Purdue Boilermakers (+14) @ Michigan Wolverines
I just really like Purdue here, I mean they play mistake free football and as good as Michigan can be, they’ll keep lesser talented teams in the game with their mental errors – that’s a fact. When you add to that little tidbit that Purdue has been playing decent football, you got yourself an upset in the making.
Wisconsin Badgers (-7) @ Ohio State Buckeyes
I know that the Buckeyes will have most of their cats back and they obviously are a talented football team with their entire season riding on upsetting the mighty Badgers – but hey, the Spartans took that glory last week, making the Buckeyes’ plans a little second fiddle(ish). The Badgers probably just come out and kill it for a few quarters and ride it out to victory.
Arizona Wildcats @ Washington Huskies (-4.5)
The Huskies are still good, despite their late struggles against Stanford. People forget that they were marching down the field offensively against the Cardinal, but it did get out of hand. Still, with suspensions on an already soft defense, the Wildcats might take a step back in Seattle.
Clemson Tigers (-3.5) @ Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets
People keep expecting the Tigers to drop a game, and I can see why. You look at them and you see the same thing you see from a lot of teams that put up points like it’s their job – defense just isn’t a part of the equation. I get why the Jackets aren’t that big of a dog in this one, I mean they run the ball right down your throat, hold onto the ball for long periods of time, and don’t do things to give their opponents extra opportunities. While that’s all fine and dandy, and maybe the smart play here is taking the Techies, I just can’t look past that mountain of offense coming at them when Clemson comes to town on Saturday. Taj Boyd is legit and there are just too many weapons there to team up on any one guy.
Wisconsin Badgers @ Purdue Boilermakers College Basketball Free Pick: I love the Badgers’ squad. They can really play tough defensively on the front lines, and if they’re hitting from the backcourt, they can beat anyone in the nation. But hey, they played PERFECT against Ohio State and I don’t think they’re going to do that again on Wednesday. They’ll have to be perfect to go on the road and beat the Purdue Boilermakers. Perfect like Purdue is at home this season, 13-0 thus far.
The Badgers are just 3-4 on the road, so home is definitely where their heart is. Purdue scores a little more by shooting a little better, and they rebound at least as well as Wisconsin does, if not a little bit better.
Expect one heck of a game, as both these teams play tough-nosed basketball – but the Boilermakers are good enough to take the Badgers by 4, especially since this is a great time to draw Wisconsin, the game after they upset previously unbeaten Wisconsin – the game after a big court-storming upset is always tough for the underdog.
All things considered, the unbelievable game the Badgers had last time out against the Nation’s #1 team, the big upset, the big comeback, the unreal performance by Mr. Taylor – I just don’t see this one going so well. Things even out in sports, and if that holds true, they’ll have a tough time putting the ball in the basket on Wednesday.
I’ll take the Purdue Boilermakers, undefeated thus far at home.
#10 Wisconsin Badgers @ #11 Purdue Boilermakers (-4) (2/16)
Purdue Boilermakers @ Ohio State Buckeyes Pick & Preview: Purdue’s not very good, but are they +24 bad? I don’t think so. I’m sure they’ll pick something up from that Wisconsin game, and that should help them keep this thing within 3 touchdowns for sure. Ohio State has great numbers, for sure, they are outscoring opponents by 24 points on average – that’s really impressive. However, they seem to be accruing big time numbers against poor opponents. Illinois held them to just 24 while scoring 13. Wisconsin held them under three touchdowns.
Purdue has certainly had Ohio State’s numbers over the years, at least in the sports betting world. The Boilermakers have covered the spread against the mighty Ohio State Buckeyes in 5 of the last 6 match-ups, and they’ve won outright in 2 of the last 4.
Purdue is looking to hand the Buckeyes their second loss in as many tries, and while I don’t expect to see much of that, I do think this one will stay closer than 24 points. Only once in the last 9 years have the Buckeyes won by more than 20 points in their yearly match-up with Purdue.
