39 m||Show|
20* NFL Non-Conference GAME OF THE MONTH on Miami Dolphins +5
The Miami Dolphins (5-5) are still very much alive for the 6th and final playoff spot in the AFC. They beat San Diego 20-16 at home last week to keep themselves in a good position with only six games to go. I look for them to not only cover against Carolina Sunday at home, but to likely win this game outright as well.
Carolina is in a massive letdown spot. It is coming off two nail-biting wins over the 49ers (10-9) and Patriots (24-20). The Panthers are feeling very good about themselves after those two wins against quality teams, but their about to be knocked off their pedestals against a motivated Miami squad. Plus, that game against New England was on Monday Night Football last week, so the Panthers will be working on one less day of rest than the Dolphins.
Miami has played in so many close games this season, and that fact alone shows that there is some value here with the Dolphins as a home underdog. Three of their five losses have come by 3 points or less, while four of their five wins have come by 4 points or fewer. That means that seven of their 10 games thus far have been decided by 4 points or less.
The Dolphins are a perfect 6-0 against the spread in home games after having lost four or five of their last six games over the past three seasons. They are winning in this spot 24.2 to 11.0, or by an average of 13.2 points per game. This has clearly been a resilient bunch over the past three seasons when times have been tough, especially when playing at home. Miami is 7-2 ATS in its last nine home games overall, and 13-6 ATS in its last 19 vs. a team with a winning record. Roll with the Dolphins Sunday.
|11-24-13||Chicago Bears v. St. Louis Rams -1||21-42||Win||100||33 h 39 m||Show|
15* NFL Sunday No-Doubt Rout on St. Louis Rams -1
The St. Louis Rams are a gritty team that will not give an inch under Jeff Fisher. They are coming off their most impressive win of the season, a 38-8 victory at Indianapolis to get back to 4-6 on the season. This team still believes there is a shot to make the playoffs with a big finish, and they won't give in until they are eliminated. Now, the Rams have had two full weeks to prepare for Chicago as they are coming off their bye week.
This is a team that has been playing well for a while now, going 3-3 in their last six games overall. Even in their three losses they played solid football. The Rams actually outgained the Panthers 317-282 in a 15-30 road loss. They outgained the Seahawks 339-135 in a 9-14 home loss in a game they obviously should have won. They were even in yards against the Titans 363-363 in a 21-28 home loss as well.
St. Louis has stayed relatively healthy outside of quarterback Sam Bradford, but backup Kellen Clemens has played very well in his place. Defensively, the Rams are very healthy. Chicago is also on to its backup quarterback in Josh McCown, which hasn't been much of a step down from starter Jay Cutler, either. However, the Bears have been ravaged by injuries defensively. Starters Lance Briggs (shoulder), Charles Tillman (triceps), Henry Melton (knee) and D.J. Williams (chest) are all out. Stephen Paea (toe) is doubtful as well.
The interior of Chicago's defense has been extremely vulnerable due to these injuries. Indeed, the Bears have given up an average 174, 145, 199, and 209 rushing yards in their last four games, respectively. They rank 31st in the league against the run, giving up 133.9 yards per game, and have allowed a 100-yard rusher in three straight and four of five.
St. Louis running back Zac Stacy will be in line for a big day on the ground. The Rams have rushed for 140, 160 and 200 yards in their last three games, respectively, with Stacy doing most of the work over that stretch. Stacy has rushed for 323 yards and three touchdowns in his last three games overall. I look for St. Louis to control the game with its rushing attack, while its underrated defense keeps McCown and company in check.
Plays on favorites (ST LOUIS) - after covering the spread in 2 out of their last 3 games, a bad team (25% to 40%) playing a team with a winning record are 40-13 (75.5%) ATS since 1983. The Rams are 6-0 ATS versus good offensive teams - averaging >=5.65 yards/play in the second half of the season over the last two seasons. The Bears are 5-15-1 ATS in their last 21 games overall. Chicago is 1-7 ATS in its last eight games following a win. St. Louis is 7-0-1 ATS in its last eight home games vs. a team with a .500 road record or better. Roll with the Rams Sunday.
|11-23-13||Missouri v. Ole Miss +3||Top||24-10||Loss||-115||27 h 12 m||Show|
20* Missouri/Ole Miss ESPN Saturday No-Brainer on Ole Miss +3
Ole Miss is still one of the best teams in the country despite suffering three losses this season. Two of those losses have come on the road against Alabama and Auburn, which are arguably the two best teams in the SEC. The other came at home against Texas A&M by a field goal, which is probably the third-best team in the conference. The Rebels proved they could beat an SEC power by knocking off LSU 27-24, which was the start of a four-game winning streak heading into this one.
|11-23-13||Orlando Magic +13.5 v. Miami Heat||99-101||Win||100||17 h 13 m||Show|
15* NBA Saturday PLAY OF THE DAY on Orlando Magic +13.5
This is a home-and-home situation for the Miami Heat and Orlando Magic. Miami won the first meeting in Orlando on November 20 by a final of 120-92. Now, they'll have a rematch Saturday night just three days later after each team has had the past two days off.
It's usually a good idea to back the team that lost the first game of a home-and-home situation. That's because the team that lost the first game is obviously motivated for revenge, while the team that one can easily become disinterested after already beating their opponent a few nights earlier.
I believe this is certainly one of those good situations to back the Game 1 loser. Miami is coming off back-to-back championships, and it already has a hard time being motivated during the regular season. There's no way the Heat even show up for this game Saturday, and that's why Orlando will easily be able to stay within this inflated number with a chance to win it in the end.
It's obvious that there is value here with the Magic. They were a 7-point home underdog in their first meeting with the Heat on November 20. Now, they are catching 13.5 points in the rematch. Home-court advantage has meant little when these teams have gotten together in the recent past. The road team is 3-1 ATS in the last four meetings.
Another reason this line has been inflated is the fact that the Magic have failed to cover the spread in each of their last six games overall. Meanwhile, the Heat have covered the spread in in three straight coming in. These two trends have forced oddsmakers to set the number much higher than it should be.
Plays against home favorites (MIAMI) - top caliber team - outscoring their opponents by 9+ points/game against opponent after allowing 105 points or more are 28-4 (87.5%) ATS over the last five seasons. The Heat are 2-9 ATS in their last 11 games following a ATS win. Miami is 2-8 ATS in its last 10 games following a SU win of more than 10 points. Bet the Magic Saturday.
|11-23-13||Vanderbilt v. Tennessee -2.5||Top||14-10||Loss||-110||41 h 11 m||Show|
25* SEC GAME OF THE YEAR on Tennessee -2.5
The Volunteers come in on two weeks of rest having last played on November 9 and in need of a victory. They have to win their final two games against Vanderbilt and Kentucky to become bowl eligible, and it
|11-23-13||California +32 v. Stanford||Top||13-63||Loss||-105||23 h 26 m||Show|
20* Pac-12 GAME OF THE MONTH on California +32
The betting public wants nothing to do with 1-10 California. As a result, I believe this line is way out of whack and inflated. This is the final game of the season for the Golden Bears, and their last chance to redeem themselves. I fully expect them to put their best foot forward Saturday because of it.
Stanford is going to be in a terrible state of mind coming into this one. It just lost at USC last week after a big win over Oregon in its previous game. That loss to the Trojans likely cost Stanford the Pac-12 Title, and they know it. I look for the Cardinal to suffer a bit of a hangover effect because of it.
The Cardinal are not an explosive offensive team. It's going to take a lot of points for them to cover this big number, and I just don't believe they have it in them. Stanford is only scoring 30.4 points and averaging 384.2 yards per game to rank 84th in the country in total offense. They are a running team who does not up the tempo offensively, which favors getting big points when going against them.
California has only beaten beaten by more than 32 points twice this season. One was a 16-55 loss to Oregon, which is a team with an explosive offense that can cover these big spreads consistently. The other was a 28-62 loss to USC. That game was much closer than the final score would indicate as the Trojans scored three special teams touchdowns. Take those away, and it's a 41-28 game.
Stanford only has one win by more than 21 points this season. That was a 55-17 win over Washington State. This isn't a team known for blowing out the opposition simply because of the style of football it plays. In fact, the Cardinal have only scored more than 34 points twice all season.
Cal has found a running game in recent weeks to compliment its dynamic passing attack. The Bears rushed for 195 yards on USC, and 197 yards on Colorado. They rank 11th in the country in passing offense at 333.4 yards per game. Stanford's biggest weakness is a pass defense that ranks 96th in the country at 253.9 yards per game. Opposing quarterbacks are completing 63.7% of their passes against Stanford.
Plays on road underdogs (CALIFORNIA) - average rushing team (3.5 to 4.3 YPR) against a good rushing defense (3 to 3.5 YPR) after 7+ games, in conference games are 31-7 (81.6%) ATS over the last five seasons. Stanford is 6-20 against the spread in its last 26 games off an upset loss as a favorite. Bet California Saturday.
|11-23-13||Nebraska v. Penn State -1.5||23-20||Loss||-110||22 h 22 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday No-Doubt Rout on Penn State -1.5
The Penn State Nittany Lions want revenge from two very close defeats to the Nebraska Cornhuskers over the past two seasons. I believe they get it at home this Saturday, where they have been dominant all season long.
Nebraska beat Penn State 17-14 on the road in 2011. Then, after blowing a 20-6 halftime lead, the Nittany Lions would lost 23-32 at Nebraska in 2012. They certainly have had this game circled on their calendars after those two defeats, and there's no question they will be the more motivated team Saturday because of it.
The Cornhuskers will be in a fragile state of mind heading into this one. They just lost at home to Michigan State by a final of 28-41 in a game that was pretty much for the Big Ten Legends Division Title. They will have a hard time bouncing back from that kind of a loss, and I look for them to suffer a hangover because of it.
Nebraska's strength is its rushing attack, which averages 240 yards per game. Penn State has been stout against the run this season, giving up just 144 yards per game and 3.9 per carry. I look for the Nittany Lions to hold up against the run, which will be the key to winning this contest.
Penn State boasts one of the more underrated offenses in the country. It is putting up 29.3 points and 434.6 yards per game this season, including 37.0 points and 478.8 yards per game at home where it is 5-1 on the season. It is outscoring opponents by an average of 17.2 points per game at home this year.
Freshman quarterback Christian Hackenberg has been solid, completing 59% of his passes for 2,399 yards with 14 touchdowns and nine interceptions. Bill Belton has rushed for 796 yards and five touchdowns, while Zach Zwinak has added 725 yards and 12 scores.
Nebraska has played a quarterback carousel all season, playing three different quarterbacks at times this year. It has not allowed the Huskers to get into any kind of rhythm offensively. Whoever has been under center of late has turned the ball over a ton. The Huskers have committed 16 turnovers in their last five games overall for an average of 3.2 per game.
The Nittany Lions are 9-3 ATS in their last 12 home games. The Cornhuskers are 3-9-1 ATS in their last 13 road games. Nebraska is 1-8-1 ATS in its last 10 road games vs. a team with a winning home record. Take Penn State Saturday.
|11-23-13||Georgia State +24 v. Arkansas State||33-35||Win||100||22 h 53 m||Show|
15* Sun Belt GAME OF THE WEEK on Georgia State +24
The betting public wants nothing to do with an 0-10 team like Georgia State. This forces oddsmakers to set inflated spreads this late in the season, and there's no question in my mind that this line has been inflated Saturday as the Panthers take on the Arkansas State Red Wolves.
Georgia State is nowhere near as bad as its record would indicate. As a result, there has been a ton of value on this team all season. In fact, Georgia State is 7-1 ATS in its last eight games overall, which means that it has been playing teams much tougher than it was expected to.
Since losing 3-45 at No. 1 Alabama, the Panthers have been playing their best football of the season. They only lost 28-35 as a 15-point home dog to Troy. The lost at Texas State 17-24 as a 16-point dog, and they also covered as a 19-point dog in a 28-44 home loss to Western Kentucky, and as a 20.5-point dog in a 21-35 loss to Louisiana-Lafayette.
To compare, Arkansas State only beat Troy 41-34 at home as a 6-point favorite. Arkansas State also lost to Louisiana-Lafayette 7-23 at home. It was outgained 168-470 by the Rajin' Cajuns in that defeat. The Red Wolves simply aren't the same team they were the past two years when they won back-to-back Sun Belt Titles. However, they continue to get treated like it by oddsmakers.
Indeed, Georgia State has played its best football of late. It was only outgained 410-444 in that loss to Western Kentucky two weeks ago. Quarterback Ronnie Bell threw for 325 yards and two touchdowns in the loss. Last week, the Panthers were only outgained 481-482 by Louisiana-Lafayette last week. Again, Bell threw for 229 yards and two touchdowns.
Bell should continue to have success against an Arkansas State defense that is simply not very good. The Red Wolves have allowed 417.8 total yards per game this season, which is very poor when you consider that the 10 opponents that they have faced only average 389 yards per game on the season.
Also, offensively, the Red Wolves are averaging a solid 431 yards per game. However, their 10 opponents combine to give up an average of 445 yards per game, so that 431-yard number is not very impressive at all. I would argue that with those numbers, the Red Wolves are below average on both sides of the football.
Georgia State is 6-0 ATS after allowing 31 or more points in two straight games this season. Arkansas state is 0-9 ATS after gaining 300 or more rushing yards last game since 1992. The Panthers are 6-0 ATS in their last six games on fieldturf. These three trends combine for a perfect 21-0 system backing the Panthers. Take Georgia State Saturday.
|11-23-13||New Mexico State +22.5 v. Florida Atlantic||10-55||Loss||-110||22 h 53 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday Non-Conference KNOCKOUT on New Mexico State +22.5
New Mexico State is one of the most undervalued teams in all of college football right now in terms of the point spread due to its 1-9 record on the season. Oddsmakers have been forced to set their spreads to high in recent weeks, and they've done so again this week. The betting public wants nothing to do with a 1-9 team, which is the cause for the inflation. We'll take advantage Saturday.
The Aggies have played their best football of the season of late. They are coming off back-to-back losses, but were very competitive against quality opponents in the process. They lost 35-49 at LA Lafayette on November 2 as a 32.5-point underdog. They lost 34-48 at home against Boston College on November 9 as a 25-point dog. Now, they have had two weeks of rest to get ready for Florida Atlantic since that loss to the Eagles and to build off of their solid play during the bye week.
