Saturday Service Picks and Consensus Reports

Saturday Service Picks and Consensus Reports

Ben Burns Sat NFL GOY: 49ERS (+7 or better)

Game: Cincinnati Bengals vs. San Francisco 49ers Game

Prediction: San Francisco 49ers Reason: I'm taking the points with SAN FRANCISCO. I believe that this game means a great deal to the 49ers. This was a team that had really improved last season and which had then gone out and spent significantly during the offseason in order to compete with the Seahawks for the division title. Obviously things haven't worked out. The QB situation has been a mess and running back Gore hasn't been nearly as effective as he was last season. After re-watching last week's game, I believe that the 49ers are ready to turn it around and close out the season on a winning pointspread run. That may sound funny, considering that they got blown out by the Vikings. I really liked what I saw from QB Shaun Hill though, who came on in relief of Trent Dilfer after the veteran suffered a concussion. It was more than the fact that Hill went an impressive 22 of 27 and had a QB rating of 106.9. Rather, it was the passion with which he played the game. He was genuinely excited to be in the game and his play provided a real lift to the team. Although I never considered him to be a top tier quarterback, I always kind of liked Trent Dilfer. However, the reality is that he's been terrible this season. Indeed, in seven games he has thrown 12 interceptions to only seven touchdowns and has a dismal QB rating of 55.1. Dilfer's accuracy hasn't been there and the interceptions have come at critical moments. Needless to say, I expect Hill to provide a major upgrade. The matchup is a favorable one for Hill, as he'll face a Bengals' unit which ranks fifth from the bottom in points allowed and in the bottom third of virtually all defensive categories. Like the 49ers, the Bengals are better than their record indicates. They also come off a solid win last week. Like the 49ers, they'd like to close out the season on a roll. However, last week's victory came at home and they've been dismal on the road all season, going 1-5 and falling to 1-7 their last eight games away from Cincinnati dating back to last December. Bengals' coach Marvin Lewis is already hearing his name linked to various college coaching jobs and the Bengal's "character issues" are well documented. The fact that both teams come off low-scoring games last week is interesting as we find the Bengals at 0-6 ATS the last six times that they were coming off a game which finished below the total and the 49ers at 10-3 ATS the last 13 times that they scored nine points or less. While I'll gladly grab all the points I can get, I'm expecting a highly motivated effort from the 49ers and won't be at all surprised if they score the outright upset. *Saturday GOY
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Mighty Quinn

Bengals -9


Jim Rich

Bengals Over 42 1/2

5-11 last week on totals
95-110


Purelock Comp

Illinois Chicago @ Depaul
Play On: Depaul (-) Pts


Comps

Jeff Benton
3* PITT (college hoops)

Matt Rivers
For Saturday take the points with Oklahoma State.

Trace Adams
SATURDAY'S COMP PLAY - Pittsburgh Panthers.

Jake Timlin
Your complimentary Saturday selection is the Penn State Nittany Lions.

Tony Weston
3* ST. LOUIS (1* to 5* Scale) College Hoops

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Vegas Experts Tip Of The Day

lost last night,the last 2 months (Oct 15-10..Nov 17-10)
8-6..month of December
2-4 totals
6-2 sides

New York beat New Jersey the last time the two clubs met, scoring a 100-93 away win with Jason Kidd AWOL for the Nets. How do the Knicks fare tonight in the rematch at MSG?

Knicks played last night in Chicago, losing but staying within the number. Now they travel back home, tired, to an arena where they are being booed on a regular basis. The Knicks have lost their last four at home S/U and ATS with the average margin of defeat 14 points. With this small line they're being asked to just about win the game, something they haven't done with any regularity this season. They are 5-14 their last 19 games and 6-13 ATS as well as 18-36 ATS when playing against a team with a losing record over the last 2 seasons.