Purdue has been great running the football and solid defensively – I think that’s a couple very important strengths of a team that wants to upset the Buckeyes. The first team that out-rushed the Buckeyes this season was Wisconsin – and what do you know? They won.
Purdue has out-rushed each opponent in the last 5 games. I think they’re improving, and I think they’ll be tough against the Buckeyes.
Purdue Boilermakers (+24) @ #10 Ohio State Buckeyes
Purdue is one of the best teams in the Big 10. Yeah, I said it – I’m going out on a limb and picking them to finish in the Top 10 in one of the weaker “big” conferences in the Nation. They have talented kids, but better yet, they have a great program that consistently pumps out winning seasons.
They struggled in the beginning of 2009, but finished the year 4-2 over their final 6 games including a nice victory over Ohio State. Purdue might just ride that wave for a while, and what a better way to start off the year than as a double-digit dog against a mediocre and overrated Notre Dame team? I get sick of hearing about the Irish, watching them get way more credit than they deserve, and flaunting their “independence” and big money NBC TV contract – and I don’t even play against them. My guess, there’s not a team more exciting to beat than Notre Dame. You beat them and you know your touchdown highlights will be on SportsCenter all week.
I expect this to be an easy cover for the Boilermakers; I believe they are going to beat Notre Dame outright. The Irish have a lot to deal with. Old coach? Gone. Star quarterback? Gone. Star receiver? Gone. I’m not saying the new coach isn’t better than the old guy, but hey, it’s part of the adversity these kids Charlie recruited will be dealing with this coming season. In Purdue, there’s no adversity. I’ll take those tough Boilermakers to win if I can get a good payout – but 11.5 points seems like free money to me.
Purdue Boilermakers (+11.5) @ Notre Dame Fighting Irish
NBA Basketball Picks
The first two NBA games of the day are dandies, as the surging Suns go to San Antonio to play a suddenly old Spurs squad – but both these teams, led by a couple aging vets, have a lot to play for as playoff spots loom. The next game is one of the best of the month as the two best teams in the West go head to head in L.A. as the Lakers host the Nuggets in what has to be considered the odds on favorite for the Western Conference Finals, known out west as “The Real Championship” – Here are my picks!
Phoenix Suns (+4) @ San Antonio Spurs (2-28: 1:00 PM ET – ABC): The Suns have looked pretty good lately and Amare Staudamire usually plays the Spurs better than anyone – he just gets his motor going against Timmy Duncan and company. That should be huge, because lately the Spurs have looked pathetic, and people can say what they want about age and injuries and inconsistent play being the biggest culprit, but I’ve been watching some games, and I see Tim Duncan getting old – on both sides of the floor. Still a very good player, but Tim can’t win by himself like he used to be able to do, and because of that the Spurs are 1-3 over their last 4 games, and Detroit and Philadelphia were two of the teams that kicked them around. I like the Suns.
Denver Nuggets @ L.A. Lakers (-6) (2-28: 3:30 PM ET – ABC): The Nuggets have been the better team lately, but is that enough to beat the Lakers in L.A.? I don’t think so. Not this time. The Nuggets have been okay over their last few games, but before that it was struggle-city, and it’s not like beating up Boston, Golden State, and Detroit (their current win streak) is that amazing. Already this season, teh Nuggets have ousted the Lakers twice, but Kobe’s back and healthy and Odom is playing well, Gasol and Bynum are going to give the Nuggets front line trouble – yes, the Lakers are getting healthy, and that spells trouble for the rest of the west. In L.A., with the Lakers needing this one more, I see them winning and covering.