New Mexico State actually led LA-Lafayette 28-7 in that game before eventually losing by 14. It also outgained the Rajin' Cajuns 450-440 for the game. Andrew McDonald threw for 327 yards and three touchdowns in the loss. Against Boston College, it was a 27-24 game going into the fourth quarter. The Aggies would lose by 14 despite outgaining the Eagles 558-555 for the game. McDonald had another solid performance, throwing for 384 yards and three touchdowns in the loss.
I would certainly argue that Boston College and Louisiana-Lafayette are both better teams than Florida Atlantic, and you would be crazy if you thought otherwise. That's why the Owls have no business being a 22.5-point favorite in this game against an improved Aggies squad that is coming off two weeks of rest.
The reason FAU is getting so much love here is that it is coming off back-to-back blowout victories over Tulane and Southern Miss. I believe Tulane is one of the most overrated teams in college football, while Southern Miss is the worst team in the FBS, period. Those blowout wins were not impressive at all, but because they happened, the Owls are getting a lot of respect from the books here.
Florida Atlantic is only scoring 24.1 points and putting up 354.9 yards per game this season to rank 104th in the country in total offense. It takes a good offense to cover a big number like this, and the Owls are simply lacking one. New Mexico State comes in having posted 449, 450 and 558 total yards in its last three games overall, so it certainly has the offense to keep this game competitive. I also like some of the comments from head coach Doug Martin heading into this one as well.
"I love the mentality of our team and our players," Martin said. "They're fighting, they've got great character. Not many teams with one win play as hard as we do. Especially against Boston College and the talent level that team had. A lot of people have been appreciative of that. I think in those terms, we've certainly turned corner, as far as the mentality of the football team."
"It's going to be a great task. A challenge we're certainly looking forward too," Martin said of Saturday's contest. "To be able to win out for us would be a great momentum change, momentum shift for us going into recruiting. We're excited about the game."
Plays on road underdogs (NEW MEXICO ST) - poor rushing team (100-140 RY/G) against an average rushing defense (140-190 RY/G) after 7+ games, in non-conference games are 38-10 (79.2%) ATS since 1992. FAU is 3-12 ATS in home games vs. bad defensive teams who give up 31 or more points per game since 1992. The Owls are 4-15 ATS in their last 19 home games after committing one or less turnovers in their previous game. Roll with New Mexico State Saturday.
|11-23-13||Nebraska-Omaha +8.5 v. Drake||80-88||Win||100||12 h 46 m||Show|
15* CBB Saturday PLAY OF THE DAY on Nebraska-Omaha +8.5
Nebraska-Omaha is one of the most underrated teams in the country in the early going. This is a team that returned four starters from last season and is playing just its second season as a Division 1 squad. That's why the Mavericks are under the radar because the betting public hasn't caught on yet.
The Mavericks returned each of their top five scorers from last season in Justin Simmons (16.7 ppg), John Karhoff (12.0 ppg), CJ Carter (9.7 ppg), Alex Phillips (8.2 ppg) and Marcus Tyus (8.2 ppg). All five guys have made significant contributions in the early going.
Carter is leading the way with 15.8 points per game. Karhoff (11.2 ppg), Tyus (11.2 ppg), Simmons (7.2 ppg) and Phillips (6.5) have picked up right where they left off as well. Devin Patterson (11.8 ppg, 4.5 apg) and Mike Rostampour (7.2 ppg, 4.4 rpg) have emerged onto the scene as well to really show the depth of this team.
Nebraska-Omaha is off to a 3-2 start this season. Its only two losses have come on the road against Iowa (75-83) as a 29.5-point underdog, and UNLV (70-73) as a 14-point dog. It has beaten Northern Illinois (68-66) on the road as a 6.5-point dog. It also beat Missouri-KC (101-71) and South Carolina State (91-59) at home. Iowa and UNLV are both expected to make the NCAA Tournament this season, so those losses were impressive to say the least.
Drake only returned two starters this season and lost three of its top four scores, including Ben Simmons (14.1 ppg). Drake did play well in road games against Illinois Chicago (61-59) and Saint Mary's (63-67), but this team is getting way too much respect as an 8.5-point favorite here.
After going into Iowa and losing by 8, and going into UNLV and losing by 3, there's no question the Mavericks can stay within 8 of the Bulldogs. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised one bit to see Nebraska-Omaha win outright. Drake is not as good of a team as either Iowa or UNLV.
One thing I love about this Nebraska-Omaha team is its free throw shooting. It has averaged 22 makes on 28 attempts per game for a 79.0% free throw percentage. With the emphasis on calling more fouls this season, free throw shooting is at a premium.
This is a very tough spot for Drake. It is coming off a heartbreaking loss at Saint Mary's last time out. It could certainly suffer a hangover from that defeat. That's especially the case when you consider it has another big road game at Fresno State on deck.
Drake is 0-6 ATS after forcing its last opponents to commit eight or less turnovers over the last three seasons. The Mavericks are 4-0 ATS in their last four non-conference games. Nebraska-Omaha is 4-0 ATS in its last four road games. These three trends combine for a perfect 14-0 system backing the Mavericks. Take Nebraska-Omaha Saturday.
|11-23-13||Michigan State v. Northwestern +7.5||30-6||Loss||-115||19 h 58 m||Show|
15* Big Ten GAME OF THE WEEK on Northwestern +7.5
The Wildcats clearly are nowhere near as bad as their 4-6 record would indicate. In fact, I would argue that this team is every bit as good as the one that won double-digit games last season. The only difference has been their record in close games, which has simply been atrocious. Five of their six losses have come by 10 points or less.
That 10-point loss to Ohio State was a 3-point game before the Buckeyes scored a garbage touchdown on special teams on the final play of the game, falling on a fumble in the end zone. Northwestern also lost by 8 points to Michigan last week, only because it went into triple overtime and the Wolverines got the 2-point conversion.
The other three close losses came to Minnesota (17-20), Iowa (10-17) and Nebraska (24-27) on a hail mary on the game's final play. The Wildcats easily could have won all five of those games, realistically only getting blown out once this season. That was on the road against Wisconsin, which was understandable because they were just coming off their heartbreaking loss to Ohio State the previous week.
With a chance to make a bowl game if they win their next two games, the Wildcats should be plenty motivated to put an end to this misery and get a win Saturday. Plus, teams who are coming off a multiple-overtime loss are a perfect 4-0 against the spread in their next game in 2013. While many will be expecting Northwestern to fold, I'm not one of them. Pat Fitzgerald is one of the best head coaches in the country and he's an excellent motivator. He will have his troops ready to go at home Saturday.
Michigan State is coming off its biggest win of the season at Nebraska, and knowing that it can afford to lose one game and still win the Legends Division, it may have a hard time getting motivated to play Saturday. The Spartans could lose this game and still beat Minnesota at home next week to win the Legends Division. The Wildcats cannot lose or they won
|11-22-13||Navy +3 v. San Jose State||Top||58-52||Win||100||11 h 1 m||Show|
20* Navy/San Jose State ESPN 2 Friday No-Brainer on Navy +3
The Midshipmen clearly want revenge from their two losses to the Trojans over the past two seasons. Last year, in their 12-0 loss, they didn
|11-22-13||Davidson v. Clemson -4||54-85||Win||100||10 h 42 m||Show|
15* CBB Friday No-Doubt Rout on Clemson -4
The Clemson Tigers came into the 2013-14 season way undervalued after going just 13-18 in head coach Brad Brownell's first season last year. The Tigers had to transition from Oliver Purnell's up-tempo style to Brownell's motion offense, and there was no question it was going to take some time.
Well, Clemson appears to be hitting on all cylinders to open the season this year. It has started 4-0 with four straight blowout victories over Stetson (71-51), Delaware State (58-37) South Carolina (71-57) and Temple (72-58). The Tigers returned five of their top seven scorers from last season, and all five have made significant contributions in the early going.
K.J. McDaniels, the top returning scorer, has averaged 18.0 points, 7.5 rebounds and 5.0 blocks per game to lead the charge. Rod Hall (11.0 ppg, 4.0 apg), Jordan Roper (11.2 ppg, 4.2 rpg, 3.8 apg), Demarcus Harrison (7.2 ppg) and Adonis Filer (4.8 ppg) have all upped their games this season from last year.
Davidson returns just two starters from last season and loses three of its top four scorers. The going has certainly been tough for the Wildcats in the early going as this team has clearly taken a big step back from last year. They have opened 1-3 with losses to Duke (77-111), Wisconsin-Milwaukee (77-81) and Virginia (57-70). Their 94-82 win over a horrible Georgia team last night was far from impressive.
With free throws being more important this season, it's certainly worth pointing out that the Tigers have been cashing in their free throws at a deadly rate this season. They are making a ridiculous 81.2% of their free throws thus far. That could come in handy if this game is close down the stretch, though I don't expect it will be.
This will essentially be a home game for Clemson as it will be played inside TD Bank Arena in Charleston, South Carolina. The Wildcats are 5-11-1 ATS in their last 17 games following a ATS win. The Tigers are 8-2 ATS in their last 10 non-conference games. Clemson is 4-1 ATS in its last five neutral site games. The Tigers are 4-0 ATS in their last four games vs. a team with a winning percentage below 40%. Bet Clemson Friday.
|11-22-13||Towson v. Kansas -17.5||58-88||Win||100||8 h 2 m||Show|
15* CBB Friday Big Chalk BLOWOUT on Kansas -17.5
The Kansas Jayhawks should be a much bigger favorite at home Friday against Towson. I look for them to be covering by halftime, and to build on their lead from there. The books have missed their mark badly tonight folks.
Somehow, I believe the Jayhawks actually came into 2013 underrated due to the lack of experience they had returning. However, they have made up for it with the talent they brought in, and the talent that was left over.
Kansas has opened 3-0 this year, which includes a 94-83 win over Duke. I believe that the Blue Devils are one of the top three teams in the country, right along with Kansas, so that win was impressive to say the least.
Perry Ellis (19.0 ppg, 8.0 rpg) has been a monster thus far. Andrew Wiggins (17.0 ppg, 6.0 rpg) is expected to be the No. 1 overall pick in next year's NBA Draft. Wayne Selden Jr. (10.0 ppg, 4.3apg), Joel Embiid (9.0 ppg, 8.0 rpg) and Frank Mason (9.0 ppg) have been solid as well.
Towson State is getting too much respect from the books tonight due to its 3-1 start. All three victories came at home against the likes of Navy, Morgan State and Temple. In its lone road game, Towson lost badly by a final of 44-78 at Villanova. I look for a similar result tonight as Towson is simply outclassed in this one.
The Jayhawks are 11-3 ATS in their last 14 home games overall. Kansas has won 65 straight non-conference games at home and has taken two meetings with Towson over that stretch by a combined 72 points.
The Jayhawks are 6-0 ATS in home games after scoring 75 points or more in two straight games over the last three seasons. The Jayhawks are 6-0 ATS after scoring 80 points or more in two straight games over the last two seasons. Kansas is 7-0 ATS in its last 7 home games vs. a team with a road winning % of less than .400. These three trends combine for a perfect 19-0 system backing the Jayhawks. Bet Kansas Friday.
|11-22-13||Indiana Pacers v. Boston Celtics UNDER 186||97-82||Win||100||7 h 60 m||Show|
15* NBA Friday Total DOMINATOR on Pacers/Celtics UNDER 186
The books have set the bar too high tonight in this contest between the Indiana Pacers and Boston Celtics. I look for an ugly, low-scoring defensive battle tonight when these teams square off inside TD Garden Friday.
Indiana ranks 24th in the league in pace at 95.3 possessions per game. It also ranks 1st in the league in defensive efficiency, allowing just 90.5 points per 100 possessions. With its ability to defend and play a half-court style, Indiana dictates tempo in almost every game it plays.
The Pacers are scoring 96.4 points and allowing 87.2 points per game this season, combining with their opponents to average 183.6 points per game. It is only allowing foes to shoot 39.5% from the floor. Boston, which is scoring just 93.4 points per game, will have a hard time finding the basket tonight.
This has been a very low-scoring series between the Pacers and Celtics in years' past, and with defensive-minded Brad Stevens as Boston's new coach, I believe that will continue. The Pacers and Celtics have combined for 164, 169, 158, 181, 180 and 161 points in their last six meetings, respectively. They are combining to average 168.8 points per game during this span, which is roughly 17 points less than tonight's posted total of 186.
The UNDER is 11-3 in Pacers last 14 games overall. The UNDER is 5-0 in Pacers last five games when playing on 1 days rest. the UNDER is 10-2 in Pacers last 12 games following a win. The UNDER is 7-1 in Celtics last 8 vs. NBA Central Division opponents. The UNDER is 13-6 in Celtics last 19 games overall. Take the UNDER in this game Friday.
|11-22-13||Phoenix Suns +2 v. Charlotte Bobcats||Top||98-91||Win||100||6 h 30 m||Show|
20* NBA DOG OF THE WEEK on Phoenix Suns +2
The Phoenix Suns are the single-most underrated team in the league in 2013. They have opened 5-6 this season and are off four straight losses, which will have them very hungry for a victory. A closer look into their defeats really shows how close this is to being an 11-0 team right now.
All six of the Suns' losses have come by 7 points or less this season, including four by 3 points or fewer. Three of those losses came on the road to three of the best teams in the league in the Thunder, Spurs and Blazers. This team isn't getting the respect it deserves, and it should not be an underdog here.
Phoenix has played its last two games without its best player in Eric Bledsoe. Well, Bledsoe is expected to return tonight from a bruised shin, and I believe it's going to make the difference. He is averaging 20.4 points, 6.8 assists, 4.6 rebounds and 1.8 steals per game. What is most amazing about the Suns start is that Bledsoe and Goran Dragic have played complete games together in just two of the last nine contests.
|11-21-13||UNLV +3 v. Air Force||41-21||Win||100||10 h 28 m||Show|
15* CFB Thursday GAME OF THE NIGHT on UNLV +3
The UNLV Rebels are extremely motivated to get to their first bowl game since 2000. They are clearly improved this year with a 5-5 record coming into this one. After suffering losses to San Jose State (24-34) and Utah State (24-28) over their past two games, the Rebels are certainly feeling a sense of urgency to get that all-important sixth victory. They don
|11-21-13||Temple v. Clemson -3.5||58-72||Win||100||10 h 42 m||Show|
15* CBB Thursday No-Doubt Rout on Clemson -3.5
The Clemson Tigers came into the 2013-14 season way undervalued after going just 13-18 in head coach Brad Brownell's first season last year. The Tigers had to transition from Oliver Purnell's up-tempo style to Brownell's motion offense, and there was no question it was going to take some time.
