Today's Free Picks for
Posted at 2:00 PM EST.
NORFOLK ST -21 over Delaware St
7:30 PM EST. We’ll dumpster dive here to perhaps the weakest conference in Division I basketball to find a sneaky good play on a big favorite. The market won’t show much interest in this game but those that look at everything will see a 9-4 team that has lost three straight spotting a massive number to conference foe and it’s not going to sit right. We, on the other hand, absolutely love that Norfolk State has dropped three in a row because it just makes them hungrier for a victory. Incidentally, those three losses were all out of conference so in the grand scheme of things, those three games against Hampton (a one-point loss), Wichita (a 13-point loss) and to New Mexico (a 14-point loss) were just games against superior competition to get warmed up and ready to go to begin their slate of conference games, which begins here. Norfolk State did not look out of place against any of the aforementioned three superior teams.
Norfolk is the favorite to represent the MEAC in this year’s NCAA Tournament. That’s absolutely a legitimate choice, especially considering that Robert Jones has never finished worse than last year’s 8-4 in league play (by win percentage). It may also have been a small “thank you” for claiming the MEAC’s first NCAA Tournament win since 2015. The Spartans knocked off Appalachian State in the First Four, earning the conference a piece of that sweet, sweet money pie.
Jones and the Spartans lost Devante Carter and several other key pieces, but they were one of the deepest teams in the sport last year. That means that, along with several tantalizing transfers, the Spartans have enough back to reign atop the league once again. This is a Norfolk State team with nine out-of-conference victories and they’re not taking a step up in class to face perhaps the worst team in all of Division I.
Delaware State has a 13-point loss to Division II school, Salisbury. Its two wins this year were against two other Division II programs in Cairn U and Regent U. Delaware State has a 33-point loss to North Carolina Central, a 42-point loss to Wagner, a 36-point loss to Liberty, a 20-point loss to Longwood and a 34-point loss to Long Island U among others and that’s after playing a group of opponents that rank 310th combined in offensive efficiency.
In the handicapping business, one can go from being the king of the hill to shoveling shit in an instant but that does not mean that we’re not trying. We dig deep to find undervalued and overvalued teams and once we find them and make our wagers, everything else is out of our control. If Norfolk State isn’t ice cold (they only need to be average), they should destroy this intruder by 30 or more.
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NORFOLK ST -21 -106 (Risking 2.12 units - To Win: 2.00)