Today's Free Picks for
Posted at 12:30 PM EST.
6:30 PM EST. We were on St. Joseph's Friday night for their emotional 91-61 drubbing of St. Louis. That night, the Hawks honored the passing of "Pops" Martelli, the father of legendary St. Joe's coach Phil Martelli. "Pops" was a staple on Hawk Hill for the entire time his son has been the coach there (21 years) and the junior Martelli often judged his teams based on how they interacted with the elder. If you watched that game on Friday night, you saw an emotional pregame ceremony that involved players and coaches from both sides personally give their condolences with the Billikens joining the Hawks in shedding many pregame tears. As inspiring and uplifting as a performance Friday night was, we can't help but wonder if there will be an emotional dump after that game. The line oddsmakers have set on this contest waves a big red flag, as the Hawks are very small favorite after a 30 point win, while their opposition was blown out by that exact same number last time out.
The Bonnies were blasted 85-55 by VCU, but we're going to stick with it by coming right back on them here tonight. That extreme margin of loss combined with the Hawks eye-popping performance in their last game could have given oddsmakers the opportunity to set this line much higher than it is and not sway a bet, but they didn’t. Seriously? Would the market back off of fading the Bonnies here if this line were two, three or even four points higher? We don't think so, as the Bonnies were priced in this same range at VCU and got whacked. That game Saturday was over before you could get your popcorn ready after the Rams jumped out to a 45-21 lead at the half and never looked back. While that performance was embarrassing, you cannot predict which team will be hot and which team will be ice cold. St. Bonaventure shot just 26.6% from the field in that game, which is well below its 41.9% season average. However, this is a what have you done for me lately market and the Bonnies stunk the joint out, but do not forget that these two teams have already met this season and while all things are not equal, the Bonnies were a small favorite and destroyed St. Joe's 73-47. If this is the sucker bet of the day and the Hawks win easy, then so be it, but we've got to trust our instincts and jump in against a team that looks too easy.
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St. Bonaventure +108 (Risking 2 units - To Win: 2.16)