Well, Clemson appears to be hitting on all cylinders to open the season this year. It has started 3-0 with three straight blowout victories over Stetson (71-51), Delaware State (58-37) and South Carolina (71-57). The Tigers returned five of their top seven scorers from last season, and all five have made significant contributions in the early going.
K.J. McDaniels, the top returning scorer, has averaged 17.3 points, 7.3 rebounds and 4.3 blocks per game to lead the charge. Rod Hall (10.3 ppg, 3.7 apg), Jordan Roper (10.3 ppg, 4.0 rpg, 3.7 apg), Demarcus Harrison (8.3 ppg, 3.3 rpg) and Adonis Filer (6.3 ppg) have all upped their games this season from last year.
Temple simply lost a ton of talent from last year and is in rebuilding mode. It lost four of its top five scorers in Khalif Wyatt (20.5 ppg), Scootie Randall (11.3 ppg), Jake O'Brien (9.8 ppg) and Rahlir Hollis-Jefferson (8.9 ppg). The leading returning scorers are Anthony Lee (9.8 ppg) and Will Cummings (5.8 ppg).
The Owls have struggled in the early going as a result, opening 1-2 with their only win coming at Pennsylvania (78-73). They lost at home to Kent State (77-81) and on the road to Towson State (69-75). This team is clearly in a world of hurt and has no depth. Only eight players have even seen the floor this year, and three of them have been Daniel Dingle (3.3 ppg), Josh Brown (2.0 ppg) and Devontae Watson (1.3 ppg).
With free throws being more important this season, it's certainly worth pointing out the advantage the Tigers will have at the charity stripe in this one. Clemson is shooting 81.4% from the line on an average of 20 free throws per game. Temple is shooting 69.7% from the line on 22 attempts per contest.
This will essentially be a home game for Clemson as it will be played inside TD Bank Arena in Charleston, South Carolina. Plays on a favorite (CLEMSON) - good defensive team from last season - allowed 64 or less points/game, after allowing 60 points or less 3 straight games are 76-39 (66.1%) ATS since 1997. The Tigers are 6-0 ATS in November road games over the last three seasons. The Tigers are 7-2 ATS in their last nine non-conference games. Roll with Clemson Thursday.
|11-21-13||New Orleans Saints v. Atlanta Falcons +10||Top||17-13||Win||100||19 h 42 m||Show|
25* NFC South GAME OF THE YEAR on Atlanta Falcons +10
While the Falcons are almost certainly out of the playoff hunt, they
|11-21-13||Los Angeles Clippers v. Oklahoma City Thunder UNDER 211||91-105||Win||100||9 h 43 m||Show|
15* Clippers/Thunder TNT Thursday No-Brainer on UNDER 211
The books have set the bar too high tonight in this contest between the Clippers and Thunder. This will be their second meeting in eight days having last played on November 13 in a 111-103 home victory for the Clippers and 214 combined points.
In that game, the total was set at 209.5. As you can see, oddsmakers have adjusted this total up to 211. That has created some line value on the UNDER. Plus, when teams are familiar with one another having recently played, it usually tends to lead to a lower-scoring game the second time around. And, being a National TV game tonight, the defensive intensity will be upped a bit as well.
Los Angeles has played in much lower-scoring games on the road this season than it has at home. The Clippers are scoring 101.5 points and allowing 101.5 points on the road this season, combining with their opponents for an average of 203 points per game. Oklahoma City is scoring 107.7 points and allowing 101.7 points at home, combining with their opponents for roughly 209 points per game. As you can see, both totals are lower than tonight's total of 211, creating some line value.
Plays on the UNDER on all teams where the total is greater than or equal to 200 (OKLAHOMA CITY) - with a winning record on the season playing another winning team, first half of the season are 135-70 (65.9%) to the UNDER over the last five seasons. Oklahoma City is 26-12 to the UNDER in home games when playing on two days of rest since 1996. The UNDER is 24-8 in Clippers last 32 Thursday games. The UNDER is 19-6-2 in Thunder last 27 after scoring 100 points or more in their previous game. Take the UNDER in this game Thursday.
|11-21-13||Connecticut v. Boston College +10||Top||72-70||Win||100||8 h 32 m||Show|
20* UConn/Boston College National TV KNOCKOUT on Boston College +10
I fully expected Boston College to be one of the most improved teams in the country this season. They returned 96 percent of their scoring from last season, 96 percent of their rebounding and 98 percent of their assists. A 1-3 start has not changed my opinion on this team, but it certainly has created some line value as the Eagles are a 10-point underdog to Connecticut tonight on a neutral floor when they shouldn't be.
A closer look at Boston College's 1-3 start shows that it could easily be 3-1 right now. Two of its losses came on the road to very good teams in Providence (78-82) and UMass (73-86). The other was a home loss to a Toledo (92-95) team that is much better than it gets credit for.
The Eagles returned two of the best players in the ACC in Ryan Anderson (14.9 ppg, 8.0 rpg) and Olivier Hanlan (14.6 ppg), who scored 41 points against Georgia Tech in the ACC Tournament and finished very strong last year. Both have picked up right where they left off last season. Hanlan is averaging 24.5 points per game, while Anderson has posted 16.2 points per contest. The Eagles are shooting 83.2% from the free throw line, which will come in handy considering the emphasis on more foul calls this season.
Connecticut is overvalued right now due to its perfect 4-0 start to the season. It has played a very soft schedule with three of its wins coming against Yale (80-62), Detroit (101-55) and Boston (77-60). In its only real test of the season, the Huskies failed to cover their 5-point spread in a 78-77 win over Maryland on a neutral floor. This is a quality squad, but they should not be a double-digit favorite over Boston College tonight.
Connecticut is 13-30 ATS off two consecutive homes wins by 10 points or more since 1997. UConn is 0-7 ATS after four or more consecutive wins over the last three seasons. Boston College is 6-0 ATS off a close home win by 3 points or less over the last three seasons. The underdog is 6-0 ATS in the last six meetings between these teams. These last three trends combine for a perfect 19-0 system backing the Eagles. Bet Boston College Thursday.
|11-20-13||Boston Celtics v. San Antonio Spurs UNDER 192||93-104||Loss||-103||8 h 28 m||Show|
15* NBA Wednesday Total ANNIHILATOR on Celtics/Spurs UNDER 192
I look for a low-scoring, defensive battle tonight between the Boston Celtics and San Antonio Spurs. Neither team is lighting it up offensively this season, and both have been solid on the defensive end, especially the Spurs.
Boston is averaging just 93.4 points per game on the season, including 89.6 points on 41.8% shooting in road games. San Antonio is scoring just 92.0 points per game at home this year. The Spurs have been excellent on the other end, giving up just 89.3 points overall and 85.7 at home. They rank second in the league in defensive efficiency.
Boston is 8-4 to the UNDER in all games this season. San Antonio is 6-1 to the UNDER in its last seven games overall. The Spurs' last two contests have been extremely low scoring with a 92-79 home win over Washington, and a 91-82 triumph at Utah. As this team continues to age, I look for them to play in more lower scoring games in 2013-14.
San Antonio is 9-1 to the UNDER versus poor ball handling teams - committing >=16 turnovers/game over the last two seasons. Boston is 17-6 to the UNDER after allowing 105 points or more over the past two seasons. The UNDER is 9-1 in Celtics last 10 road games. The UNDER is 30-12-2 in Spurs last 44 when their opponent allows 100 points or more in their previous game. Bet the UNDER in this game Wednesday.
|11-20-13||Northern Illinois v. Toledo +3||Top||35-17||Loss||-105||9 h 16 m||Show|
20* NIU/Toledo MAC Wednesday ANNIHILATOR on Toledo +3
The Toledo Rockets will be out for revenge after narrow losses to Northern Illinois each of the past two seasons. They fell 63-60 at home against the Huskies in 2011, and lost 24-31 on the road last year. They have had this game circled on their calendars for a long time. After taking care of business up to this point, the Rockets now control their own destiny in the MAC West. If they win out, they will win the division and play in the MAC Title game. They certainly will not be lacking any motivation because of it.
Toledo was very impressive in a 51-41 win over Buffalo last week. This was a 38-0 game early into the third quarter with the outcome basically decided. The Rockets packed it in from there, and allowed the Bulls to rack up a ton of points in garbage time to make the final score appear closer than it really was. Terrance Owens threw for 228 yards and two touchdowns in the win, while Kareem Hunt added 186 rushing yards and a score.
This is a Toledo offense that is putting up 35.0 points and 456.1 yards per game against a very tough schedule this season. Its only losses have come on the road to the likes of Florida, Missouri and Ball State, and it hung tough in all three contests. The Rockets are a perfect 5-0 straight up and 4-1 against the spread at home this year, outscoring opponents by 17.8 points per game. Their strength defensively is a run defense that is giving up 160 yards per game on just 3.8 per carry. The key to a win will be stopping Jordan Lynch and NIU
|11-20-13||Portland Trail Blazers v. Milwaukee Bucks UNDER 196||91-82||Win||100||8 h 59 m||Show|
15* NBA Wednesday Total DOMINATOR on Blazers/Bucks UNDER 196
The books have set the bar too high tonight in this contest between the Portland Trail Blazers and Milwaukee Bucks. Both teams play at below-average league paces, especially Milwaukee, which should control the tempo playing at home tonight.
The Bucks rank 25th in the league in pace at 94.9 possessions per game. The Blazers are 18th in pace at 96.4 possessions per contest. Milwaukee has been one of the worst offensive teams in the league to boot, scoring just 90.2 points per game on 41.4% shooting. This is honestly one of the worst rosters in the league.
Milwaukee has been even worse offensively of late,scoring an average of 85.0 points per game over its last five contests on 38.5% shooting. Portland has played three straight high-scoring games, which is why I believe this total has been inflated as it is coming off three straight OVERS.
Portland is 31-15 to the UNDER after scoring 100 points or more in three straight games since 1996. The Blazers are 31-17 to the UNDER after a combined score of 205 or more points over the past three seasons. The UNDER is 5-0-2 in Bucks last 7 games vs. a team with a winning % above .600. Roll with the UNDER in this game Wednesday.
|11-20-13||Indiana Pacers -6 v. New York Knicks||Top||103-96||Win||100||7 h 59 m||Show|
20* Pacers/Knicks ESPN GAME OF THE WEEK on Indiana -6
The Indiana Pacers (9-1) have been the best team in the league to open 2013-14. Off their first loss of the season at Chicago, and with three days of rest in between games having last played on Saturday, I fully expect the Pacers to bounce back with a blowout victory at New York tonight.
The hapless Knicks have opened 3-7 SU & 3-7 ATS in 2013-14. I expected this team to take a big step back this year with the poor moves they made in the offseason, and that has proven to be the case. Now, injuries have really taken their toll.
The Knicks are without Tyson Chandler, and both Raymond Felton and Metta World Peace are doubtful to play tonight. That leaves an already poor roster very thin going forward. Plus, this will be the second of a back-to-back for the Knicks after falling 86-92 at Detroit last night for their third straight defeat, and seventh loss in nine games.
Indiana is 20-7 ATS in its last 27 games following a road loss. The Pacers are 6-0 ATS in their last six games following a S.U. loss. Indiana is 7-0 ATS in its last seven games following an ATS loss. The Knicks are 0-6 ATS in all home games this season. These three trends combine for a perfect 19-0 system backing Indiana. Take the Pacers Wednesday.
|11-20-13||Dayton +7.5 v. Georgia Tech||82-72||Win||100||7 h 53 m||Show|
15* CBB Wednesday PLAY OF THE DAY on Dayton +7.5
I believe Dayton came into the 2013-14 season way undervalued after going just 17-14 last season. A closer look shows that this team was much better than its record would indicate.
Indeed, the Flyers played 13 games that were decided by six points or less last season, winning only three of them. That means that only four of their 14 losses came by more than six points. This team was very close to being a 20-plus win team, and I fully expect the Flyers to top that number this season with better fortune in close games.
Archie Miller's team brings back a ton of talent this year. Veteran guard Vee Sanford is back, as is a sophomore class of Dyshawn Pierre, Jalen Robinson, Devon Scott and Khari Price that played 34 percent of the team's minutes as freshmen. Matt Kavanaugh averaged 9.0 points and 5.0 rebounds as a junior, but was suspended all of last season. Jordan Sibert, an Ohio State transfer, is a major find. Freshmen guards Kendall Pollard and Dayshon Smith were big recruits.
All of this talent has led to a 3-0 start for Dayton this season. It is shooting 47.5% from the floor, 48.3% from 3-point range, and 76.2% from the free throw line. Pierre (15.3 ppg, 6.3 rpg), Price (14.7 ppg), Sibert (11.7 ppg), Devin Oliver (10.7 ppg, 8.7 rpg), Sanford (9.3 ppg) and Kavanaugh (5.7 ppg, 5.7 rpg) have all made major contributions thus far.
Georgia Tech is coming off a huge 80-71 win at in-state rival Georgia, which puts it in a big letdown spot here. I'm not expecting much at all from this team in 2013 after going just 16-15 last year. The Yellow Jackets do have a lot of experience coming back from last year, but the fact of the matter is that the talent just isn't that good.
Dayton is 6-0 ATS after playing three consecutive home games over the last three seasons. Georgia Tech is 6-21 ATS in its last 27 games following an ATS win. The Yellow Jackets are 9-24 ATS in their last 33 games vs. a team with a winning % above .600. Georgia Tech is 7-20 ATS in its last 27 games following a S.U. win. Take Dayton Wednesday.
|11-19-13||Bucknell +8.5 v. St John's||63-67||Win||100||9 h 42 m||Show|
15* CBB Tuesday PLAY OF THE DAY on Bucknell +8.5
The Bucknell Bison are coming off a 28-6 season in which they earned the No. 11 seed in the NCAA Tournament. While they lost three of their top players, they return all-conference pick Cameron Ayers (12.4 ppg) along with experienced backups in senior Ryan Hill, junior Steven Kaspar and sophomore Ryan Frazier.
