SUNDAY PREMIUM SERVICE PLAYS
Re: SUNDAY PREMIUM SERVICE PLAYS
Southern Cal (+4) vs Michigan State (129')
Michigan State feasted on slowing down the plodding offenses that the Spartans faced in the Big Ten this year. That won't be the case later this afternoon at the Metrodome as MSU will have its hands full with this athletic, aggressive Southern Cal team that attacks the rim and is playing with a load of confidence of late. The Troajns have won and covered six straight, the last four over Big Dance teams after Friday's solid win over Boston College. Tom Izzo's MSU teams have traditionally played stout defense, but Tim Floyd has really stressed defense and rebounding at Southern Cal and the Trojans held 14 opponents under 60 points this year. MSU has failed to cover in two straight and this team took a hit when Raymar Morgan went down midway through the season with walking pneumonia. He's back, but clearly not himself and that's been a blow to sometimes inconsistent Spartan offense. Michigan State, 1-3 ATS slide on one or less days rest, will encounter a USC team that features five athletic starters who all stand at least 6-foot-5. They're on ATS runs of 26-12 both as a dog and playing on one or less days rest and look for Taj Simmons, Marcus Simmons, super frosh DeMar DeRozan and the rest of the streaking Trojans to stay aggressive offensively in winning this game outright.
SOUTHERN CAL (+4) 5000 Dime High Roller
Arizona State (+2') vs Syracuse (139')
Pac-10 Player of the Year James Harden did not have a good game in his team's hard-fought win over Temple on Friday, but he'll bounce back and be special this afternoon in South Florida as the Sun Devils score this win and cover. Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim is shooting for win No. 799, but it will be Herb Sendek coaching ASU into the Sweet 16 as the Sun Devils thrive in this role as a dog (3-1 SU & 4-0 ATS this year). The Sun Devils play stingy defense and this is a Syracuse team that hasn't been consistent away from the Carrier Dome. Jonny Flyn had seven turnovers in Friday's win over Stephen F. Austin and the Orangmenare only 5-6 ATS on one or less days rest this season. ASU has won and covered four of its last five and is 12-1 SU and 6-3 ATS in non-conference games. Again, big rebound effort from Harden as ASU punced its ticket to the Sweet 16.
ARIZONA STATE (+2') 1000 Dime High Roller
Oklahoma State (+8') vs Pittsburgh (150)
This is just way too many points to cover for a Pittsburgh team (3-4 ATS last seven) that didn't look good in Friday's win over East Tennessee State and clearly doesn't have healthy point guard in Lavance Fields. He continues to be bothered by a sore groin and that's the key factor in this one as Fields goes, so do the Panthers (2-4 ATS slide in the Big Dance). He didn't bring the ball up the court against East Tennessee State's press Friday and finished the game with as many feild goals as turnovers (3) and missed all five of his 3-point attempts. He'll again struggle against this Travis Ford-coach Oklahoma State team that plays up-tempo, utilizes a lot of ball movement and defensive pressure and does a good job of crashing the boards. These two teams have split meetings the last two seasons, but it was Pitt scoring an 85-68 home win last year. Payback time for this Cowboy team that is on runs of 9-2 SU and 10-1 ATS overall and has covered 13 of its last 20 on neutral courts. Big effort fro Marshall Moses and especially senior point guard Byron Eaton as Oklahoma State takes this one down to the final possession and covers with ease.
OKLAHOMA STATE (+8') 1000 Dime High Roller
Siena (141) vs Louisville (-11')
That was a nice upset win over Ohio State on Friday for the Saints, but their Big Dance run comes to a close Sunday as the top-seeded Cards blast them big time. The Saints needed double-OT to turn back the Buckeyes, but if this team has a weakness, it's depth, and this very deep and relentless Louisville team will flat out wear down Siena. The Cards are a great pressing team and rank ninth in the country in steals and fifth in blocks. Senior guard Andre McGee locks down on opposing ball-handlers and then all those long-armed teammates of his step into passing lanes and swat away shots. The've won 11 straight and have covered in eight of those victories despite just missing the ATS win in Friday's 20-point whipping of Morehead State. They've covered 10 of their last 16 versus teams with winning records, are 2-0 SU/ATS as a neutral court chalk of 9 1/2 to 12 points and they'll pull away from this tiring Siena team in the second half in winning this game by 18 to 20 points.
LOUISVILLE (-11') 1000 Dime High Roller