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NCAA Hoops Picks - December 2007


Monday, Dec. 31, 2007 (1-0, +$200)


San Diego (7-8) at Marshall (6-4)
Line: Marshall by 4.


San Diego just went into Kentucky and embarrassed the Wildcats. People want to bet them today, and I think they go down big time to Marshall. I like the fact that the Herd have gone from -2.5 to -4 despite a slight edge in action toward San Diego.


Prediction: Marshall 71, San Diego 64
Marshall -4 (2 Units) -- Correct; +$200




Saturday, Dec. 29, 2007 (0-1, -$440)


Tennessee (11-1) at Gonzaga (9-3)
Line: Gonzaga by 1.5.


I'm a huge fan of taking unranked home favorites over ranked visitors. I also like the fact that despite action on Tennessee, this line has risen from -1 to -1.5.


Prediction: Gonzaga 87, Tennessee 74
Gonzaga -1.5 (4 Units) -- Incorrect; -$440




Saturday, Dec. 22, 2007 (0-1, -$330)


Tennessee (10-1) at Xavier (8-2)
Line: Xavier by 3.


Another unranked home favorite playing a ranked visitor. I'm not sure why this works, but it does. Tennessee has played only one road game this year.


Prediction: Xavier 88, Tennessee 78
Xavier -3 (3 Units) -- Incorrect; -$330




Friday, Dec. 21, 2007 (1-0, +$100)


Youngstown State (3-6) at Akron (8-2)
Line: Akron by 16.5.


Just a small play on the Zips here. Akron always dominates its opponents at home. Looks like Pinnacle has taken notice of this, raising the line to -17 despite equal action on both sides.


Prediction: Akron 84, Youngstown State 60
Akron -16.5 (1 Unit) -- Correct; +$100




Thursday, Dec. 20, 2007 (1-0, +$400)


Gonzaga (9-2) at Oklahoma (8-3)
Line: Oklahoma by 3.


Taking unranked home favorites over ranked visitors works almost every time. Let's go Sooners.


Prediction: Oklahoma 69, Gonzaga 60
Oklahoma -3 (4 Units) -- Correct; +$400




Monday, Dec. 17, 2007 (0-1, -$110)


West Carolina (3-6) at Illinois (5-3)
Line: Illinois by 22.5.


I think Illinois stinks. I watched them a few times this year and have not been impressed. They're actually 2-6 against the spread, meaning they're overrated. They haven't blown out anyone this year. I don't see it happening tonight.


Prediction: Illinois 75, West Carolina 60
West Carolina +22.5 (1 Unit) -- Incorrect; -$110




Saurday, Dec. 15, 2007 (1-0, +$400)


Arkansas (8-1) at Oklahoma (7-3)
Line: Oklahoma by 4.


Another unranked home favorite giving points over a ranked visitor. I like that despite 50-percent action, the line has risen from -3.5 to -4. It's even -4.5 in Pinnacle, which is a good sign.


Prediction: Oklahoma 73, Arkansas 61
Oklahoma -4 (4 Units) -- Correct; +$400




Wednesday, Dec. 12, 2007 (0-1, -$220)


Pacific (6-3) at Santa Clara (6-2)
Line: Santa Clara by 6.


When you figure the records of these two squads, they may seem about even to you. That's not the case, however, as Santa Clara has played every single game, excluding its opener, on the road. That's right - the Broncos are 5-2 as visitors. Any team that consistently win on the road has my respect. I think they cover tonight, and the line movement supports my prediction. With 90 percent of the public on the host, the spread has risen from -4.5 to -6.


Prediction: Santa Clara 76, Pacific 61
Santa Clara -6 (2 Units) -- Incorrect; -$220




Tuesday, Dec. 11, 2007 (1-0, +$300)


Saint Mary's (7-0) at Southern Illinois (3-3)
Line: Southern Illinois by 4.5.


OK... here we go again... Taking unranked home favorites over ranked visitors usually pays off. It didn't Saturday, but it definitely did all last year.


Prediction: Southern Illinois 71, Saint Mary's 63
Southern Illinois -4.5 (3 Units) -- Correct; +$300




Saturday, Dec. 8, 2007 (2-4, -$700)


Arizona (5-2) at Illinois (5-2)
Line: Illinois by 3.