I have been really impressed with what I've seen from the Bison en route to a 2-1 start this season. Their only loss came at Stanford by a final of 68-72. They went on the road and beat Penn State 90-80, while also topping St. Francis-PA 72-50 at home.
Bucknell is shooting 52.1% from the floor, 45.3% from 3-point range, and 80% from the free throw line. Ayers (15.3 ppg) and Kaspar (14.3 ppg, 5.7 apg, 5.0 rpg) have led the way, while Ben Brackney (11.7 ppg), Dan Hoffman (11.7 ppg) and Brian Fitzpatrick (9.7 ppg, 4.3 rpg) have been pleasant surprises.
St. John's is coming off a brutal 17-16 campaign last season and I haven't been impressed with what I've seen from the Red Storm so far. They have opened 1-1 with their loss coming against Wisconsin by a final of 75-86 on a neutral floor as a 5-point underdog. Their 73-57 home win over Wagner was far from impressive, too.
The Red Storm are 1-10 ATS after allowing 60 points or less over the last three seasons. They are actually losing in this spot 65.9 to 70.1, or by an average of 4.2 points per game. St. John's is 0-5 ATS in its last five games following a S.U. win. Take Bucknell Tuesday.
|11-19-13||Buffalo v. Miami (OH) +24.5||Top||44-7||Loss||-105||9 h 14 m||Show|
20* MAC GAME OF THE WEEK on Miami Ohio +24.5
The betting public wants nothing to do with a team that is 0-10 on the season. That
|11-19-13||Minnesota Timberwolves v. Washington Wizards OVER 205||100-104||Loss||-106||7 h 17 m||Show|
15* NBA Tuesday Total DOMINATOR on Timberwolves/Wizards OVER 205
The books have set the bar too low in this game between the Minnesota Timberwolves and Washington Wizards. I look for an absolute shootout for four quarters as the final combined score of this one sails way OVER the number.
Minnesota ranks 1st in the league in pace at 102.6 possessions per game. It is also 10th in the league in offensive efficiency at 103.5 points per 100 possessions. Washington likes to play at a fast tempo as well, making for the perfect storm. The Wizards rank 12th in the league in pace at 98.9 possessions per game.
The Timberwolves are putting up 108.5 points per game on the season. Washington has been solid offensively as well, averaging 100.0 points per game. Neither team has played well on the other end. The Timberwolves are giving up 100.2 points per game, while the Wizards are yielding 104.6 points per contest.
Washington is 9-1 to the OVER in home games versus good teams who outscore their opponents by 3+ points/game over the last two seasons. Minnesota is a perfect 10-0 to the OVER off a blowout win by 15 points or more over the last two seasons. Washington is 10-1 to the OVER in home games after having lost five or six of its last seven games over the past two seasons. Roll with the OVER in this game Tuesday.
|11-18-13||Memphis Grizzlies v. Los Angeles Clippers -8.5||106-102||Loss||-102||11 h 55 m||Show|
15* Grizzlies/Clippers NBA Late-Night BAILOUT on Los Angeles -8.5
The Los Angeles Clippers want revenge in a big way tonight as they host the Memphis Grizzlies. They were knocked out of the playoffs by the Grizzlies last season, but that was largely aided by an injury to Blake Griffin. It's payback time tonight ladies and gents.
The Clippers have looked very sharp of late, winning seven of their last nine games overall while going 6-3 ATS in the process. Offensively, they cannot be stopped, averaging 110.0 points per game on 48.6% shooting. The Clippers are 5-0 at home this year, putting up a ridiculous 118.6 points per game.
Memphis is clearly down this season, opening 5-5 while continuing to struggle offensively. It is averaging just 94.3 points per game overall, including 91.6 on the road where it is 2-3 on the year. This is a very tough spot for the Grizzlies to boot. They will be playing the second of a back-to-back and their 3rd game in 4 days.
The Grizzlies are 2-9-1 ATS in their last 12 games overall. Memphis is 1-5 ATS in its last six games vs. a team with a winning record. The Clippers are 8-2 ATS in their last 10 home games vs. a team with a losing road record. The home team has won five of the past six meetings with four of those victories coming by double-digits. Roll with the Clippers Monday.
|11-18-13||Norfolk State v. East Carolina -1.5||74-76||Win||100||10 h 50 m||Show|
15* CBB Monday No-Doubt Rout on East Carolina -1.5
East Carolina is showing tremendous value tonight as only a 1.5-point favorite over Norfolk State. This is the NIT Tip Off played at Cameron Indoor Stadium, which is the home of the Duke Blue Devils. With a chance to play Duke next, ECU will certainly want to take care of business tonight to take advantage of that opportunity.
I really like what I've seen from ECU thus far en route to a 3-0 start. It has posted blowout home victories over NC Wesleyan (97-51) and Chowan (95-45), as well as an impressive road win at UNC-Greensboro (85-84). It is scoring 92.3 points per game on 48.5% shooting. It is also hitting 71.2% of its free throws, and outrebounding opponents 47-34 on average. It is holding opponents to 60.0 points on 35.3% shooting.
Norfolk State has been far less impressive en route to a 2-1 start. Its two wins have both come at home against the likes of Newberry (115-95) and Virginia Union (92-84). It lost in its lone road game to Texas Southern (83-95). It is allowing a ridiculous 91.3 points per game on 48.2% shooting. I'll gladly take the better defensive team in this one.
Plays against all teams where the line is +3 to -3 (NORFOLK ST) - after allowing 75 points or more 3 straight games against opponent after scoring 80 points or more 3 straight games are 25-6 (80.6%) ATS since 1997. This is an ECU team that went 23-12 last season and one that is obviously a quality bunch again in 2013. Bet East Carolina Monday.
|11-18-13||Golden State Warriors v. Utah Jazz +9||Top||98-87||Loss||-110||9 h 25 m||Show|
20* NBA Monday Undervalued Underdog on Utah Jazz +9
This is a home-and-home situation for the Utah Jazz and Golden State Warriors. These teams just played at Golden State Saturday night with the Warriors coming away with a 102-88 home victory. I look for the Jazz to return the favor two nights later and to easily stay within this 9-point spread with an excellent chance to pull off the upset.
Utah has been playing much better of late after a horrendous start. It has gone 3-0 ATS in its last three games overall, beating New Orleans 111-105 as a 2.5-point home underdog in the process. It also stayed within its 10-point spread against San Antonio in a 9-point loss.
There's no question that the Jazz are going to be the more motivated team heading into this one. I normally look to back the team that lost the first game in a home-and-home situation, especially if their loss was on the road in the first game. The oddsmakers giving us 9 points to back a team in revenge mode in this situation is simply a gift.
Utah has won four of its last six meetings with Golden State. The Warriors are just 2-3 on the road this season after going 19-22 on the road last year. Golden State is 3-13 ATS off two or more consecutive home wins over the last three seasons. Utah is 9-1 ATS in home games after having lost three of its last four games over the last two seasons. The underdog is 5-1 ATS in the last six meetings in this series. Take the Jazz Monday.
|11-18-13||New England Patriots +3 v. Carolina Panthers||Top||20-24||Loss||-110||10 h 57 m||Show|
20* Patriots/Panthers ESPN Monday No-Brainer on New England +3
Give Bill Belichick two weeks to prepare for a team, and the Patriots are almost certainly going to be ready for everything Carolina has to offer. That will be the case Monday as the Patriots come off a bye following their most dominant performance of the season. They beat the Pittsburgh Steelers 55-31 at home last time out on November 3 behind a whopping 610 yards of total offense.
|11-18-13||The Citadel +28 v. Tennessee||60-86||Win||100||7 h 16 m||Show|
15* CBB Monday Night Line Mistake on The Citadel +28
Tennessee is getting way too much respect from oddsmakers tonight. It has opened 1-1 with its only win coming against lowly USC Upstate at home by a final of 74-65. I fully expect this game to be much closer than this 28-point spread as well as The Citadel is one of the more underrated teams in the country in my opinion.
The Citadel returned four starters from last season, and it is off to a 2-2 start with both of its losses coming on the road by 11 and 15 points, respectively. It has three studs in Matt Van Scyoc (18.0 ppg, 7.0 rpg, 92.9% free throws), Brian White (15.5 ppg, 7.8 rpg, 81.2% free throws) and Ashton Moore (13.0 ppg, 6.0 apg, 78.6% free throws).
Marshall Harris III (9.5 ppg, 4.5 apg, 100% free throws) has been a solid contributor as well. With the importance of free throws being at a premium this season, I really like backing teams like The Citadel, which is shooting 75.9% from the charity stripe as a team. It is also only allowing 40.2% shooting to opponents and putting them on the free throw line an average of 19 times per game, so it is sound defensively.
Tennessee only brings back one starters from last season. It certainly has not been impressive in opening 1-1. It is shooting just 38.6% from the field while allowing opponents to shoot 46.8%. The Volunteers have struggled at the free throw line as well, making just 65.5% of their attempts. This team is clearly overrated in the early going, and that was evident in a 74-65 win over USC Upstate.
The Bulldogs are 6-1 ATS in their last seven games following a S.U. win. The Citadel is 5-1 ATS in its last six road games vs. a team with a winning home record. The Volunteers are 0-4 ATS in their last four non-conference games. Take The Citadel Monday.
|11-17-13||Kansas City Chiefs +8 v. Denver Broncos||Top||17-27||Loss||-110||67 h 36 m||Show|
20* Chiefs/Broncos NBC Sunday Night BAILOUT on Kansas City +8
Coming off their bye week, the Chiefs have had two full weeks to prepare for Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos. That will be a huge advantage heading into this divisional showdown with first place in the AFC West on the line. That's especially the case when you consider that Andy Reid is 13-1 straight up off a bye as a head coach.
Adding to Denver's disadvantage is the fact that Peyton Manning is banged up. He was noticeably limping at the end of their 28-20 win at San Diego last week, and it
|11-17-13||Memphis Grizzlies v. Sacramento Kings UNDER 189.5||Top||97-86||Win||100||9 h 31 m||Show|
20* NBA Sunday Total DOMINATOR on Grizzlies/Kings UNDER 189.5
The Memphis Grizzlies and Sacramento Kings both play at extremely slow paces. As a result, I look for a low-scoring, defensive battle when these teams square off Sunday.
Memphis ranks 27th in the league in pace at 94.5 possessions per game. Sacramento is tied with Memphis for 27th, also averaging 94.5 possessions per contest.
Making matters worse for both teams is that neither has been efficient offensively this year. Sacramento is 20th in the league in offensive efficiency, averaging just 99.0 points per 100 possessions. Memphis is even worse, ranking 24th in offensive efficiency at 97.5 points per 100 possessions.
The Grizzlies are 10-1 to the UNDER versus poor shooting teams - making <=43% of their shots over the last 2 seasons. Memphis is 20-7 to the UNDER off a road win over the last two years. The UNDER is 17-8 in Grizzlies last 25 games following a S.U. win. The UNDER is 18-7-2 in Kings last 27 games following a ATS loss. Bet the UNDER in this game.
|11-17-13||San Francisco 49ers v. New Orleans Saints -3||Top||20-23||Push||0||63 h 31 m||Show|
20* 49ers/Saints Late-Afternoon ANNIHILATOR on New Orleans -3
The Saints have been simply unstoppable at home this season. They are a perfect 5-0 straight up and 5-0 against the spread inside the Superdome with their smallest margin of victory coming by six points. They are scoring 35.2 points and giving up 15.0 points at home this year, outscoring opponents by a whopping 20.2 points per game. They certainly will be wanting revenge on the 49ers, who have beaten them each of the past two seasons.
Looking at the numbers, it
|11-17-13||Baltimore Ravens +3 v. Chicago Bears||20-23||Push||0||59 h 6 m||Show|
15* NFL Non-Conference KNOCKOUT on Baltimore Ravens +3
The Baltimore Ravens have simply been unlucky in close games this season, which is the biggest reason for their 4-5 record to this point. They have lost four times by six or fewer points, including three times by a field goal or less. Only twice in their nine games this year have they been beaten by more than a field goal. That trend right there shows you that there is some nice value in snagging the Ravens at +3 in this contest.
Baltimore kept its playoff and division title hopes alive last week with a huge 20-17 victory over Cincinnati. It led 17-0 and nearly blew the game as the Bengals tied it on a hail mary with no time left to force overtime. However, the Ravens would get the winning field goal in the extra session, and that
|11-17-13||Cleveland Browns +6.5 v. Cincinnati Bengals||20-41||Loss||-110||59 h 6 m||Show|
15* NFL Sunday Undervalued Underdog on Cleveland Browns +6.5
The Cleveland Browns have been one of the most improved teams in the league in 2013. Despite going through three different quarterbacks, they have a chance to pull within a half-game of Cincinnati for first place in the AFC North with a win Sunday.
Jason Campbell has played very well as a starter in his last two games. He threw for 293 yards and two touchdowns in a 17-23 loss at Kansas City. Campbell threw for 262 yards and three scores in a 24-18 home win over Baltimore last time out on November 3.
As you can see, the Browns are coming off their bye and have had two full weeks to prepare for the Bengals. That will be a huge advantage heading into this one.
After already beating Cincinnati 17-6 at home on September 29 in their first meeting of the season, they
|11-17-13||Washington Redskins +4.5 v. Philadelphia Eagles||16-24||Loss||-110||59 h 6 m||Show|
15* NFL Sunday Afternoon Line Mistake on Washington Redskins +4.5
This is clearly a must-win game for Washington, which cannot afford another loss if it wants to win back-to-back NFC East Titles. The good news is that the NFC East is down this season, with both Dallas and Philadelphia tied for first place with .500 records.
This is where Washington made its run last season, winning each of its final seven games after starting with an identical 3-6 record to finish 10-6. Having that memory in the back of their minds will serve the Redskins well going forward.
Washington will have a big edge in rest heading into this one. It last played on Thursday, November 7, losing 27-34 at Minnesota despite dominating that football game. In fact, the Redskins outgained the Vikings 433-307 but found a way to lose.
Offense certainly hasn
|11-16-13||Wyoming +24 v. Boise State||7-48||Loss||-110||51 h 58 m||Show|
15* Wyoming/Boise State ESPN 2 BAILOUT on Wyoming +24
The Boise State Broncos are getting way too much respect from oddsmakers here. They should not be a 23-point favorite over Wyoming. Down their starting quarterback, and certainly down from their level of play from year's past, the Broncos are way overvalued in this one.