Play on: New Jersey

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THE GOLD SHEET:

*Cincinnati 23 - SAN FRANCISCO 20—Will S.F.’s last-in-yards, last-inpoints
offense be able to move like a normal team vs. Cincy’s injury-thinned
defense (25 ppg)? Probably not. However, it’s usually not a good idea to lay
substantial points on the road with flawed teams such as Cincy that also have
dubious motivation. Plus, the Niners can still run hard with Frank Gore and
defend respectably, while young veteran QB Shaun Hill (22 of 28 off the bench
last week after Trent Dilfer’s concussion) has been eager for his chance. TV—
NFL (03-CIN. -3 41-38...SR: SF 9-3)

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THE SPORTS REPORTER

RECOMMENDED

CINCINNATI over *SAN FRANCISCO by 17

The Play for Pride Bowl, with the Bengals’ prospect for a .500 season their proverbial
dangling carrot. The best San Francisco can hope for is to worsen the first round draft
pick they’ll be handing over to New England at season’s end. The rest of the NFL will be thrilled to know that the Patriots will most likely end up with the #2 pick in the draft – hello Darren McFadden! Despite a desultory 2007 season so far, the Bengals have been saddled by a tough schedule that did them no favors. Luckily, the last three weeks represent very winnable games. Rudi Johnson’s best game in weeks should give the Cincy offense some hope of consistency after suffering through Carson Palmer’s worst stretch of his career in recent weeks. The San Francisco defense, which began the season with such high hopes, has been decimated by injury and overuse and should prove susceptible to a high-flying Bengals attack that should be able to take advantage of a 49ers squad that has already given up the ghost.

CINCINNATI 30-13

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THE SPORTS REPORTER

BEST BET

*PENN STATE over DENVER by 25

After performing to reasonable expectations, Pioneers took a bad step when starting G
Tyler Bullock (10+ PPG) left the team for family reasons December 7, opening the door
for rare Nittany Lion domination of a “board program.” F Jamelle Comley saw action in
encouraging come-from-behind win over respectable Seton Hall. Perhaps the Nits can
build on that. PENN STATE, 83-58 .

BEST BET

*WASHINGTON over PORTLAND by 24

Held back by the absence of a legitimate, sustained outside-shooting threat, Huskies
were revitalized by senior Ryan Appleby’s return to action against Pitt last weekend. Even
though Husky G Adrian Oliver has announced his decision to transfer, Appleby’s presence
adds up to a net plus, though Saturday’s result was a severe disappointment. This foe’s
made-to-order, in terms of reviving Husky spirits, however. WASHINGTON, 96-72.


RECOMMENDED

UAB over *KENTUCKY by 3 (at Louisville, KY)
[UAB, plus the points] Billy Gillispie was trying to say things the right way leading into the
Indiana game, but what came out sounded suspiciously like excuses, before the fact.
Neither Eric Gordon nor Armon Bassett played for the Hoosiers, and Indy STILL put the
‘Cats through the wringer. The body language in the vicinity of the Wildcat bench was
dreadful, during that exercise, and it was reflected on the scoreboard. The Blazers are
very athletic, can keep pace defensively, and shouldn’t be catching double-digits, here.
UAB, 72-69.

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WINNING POINTS:

***BEST BET

*Atlanta over Charlotte by 14
After a promising start the Bobcats have run into problems. They had dropped seven
of eight through the first week of this month, not coming within 16 points during
three of their past four defeats. The players were losing confidence in first-year coach
Sam Vincent, there is lack of leadership on the floor and poor play at point guard. The
Hawks are trying to build-up their fan base. This is a good opportunity for them to
impress people with a blow-out win. They have the talent with Joe Johnson, Josh
Smith and Marvin Williams. ATLANTA 102-88


***BEST BET

New Jersey over *New York by 12
The Nets have matched up well to their neighbor rivals, winning 20 of the past 25
while covering eight of the past 12. The Knicks upset the Nets, though, when the
teams 10 days ago in New Jersey. The rested Knicks caught the Nets playing their
fourth game in five days and without Jason Kidd, who missed the 100-93 loss because
of a migraine. Vince Carter is regaining his touch. The Knicks can’t be taken seriously
as long as Isiah Thomas remains the coach. NEW JERSEY 103-91.


COLLEGE:


Saturday, December 15

***BEST BET

Butler* over Florida State by 20
Can’t imagine the guard-laden Seminoles absorbing much in the “how-to-beat-Butler”
preparation. Defensive intensity necessary saps the offensive energy. Lose-lose situation.
FSU sank a school-record 20 three-pointers -- including five from walk-on Brian
Hoff and six from Isaiah Swann – beating Maine 95-55 last Saturday. Don’t they wish
they’d have saved some of that accuracy for this building? "It feels good when shots go
down like that," Toney Douglas said. "We really started having fun out there." Fun is
fleeting. BUTLER, 72-52.

