Today's Free Picks for
Posted at 2:30 PM EST odds are subject to change.
William D. Mullins Memorial Center, Amherst, MA
Saint Louis -3½ over UMass
7:30 PM EST. The Minutemen are 9-4 overall while the Billikens are 9-5 overall, which isn’t sitting right with the inefficient market but not all records are created equally. UMass lost its A-10 opener by 19 points to the Bonnies, a team that has market credibility but that is going nowhere this year. That loss to the Bonnies by UMass should absolutely not be discounted as an off night. Meanwhile, Saint Louis opened A-10 play up with a five-point road win at St. Joe’s but failed to cover as a 7-point road favorite. Now the Billikens are half that price against UMass and they are not taking a step down in class. It’s also worth noting that the Billikens have failed to cover in two straight and four of their last five so the market is losing trust in them. That’s usually a pretty good time to step in.
UMass has played the 216th ranked non-conference Strength of Schedule (SOS) in the country. The Billikens non-conference Strength of Schedule ranked 51st. Saint Louis is much more battle tested while the Minutemen have some unimpressive results, like an 11-point win over Dartmouth, a six point win over South Florida, a two-point win over Murray State and a 6-point win over Charlotte to name a few. By contrast, SLU is a dangerous team, capable of earning an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament. If things break right there’s really no limit to how far this squad can climb. Travis Ford has an experienced eight- or nine-man rotation that rivals any at the mid-major level — and much of the power conference squads, as well. Ford says “he has the best guard in the country”. Finishing the season as A-10 champs and inside the AP Top 25 is well within the realm of possibilities. The Billikens were off 10 days prior to beating St. Joe’s last game. They figure to be sharper tonight and at this reduced price, we’ll put that to the test.
Saint Louis -3½ -106 (Risking 2.12 units - To Win: 2.00)