This line is an overreaction from Boise State's 42-30 win at Colorado State last time out, coupled with Wyoming's 10-48 loss to Fresno State last game. The Broncos were actually outgained 437-626 by Colorado State, further showing that their defense is nowhere near as dominant as it has been in year's past.
Boise State is allowing 25.2 points and 437.7 yards per game this season to rank 95th in the country in total defense. It will have a hard time containing an explosive Wyoming offense that is averaging 33.6 points and 491.6 yards per game to rank 17th in the country in total offense. Wyoming's ability to move the football and put points on the board will allow it to stay within this 23-point spread.
Wyoming quarterback Brett Smith is quietly having a monster season in the Mountain West. He is completing 62.8 percent of his passes for 2,508 yards with 20 touchdowns and eight interceptions, while also rushing for 441 yards and three scores. Running back Shaun Wick is also having a big year, rushing for 823 yards and nine touchdowns on 6.5 per carry.
The Cowboys have played their best football on the road this season. They have gone 3-1 against the spread in road games in 2013. They lost at Nebraska 34-37 as a 31-point underdog to open the season. They won at Air Force 56-23 as a 4-point favorite, and they only lost 44-51 at San Jose State as a 10.5-point underdog. Those three results right there show that Wyoming travels well.
Furthermore, Wyoming head coach Dave Christensen is a sensational 17-4 against the spread as a road underdog as the coach of Wyoming. Wyoming is 21-7 ATS in its last 28 road games overall. Meanwhile, Chris Peterson is 0-6 against the number in home games after having won four or five of their last six games as the coach of Boise State. Peterson is also 0-6 against the spread in home games versus good rushing teams that average at least 200 rushing yards per game as the coach of Boise State.
The Broncos are 1-12 against the spread in home games after one or more consecutive wins over the last three seasons. The Cowboys are 5-0 ATS in their last 5 games following a double-digit loss at home. Boise State is 1-9 ATS in home games against conference opponents over the last three seasons. These last five trends combined for a 38-2 system backing the Cowboys. Take Wyoming Saturday.
|11-16-13||Oregon State +14 v. Arizona State||Top||17-30||Win||100||50 h 9 m||Show|
20* Pac-12 GAME OF THE WEEK on Oregon State +14
Off two straight losses to Stanford and USC, the Beavers will be hungry for a victory Saturday. That
|11-16-13||Tulsa v. Missouri State -4.5||93-96||Loss||-106||10 h 10 m||Show|
15* CBB Saturday PLAY OF THE DAY on Missouri State -4.5
After a 2-10 start last year with an inexperienced roster, Missouri State really rebounded to finish 11-22. Now, with four starters back, I fully expect this to be one of the most improved teams in the country.
Guard Marcus Marshall (11.5 ppg) and junior Christian Kirk (8.7 ppg, 4.2 rpg) are the top two returnees. After missing all of last season with a knee injury, senior forward Jamar Gulley returns. He averaged 10.4 points and 5.8 rebounds in 2011-12. Northern Colorado transfer Emmanuel Addo is 6'7", 220 pounds. Freshman Tyler McCullough (6'10", 230) is ready to contribute right away.
Missouri State is off to a solid start this season, picking up a 79-67 win at Old Dominion as a 1.5-point favorite. They grabbed 52 rebounds in that game and shot 72.2% from the free throw line, which will be huge with the new rules and tons of fouls being called. Gulley and Marshall led the way with 18 points apiece, while Austin Ruder added 14 points.
Tulsa is a team in rebuilding mode under second-year head coach Danny Manning. Its roster is made up of 12 of 165 players who are either freshmen or sophomores. That inexperience showed in the opener, losing 68-74 at home to Oral Roberts. The Golden Hurricane were outrebounded 28-45 in the loss. What really cost them was going 17-of-36 from the free throw line for 47.2% shooting.
Free throws could easily be the difference in this game, and I like Missouri State's chances of making them a lot more than Tulsa's. With a line of only 4.5, those free throws will be huge. The Bears are 17-5 ATS in their last 22 games overall, including 6-1 ATS in their last seven home games. Roll with Missouri State Saturday.
|11-16-13||Alabama v. Mississippi State +25.5||20-7||Win||100||48 h 24 m||Show|
15* Alabama/Mississippi State ESPN No-Brainer on Mississippi State +25.5
This is a huge letdown spot for Alabama. It is coming off arguably its biggest win of the season last Saturday in a 38-17 home victory over LSU. That game was much closer than the final score would indicate as it was tied 17-17 in the third quarter before the Crimson Tide pulled away in the fourth.
It would be pretty easy for the Crimson Tide to overlook Mississippi State enough to fail to win by 26-plus points, which is what it would take to cover. We only have to look back to last year to find how Alabama responds after the LSU game. It beat LSU 21-17 on the road in 2012, then came back home the next week and lost to Texsa A&M 24-29 despite being a 13-point favorite.
|11-16-13||Texas Tech +28 v. Baylor||Top||34-63||Loss||-110||48 h 54 m||Show|
25* Big 12 GAME OF THE YEAR on Texas Tech +28
Texas Tech comes way undervalued due to its three-game losing streak. A closer look at the skid shows that the Red Raiders really had a chance to win all three games despite the final margins. They lost 30-38 at Oklahoma despite amassing 460 total yards. They committed three turnovers in that contest, which really put them in a hole that they just couldn
|11-16-13||Cleveland Cavaliers v. Washington Wizards UNDER 196||103-96||Loss||-110||9 h 59 m||Show|
15* NBA Saturday PLAY OF THE DAY on Cavaliers/Wizards UNDER 196
The Cleveland Cavaliers and Washington Wizards are two of the most inept offensive teams in the league in 2013-14. They both rank right in the middle of the pack in terms of pace with Washington 12th at 99.2 possessions per game, while Cleveland is 14th with 97.1 possessions per game.
Neither team has been very efficient offensively this season. Washington ranks 20th in offensive efficiency with 99.0 points per 100 possessions, while Cleveland is a woeful 29th in offensive efficiency at 92.0 points per 100 possessions. Only Utah has been worse.
Looking at recent meetings between Washington and Cleveland, it's easy to see that this number has been inflated. The UNDER is 7-0 in the last seven meetings between these teams. Each of the last five meetings have seen 187 or fewer combined points with an average of 182.4 combined points/game during that span. That's nearly 14 points less than tonight's posted total of 196.
The UNDER is 7-0 in Cavaliers last 7 vs. a team with a losing record. The UNDER is 7-0 in the Wizards last 7 vs. a team with a losing record. Throw in the fact that the UNDER is 7-0 in the last 7 meetings between these teams, and we have a combined 21-0 system backing the UNDER in this one. Bet the UNDER in this game Saturday.
|11-16-13||Kentucky +13 v. Vanderbilt||6-22||Loss||-115||41 h 58 m||Show|
15* CFB Saturday Undervalued Underdog on Kentucky +13
Vanderbilt is in a huge letdown spot Saturday. It is coming off a 34-17 win at Florida last Saturday to put an end to a 22-game losing streak to the Gators. It's going to be very hard for them to come back emotionally to get ready for face a 2-7 Kentucky team that the Commodores will certainly be overlooking.
A closer look into the box score against Florida shows that Vanderbilt was very lucky to win, and that there's no way in hell it should have scored 34 points. In fact, the Commodores were outgained 183-344 by the Gators, which would normally equate to a blowout win in Florida's favor. But the Gators turned the ball over four times and gave the Commodores several easy scores.
Backup quarterback Patton Robinette only completed 6 of 12 passes for 57 yards against the Gators, so obviously he wasn't asked to do too much as Florida gave that game away. He'll have to do much more against Kentucky this week if the Commodores are going to win, let alone cover. Starting quarterback Austyn Carta-Samuels remains doubtful with a knee injury. Robinette is only completing 56.7 percent of his passes for 421 yards with one touchdown and three interceptions on the season.
Kentucky is highly motivated to pick up its first SEC win of the season. It has played its best football on the road this year, only losing at South Carolina 28-35 despite being a 22-point underdog, and at Mississippi State 22-28 as a 12-point dog. If it can stay within a touchdown of both of those teams, then it certainly can stay within 13 of Vanderbilt Saturday.
Last week's game against Missouri was much closer than the final score would indicate. But because the Wildcats were blown out 17-48, and the Commodores are coming off a win at Florida, this line has been inflated due to public perception. The Wildcats were only outgained 369-426 by the Tigers last week in what was a 35-17 game entering the 4th quarter. Quarterback Jalen Whitlow was solid, completing 17 of 27 passes for 225 yards in the loss. It's nice to have him back and healthy again.
The Wildcats are 4-0 ATS in their last four games after allowing more than 40 points in their previous game. Kentucky is 8-1 ATS in its last nine games after allowing more than 200 rushing yards in its last game. The Commodores are 2-7 ATS in their last nine games after accumulating less than 275 total yards in their previous game. Bet Kentucky Saturday.
|11-15-13||Nebraska-Omaha +13.5 v. UNLV||70-73||Win||100||19 h 57 m||Show|
15* CBB Friday Late-Night BAILOUT on Nebraska-Omaha +13.5
There are so many things to like about Nebraska-Omaha heading into their showdown with UNLV tonight at 10:00 EST. First and foremost, Nebraska-Omaha is in just its second season as a Division 1 team, which makes it under the radar to the general betting public. That's why there is going to be a lot of value on this team until the public starts to realize how good they really are.
Omaha managed to finish in the middle of the pack in the Summit League last year. Now, with six of their top seven scorers back from last season, this is going to be one of the most improved teams in the country. Justin Simmons (16.7 ppg), John Karhoff (12.0 ppg), CJ Carter (9.7 ppg), Alex Phillips (8.2 ppg) and Marcus Tyus (6.0 ppg) are all back.
These five players have led Omaha to a 2-1 start. They went on the road and beat Northern Illinois 68-66 as a 6.5-point underdog, and then they gave a very good Iowa team from the Big Ten all they wanted and more. Omaha would lost 75-83 as a 29.5-point dog, easily covering the spread. The Mavericks came back with a 101-71 home victory over Missouri-KC on Wednesday for their second win of the year.
Carter is off to a hot start, averaging 20.7 points per game. Karhoff (11.0 ppg) and Devin Patterson (10.0 ppg) have played well, too. What's most impressive about Omaha's start is that last year's leading scorer Justin Simmons has been held to just 9.7 ppg on 28.6% shooting. This team is really going to be dangerous once he gets going.
UNLV lost so much talent from last season that it simply cannot replace. It lost three off its top four scorers, including the No. 1 overall pick in the 2013 draft in F Anthony Bennett (16.1 ppg, 8.1 rpg). Only Khem Birch (7.2 ppg) and Bryce Dejean-Jones (10.3 ppg) are back who played significant minutes last season. Making matters worse for the Rebels is that Dejean-Jones is nursing a hamstring injury.
Dejean-Jones returned in UNLV's last game, which was an ugly 65-86 home loss to UC-Santa Barbara as an 8.5-point favorite. He was held to 1-of-5 shooting for five points in 16 minutes of action. It was clear that he wasn't healthy, and without him at full strength, the Rebels are in a world of hurt going forward.
With all of the fouls that are being called this season due to the rule changes, free throw shooting becomes a huge factor on which team is going to cover the spread. Omaha is averaging 22-of-28 for 80.7% from the charity stripe in 2013. UNLV is averaging 12-of-24 for 50% from the free throw line this year. As you can see, the Mavericks will have a big edge in free throws in this one.
Plays on an underdog (NEBRASKA-OMAHA) - after a win by 15 points or more against opponent after a blowout loss by 20 points or more are 252-161 (61%) ATS since 1997. The Rebels are 8-17 ATS in their last 25 games overall, including 2-7 ATS in their last nine home games. The Mavericks are 5-1 ATS in their last six road games. Take Nebraska-Omaha Friday.
|11-15-13||Washington +3 v. UCLA||Top||31-41||Loss||-105||21 h 45 m||Show|
20* Washington/UCLA ESPN 2 Friday No-Brainer on Washington +3
Looking at the numbers, it
|11-15-13||Portland Trail Blazers v. Boston Celtics UNDER 194||109-96||Loss||-105||8 h 44 m||Show|
15* NBA Friday Total DOMINATOR on Blazers/Celtics UNDER 194
Both Portland and Boston play at slower paces than the average NBA team. Portland ranks 23rd in the league in pace at 95.8 possessions per game. Boston ranks 18th in pace at 96.5 possessions per game.
I look for this game to be played at a snail's pace, which would be nothing new to when these teams have gotten together recently. Each of the last four meetings between the Blazers and Celtics have seen 190 or fewer combined points.
In fact, each of the last nine meetings in this series have seen 194 or less combined points. That makes for a perfect 8-0-1 system backing the UNDER pertaining to tonight's total set of 194, which dates back to the 2008 season.
Boston is 13-3 to the UNDER In home games versus teams who average 7 or less steals per game over the last three seasons. The UNDER is 11-4 in Celtics last 15 games overall. The UNDER is 6-2 in Celtics last eight games following a loss. Roll with the UNDER in this game Friday.
|11-15-13||Charlotte Bobcats v. Cleveland Cavaliers UNDER 190||Top||86-80||Win||100||8 h 44 m||Show|
20* NBA TOTAL OF THE WEEK on Bobcats/Cavaliers UNDER 190
The Charlotte Bobcats and Cleveland Cavaliers will take part in a defensive battle tonight. This will be their second meetings of the season, with their first resulting in a 90-84 home win by Charlotte for 174 combined points. I look for a similar low-scoring affair in the rematch.
Charlotte ranks 26th in the league in pace, averaging just 95.0 possessions per game. Cleveland is right in the middle of the pack at 15th, averaging 97.6 possessions per game.
Not only are both offenses playing at slow paces, but they are two of the least-efficient units in the NBA as well. Charlotte ranks 28th in offensive efficiency at 94.7, while Cleveland is 29th at 92.7. These numbers represent the amount of points each team scores per 100 possessions.
