Free Picks: Premium Service Plays for Saturday, December 12,2009

Re: Free Picks: Premium Service Plays for Saturday, December 12,2009

Al Demarco

10 Dime - Washington State

You have no idea how tempting it was to back Washington against Georgetown today, especially with the Huskies just one game removed from a double-overtime loss at Texas Tech and the Hoyas coming off a wire-to-wire rout of Butler. But, how many times have I said over the past 25 years that the marquee games are the toughest to win because their lines are always the sharpest? There's a reason that contest is priced right around 1 to 1 1/2 points and that's enough reason for me to stay away.

I used the same philosophy on Tuesday when the world was on Butler against Georgetown - and lost. Instead, I turned to the Lone Star State that night and produced a 5 dime winner on Texas Tech against TCU.

Same thing on Wednesday when I considered Connecticut versus Kentucky, but opted instead to travel to Tucson and back Arizona as a 5 dime play in a rout of Louisiana Tech.

Forget about my 5-0 NFL run that's produced 85 dimes profit the past two weeks; today it's all about taking the profit from this week's two college winners and putting it right back on the best game on today's board, another relatively obscure match-up between Washington State and Air Force in Spokane.

Remember when I said on Wednesday Louisiana Tech was overrated at 7-1 because of its weak schedule? That was one of the many reasons I went against the Bulldogs that night at Arizona and the Wildcats rolled in a rout. If Tech was overrated at 7-1, I don't know what adjective I can apply to Air Force's 5-2 record heading into today's game in Spokane against Washington State.

On the surface, 5-2 sounds impressive for the Service Academy school, but when those five wins come against the likes of Western State Colorado, Dickinson State, Charleston Southern, North Carolina Central and Prairie View - all at home no less - I can't get too excited. The Falcons' two losses? They got drilled at home by Northern Colorado, 70-46, and lost their only road game at Missouri State, 58-48. And here's something to chew on: in those two losses, they committed 17 and 16 turnovers, respectively. That's troubling when you consider Washington State forces on average 15.8 turnovers a game. And it's fair to say the Cougars are a bit better than Northern Colorado and Missouri State.

Air Force is a young team that regularly plays four freshman. And its starting center, Sammy Schafer, is expected to miss his fifth straight game today because of a concussion. But in keeping with the youth movement, the team hopes another freshman center - Taylor Broekhuis, who is a game-time decision after missing the last four games with a leg injury - might be able to help in the pivot.

What do I know about Washington State? They've got one of the best shooters in college - the nation's second-leading scorer - in 6-6 guard Klay Thompson, who is averaging 25.8 points on nearly 49% shooting from the field, including 44% from beyond the arc. He's also second on the team in rebounds (5.6 pg) and first in steals (2.1 pg). Perhaps you didn't know, but he also has the pedigree; his father is former Laker Mychal Thompson, who was the No. 1 overall draft pick in the NBA by Portland in 1978.

Washington State is not the methodical, low-scoring team that you've grown accustomed to over the years with the Bennett's - first Dick and then his son, Tony - in charge. First-year coach Ken Bone - who previously led Portland State to Big Dance appearances the past two years - allows his squad to run the floor a bit and it's reflected in the 80.2 points per game it averages.

The Cougars have lost two games this season. The first came at Gonzaga, 74-69, as a 10-point dog. Not surprisingly, three days later in Manhattan, Kansas, they played their worst game of the season, getting destroyed by K-State 86-69. Clearly they came out flat following the Gonzaga game and subsequently had no answer for the Wildcats' quickness and speed as they were buried by 20 early.

Quickness and speed; those are two factors Washington State won't have to worry about from Air Force today. For years the Falcons have relied on slowing down the pace of the game, using a strong half-court game, tough defense, and accurate three-point shooting to compete with more athletic foes. This year, they've shown a tendency to run a bit more, but this is still a team that went 0-16 in Mountain West Conference play a year ago and one that relies heavily on freshmen to contribute this season.