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GOLD SHEET HOOPS

***New Jersey 96 - NEW YORK 84—Dynamics ought to be much different for
rematch of New York’s 7-point win at Meadowlands ten nights ago. That’s
mainly because Jason Kidd almost assuredly back in Nets’ lineup after missing
that one with a migraine, and we know New Jersey definitely not the same team
if it’s Eddie Gill running the show from the point. Series trends still point toward
Nets, who have won 10 of last 12 vs. troubled Knicks, who have fallen into
Atlantic basement. 07-NY +6' 100-93 (185); 06-Nj -3 101-100 (194), NJ -4' 101-
92 (197), NJ -9' 100-86 (190), Nj -6 104-95 (193) TV—NBA NETWORK


***NEW MEXICO 82 - Texas Tech 67—With popular new HC Steve Alford
now filling up the “The Pit,” favor ball-sharing (20 apg), deep Lobos (10 playing
15+ mpg), who are excelling on both ends (hitting 50% FGs, yielding just 60
ppg). NM’s gifted, defensively-tenacious 6-5 sr. G J.R Giddens (12 ppg, teambest
8 rpg) will pester Texas Tech’s slashing G Martin Zeno (17 ppg) or
marksmen G Alan Voskuil (14 ppg, 3 treys pg at nation-leading 69%!). And Red
Raiders ever-controversial HC Bob Knight (check out the hunting video on
YouTube), who says his squad must play smarter, is just 9-19 as a road dog since
‘03-‘04. 06-TECH -9’ 70-68


***SOUTH ALABAMA 79 - Mississippi St. 69—After pair of frustrating, but
highly-combative 3-pt. losses at Ole Miss & Vandy (OT) in November, athletic,
uptempo USA ready to notch SEC “hump win” in highly-anticipated revenge
game with MSU, which totally embarrassed Jags 84-46 in Starkville LY. USA’s
3-G attack—composed of Demetric Bennett (19 ppg, 3 treys pg at 38%),
Domonic Tilford (15 ppg, 44% from arc) & Daon Merrit (12 ppg, 5 apg)—can
handle Bulldogs pressure defense in rematch. And Rick Stansbury’s
potentially-fatigued squad (off Miami-Florida tilt fewer than 48 hours prior), is a
poor 4-17 SU away vs. TGS-rated squads last 2+Ys. 06-MSU -12 84-46

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Pointwise

NCAAB

Rating:1 Pepperdine 69 BYU 78
Rating:2 Denver 69 Penn st 71
Rating:3 Ark-LR 88 Fla-int 67
Rating:5 Oklahoma 83 Arkansas 70

Best Bets:Utah,Nebraska,Charlotte, New Mexico, and Portland.


NBA

Rating:1 Utah 108 Seattle 91
Rating:3 Phoenix 111 New Orleans 98

Best Bets:Atlanta and Denver


NFL

Cincinnati 27 San Francisco 10

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Larry Ness

My 24* is on South Alabama at 8:20 ET. Rick Stansbury's Miss St team has shown VERY little so far this season. In a November tourney in Anaheim, the Bulldogs lost two of three (lost to Sou Ill and Mia-0 while beating Cal-Irvine). Overall, the Bulldogs have opened 5-4, beating no one of consequence, while losing home games to Clemson and Miami-Florida (both are unbeaten). Do-everything guard Gordon (18.3-6.3-3.9) and the 6-9 Rhodes (15.2-7.1) are the team's best players but Stansbury hasn't gotten much out of any other player. Also, Gordon controls the ball and he's one of those "shoot-first" guys. South Alabama is one of those "under the radar" teams from a non-descript conference (Sun Belt). However, the Jaguars can play. The perimeter game is led by two seniors, Bennett (18.1-5.8) and PG Merritt (12.9-3.0-4.7) plus sophomore Tilford (15.4). Two 6-7 players, Davis (10.2-5.7) and Coleman (6.1-6.6) plus the 6-9 Douglas (6.1-5.0) will offer an excellent challenge to Rhodes inside, whose only help comes from the 6-9 Vanardo (5.2-7.7), who at 6-9 is considered 'soft!' South Alabama was at the same Anaheim tourney Miss St played in (also went 2-1, losing to Mia-O) plus has shown some early season toughness away from home against two SEC teams. The Jaguars lost at Ole Miss and at Vandy (both teams are still unbeaten) this year, each time by just three points. Now they get a mediocre SEC at home, where the Jags are a perfect 4-0. Better yet, they'll remember LY's 84-46 loss at Starkville, the worst beating the team took all season. I also believe that easy win for Miss St will give the Bulldogs a "false sense of security" for this one. Expect the Jags to win handily!