Mike Browns is 15-4 to the UNDER versus terrible 3 point shooting teams who make less than 30% of their attempts in all games he had coached. The UNDER is 59-26-2 in Bobcats last 87 road games vs. a team with a winning home record. The UNDER is 6-0 in Cavaliers last six after allowing more than 100 points in their previous game. The UNDER is 7-0 in Cavaliers last seven Friday games. Bet the UNDER in this game Friday.
|11-14-13||North Dakota State v. St Mary's CA -6||65-78||Win||100||12 h 4 m||Show|
15* NDSU/Saint Mary's CBB Late-Night BAILOUT on Saint Mary's -6
Saint Mary's came into the season way undervalued due to the loss of leading scorer Mathew Dellavedova. But this is a team that went 28-7 last year and returned plenty of talent to make up for his loss.
That has been evident en route to a 2-0 start with an 83-70 victory over a very good Louisiana Tech team that went 27-7 last year, and an 85-63 triumph against an Akron team that went 26-7 a year ago. That's the same Akron team that beat North Dakota State 68-53 last season.
The Gaels are playing tremendous team basketball with four players averaging 10.0 or more points per game. Brad Waldow is averaging 22.0 points and 5.0 rebounds, and he and Stephen Holt (16.0 ppg, 6.5 apg, 5.5 rpg) are the top two returnees from last year. Both are off to tremendous starts. James Walker III (12.0 ppg) and Beau Levesque (10.0 ppg) have also made key contributions thus far.
One big x-factor in this game is how well Saint Mary's has shot free throws through the first two games. It is averaging 27 makes in 32 attempts per game for a free throw percentage of 85.4%. That is going to be huge all season for the Gaels considering how many more fouls the refs are calling this year than in the past. Meanwhile, North Dakota State went 12-of-21 (57.1%) from the charity stripe in its opening win over Viterbo.
Saint Mary's is a perfect 9-0 ATS off a home win scoring 85 or more points over the last three seasons. It is coming back to win this this spot 73.7 to 56.2, or by an average of 17.5 points per game. Somehow, the Gaels are undervalued in the early going and I'll take advantage of it. Bet Saint Mary's Thursday.
|11-14-13||Oklahoma City Thunder +5 v. Golden State Warriors||115-116||Win||100||11 h 20 m||Show|
15* Thunder/Warriors TNT Late-Night BAILOUT on Oklahoma City +5
While the Oklahoma City Thunder will be playing the second of a back-to-back tonight after losing to the Clippers last night, I don't look for that to be much of a factor in this one. That's because the Thunder had two days off before last night's game, so they should still be fresh and ready to go. They'll also be motivated following just their second loss of the season.
Golden State is really starting to get a lot of respect from oddsmakers. It should not be a 5-point favorite in this match-up against what I feel is a better all-around team in Oklahoma City. The only good win the Warriors have this season came at Minnesota, but their other four wins have come against the likes of the Lakers, Kings, 76ers and Pistons.
Oklahoma City has simply owned Golden State in recent meetings. The Thunder have won seven of their last eight meetings with the Warriors with their only loss coming by exactly 5 points. There is clearly some value here with the Thunder as a 5-point underdog given the recent history. Plus, I expect this one to go right down to the wire, so I'd much rather take the points than give them up.
Scott Brooks is a sensational 107-62 ATS after one or more consecutive losses as the coach of Oklahoma City. Golden State is 2-13 ATS in home games after leading its previous game by 20 or more points at the half since 1996. The Thunder are 4-0 ATS in their last four games when playing on 0 days rest. Roll with Oklahoma City Thursday.
|11-14-13||Indianapolis Colts v. Tennessee Titans +3||Top||30-27||Push||0||67 h 51 m||Show|
20* Colts/Titans AFC South ANNIHILATOR on Tennessee +3
This is a huge game for Tennessee, which trails Indianapolis by two games for the AFC South lead. If it wants any chance to make the playoffs, it simply has to have this game Thursday. That
|11-14-13||Georgia Tech v. Clemson -10.5||31-55||Win||100||8 h 4 m||Show|
15* GA Tech/Clemson ACC Thursday No-Brainer on Clemson -10.5
The Clemson Tigers have rebounded nicely from their lone loss of the season to Florida State. They have bounced back with back-to-back blowout road victories over Maryland (40-27) and Virginia (59-10). They are still playing for a shot at a BCS game, and if they win out, they
|11-13-13||Phoenix Suns +6.5 v. Portland Trail Blazers||89-90||Win||100||11 h 36 m||Show|
15* NBA Wednesday Undervalued Underdog on Phoenix Suns +6.5
The Phoenix Suns have been the most underrated teams in the league in the early going. They have opened 5-2 straight up and 6-0-1 against the spread through their first seven games of the season. They continue to get no respect from oddsmakers as a nice-sized underdog at Portland tonight.
When you look the two losses that Phoenix has suffered this season, it's easy to see that it is legit. It lost at Oklahoma City 96-103 as a 12.5-point underdog, and at San Antonio 96-99 as a 13-point dog. It has won its other five games, including a 104-91 triumph over Portland to open the season.
This is a very balanced Phoenix team that features eight players who are averaging 22 or more minutes per game. Eric Bledsoe has been one of the most valuable players in the league to this point, averaging 20.9 points, 7.3 assists and 1.9 steals per game. He is running the show and proving that he was worth the big offseason trade.
Plays on underdogs of 3.5 to 9.5 points (PHOENIX) - off 2 or more consecutive home wins, first half of the season are 45-18 (71.4%) ATS over the last five seasons. The Blazers are 1-6 ATS in their last seven games vs. a team with a winning % above .600. Phoenix is 6-0-1 ATS in its last seven games overall. Take the Suns Wednesday.
|11-13-13||Pepperdine -1 v. UC Riverside||69-66||Win||100||10 h 16 m||Show|
15* CBB Wednesday PLAY OF THE DAY on Pepperdine -1
I fully expect Pepperdine to be improved this season with three starters back, including sophomore forward Stacy Davis. He averaged 11.2 points and 7.3 rebounds last year and was voted WCC Newcomer of the Year.
Davis poured in 24 points on 9-of-13 shooting to lead Pepperdine to an 81-68 win over San Diego Christion in their opener. But the big surprise was center Brendan Lane, who finished with 12 points, 14 rebounds and 7 blocks. Lamond Murray Jr. added 13 points in the win.
UC-Riverside went just 6-25 last season and is clearly in a world of hurt once again in 2013. It opened the season with an ugly 41-77 loss at San Diego State while shooting 30.8% from the floor. Riverside's average home attendance last year was 758, which means that they have very little home-court advantage.
Pepperdine beat Riverside 62-40 last year as a 7.5-point home favorite. The Waves held the Highlanders to just 28.6% shooting in the win as not one player for Riverside scored in double figures.
The Waves are 5-1 ATS in their last six games vs. a team with a winning % below .400. Pepperdine is 4-1 ATS in its last five road games. Riverside is 5-13 ATS in its last 18 home games. The Highlanders are 5-17-1 ATS in their last 23 non-conference games. Riverside is 1-6 ATS in its last seven games vs. a team with a winning % above .600. Take Pepperdine Wednesday.
|11-13-13||Los Angeles Lakers v. Denver Nuggets OVER 207||99-111||Win||100||10 h 36 m||Show|
15* NBA Wednesday Total ANNIHILATOR on Lakers/Nuggets OVER 207
The Lakers and Nuggets both play at very fast paces, and I look for a shootout tonight between these teams because of it. The Lakers rank 2nd in the league in pace with 102.8 possessions per game. The Nuggets aren't far behind, ranking 11th at 100.0 possessions per contest.
One big factor here that is getting overlooked is that Denver is without its best defensive player in JaVale McGee. Without his presence on the inside defensively, and his lack of offense on the other end, this is going to allow for more points being scored for both teams.
When you look at the recent history between the Lakers and Nuggets, it's easy to see that this number has been set too low. Los Angeles and Denver have combined for 227, 217, 240 and 225 points in their last four meetings, respectively. That's an average of 227.3 points per game, which is roughly 20 points more than tonight's posted total of 207.
The OVER is 4-0 in Lakers last 4 games vs. a team with a winning % below .400. The OVER is 7-1 in Lakers last 8 vs. NBA Northwest Division opponents. The OVER is 4-0 in Nuggets last 4 vs. a team with a losing S.U. record. The OVER is 7-2 in Nuggets last 9 games when playing on 1 days rest. The OVER is 4-0 in the last 4 meetings in this series. Bet the OVER in this game Wednesday.
|11-13-13||Ball State +7.5 v. Northern Illinois||Top||27-48||Loss||-105||9 h 49 m||Show|
20* Ball State/NIU MAC GAME OF THE WEEK on Ball State +7.5
The Ball State Cardinals are one of the most underrated teams in the country in 2013. They have opened 9-1 straight up and 7-3 against the spread with their only loss coming on the road against a quality North Texas team by seven points. They have been dominant in victory, too, as seven of their nine wins have come by 18 points or more. They are outscoring opponents by an average of 16.3 points per game. They have played their best football on the road, going 4-1 against the spread while winning by 16.8 points per game.
Ball State is putting up 39.9 points and 475.7 yards per game to rank 25th in the country in total offense. Quarterback Keith Wenning is completing 62.9 percent of his passes for 3,164 yards with 27 touchdowns and only five interceptions. Willie Snead has caught 74 balls for 1,175 yards and 12 scores. Jahwan Edwards has rushed for 749 yards and 12 touchdowns. The defense, which is only giving up 23.6 points per game, leads the country by forcing 26 turnovers on the season.
Sure, Northern Illinois has won four straight in this series, but Ball State has hung tough. The last time these teams met at Northern Illinois, Ball State lost on a last-second field goal by a final of 38-41. Last year, the Huskies won 35-23 at Ball State, but a closer look into the box score shows that the Cardinals probably should have won that game. They outgained the Huskies 563-509, and Wenning threw for 434 yards in the loss. Ball State held a 23-21 lead with under five minutes remaining before the Huskies tacked on two touchdowns in the closing minutes to pull away. Revenge is certainly on the Cardinals
|11-13-13||Charlotte Bobcats v. Boston Celtics UNDER 193||89-83||Win||100||8 h 6 m||Show|
15* NBA Wednesday Total DOMINATOR on Bobcats/Celtics UNDER 193
The books have set the bar too high in this game between the Charlotte Bobcats and Boston Celtics Wednesday. I'll gladly take advantage and back the UNDER in what I believe will be a very low-scoring affair between two of the worst offensive teams in the league.
Both teams play at slower than normal paces. Charlotte ranks 25th in the league at 95.1 possessions per game. Boston ranks 17th at 96.8 possessions per game. Worse yet, Charlotte ranks 28th in offensive efficiency, while Boston ranks 20th in offensive efficiency.
Looking at recent meetings between these teams, it's easy to see that this total has been inflated. Boston and Charlotte have combined for 193 or less points in each of their last five meetings. Dating back further, the Celtics and Bobcats have combined for 193 or fewer points in 11 of their last 12 meetings. That makes for an 11-1 system backing the UNDER pertaining to tonight's total set of 193.
Charlotte is 15-3 to the UNDER in a road game where where the total is between 190 and 194.5 points over the last 3 seasons. The UNDER is 58-26-2 in Bobcats last 86 road games vs. a team with a winning home record. The UNDER is 10-4 in Celtics last 14 games overall. Roll with the UNDER in this game Wednesday.
|11-12-13||Kansas v. Duke -4.5||94-83||Loss||-107||11 h 21 m||Show|
15* Kansas/Duke ESPN Tuesday Night BAILOUT on Duke -4.5
The Blue Devils are much better off to start the season than the Kansas Jayhawks. I fully expect them to blow the Jayhawks out of the building at the United Center in Chicago Tuesday.
Freshman phenom Jabari Parker made an immediate impact with 22 points in the Blue Devils' 111-77 rout of Davidson in Friday's season opener.
|11-12-13||Washington Wizards +6 v. Dallas Mavericks||Top||95-105||Loss||-110||10 h 32 m||Show|
20* NBA Tuesday Night Line Mistake on Washington Wizards +6
After losing by a final of 105-106 at Oklahoma City on Sunday, the Washington Wizards really showed what they are capable of this season. They have rebounded nicely following an 0-3 start, and following that 1-point loss, I look for them to go give Dallas everything it wants and more tonight.
The Mavericks are in a huge letdown spot here. They have a game against the defending champion Miami Heat on deck, and it's only human nature for them to be looking ahead to that contest. They won't come to play with their best effort because of it.
The Wizards are getting a ton of balance this season. They have five players averaging 13.5 points per game or more. You have to remember that Marcin Gortat was traded here just before the season, so it has taken him a few games to get accustomed to the system. He has played well in spite of it, averaging 13.5 points and 9.8 rebounds per game.
Plays on underdogs of 3.5 to 9.5 points (WASHINGTON) - explosive offensive team - scoring 103+ points/game on the season against opponent after a combined score of 175 points or less are 25-5 (83.3%) ATS over the last five seasons. Washington is 13-3 ATS after allowing 100 points or more 2 straight games over the last 2 seasons. The Wizards are 21-6-1 ATS in their last 28 vs. Western Conference opponents. Take Washington Tuesday.
|11-12-13||Buffalo +3.5 v. Toledo||Top||41-51||Loss||-110||23 h 16 m||Show|
20* Buffalo/Toledo MAC Tuesday No-Brainer on Buffalo +3.5
The Buffalo Bulls remain one of the most underrated teams in the country. After losing very tough road games to Ohio State and Baylor to open the season, which both remain unbeaten this year, the Bulls have responded by winning seven straight. In fact, their last six wins have come via blowout. They have beaten each of their last six opponents by 20 or more points, including last week
|11-12-13||VCU +4.5 v. Virginia||59-56||Win||100||8 h 6 m||Show|
15* VCU/Virginia ESPN 2 No-Brainer on Virginia Commonwealth +4.5
Virginia Commonwealth is one of the best teams in the country this season. It has opened the season ranked in the Top 25 and for good reason. It showed off what it is capable of with a 96-58 home win over Illinois State on November 8, and I fully expect it to go into Virginia and win outright tonight.
VCU returns three starters this season, including leading scoerers Juvonte Reddic (14.6 ppg, 8.1 rpg) and Treveon Graham (15.1 ppg, 5.8 rpg). Also back is Rob Brandenberg (10.4 ppg), Melvin Johnson (6.9 ppg) and Briante Weber (5.4 rpg).
The Rams play a pressure defense that is unmatched by anyone in the country. They get after it for 40 minutes and force opponents into mistakes, which leads to easy buckets the other way for Shaka Smart's club. The Rams forced 22 turnovers in the opener against Illinois State.