Air Force's toughest opponent this season has been Northern Colorado, and it was hammered in that game with its leading scorer, Grant Parker (18.2 ppg), held to just one point on 0-for-10 shooting from the field. This game might be on a "neutral" court in Spokane, but it's as much of a home game as one can possibly be for Washington State. And considering the Cougars, just one game removed from consecutive losses, took the foot off the pedal late in their last game against Idaho, I don't expect a repeat performance today. Although they easily covered as a 7-point home chalk in the 76-64 win versus Idaho, they allowed the Vandals to make a late charge that cut the deficit to seven in the closing minutes.

Today I expect a wire-to-wire effort this time with no slacking off near the end as the Cougars take advantage of a soft spot in their schedule and continue to prepare for their Pac-10 opener against Oregon in Pullman on New Year's Eve.

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Re: Free Picks: Premium Service Plays for Saturday, December 12,2009

SPORTS UNLIMITED

7* NEBRASKA

5* TOWSON ST

4* KANSAS ST

4* GEORGETOWN

3* JAMES MADISON

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Re: Free Picks: Premium Service Plays for Saturday, December 12,2009

Pure Lock

Navy

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Pitbull

20 unit GOY Washington +2

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Texas Sports Wire

5* Navy

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Re: Free Picks: Premium Service Plays for Saturday, December 12,2009

Scott Rickenbach

8* (Regular Play) OVER the total in Detroit vs Golden State

The Pistons have been playing short-handed but you wouldn’t know that from looking at their recent results. Detroit has averaged 98.5 points per game during their four game win streak. In their nine games that preceded this winning streak (this included time when the Pistons were healthier) they only averaged 90.6 points per game. Now this resurgent offense will take advantage of a Golden State team that has allowed 111.8 points per game this season. Also, the Warriors defense isn’t likely to be at it’s best tonight after they had to go to overtime in Chicago last night – and they still lost to the Bulls. Note that the Warriors are 4-1 to the over in the second night of their last 5 back to backs. Golden State has a tendency to push the pace offensively when in a back to back – because that’s all the Warriors really do well – but their already porous defense has a tendency to suffer. Surprisingly, the Warriors have stayed under the total in three straight games (facing weaker offenses has impacted that) but note that Golden State is 14-6 to the over when they have stayed under the total in three or more consecutive games! As for the Pistons, they’ve shown a willingness this season to join the “run and gun” when they play a skilled offensive team. Against teams averaging 99 points or more per game, the Pistons have gone over the total to the tune of an 8-4 record this season. We’ll put this combined 22-10 ATS mark in favor of the over to work for us tonight. Play OVER the total in Detroit as an 8* Regular Play selection.

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Re: Free Picks: Premium Service Plays for Saturday, December 12,2009

ASA

5-STAR PLAY ON #552 Texas A&M (-1.5) vs. New Mexico

The Lobos are undefeated on the year, however this is where it comes to an end. Don't get us wrong, we do like New Mexico as a team, but not in this spot.

The Lobos have played just three road games this year and all have been against fairly poor competition. The won at Hawaii, at New Mexico State and at San Diego. Not one of those teams is currently above the .500 mark. NM's most recent game was their 82-78 win @ San Diego on Wednesday of this week. Thus, they are traveling for the second time in just a few days as this one is being played in Houston. We were on the Lobos a week and a half ago when they played host to Cal. They won that game by 8 at home. However, winning at the Pit in Albuquerque vs. a good team is a whole different story than playing an 8-1 A&M team in Texas. The Pit is a very difficult venue in which very few visitors come away winners. However, other than their Cal win, this team has played a VERY tame schedule to date. Besides the Bears, they have played only two teams that currently have a winning record and BOTH of those were at home (UC Riverside and LouiSIAna Tech). This will be their toughest game to date by far.

As we mentioned, the Aggies are 8-1 on the season. However, unlike New Mexico, they have played a very tough schedule to get them prepared for this one. They have already played the likes of Minnesota, Clemson and West Virginia all on neutral courts. Their only loss was a 73-66 setback vs. a top notch West Virginia team. The Mountaineers have won their other five games by an average margin of 22.4 points per game giving you an idea of just how good they are. The Aggies are a veteran team led by three seniors (Donald Sloan, Bryan Davis and Derrick Roland) who have been ultra successful winning an average of 25 games per season the last three years. For their careers these three have already captured 87 wins.