24* South Alabama

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Sports Gambling Hotline

Xavier (-4) at ARIZONA STATE

Outright winner last night on the Blazers, now 25-14 the last 39 days for free!

Tough matchup for the Sun Devils today, as Arizona State has fattened their win total with non-lined wins over Coppin State, and Delaware State but now must face the 8-1 Xavier Musketeers this afternoon at home,

Xavier played one of their worst games of the season on Tuesday night, yet still managed to get by their corss-town rivals the Cincinnati Bearcats. True, they didn't cover the monster impost, but we expect them to come through with the spread cover today.

The Musketeers have been outrebounding the opposition by 10 boards a game, and they have been spreading out their offense as well, as they have six players averaging 10-points or better per game.

The Sun Devils couldn't contend with the Muskies last season, as they were blasted 76-58 as double-digit road dogs, and this year coach Herb Sendek is starting 3 true freshman in his rotation.

Play on Xavier to get the road win and cover in Tempe.


2* XAVIER

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Feist blowout gom penn st

Feist comp nj-ny under


Spreitzer hammer gom new mex


Glen Mcgrew dog gom arkansas


Bob Donahue free play cal irvine


Dave Cokin free play utah univ

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Smart Money Syndicate 12/15/07

4* (NCAAB) Portland Univ. +17

3* (NCAAB) Missouri St. +5

2* (NBA) Seattle/Utah UNDER 212

2* (NBA) Utah -12

2* (NBA) Indiana +4.5

2* (NCAAB) Purdue -1.5

2* (NCAAB) Central Michigan +8

2* (NCAAB) Georgia Southern +15

1* (NBA) Charlotte +6.5

1* (NCAAB) South Alabama -1

1* (NCAAB) Kansas -19

1* (NCAAB) Arkansas +3.5

1* (NCAAB) Montana +6

1* (NCAAB) Tennessee -10

1* (NCAAB) DePaul -9.5

1* (NCAAB) San Francisco +6

Record:

NFL 0-2
NBA 5-7-1
NHL 4-1
NCAAB 2-3
NCAAF 0-0

5* 0-0
4* 2-0
3* 1-1
2* 3-2
1* 5-8-1

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ATS LOCK CLUB

8 units Ark LR -10
6 units So Alabama -1 1/2
5 units St. Louis +5 1/2
4 units N Mexico -4 1/2


Football
3 units Over 42 Cinn/SF

ATS FINANCIAL

4 units Pitt -13.5
3 units Miami O -3
3 units Cal-Irv -6

Football
3 units San Fran +9

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cokin 3* toledo,chatt hat: wisc wind: akron sy: lville,gasouth   nfl: sf   pass nba

feist: 5* n.az 4* mont st 3* wkty  ic: stl pl: uab,s.alab pb: nmex  nba: 5* kings ic: cavs pb: mia   nfL 5* cin und

scotty: 5* nmex 4* temp  tko: ark,uncc,s.alab  ko: n.az   nba: 5* mavs tko; suns  ko: nets    nfl 5* sf

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NORTHCOAST:

Top Opinions
Cincinnati -8 vs San Fran @ 8:00 pm ET Saturday Marquee Play

cokin 3* toledo,chatt hat: wisc wind: akron sy: lville,gasouth   nfl: sf   pass nba

feist: 5* n.az 4* mont st 3* wkty  ic: stl pl: uab,s.alab pb: nmex  nba: 5* kings ic: cavs pb: mia   nfL 5* cin und

scotty: 5* nmex 4* temp  tko: ark,uncc,s.alab  ko: n.az   nba: 5* mavs tko; suns  ko: nets    nfl 5* sf