The Rams are 9-4-1 ATS in their last 14 games after scoring more than 90 points in their previous game. VCU is 4-1 ATS in its last five non-conference games. Virginia is 1-7 ATS in its last eight games overall. The Cavaliers are 0-4 ATS in their last four vs. Atlantic 10 foes. This is the best team in the Atlantic 10 in 2013, and it will show tonight. Bet VCU Tuesday.
|11-12-13||Hofstra +33 v. Louisville||69-97||Win||100||8 h 6 m||Show|
15* CBB Tuesday Undervalued Underdog on Hofstra +33
This play is more of a fade of Louisville than a play on Hofstra. I realize the Pride don't have the talent to hang with Louisville, but they do have enough to stay within 33 points of this ridiculous spread.
I am fading Louisville early in the season due to its reputation as the defending national champs. I believe it is way overvalued after losing its two most important players from last year in center Gorgui Dieng (9.8 ppg, 9.4 rpg, 2.5 bpg) and point guard Peyton Siva (10.0 ppg, 5.7 apg, 2.3 spg).
I went against Louisville in its opener as a 22-point favorite against College of Charleston. That was a 48-45 game with six minutes remaining before the Cardinals used a ridiculous 22-3 run to close out the game to win 70-48. As you can see, that was a much closer game than the final score would indicate, but if you only saw the final score you wouldn't realize it.
Hofstra has put up 82.0 points per game while opening the season 1-1 with a loss to Monmouth (84-88) and a win over Fairleigh Dickinson (80-58). It is also shooting 47.1% from the field while only averaging 11 turnovers per game. Taking care of the ball will be huge against the Cardinals. Hofstra is 18-5 ATS in road games after scoring 75 or more points in two straight games since 1997. Roll with Hofstra Tuesday.
|11-11-13||Miami Dolphins v. Tampa Bay Buccaneers +3||Top||19-22||Win||100||10 h 47 m||Show|
20* Dolphins/Bucs ESPN Monday No-Brainer on Tampa Bay +3
|11-11-13||Cleveland Cavaliers v. Chicago Bulls -7.5||81-96||Win||100||8 h 2 m||Show|
15* NBA Monday No-Doubt Rout on Chicago Bulls -7.5
The Chicago Bulls are way undervalued right now due to their 2-3 start. I believe their 97-73 home victory over Utah on Friday was a more telling sign up what this team is capable, and I fully expect the Bulls to be one of the best teams in the league from here-forward.
Chicago has now had two full days to prepare for Cleveland. In fact, this will only be the 3rd game in 9 days for the Bulls, so they'll be well rested and ready to go. Meanwhile, the Cavaliers will be playing their 7th game in 11 days, so this is certainly a tired team right now.
This has been a one-sided series in recent years to say the least. Chicago has gone 10-1 in its last 11 meetings with Cleveland, and it is 6-1 SU & 6-1 ATS in its last seven home meetings with the Cavaliers. In fact, the Bulls have won nine of their last 10 meetings with Cleveland by 9-plus points.
The Cavaliers are 1-10 ATS in their last 11 vs. Eastern Conference. Cleveland is 0-6 ATS in its last six road games. The Cavaliers are 1-9-1 ATS in their last 11 games vs. a team with a losing S.U. record. Throw in the 9-1 system where the Bulls have won nine of 10 vs. Cleveland by nine or more points, and we have a combined 34-3 system backing Chicago in this one. Roll with the Bulls Monday.
|11-11-13||Orlando Magic v. Boston Celtics UNDER 190.5||105-120||Loss||-110||7 h 58 m||Show|
15* NBA Monday Total DOMINATOR on Magic/Celtics UNDER 190.5
The books have set the bar too high in this game between the Orlando Magic and Boston Celtics tonight. These teams just played each other on November 8 three days ago with the Celtics coming away with a 91-89 road victory for 180 combined points.
I was on the UNDER in that game, and I'll certainly be on the UNDER in the rematch tonight. Familiarity breeds low-scoring games, and having played just three days ago, there's no question that favors the defenses in this one.
Brad Stevens is a defensive-minded head coach who will have Boston playing in low-scoring games for most of the season. He values possessions offensively, and makes sure his players work the shot clock to find the best shot available.
It's no surprise that Boston is 5-2 to the UNDER through its first seven games due to Stevens' philosophy, and its lack of scorers to boot. Orlando is also 5-2 to the UNDER in the early going as oddsmakers continually set the totals too high for both of these teams.
Orlando is 10-1 to the UNDER vs. teams who are called for 2+ more fouls/game than their opponents over the last two seasons. The UNDER is 6-1 in Celtics last 7 when their opponent allows 100 points or more in their previous game. The UNDER is 16-7-1 in the last 24 meetings in this series, including 9-3 in the last 12 meetings in Boston. Bet the UNDER in this game Monday.
|11-11-13||Atlanta Hawks -2.5 v. Charlotte Bobcats||Top||103-94||Win||100||7 h 2 m||Show|
20* NBA Monday Night Line Mistake on Atlanta Hawks -2.5
The Atlanta Hawks are showing tremendous value as only a 2.5-point favorite against the lowly Charlotte Bobcats Monday. The Hawks have absolutely dominated this series over the past couple of seasons, and I look for that trend to continue tonight.
Atlanta is off to a 3-3 start this season despite playing a brutal schedule that has featured four road games. All three of its losses have come by nine points or less, including two by exactly two points at the Lakers and at the Nuggets. In my opinion, this will be its easiest game yet.
Charlotte is getting a little too much respect from oddsmakers due to its 3-3 start. Its three wins have all come by six points or less, and its three losses have come via blowout at Houston (83-96), at New Orleans (84-105) and versus New York (91-101). Atlanta is outscoring teams by 1.5 points per game on the season, while Charlotte is getting outscored by 5.2 points per game.
The Hawks have won eight straight meetings with the Bobcats dating to a 96-85 home victory April 13, 2011. They have gone 7-1 ATS in the process. Atlanta's average margin of victory during that stretch is 16.3 points per game. Al Jefferson has been hobbled by an injured ankle, and he's questionable to return tonight for Charlotte.
Plays on road favorites (ATLANTA) - off a win by 10 points or more over a division rival against opponent off a home loss by 10 points or more are 42-14 (75%) ATS since 1996. Charlotte is 4-17 ATS versus good shooting teams that make 46% of their shots or better over the last three seasons. Atlanta is 10-1 ATS after two straight games where it attempted 90 or more shots since 1996. Bet the Hawks Monday.
|11-11-13||Wisc-Milwaukee v. Davidson -12||81-77||Loss||-110||7 h 57 m||Show|
15* CBB Monday PLAY OF THE DAY on Davidson -12
Davidson went 26-8 last season and reached the NCAA Tournament. It returned senior forward De'Mon Brooks (13.7 ppg, 6.2 rpg) as well as experienced contributors such as point guard Tom Droney, small forward Chris Czerapowicz and shooting guard Tyler Kalinoski.
Wisconsin Milwaukee finished in last place in the Horizon League with an 8-24 record overall and a 3-13 mark in conference play. While point guard Jordan Aaron (12.8 ppg, 3.9 apg conference play) is back, the Panthers return only one other starter from a team that struggled in every phase of the game.
Davidson has set up a brutal non-conference schedule that features the likes of Duke, North Carolina, Virginia and Wichita State. After falling 77-111 to a Top-5 Duke team in the opener Saturday, and with Virginia on deck, Davidson knows it must take care of business in the rest of its non-conference games against weaker teams like this one if it wants to get back to the NCAA Tournament.
Brooks had a solid game against Duke, pouring in 24 points and grabbing seven board while going 7-for-9 from the field. Droney also played well, scoring 16 points in the loss. I look for these two players to carry the load against the overmatched Panthers, who fell 62-66 at Loyola-Illinois in their opener.
This is also a revenge game for Davidson, which lost at Milwaukee last year in one of its worst performances of the season. That's a big reason why the Wildcats will not be overlooking the Panthers tonight.
Milwaukee is 0-7 ATS after a loss by 6 points or less over the last two seasons. Davidson is 6-0 ATS after a loss by 10 points or more over the last three years. The Wildcats are 11-1 ATS in home games after allowing 85 points or more since 1997. These three trends combine for a 24-1 system backing the Wildcats. Take Davidson Monday.
|11-10-13||Dallas Cowboys v. New Orleans Saints -6||17-49||Win||100||34 h 5 m||Show|
15* Cowboys/Saints NBC Sunday Night BAILOUT on New Orleans -6
After losing at New York despite dominating the game last week, the New Orleans Saints are going to return home pissed off and ready to go Sunday night. They outgained the Jets 407-338 for the game, but lost Darren Sproles on the team's first drive, which made them much more easy to deal with. However, Sproles will return this week and will give this soft Dallas defense fits.
New Orleans is putting up 27.0 points and 397.4 yards per game this season to rank 7th in the league in total offense. I've been even more impressed with the new stop unit under the guidance of defensive coordinator, Rob Ryan. The stop unit is giving up just 18.2 points and 333.1 yards per game to rank 9th in the NFL in total defense. Ryan wants revenge on the Cowboys, who made him the scapegoat and canned him after last season.
When you look at Dallas' numbers, it's easy to see that it is way overrated due to its 5-4 record. Three of those wins have come against teams from the NFC East, which is the worst division in football. The Cowboys rank 17th in the league in total offense at 342.6 yards per game, and a woeful 31st in total defense at 419.2 yards per game allowed. Their defense will get shredding by this high-powered New Orleans offense Sunday night.
The Saints simply do not lose at home. They are 4-0 SU & 4-0 ATS in home games this season, outscoring opponents by 17.2 points per game. New Orleans is 20-6 ATS in its last 26 home games overall. The Saints are 9-1 ATS as a home favorite of 3.5 to 7 points over the last three seasons. They are winning by an average of 19.2 points per game in this spot. Bet the Saints Sunday.
|11-10-13||New Orleans Pelicans -2 v. Phoenix Suns||94-101||Loss||-105||17 h 41 m||Show|
15* NBA Sunday PLAY OF THE DAY on New Orleans Pelicans -2
There's no question that the Phoenix Suns have been one of the biggest surprise teams in the early going. They are off to a 4-2 start this year, which includes a 104-98 win at New Orleans on November 5. That sets the Pelicans up for a big revenge spot here. After losing at home to the Suns, I fully expect them to return the favor five days later.
New Orleans did not look great in the early going, but it has managed to rebound for two straight blowout victories to get back to 3-3 on the season. It won at Memphis (99-84) and topped the Lakers (96-85) at home. Unlike the Suns, I fully believe the Pelicans are here to stay for the long haul with the talent they have on board. Meanwhile, Phoenix will fade as the season progresses due to a lack of overall talent.
Indeed, the Pelicans are loaded with talent. Anthony Davis is averaging 23.0 points, 11.5 rebounds, 4.3 blocks and 2.0 steals per game to live up to his No. 1 pick status. Eric Gordon (16.5 points) is healthy, while Jrue Holiday (13.7 points, 7.2 assists) and Tyreke Evans (8.5 points) were excellent additions this offseason.
Home-court advantage has meant little when these teams have gotten together over the past couple seasons. In fact, the road team has won five of the last eight meetings while going 6-2 ATS in the process. New Orleans is a perfect 8-0 ATS in road games after having won three of its last four games over the past three seasons. Phoenix is 8-21 ATS when playing six or more games in 10 days over the last two seasons. Take the Pelicans Sunday.
|11-10-13||Carolina Panthers +6.5 v. San Francisco 49ers||10-9||Win||100||30 h 39 m||Show|
15* Panthers/49ers NFC Late-Afternoon ANNIHILATOR on Carolina +6.5
Quietly, the Carolina Panthers have been one of the best teams in the entire league in 2013. They have gotten to 5-3 on the season thanks to winning five of their last six games via blowout. Their five victories have been against the Giants (38-0), Vikings (35-10), Rams (30-15), Bucs (31-13) and Falcons (34-10). That's complete domination folks.
Carolina continues to get no respect from the books this week as a 6-point underdog at San Francisco. They're saying that the 49ers are three points better on a neutral field, and I'm not buying it. I believe these teams are very evenly-matched and that this game will go right down to the wire with the winner likely winning by a field goal.
In my opinion, the Panthers have the best defense in the league right up there with the Chiefs. They are giving up just 13.2 points per game while ranking 3rd in the NFL in total defense at 299.9 yards per game allowed. The reason they have an advantage in this game particularly is because of their ability to stop the run.
San Francisco relies heavily on its running game, ranking 1st in the league in rushing offense at 153.0 yards per game. The 49ers have the worst passing offense in the league, ranking 32nd at 189.9 yards per game through the air. So, the key to stopping San Francisco is stopping its running game. Carolina has the perfect antidote, ranking 2nd in the league against the run at 79.1 yards per game and 3.7 per carry.
During the team's four-game winning streak, Cam Newton is completing 72.3 percent of his passes with seven touchdowns, two picks and a 109.8 rating along with three rushing touchdowns. Carolina is a perfect 6-0 ATS as a road underdog over the past two seasons. Ron Rivera is 9-0 ATS after allowing 99 or less rushing yards in two straight games as the coach of Carolina. Take the Panthers Sunday.
|11-10-13||Jacksonville Jaguars +13 v. Tennessee Titans||Top||29-27||Win||100||27 h 37 m||Show|
25* NFL DOG OF THE YEAR on Jacksonville Jaguars +13
After going 0-8 straight up and 1-7 against the spread through the first half of their season, the Jacksonville Jaguars are going to be showing a ton of value in the second half. Oddsmakers realize that the betting public is going to keep fading Jacksonville, and that is going to force them to set the numbers a lot higher than they should be. I'm going to take advantage, starting this week.
If the Jaguars were going to win their first game of the season, this would be the perfect situation for it. They are coming off their bye week, getting two full weeks to prepare for division rival Tennessee, so this is a game where they should be in a great state of mind coming in. Meanwhile, the Titans have a game against the division-leading Indianapolis Colts on deck, which makes this a lookahead spot for them.
At 4-4, Tennessee is clearly one of the most overrated teams in the league. It is averaging just 318.0 yards per game to rank 24th in the league in total offense. It is giving up 340.4 yards per game, getting outgained by 22.4 yards per game on the season. This team does not deserve to be laying double-digit points against any team in the league, even the Jaguars.
