NBA (0.5 Unit) Philadelphia 76ers/Washington Wizards Over 236.5 (-110; Odds via Fanduel): 6:00 PM CT on NBCS-PHI
The biggest factor for me here is that both teams are on no rest, with travel, after playing high-possession games last night. These defenses are tired, and they aren’t very good to begin with, especially Washington who has the worst defensive efficiency in the league at home. And without Joel Embiid’s rim protection, this Sixers defense has taken a big step back, pushing them to the best over record in the league.
Philly still has scorers though, especially with the addition of Buddy Hield, and put up 121 last night against a bad defense with Tyrese Maxey also sidelined. The season series between these teams has averaged 259.3 PPG, and even though those included big nights from Joel Embiid, I’ll count on the tired defenses to turn this into another shootout at a discounted number.
NCAA Basketball (0.75 Unit) TCU @ Iowa State -4.5 First Half (-110; Odds via Caesars): 1:00 PM CT on ESPN2
Hilton will be rocking as always for this one, and it should carry my Cyclones to another strong start. Iowa State is 3rd nationally for first half margin in home games, and in Big12 play they’ve averaged a 9.3 point halftime lead. TCU is a very good team, but they tend to give up a lot of points early which the Clones should capitalize on.
The Horned Frogs also tend to turn it over a lot, ranked 270th in turnovers per game, so ISU’s defense that’s best in the country at generating steals should thrive. You have to be red hot from deep to get an advantage on this Cyclones team, and I don’t see that from TCU with atmosphere they’re walking into this afternoon.
NCAA Basketball (0.75 Unit) Dartmouth Team Total Under 61.5 (-110; Odds via Caesars): 1:00 PM CT on ESPN+
There’s a solid argument to be made that this is the worst offense in the country. It’s not quite at the bottom by adjusted efficiency, ranked 356th, but the lack of success they’ve had is remarkable. The Big Green have only gone over this total once in Ivy League play, and five times total on the season. Harvard’s defense isn’t elite by any means, but they defend the three well which is what Dartmouth relies on most. Don’t overthink it, one of the worst offenses in the country isn’t having a big day in a road game.
NCAA Basketball (2 Units) Purdue First Half Team Total Over 40.5 (-110; Odds via Caesars): 7:00 PM CT on FOX
I absolutely love this number, and think the Purdue revenge tour continues here as they look to stomp their in-state rival. As usual, that stomping should start early, as the Boilermakers have made a habit of piling on the points in the first half. Purdue is 3rd nationally for first-half scoring at home, averaging 46.0 points, and have gone over this in every Big10 home game with 48.8 on average.
Today they face an Indiana team that is 311th nationally in first half points allowed, and is dealing with injuries to some of their best defenders. The Hoosiers struggle to guard the three, and Purdue shoots it at 44% in their own building, so the Boilers will fill it up from inside and out tonight to make a national TV statement.
NCAA Basketball (0.75 Unit) Arizona/Colorado Over 158.5 (-110; Odds via Fanduel): 9:00 PM CT on ESPN
Arizona is extremely fortunate to have pulled out a win at Utah on Thursday night, as triple OT is just where underdogs go to die. It’s also where defensive legs go to die, and the Wildcats being on the second leg of their elevation road trip is going to be rough for them. I expect Colorado to take advantage, as the Buffaloes have been playing at a much faster tempo lately. They also score in bunches on their home floor, ranked 21st in scoring for home games.
It’s based on the three, which the Buffs shoot at the 9th-best percentage nationally, and Arizona just happens to be 258th in three-point defense. But Arizona can score on anyone and already hung 97 on this Colorado team in the first meeting, so expect their offense to also shine. But I think the defense will be in trouble today, and that should get this game over the big number as sharp money and metrics sites are expecting.
NCAA Basketball Auburn/Florida Under 158.5 (-110; Odds via Caesars): 2:30 PM CT on SEC Network
I haven’t run the numbers or anything, but I definitely feel like I’ve noticed a trend lately that impacts this game. With Auburn and Florida squaring off my initial reaction is that the over is in play, especially with how Florida home games tend to go. Auburn’s excellent offense that’s been on fire lately should have no trouble with Florida’s lackadaisical defense, and the pace should be very up-tempo.
KenPom and other metrics sites see this game getting into the 160’s, and the total opened at 160. But smart money immediately bet the under and drove it down, which is the exact trend that I’ve noticed and it just feels like the under is undefeated in these spots. I hate it with a passion, but I’m done fighting this trend of line moves, so I’ll cautiously take the under here.
Tiny Nick is 2023-1825 ATS (+95.5 Units) on his Locks since joining Zone Coverage.
Every day he will offer his Locks and Degenerate picks. Locks are the games he’s confident in. Degenerates are entertaining but riskier picks.