NCAA Tournament: Thursday Picks

Ah March, the time when the general public dives in and throws their money around like they have been watching College Basketball all season.

This is not to say the public doesn’t have a clue or that I am so much smarter than everyone else, because I am definitely not. I do however like to take advantage of a public betting market.

As someone who traditionally likes to fade the majority, this is my time to shine. See a trendy upset pick or every prognosticator picking one team over another? Fade them and go the other way!

A quick tip before we get into Thursdays picks, just take first half unders in the opening weekend. These are new arenas, bigger crowds, and unique shooting background for 18-22 year olds.

Kyle’s Picks:

Maryland -3 vs Belmont

The Belmont hype is oh so real and with good reason. They had an impressive season falling just short of an Ohio Valley Championship losing to Ja Morant and Murray State in the title game. The Bruins also have Dylan Windler who is a legit NBA prospect that should hear his name called in the 2019 NBA Draft.

That said, give me the Terrapins -3. Belmont played on Tuesday in the play in game just for the opportunity to face Maryland. They will be tired and have dealt with more travel.

LSU -7.5 vs Yale

The Tigers come into this game without its head coach but fear not, they are the right side. While I don’t expect LSU to make a serious run in the tourney, they’re still a really talented 3 seed that should top Yale. Fade the masses and win some cashes.

Kansas -6.5 v North Eastern

This was not the season Jayhawks fans had hoped for when the season started. They are used to winning the Big 12, which didn’t happen and be in the conversation for a 1 seed, which didn’t happen. That said, this is still Rock Chalk, Jayhawk! They are still a really good team that played a ton of quality opponents in a tough Big 12.

Like Belmont, North Eastern is a team with plenty of buzz. I’m pulling out the fly swatter and laying 6.5 with Kansas!

Brians’s Picks:

Minnesota/Louisville – Under 135

Both of these teams have had roller coaster seasons while playing in probably the two toughest conferences in America. What Minnesota lacks in guard play, they more than make up for on the wing and down low where All Big Ten selection Jordan Murphy cleans the glass better than Mr. Clean. Louisville has competed with some of the best teams in the country but ended the season losing 8 of 12. They lack a true elite scorer even with Jordan Nwora getting hot and carrying the Cards. Both teams have issues tickling the twine at times and thus I think this game winds up being lower scoring than expected.

Auburn -3  first half v New Mexico State

That noise you hear is the load roar of the Auburn Tigers. They enter the 2019 tournament riding a 5 game winning streak and winners of the SEC tourney. Although their path to the title wasn’t very difficult, Auburn crushed potential no. 1 seed Tennessee by 20! They are more than willing to take and make 3’s as they attempted 40 against the Vols. Auburn will look to separate themselves early from a highly experienced and pesky Aggies team who are playing in their 3rd consecutive tournament.

Marquette -4 vs Murray State

I feel as if this line might creep closer to 3 ½ or 3 by tip as the public, and a good amount of experts are picking Murray State as one of their upsets. I don’t think the same as most everybody however. Markus Howard was banged up, and Theo John was ejected during their loss to Seton Hall where they lost by 2. Although the Golden Eagles struggled mightily at season’s end losing 5 of 6, almost a week of rest and recovery might bring back the team that started 23-4. I think the Hauser brothers and Howard will all be on top of their games helping Marquette pull away late and cover the 4.

Syracuse -2.5 vs Baylor

This year the Orange didn’t have to sweat out the selection show as they were safely in and subsequently seeded with an 8. No matter where they’ve landed, the ‘Cuse has won at least 1 game in each of the last 8 NCAA’s they played in and I fully expect that trend to continue even without Frank Howard.

Their opponent the Baylor Bears will struggle to solve the rubiks cube like 2-3 zone that Boeheim employs and with no low post presence and limited size, I expect Syracuse to dominate the glass. Unless Baylor shoots a ridiculous percentage from bonus land, Syracuse in my opinion should control the game.

Make sure you check back every day to get more winners!

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