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glen mcgrew dog gom arkansas

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THE SPORTS REPORTER--

RECOMMENDED
CINCINNATI over *SAN FRANCISCO by 17
The Play for Pride Bowl, with the Bengals’ prospect for a .500 season their proverbial
dangling carrot. The best San Francisco can hope for is to worsen the first round draft
pick they’ll be handing over to New England at season’s end. The rest of the NFL will be
thrilled to know that the Patriots will most likely end up with the #2 pick in the draft –
hello Darren McFadden! Despite a desultory 2007 season so far, the Bengals have been
saddled by a tough schedule that did them no favors. Luckily, the last three weeks represent
very winnable games. Rudi Johnson’s best game in weeks should give the Cincy
offense some hope of consistency after suffering through Carson Palmer’s worst stretch
of his career in recent weeks. The San Francisco defense, which began the season with
such high hopes, has been decimated by injury and overuse and should prove susceptible
to a high-flying Bengals attack that should be able to take advantage of a 49ers
squad that has already given up the ghost. CINCINNATI 30-13

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Brandon Lang
SATURDAY

10-DIME - Xavier, Utah and Butler

5-DIME - UNC Charlotte, Pittsburgh and Bengals


10 Dime - Xavier

Uninspiring and lethargic – a pair of adjectives that easily describe Xavier's win over rival Cincinnati. Inside the final four minutes of the Dec. 12 showdown, the Musketeers had been outworked, out-hustled and outmaneuvered for the most of the 75th Crosstown Shootout; and though they won the game, it was the lethargic effort that is giving us the value in this game, an easy low chalk play with the better team. Xavier, 8-1 SU and 4-2 ATS on the year, is outscoring its foes by an average margin of nine points away from Cincy-town, and I honestly don't believe the Sun Devils have a clue what they're about to face after seeing the likes of Coppin State and Delaware State the last two times out. ASU hasn't played the types of teams Xavier has, and that'll play a big part in this blowout for us. Lay the chalk as this will be all Xavier.

10 Dime – Utah

The Missouri State Bears will get a rude awakening in the Huntsman Center today, as the Utes are a feisty team that can play an up-tempo game ignited by a stingy defense that held the 91.3-points-a-game Oregon Ducks to a season-low 75 points last Saturday. Rolling into this clash on a 13-5 all-time mark against foes from the Missouri Valley Conference, the Utes are looking to make their mark on the nation once again – their first since the days of Rick Majerus. And while the defense is has stymied three-of-four guests this season and is helping the Utes outscore folks at Huntsman by an average final of 73-60, the offense currently ranks No. 1 in the Mountain West Conference and fourth in the nation in field-goal percentage, converting at a .523 clip. Play the home team in this one, as Utah continues to look solid in preseason action.

10 Dime - Butler

All of a sudden Butler is the 'next something or another', haven't you heard? Yes, the Bulldogs have attained the label "The Next Gonzaga," which means one of two things – if not both – and that is Gonzaga has arrived, or Butler is about to. The thing is, I've always considered Butler a part of the show, and once again the Dawgs are proving me right. Coming off their second Sweet 16 in the past five Big Dances, the Bulldogs are 8-1, ranked 18th and what's this – oh my! - favored to beat big, nasty Florida State in today's Wooden Tradition. I'll lay the chalk at Conseco Fieldhouse, as the Dawgs are getting it done with an incredible chemistry between players who are playing team basketball - sharp-shooting players who have a keen eye from the arc – and whose selfless ways become contagious up and down the roster. And get this: Butler has won nine of its past 10 games against schools from Bowl Championship Series conferences. Talk about being a big-game hunter, I'll take the Dawgs in this one.

5 Dime – Charlotte

Give me Bobby Lutz's crew in this one, as it's won three in a row and four of their last five entering tonight's contest at Hofstra. Though this represents the 49ers' first true road game of the year, it's hard to ignore the fact Hofstra has lost four in a row, albeit each by four points or less, to Stony Brook, Fordham, UNC Wilmington and St. Francis. Not exactly the blockbuster bunch to brag about losing closely to, is it? Charlotte has held six of its first eight opponents below 40 percent shooting, including each of the last five (4-1), while bolting out to a 6-2 start on the season. Charlotte has also forced more turnovers in five of the first eight games, forcing 17.6 turnovers per game. This is enough for us to side with the Niners here, as they sink the Pride into humility.

