Monday brought about another rendition of the AP Poll, and while Purdue remaining at No. 1 was no surprise given they did not lose last week, the UConn Huskies made the big jump to No. 2. With that move came a little bit of history, as ESPN Stats & Info explained.
Purdue and UConn sit atop this week’s AP Poll.
It’s the second time in AP Poll history that two teams unranked in the first poll of the season occupy the top two spots.
The other was the poll on February 28, 1966, when Kentucky was No. 1 and Texas Western (now UTEP) was No. 2. pic.twitter.com/Op3198xWVs
— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) December 19, 2022
Here are our best bets for Tuesday’s college basketball action. (Odds courtesy of DraftKings)
Lipscomb vs. Louisville Spread
Bellarmine and Lipscomb were predicted to finish tied for sixth in the ASUN preseason media poll. Bellarmine kickstarted Louisville’s 0-9 start with a one-point road victory. Do you know who has a better rank than the Knights in nearly every statistical category, including adjusted offensive and defensive efficiency, turnover percentage, turnovers forced, offensive rebounding percentage, and effective field goal percentage? Answer: Lipscomb. If Bellarmine can beat Louisville in a packed gym on opening night before the Cardinals started their slide, a better Lipscomb team can do the same in a half-empty gym with students home for winter break.
Virginia vs. Miami Spread
In a seven-point victory over Baylor, Virginia made nine of 14 (64.3%) 3-point attempts. The following are Virginia’s 3-point percentages in the six games since: 29.4%, 33.3%, 50% (4-8), 26.3%, 23.8%, 27.3%. That long-range ineptitude suggests regression should be coming in the adjusted offensive efficiency metric in which it is currently 11th. In addition, Miami’s 12th-ranked adjusted offensive efficiency will challenge Virginia in many ways it has not seen all year. The Hurricanes have three guards (Bensley Joseph, Isaiah Wong, and Nijel Pack) that can break defenders off the dribble, allowing Jim Larranaga’s squad to identify a matchup they like on every possession.
Virginia has not covered the spread in any of its last five games, while Miami is 9-3-1 ATS in its last 13 games against teams with a winning record.
Marquette vs. Providence Spread
We are fading a Marquette team who just entered the top-25 for the first time this season. Though its three losses are to Purdue, Mississippi State, and Wisconsin by a combined 11 points, Providence has a physical advantage over the Golden Eagles. The Friars attempted 28 free throws and outrebounded Seton Hall by five in its Big East opener, and the backboards has been a strength of theirs all season (ranking sixth in offensive rebounding percentage). The Golden Eagles have been outrebounded in four of their last five games, and Providence’s edge on the backboards makes them a dangerous home ‘dog.
Providence enters this game with four consecutive covers, and we expect a fifth straight tonight.
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College Basketball, Picks