These two have almost identical numbers on the season. Each shoot the ball at a 46% clip and allow right around 41%. The rebounding numbers are very close and neither team turns the ball over much. That gives the edge to A&M in our view as they have played the much tougher slate to date. Also, with this game being in Houston, the Aggies will have the following behind them. At this number, we side with Texas A&M.


3-Star play on: UNDER 206.5 Pacers @ Wizards

First of all, I'll apologize as this analysis will not be as in-depth as my usual write ups due to time constraints. Indiana is without their leading scorers and one of the best scorers in the NBA with Danny Granger sidelined for the next 4-6 weeks. A team like the Pacers will have a tough time making up for his 25 ppg average.

Indiana is coming off a win last night over the pathetic Nets at home 107-91 and that game helps us with our 'under' call tonight. The Pacers have REALLY struggled when playing the second night of a back-to-back concerning the total as they are 4-0 'under' this year in that situation while averaging just 180 ppg. Let me repeat that...180 points per game!

When Vegas has posted a total of 200 or more points on both of these teams the 'under' has responded with a solid 15-4 record. In their last five games the Pacers 'D' has held foes to just 42% shooting but their 'stroke' on offense hasn't been good as they're hitting just 42% of their shots.

Both teams are in the top 14 in the league in pace of play, meaning they like to get up and down the floor, but it doesn't translate to a lot of points as they are both 24th and lower in the NBA in offensive efficiency. Based on my math model this game stays below the number by 9 full points. Play UNDER!

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Re: Free Picks: Premium Service Plays for Saturday, December 12,2009

Guaranteed Pick: Ben Burns

Game: New Mexico at Texas A&M Dec 12 2009 6:00PM
Prediction: New Mexico
Reason: I'm playing on NEW MEXICO. Not many people are surprised to see the Aggies with a Top-25 ranking and an 8-1 record. However, most didn't expect the Lobos to be a perfect 9-0 to start the season. That's the case though. With this game being played at the Toyota Center in Houston, still not willing to believe, most will likely also expect the Aggies to hand the Lobos their first loss. I expect a different outcome. Yes, the Lobos are young. However, I believe that they're the "real deal" and expect them to play with a chip on their shoulder. As Aggies coach Mark Turgeon said: "They're legit. We've played a lot of really good teams. This will probably be the best offensive team we've faced. ... It'll be our toughest challenge defensively." Indeed, the Lobos rank among the top 25 in the country in scoring, averaging 82.1 points per game. It helps when you hit nearly 40% from beyond the arc! Always tough at The Pit, the Lobos are also already 3-0 on the road. They won 82-78 at San Diego last time out and their previous two road wins both came by double-digits. Having beaten California, the preseason Pac-10 favorite, by double-digits, the Lobos have shown that they can defeat top tier teams. Of course, with wins over the likes of Clemson and Minnesota, the Aggies are certainly worthy of respect. They've been through an exhausting stretch recently though (six games in 12 days, before having a 5-day break before this one) may have exams on the back of their mind, not to mention a big games at Washington in the not too distant future. The well-coached Lobos feel that they deserve a national ranking. This is a huge game for them and I expect them to be fully focused. After all, they already received 35 votes in this week's AP poll. A win here brings the respect that they feel they deserve and a national ranking. Of course, it would also go along way come Tourament time. Yes, the Aggies are tough defensively. The Lobos are 16-5 SU and 15-6 ATS the last 21 times that they faced a team which allows 64 or fewer points per game though. They're also 18-6 ATS the last few seasons when coming off a game in which they scored 80 or more points, including a 5-1 ATS (6-0 SU) mark in that situation this season. They're 7-2 ATS this season and are now a highly profitable 47-25-1 ATS in lined games the past few seasons. They're also 10-4 ATS their last 14 against teams from the Big 12, including 3-1 SU/ATS their last four. They've beaten the Aggies four of five all-time meetings (haven't played since 1992) and I look for them to do it again here. *10 GOW



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Re: Free Picks: Premium Service Plays for Saturday, December 12,2009

How does he say that its guaranteed that New Mexico will cover against A&M?? confirmed-tool

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Re: Free Picks: Premium Service Plays for Saturday, December 12,2009

papi_45 wrote:


How does he say that its guaranteed that New Mexico will cover against A&M?? confirmed-tool

Yeah they refund your losses  ;D

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