NCAA Basketball Picks
The Big 10 didn’t have a place in my 4 amazing games for Saturday, but they are rocking Sunday all by themselves in my College Hoops ticket. The Boilermakers have to play without one of their top games, and Robbie Hummel is out for the season, and Michigan State is looking for a big win to boost their resume…
Michigan State Spartans (+4) @ Purdue Boilermakers (4:00pm ET, 2-28): Purdue managed a win even when Hummel went down against Minnesota, but it was tight, and they needed every ounce they had to beat a pretty decent, but unranked Golden Gophers team. The 14th ranked Spartans need this one bad, and I’m wiling to bet that Purdue struggles in their first game without Hummel. That will be enough, and the Spartans pull the upset over the 3rd ranked Boilermakers.
Wednesday Basketball Picks – NCAA, NBA Previews & Picks: There are two games on my schedule for Wednesday Night – as two Big 10 schools go at it in NCAA action while the NBA sees Steve Nash headed to his old stomping grounds to play one of his best friends, Dirk Nowitzki and the Mavericks. It should be a good night of Hoops on Wednesday, here’s the haps…
Phoenix Suns @ Dallas Mavericks (-4.5) (2-17: 9:00 PM ET – ESPN): The Dallas Mavericks fell last night in their first game since “the trade” and Caron Butler was unimpressive to say the very least, tallying up a plus/minus of -13 and shooting 4 for 16 while Haywood finished -16 in just 15 minutes of action. But I’m going to give them a little credit here, and say the first game might be just getting their feet wet. Plus, they were going up against one of the youngest and most athletic defensive teams in the West in Oklahoma. The entire team wasn’t too impressive during the 13 point loss. In the 2nd game of a back to back, Caron and Haywood get to try their games against one of the worst defensive teams in the West when Phoenix comes to town. With Staudamire possibly getting traded any minute, I like the improved Mavericks to beat up on Phoenix. The Suns are playing their second game of a back-to-back as well, and I see them losing on the road here.
Purdue Boilermakers @ Ohio State Buckeyes(-3.5) (6:30pm ET, 2-17): Neither the 4th ranked Boilermakers nor the 12th ranked Ohio State Buckeyes have lost since January. Not a bad Big 10 match-up on Wednesday Night. But I’m all over the Buckeyes in this one. The game should be close, but Ohio State boasts the best player in college basketball in Evan Turner and a 15-0 home record so far this season. Ohio State looks like they are going to be fully healthy, and while Purdue certainly has the players to give Ohio State a run, their mediocre play and close wins against sub-par opponents looks to catch up with them. Take the home team!
Tuesday boasts some big games in the SEC and Big 10. Both Vandy and Tennessee have 17+ wins while the two Big 10 schools sit at 19 Ws so far this year. These are 4 solid teams, and these games should represent that.
Tennessee Volunteers @ Vanderbilt Commodores (-3) (7:00pm ET, 2-9)
Tennessee has won each of their last 3 and 8 of their last 10 but not many of them have been easy. Their win over Florida was of the one-point nature while LSU gave the Vols all they could handle. South Carolina didn’t pose much of a fight, but then again, Vandy beat them up as well. I think Vandy’s 11-0 mark at home stays clean on Tuesday Night. As I said in my Just Picks Newsletter, the Commodores went to Tennessee and handed the Vols their only home loss of the season, I don’t see why going home and getting the best of Tennessee again isn’t the best bet here. Beating a good team twice is tough, but the high scoring Commodores get the edge here.
Purdue Boilermakers (+3) @ Michigan State Spartans (9:00pm ET, 2-9)
Purdue might not be the best bet to be the first team to oust the Spartans at home, but somebody’s going to have to do it, and why not the clutch bunch from Purdue? The Spartans’ best player, Kalin Lucas, won’t be at full strength though he is expected to play with a dinged up ankle. In the end, I think this game comes down toe the Boilermakers’ front line of E’Twaun Moore, Robbie Hummel, and Jujan Johnson – those three guys have been teaming up and beating up the Big 10 over the last 5 games, and while the Spartans know how to defend their home court, they’re going to slip up sooner or later, why not sooner? A big game from JaJuan Johnson will be just enough to upset the masses.