Plays on road teams (JACKSONVILLE) - after being beaten by the spread by 42 or more points total in their last five games, terrible team, winning 25% or less of their games on the season are 35-8 (81.4%) ATS over the last 10 seasons. This trend just goes to show how backing these teams that are perceived as 'awful' can really pay dividends for bettors. I expect it to pay off this weekend. Roll with the Jaguars Sunday.
|11-10-13||St. Louis Rams +10 v. Indianapolis Colts||Top||38-8||Win||100||27 h 36 m||Show|
20* NFL Sunday Non-Conference KNOCKOUT on St. Louis Rams +10
You have to give the Rams a lot of credit for the way they have fought the last couple of weeks. They fell 9-14 to Seattle as a 13-point underdog, but really dominated that game and should have won. They outgained the Seahawks 339-135 for the game. They also played a very good game last week, falling 21-28 to the Tennessee Titans in a very evenly-matched game that saw both teams gain exactly 363 yards.
A new-found running game has taken a lot of pressure off of St. Louis quarterback Kellen Clemens, who has played pretty well all things considered. The Rams rushed for 200 yards against Seattle and 160 more against Tennessee. Zac Stacy has been one of the best running backs in the league over the past couple of weeks. He has 475 rushing yards and two touchdowns on the season while averaging an impressive 4.6 yards per carry.
Indianapolis has been soft against the run this season. It ranks 26th in the league in rushing defense, allowing 124.9 yards per game and 4.4 per carry. It gave up 171 yards to Oakland, 218 yards to Seattle, 147 to San Diego and 143 to Houston. Considering the Colts are actually getting outgained by 26.3 yards per game on the season, they clearly aren
|11-10-13||Detroit Lions v. Chicago Bears||21-19||Win||102||27 h 33 m||Show|
15* Lions/Bears NFC North No-Brainer on Detroit PK
This is a very favorable spot for Detroit and a very tough one for Chicago. Despite the fact that both teams are 5-3 heading into this game with first place in the NFC North on the line, I believe the Lions have a decisive advantage going into it.
Detroit is coming off its bye week, giving it two full weeks to prepare for Chicago. Meanwhile, the Bears will be on short rest after their huge Monday Night Football win over the Aaron Rodgers-less Green Bay Packers. That gives a huge edge in rest and preparation to the Lions, while also setting the Bears up for a letdown spot off a win over their biggest rivals.
The Lions beat the Bears 40-32 at home in their first meeting this season. This game was a much bigger blowout than the final score would indicate as the Lions led 40-16 with nine minutes left in the fourth quarter. Jay Cutler threw three interceptions in the loss, while Reggie Bush rushed for 139 yards and a touchdown in the win.
Chicago has all kinds of injury concerns heading into this one. Its defense is very soft due to the losses of LB Lance Briggs, LB D.J. Williams, DT Henry Melton, DT Nate Collins and DT Jay Ratliff. Cutler is expected to return from a groin injury, but he may be coming back too soon as Josh McCown played well in his place. Bush should have another monster game on the ground against a Chicago defense that has allowed a combined 408 rushing yards in its last two games.
The Bears are 12-33 ATS in their last 45 games vs. excellent offensive teams that average 6 or more yards per play. Chicago is 5-20 ATS in its last 25 games after scoring 25 or more points in two straight games. The Lions are 6-1 ATS in their last seven meetings with the Bears. Chicago is 0-5-1 ATS in its last six home games. Roll with the Lions Sunday.
|11-10-13||Cincinnati Bengals v. Baltimore Ravens +1||17-20||Win||105||27 h 32 m||Show|
15* Bengals/Ravens AFC North Rivalry Play on Baltimore +1
This is essentially a must-win for the Baltimore Ravens. At 3-5 on the season, they trail the Cincinnati Bengals (6-3) by 2.5 games for first place in the AFC North. They simply cannot afford to lose this game if they want any chance of winning the division, and as a result, I expect their best effort of the season at home Sunday.
Due to injuries, the Cincinnati Bengals are not going to be as strong the rest of the way as they were in the first half of the season. That was evident in a 20-22 loss at Miami last week as the defense was shredded for 157 rushing yards by the Dolphins. It's no coincidence that the Dolphins were able to have so much success on the ground considering the injuries the Bengals are dealing with.
Cincinnati has lost its rock in the middle in defensive tackle Geno Atkins (knee) for the season in the loss to Miami. Atkins, who had a team-best six sacks and a career-high 12 1/2 in 2012, joins cornerback Leon Hall (Achilles), safety Taylor Mays (shoulder) and defensive end Robert Geathers (elbow) on injured reserve.
Middle linebacker Rey Maualuga (knee, concussion) and offensive tackle Andrew Whitworth (knee) didn't play last week and both were held out of practice Wednesday. Maualuga is doubtful Sunday, while Whitworth is expected to play. Linebacker Michael Boely is doubtful, while running back Giovani Bernard is expected to return despite sitting out late in the Miami game due to a rib injury.
Baltimore has fell victim to a tough schedule more than anything. It has played five road games compared to only three home games. It is 2-1 at home with its only loss coming to the Green Bay Packers by a final of 17-19. Cincinnati is just 2-3 SU and 1-3-1 ATS on the road this year. The Ravens have been on the wrong end of several close calls, losing their last three by a combined 11 points. Cincinnati has lost in each of its last three visits to Baltimore and was blown out 44-13 in its latest one Sept. 10, 2012.
Home-field advantage has been huge in this series as the home team has won six of the past seven meetings. The Bengals are 1-4-1 ATS in their last 6 road games. The Ravens are 6-0 ATS in their last six vs. a team with a winning record. Baltimore is 4-1 ATS in its last five home games. Bet the Ravens Sunday.
|11-10-13||Buffalo Bills v. Pittsburgh Steelers -2.5||10-23||Win||100||27 h 31 m||Show|
15* NFL Sunday No-Doubt Rout on Pittsburgh Steelers -2.5
The Steelers have clearly been much better than their record would indicate this season. They are almost dead even in yards gained and yards allowed this year, averaging 341.9 yards per game on offense and giving up 341.2 yards per game on defense. That is more of a sign of a team that would be 4-4 right now rather than one that is 2-6, but the Steelers are -11 in turnover differential, which has been the difference.
The Bills, on the other hand, are about as bad as their 3-6 record would indicate. They are averaging 344.7 yards per game offensively, while giving up 362.1 yards per game defensively, getting outgained by 17.4 yards per game. They are yielding 26.2 points per game to rank 24th in the league in scoring defense. They are coming off back-to-back blowout losses to New Orleans (17-35) and Kansas City (13-23).
Pittsburgh has absolutely dominated this series with Buffalo. In fact, the Steelers are 8-1 straight up and 8-1 against the spread in the last nine meetings in this series. All eight of their wins have come by three points or more, including six by 13 or more. At home as only a 2.5-point favorite, there
|11-09-13||Portland Trail Blazers v. Sacramento Kings -1.5||96-85||Loss||-110||11 h 58 m||Show|
15* Blazers/Kings NBA Late-Night BAILOUT on Sacramento -1.5
This is a home-and-home situation between the Portland Trail Blazers and Sacramento Kings. Portland won at home last night 104-91, and I fully expect the Kings to come back the more motivated team tonight to protect their home court in the second meeting.
Sacramento has one of the most underrated home-court advantages in the league. That has been evident in recent meetings with the Blazers, as the Kings have taken three of the past four meetings at home. The home team has won seven of the past nine meetings overall.
Portland had a historically bad bench last season, and its bench has not gotten that much better in 2013. That makes dealing with these back-to-back situation much more difficult on the Blazers than it would be for most teams.
Starters Damian Lillard, LaMarcus Aldridge, Wesley Matthews and Nicolas Batum are all averaging at least 34 minutes per game. Head coach Terry Stotts' hand is forced to have his starters play big minutes due to the lack of a bench. Only Mo Williams (7.2 ppg) is averaging more than 4.8 ppg off Portland's bench this year.
Meanwhile, Sacramento has a deep bench. That's evident by the fact that the Kings have a whopping nine players averaging at least 17 minutes per game this season. They bring guys like Ben McLemore, Travis Outlaw, Isaiah Thomas, Jason Thompson and Chuck Hayes off the bench, which is a pretty salty crew.
Portland is 3-15 ATS in its last 18 road games after a win by 10 points or more. The Blazers are 1-10 ATS in their last 11 road games after scoring 100 or more points in two straight games. The Kings are 6-1 ATS in their last 7 games following a SU loss of more than 10 points. Roll with Sacramento Saturday.
|11-09-13||Golden State Warriors v. Memphis Grizzlies -3||90-108||Win||100||9 h 58 m||Show|
15* NBA Saturday Bounce-Back BLOWOUT on Memphis Grizzlies -3
The Memphis Grizzlies were getting way too much respect to open the season due to making the Western Conference Finals last year. As a result, they have opened the season 0-5 against the spread. Now, the betting public is off this team, which has forced them to set a weak line tonight.
Meanwhile, the Warriors are the flavor of the week in the early going due to their 4-1-1 ATS mark. Now, Golden State is getting way too much respect from oddsmakers, and the roles have reversed. There is a ton of value with Memphis as only a 3-point home favorite tonight.
The Grizzlies will come out determined for a win after opening 2-3 this year. They have had two days off to prepare for the Warriors having last played on Wednesday. Meanwhile, Golden State will be playing the second of a back-to-back and its 3rd game in 4 days. This will also be the 4th game of a tough 4-game road trip, and there's no question the Warriors are tired, while the Grizzlies are well-rested.
Making matters worse for the Warriors is that Stephen Curry (ankle) is questionable to play tonight after sitting out last night's 74-76 loss at San Antonio. Whether he plays or not, I like the Grizzlies to win and cover, but if he doesn't play it's only an added bonus. Chances are he won't be playing after sitting out last night as 24 hours probably isn't long enough for his ankle to fully recover.
The Warriors tend to struggle without Stephen Curry, but having him hasn't made much of a difference against the Memphis Grizzlies. His importance to the Warriors has been evident when he's missing - especially on the road. They're 16-39 without Curry, dropping 23 of 31 contests away from home.
His status may not matter since the Warriors have dropped nine straight meetings with the Grizzlies, and Curry has averaged 22.9 points in eight of them. He poured in 32 with eight assists and five rebounds in a 99-93 defeat in the most recent visit to Memphis on Feb. 8. The Warriors have lost eight in a row there dating to a victory on April 4, 2008. That is a span of over five years. Take the Grizzlies Saturday.
|11-09-13||LSU +13 v. Alabama||Top||17-38||Loss||-114||50 h 58 m||Show|
25* College Football PARLAY OF THE YEAR on LSU +13/UNDER 55
Reasons for LSU - While the Tigers haven
|11-09-13||LSU v. Alabama UNDER 55||Top||17-38||Push||0||50 h 57 m||Show|
25* College Football PARLAY OF THE YEAR on LSU +13/UNDER 55
Reasons for LSU - While the Tigers haven
|11-09-13||Philadelphia 76ers v. Cleveland Cavaliers UNDER 201.5||125-127||Loss||-110||11 h 50 m||Show|
15* NBA Saturday Total DOMINATOR on 76ers/Cavaliers UNDER 201.5
This is a home-and-home situation for the Philadelphia 76ers and Cleveland Cavaliers. These teams met last night in Philadelphia with the 76ers pulling out a 94-79 victory for 173 combined points.
I look for a similar low-scoring affair tonight as these teams square off for a second straight night. There's no question that the familiarity of one another favors the UNDER as the defenses know the opposing offense tendencies. Those tendencies aren't going to change over night.
Taking a look at this series between Philadelphia and Cleveland, its easy to see that there is a ton of value with the UNDER. In fact, each of the last nine meetings have seen 190 or less combined points. They have combined for 173, 168, 184, 175, 165, 190, 188, 183, and 186 points in their last nine meetings, respectively. That's an average of 179.1 combined points/game, which is roughly 22 points less than tonight's posted total of 201.5.
The UNDER is 5-0 in 76ers last 5 vs. a team with a losing S.U. record. The UNDER is 9-0 in Cavaliers last 9 games following a S.U. loss of more than 10 points. The UNDER is 4-0 in Cavaliers last 4 home games. The UNDER is 4-0 in Cavaliers last 4 games vs. a team with a winning percentage of .600 or better. The UNDER is 5-0 in the last 5 meetings in this series. These five trends combined for a perfect 27-0 system backing the UNDER. Take the UNDER in this game Saturday.
|11-09-13||Indiana Pacers v. Brooklyn Nets -1.5||96-91||Loss||-110||11 h 49 m||Show|
15* NBA Saturday No-Doubt Rout on Brooklyn Nets -1.5
The Brooklyn Nets are showing excellent value as a mere 1.5-point home favorite over the Indiana Pacers tonight. Off an overtime loss to Washington, Brooklyn is going to come back pissed off and ready to go tonight.
Indiana is way overvalued due to its 6-0 start this season. I faded it with success last night by backing the Raptors +9, and I'll fade the Pacers again tonight. They are in the toughest possible situation, playing their 4th game in 5 nights.
This Indiana team had one of the worst benches in the entire league last year, and it has done little to upgrade its bench in 2013. Not having a bench makes it extremely difficult to play a 4th game in 5 nights.
While Brooklyn will be playing the second of a back-to-back, and it went to overtime last night, this will only be its 2nd game in 4 nights. Plus, the Nets have one of the best benches in the league. They have 12 players averaging at least 10 minutes per game, and their bench consists of solid players like Jason Terry, Shaun Livingston, Andray Blatche, Andrei Kirilenko and Reggie Evans.
Brooklyn went 3-0 against Indiana last season. Paul George averaged 13.7 points on 37% shooting in those three contests, while Roy Hibbert has averaged 10.3 points on 38% shooting during a four-game losing streak to Brooklyn. Brook Lopez averaged 21.3 points and 3.0 blocks in last season's series, and he's averaged 22.3 points in 10 meetings against Indiana since the 2009-10 season.
The Pacers are 0-5 ATS in their last 5 games vs. a team with a losing S.U. record. The Nets are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games following a S.U. loss. The Nets are 16-5 ATS in their last 21 games following a ATS loss. Brooklyn is 6-0 ATS in its last six meetings with Indiana. Roll with the Nets Saturday.