5 Dime – Pitt

Pittsburgh won its first six games by an average of 31 points per contest, and in all but one of those outings the Panthers led by double digits at halftime, with the average lead being 20 at the break in those games. So here comes this Oklahoma State team that is threatening to be just that – the Panthers' first real threat – and there are so many intangibles that say the Cowboys will give Pitt a good game. Then I look at the line. If this game is to be so contentious, why is this line so big? Don't let the oddsmakers fool you here, as the Panthers are the much better team, and are proving Aaron Gray is not missed this season. Our edge in this one is that Oklahoma State is a guard-oriented team that tends to stay beyond the arc. The Cowboys are averaging nearly 24 3-point attempts per contest, and though they're draining about 36 percent of those shots, the Panthers have vowed to improve on defense for this one by pressuring the rock at mid-court. Lay the chalk with the Panthers.

5 Dime - Bengals

Welcome to the 2007 season Cincy D, your offensive teammates have missed you all season. As it turns out, you've been here all along and you're final showing your face. This is a defense known for having more holes then Swiss cheese, but most recently, Cincy has won three of its last five by allowing just one team to gain more than 300 yards. And over this stretch, the defense is allowing only 262 yards of offense per game, while roughly 13 points per game the past three outings. Shaun Hill makes his first NFL start tonight, and he'll be introduced to Cincy's rejuvenated stop unit, as will the rushing game, which I expect to take some of the pressure off Hill. In the meantime, balancing things out on the other side will be an offense that we all know is capable of lighting up the scoreboard, and is long overdue for a blowout. Carson Palmer will be taking aim for his 100th career TD pass, and will get a balanced attack from Rudi Johnson, who has picked up his game as well. This is a pure blowout in the making, as we take the Bengals.

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GOLD SHEET HOOPS

***New Jersey 96 - NEW YORK 84—Dynamics ought to be much different for
rematch of New York’s 7-point win at Meadowlands ten nights ago. That’s
mainly because Jason Kidd almost assuredly back in Nets’ lineup after missing
that one with a migraine, and we know New Jersey definitely not the same team
if it’s Eddie Gill running the show from the point. Series trends still point toward
Nets, who have won 10 of last 12 vs. troubled Knicks, who have fallen into
Atlantic basement. 07-NY +6' 100-93 (185); 06-Nj -3 101-100 (194), NJ -4' 101-
92 (197), NJ -9' 100-86 (190), Nj -6 104-95 (193) TV—NBA NETWORK



***NEW MEXICO 82 - Texas Tech 67—With popular new HC Steve Alford
now filling up the “The Pit,” favor ball-sharing (20 apg), deep Lobos (10 playing
15+ mpg), who are excelling on both ends (hitting 50% FGs, yielding just 60
ppg). NM’s gifted, defensively-tenacious 6-5 sr. G J.R Giddens (12 ppg, teambest
8 rpg) will pester Texas Tech’s slashing G Martin Zeno (17 ppg) or
marksmen G Alan Voskuil (14 ppg, 3 treys pg at nation-leading 69%!). And Red
Raiders ever-controversial HC Bob Knight (check out the hunting video on
YouTube), who says his squad must play smarter, is just 9-19 as a road dog since
‘03-‘04. 06-TECH -9’ 70-68



***SOUTH ALABAMA 79 - Mississippi St. 69—After pair of frustrating, but
highly-combative 3-pt. losses at Ole Miss & Vandy (OT) in November, athletic,
uptempo USA ready to notch SEC “hump win” in highly-anticipated revenge
game with MSU, which totally embarrassed Jags 84-46 in Starkville LY. USA’s
3-G attack—composed of Demetric Bennett (19 ppg, 3 treys pg at 38%),
Domonic Tilford (15 ppg, 44% from arc) & Daon Merrit (12 ppg, 5 apg)—can
handle Bulldogs pressure defense in rematch. And Rick Stansbury’s
potentially-fatigued squad (off Miami-Florida tilt fewer than 48 hours prior), is a
poor 4-17 SU away vs. TGS-rated squads last 2+Ys. 06-MSU -12 84-46

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