Jim Sez Thursday NCAA Previews
THE NCAA TOURNAMENT REPORT – WE GO ‘ROUND THE COUNTRY WITH QUICK-HITTER PREVIEWS/POINTSPREAD COMMENTS AS WE TRACK THURSDAY’S BIG DAY/NIGHT
Handed in your NCAA Tournament bracket sheets?
Took Thursday and Friday off from work and have plenty of snacks at home?
Ahh, so now’s the time to settle in and win big in this year’s NCAA Tournament and you’ve come to the right place …
Jim Hurley has all the NCAA Tournament winners right through the championship game on the night of April 4th and you can get it either right here online or at our exclusive toll-free telephone # of 1-800-323-4453 – plus don’t forget we’re banging out lots of winners in the other college tournies such as the NIT, CIT and CBI and there’s lots of daily NBA Winners too these days. Join the fun and profits with all the hardwood action – win big starting today!
NCAA TOURNAMENT – THURSDAY’S GAMES
Here’s a sampling of what’s on tap for this first full day of the NCAA Tournament …
WEST REGION – at Providence, RI
#13 UNC-WILMINGTON (25-7) vs. #4 DUKE (23-10) – 12:15 p.m. ET, CBS
Only appropriate that last year’s national champions – the Duke Blue Devils – “open” the real part of this year’s tourney following those “First Four” tilts in Dayton but no question this isn’t a vintage Dookie bunch plus coach Mike Krzyzewski’s squad is just 13-17-2 ATS (against the spread) this year. Frosh F Brandon Ingram (16.8 ppg, 6.8 rpg) is the best player on the floor no matter what anyone says and we claim he needs to attempt 20-plus shots in order for ACC guys to cover bloated 10.5-point price here.
In other West Region action on Thursday …
#12 Yale (22-6) vs. #5 Baylor (22-11) – approximately 2:45 p.m. ET in Providence … The Yalies are a tasty 11-6-2 against the odds this year but note the Bears just played the country’s sixth-tougher sked.
SOUTH REGION – at Des Moines, IA
#9 UCONN (24-10) vs. #8 COLORADO (22-11) – 1:30 p.m. ET, TNT
Get a feeling that everyone’s busy yapping about this UConn team that nailed 60-footer in the four-OT win against Cincinnati last Friday and then zoomed through the American Athletic Conference Tournament in Orlando … and maybe is ignoring this Colorado Buffaloes’ bunch? Well, know this: The Buffs are 19-11 versus the vig this year and 6-10 F Josh Scott (16.1 ppg and 8.7 rpg) was major reason why this Pac-12 team led the league in offensive rebounds. If Colorado can get 8-to-10 offensive boards here, Tad Boyle’s club could pull the mild upset.
In other South Regional action on Thursday …
#14 BUFFALO (20-14) vs. #3 MIAMI (25-7) – approximately 6:50 p.m. ET in Providence … Notice how nobody is talking about the Miami Hurricanes as a potential national champ? Hey, Jim Larranaga’s crew starts five upperclassmen and PG Angel Rodriguez (11.7 ppg and 4.4 apg) is a classy court general but laying “two TDs” here might be too rich for some folks even though the ‘Canes are a solid 18-12-1 spreadwise this season.
EAST REGION – at Des Moines, IA
#12 CHATTANOOGA (29-5) vs. #5 INDIANA (25-7) – 7:10 p.m. ET, CBS
If you listen to Indiana Hoosiers’ head coach Tom Crean, who don’t get the sense that his Big 10 team is “looking ahead” to a potential Round-of-32 game against Kentucky come Saturday, but how are a bunch of 18-to-21 year-old kids not thinking past this tilt against Chattanooga? No doubt Crean – one of the top coaches in the country – has hardly been a legend in March while going a composite 9-8 SU (straight-up) in eight prior NCAA Tournaments with Marquette and then Indiana, so maybe he’s more apt to talk about keeping your head straight but this 12-point price looks on the hefty side with what may lie ahead. If Indiana PG Yogi Ferrell (17.1 ppg and 5.5 apg) can keep the Hoosiers from any prolonged scoring droughts here, then Indiana might be able to pull away late but keep in mind Chattanooga is a solid 16-13 ATS overall this year and the Moccasins led the Southern Conference in scoring margin while winning their games by 9.2 per.
In other East Regional action on Thursday …
#13 STONY BROOK (26-6) vs. #4 KENTUCKY (26-8) – approximately 9:40 p.m. ET in Des Moines … Now that Kentucky head coach has been censored by the stuffed-shirt NCAA “establishment” – wasn’t his Sunday night post-brackets rant just the greatest! – we’ll see if his kids can follow up their SEC Tournament title with a win/cover against 14.5-point pup Stony Brook who may need another 43-point game from mega-star Jameel Warney just to hang tough here.
MIDWEST REGION – at Denver, CO
#11 GONZAGA (26-7) vs. #6 SETON HALL (25-8) – approximately 9:55 p.m. ET, Tru TV
Hands-down best game of the day on paper – and our good friends in Las Vegas agree as this one’s a pick ‘em affair right at this very moment and we won’t be surprised if this one goes down to a final shot … or maybe even “bonus basketball” as in overtime! Okay, so “The Hall” captivated Madison Square Garden last week while sweeping through the Big East Tournament with wins/covers against Creighton, Xavier and Villanova (the latter two teams were ranked #5 and #3 in the nation, respectively) but $64,000 question is will Kevin Willard’s crew still play with that edge or does the air come out of the Pirates’ balloon here against monster tag-team front-wall guys Kyle Wiltjer (20.7 ppg) and Domantas Sabonis (17.4 ppg and 11.6 rpg)? Worth noting that Seton Hall is sizzling 23-9 against the odds this year (that’s a .719 winning rate) … just sayin’!
In other Midwest Regional action on Thursday …
#9 BUTLER (21-10) vs. #8 TEXAS TECH (19-12) – 12:40 p.m. ET in Raleigh, NC
If you’re interested in recent stats, then note Texas Tech is a miserable 1-6-1 spreadwise in its last eight games against Big East teams but the Butler Bulldogs have not exactly been peaking after an 11-1 SU start and then going 10-9 SU ever since. If Tubby Smith – the TT Red Raiders’ boss man – knows anything it’s how to win in March (he’s 30-16 SU in “Big Dance” games).
Note: More NCAA Tournament goodies in the next Jim Sez.
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