I'm going to revert to something I used religiously last year. Taking unranked home favorites against ranked visitors seldom fails. Illinois is the only team that fits this system today.


Prediction: Illinois 79, Arizona 69
Illinois -3 (3 Units) -- Incorrect; -$330



Valparaiso (7-1) at Detroit (4-4)
Line: Valparaiso by 1.5.


I mentioned yesterday how I like conference home dogs. Well, that won't be the case here, as Valparaiso is taking no prisoners since moving to the Horizon League. The team's only loss is at undefeated Vanderbilt. I think it can dominate a mediocre Detroit squad.


Prediction: Valparaiso 73, Detroit 62
Valparaiso -1.5 (1 Unit) -- Correct; +$100



Davidson (3-4) at UCLA (7-1)
Line: UCLA by 13.5.


Poor Davidson scheduled so many tough games that it can't concentrate against the softees. I think this line is huge because the Wildcats lost to the likes of Charlotte and Western Michigan. But keep in mind those defeats were surrounded by covers against North Carolina and Duke. I think Davidson can hang the number here, especially considering that UCLA will be flat off its first loss of the year.


Prediction: UCLA 73, Davidson 71
Davidson +13.5 (3 Units) -- Correct; +$300



Marquette (5-1) at Wisconsin (6-1)
Line: Wisconsin by 3.5.


Whoops... scrap whatever I said in the Illinois-Arizona game. Wisconsin is an unranked home favorite playing a ranked visitor that I somehow missed. Adding this pick at 12:45 Saturday afternoon.


Prediction: Wisconsin 74, Marquette 66
Wisconsin -3.5 (3 Units) -- Incorrect; -$330



Ball State (0-7) at Indiana State (3-4)
Line: Indiana State by 9.


I can't believe I'm about to place two units on an 0-7 team on the road, but consider this: Ball State's opponents, excluding Evansville, have a combined 33-10 record. The Cardinals, for whatever reason, played a brutal schedule. Thus, I think they're a bit underrated because they managed to cover three of those games. Indiana State shouldn't be favored by nine over anyone.


Prediction: Indiana State 61, Ball State 58
Ball State +9 (2 Units) -- Incorrect; -$220



Rider (5-4) at Canisius (0-7)
Line: Rider by 6.5.


But let's get back to the conference-home dog bit. Who is Rider to be favored on the road when it hasn't even won as a visitor yet? They just lost by 12 to Niagara for crying out loud. I know Canisius has yet to win, but to be fair, the team played five of its seven games on the road. The two squads they lost to at home are both 6-3.


Prediction: Canisius 75, Rider 65
Canisius +6.5 (2 Units) -- Incorrect; -$220




Friday, Dec. 7, 2007 (1-0, +$400)


Loyola-Maryland (4-4) at Iona (1-6)
Line: Loyola-Maryland by 3.


I love conference home dogs. Iona, despite its record, hasn't played poorly. They lost by four to Jackson State; five to South Carolina State; eight at Princeton; and six at Robert Morris. All of those contests were on the road or a neutral site. Loyola-Maryland is asked to cover 3.5 as a visitor when it hasn't even won in that role yet this year.

Friday Evening Update: With about 90 percent of the public on Loyola-Maryland, the line has dropped from 3.5 to 3. I already liked Iona before I saw that. I'm upgrading this play to four units.


Prediction: Iona 64, Loyola-Maryland 56
Iona +3 (4 Units) -- Correct; +$400




Season:
2013-14: 2013-14 -
2012-13: 2012-13 -
2011-12: 2011-12 -
2010-11: 2010-11 -
2009-10: 2009-10 -
2008-09: 2008-09 -
2007-2008: December - January - February - March -
2006-2007: November - December - January - February - March - April -


2003-2004 Season: 138-107-6 (56.3%)
2004-2005 Season: 168-148-6 (53.2%)
2005-2006 Season: 188-173-7 (52.1%)
2006-2007 Season: 273-255-8 (51.7%), +$945
2007-2008 Season: 71-64-5 (52.6%), +$1,420
2008-2009 Season: 66-53-2 (55.5%), +$1,680

Career Against The Spread: 906-780-32 (53.7%), +$4,045


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