NCAA Basketball Thursday Night Wisconsin Badgers VS Purdue Boilermakers Pick: Listen, Purdue is solid, but they aren’t 8.5 points better than a Wisconsin Badger team that plays tough defense and generally plays in close games kind of solid. I know Purdue is ranked 12th in the nation, but some kinks in the armor have presented themselves. They’ve recently won two straight games, but they’ve covered just 1 of their last 5 contests and they had lost three straight earlier in the month, getting ousted by Wisconsin (by 7), Ohio State (by 4), and Northwestern (by 8). Those are the Boilermakers only three losses of the season, but that 14-0 start doesn’t quite look as good when you see they’ve lost 3 of their last 5. Purdue is actually just 3-7 ATS in their last 10 games.
Wisconsin is 2-3 straight up on the road this season, and it’s not like they’ve been amazing lately either. They needed overtime to beat Penn State at home, and their win over Michigan was too close as well. Wisconsin plays tough though, the rebound the basketball and make opponents earn their buckets. In college basketball, a close game can be won by 8-10 points and a blowout can turn into 8-10 in a hurry as well. You just never know. But the likelihood of this game being double digits is pretty low, so Wisconsin and the points looks good.
40% of the betting public likes Wisconsin to cover. The Badgers are 10-8 ATS this season. Purdue, 8-10-1 ATS. The Badgers are one game up in the win-column on the Boilermakers in the Big 10 – Wisconsin is 6-2 while the Boilermakers are 4-3.
Wisconsin Badgers (+8.5) @ Purdue Boilermakers:
Purdue Boilermakers (+4) @ Michigan Wolverines Football Pick: Luckily for you, this spread has made a change for the better since Monday Night when I made my selection. I have the Boilermakers at +4 but they are already getting +6 at almost every book. Still, 75% of the public likes Michigan to cover at home in this one.
Fortunately, I think the public is confused, and the man is happy as a clam at high tide about the whole thing. See, the public (or so I guess) sees 5-4 Michigan hosting 3-6 Purdue, and they think, “favored by less than a touchdown, give me that football powerhouse, Michigan” – but that’s where they’re all wrong. Sure, the Wolverines got the Fighting Irish when they were on the other side of that luck thing, and that was a good win. But their other four wins have come against less than stellar competition, Delaware State, Western and Eastern Michigan, and good old Indiana. How’s that 5-4 resume looking now? And Michigan has really struggled lately, losing 4 of their last 5, including a beat down last week at the hands of Illinois, of all teams.
Purdue may have 6 losses, and on any given day they can play like piss, but aside from last week, they’ve been very competitive against some pretty good teams. Purdue has lost by more than a touchdown just twice this season, losing to Notre Dame and Oregon by 5 points combined. They got kicked around last week by Wisconsin, but that puts them in a good place to come out and fight hard against Michigan. I’ll take Purdue, the better team of the two.
Ohio State Buckeyes @ Purdue Boilermakers (+14): The Boilermakers might not be the sexy pick, but I’m a firm believer in football karma evening out, and the Boilermakers have played a lot better than their 1-5 record shows. They’ve played in heaps of close games already, losing by just 3 to Notre Dame, 2 to Oregon, 6 to Northwestern, and a Touchdown to Northern Illinois. Now listen, the Boilermakers aren’t good, I just expect a couple things to bounce right for them against the Buckeyes. The Buckeyes aren’t the most explosive offense on the planet, and the Boilermakers historically give the Ohio State trouble. Now, OSU has beaten the Boilermakers in 5 of the last 6 contests, but Purdue has covered in 4 of the last 5, and this game has been close in the last 5 showdowns. The Boilermakers have lost by more than two touchdowns just once in the last 5 years, that was a 16 point loss in ’07. Two touchdowns is a lot to spot the Boilermakers, I’m thinking too much. I’ll take the points again!