When you bet on the college hoops, you should know all about the numbers. Numbers for stats, numbers for trends, numbers for betting lines, numbers for ‘totals’ – You should know it all. Here at Bang the Book, we are set to talk about the basketball betting lines for this week, and showing you some of the most important numbers that you should be keeping an eye on!
2: The number of covers that the Syracuse Orange had in six games with F James Southerland out of the fold with eligibility issues. With Southerland in the lineup, the team is 10-3 ATS this season, and that’s a remarkable statistic to consider. The three-point shooting expert makes a world of difference to the ‘Cuse, and that showed right away when he came off of the bench and scored 13 in his first game back against the St. John’s Red Storm this weekend. That win improved the Orange to 7-1 ATS at home in games in which Southerland has played. This is a team to watch as the rest of the season wears on for sure.
6: The number of games that the Georgetown Hoyas have covered in a row. What a job that Head Coach John Thompson III has done with this team this year! Georgetown could have very easily gone into the tank when it lost F Greg Whittington to eligibility issues, but the team really has bonded together and made the most of the situation. Now, after beating the Marquette Golden Eagles on Monday, the Hoyas have rolled off six straight wins and six straight covers, and they are right in the thick of the Big East title race.
7: The number of consecutive road games that the VCU Rams have failed to cover against teams that are .500 or better. That’s an alarming stat for a team that is consistently laying points on the road. Case in point: The Rams had to give eight to the Charlotte 49ers on the road this past weekend. They won by just seven. It’s tough to go on the road in the A-10 and cover games regardless of who the foes are, but it isn’t an accident that this team is just 1-5 ATS this season away from home. VCU really feeds off of its home crowd, and the fact of the matter is that it needs that crowd to ultimately get the most out of its tough defense.
7: The number of games on Saturday that were canceled due to Nemo in the Northeast. It was a brutal few days of Mother Nature dumping a ton of snow on Boston and the surrounding areas, and that made travel virtually impossible. Fortunately, there weren’t any huge games on the docket that ended up being canceled at the college basketball level, as the biggest of the bunch was probably the Manhattan/Fairfield game in the Metro Atlantic.
11: The number of games that the Marshall Thundering Herd have failed to cover away from home this year. In fact, the team is just 1-11 ATS in games played outside of Huntington. Ironically, the one cover was a near upset of the 20-3 Memphis Tigers a few weeks ago at the FedEx Forum. Aside from that though, this has been one of the worst ATS teams in the country, going just 4-14-1 ATS for the campaign. It’s that 1-11 mark on the road that really has us licking our chops though, and we can’t wait to play against Marshall more as we head down the stretch.
9: The number of consecutive home covers that the Miami Hurricanes have at home to start the season. It’s amazing to think that we are now nearing Valentine’s Day, and the Canes still have a perfect ATS record while playing in South Beach this year. The team swept the North Carolina Tar Heels on the season, and it now has wins of 25+ points against both the Heels and the Duke Blue Devils on the campaign, something that you really never see. Three of the next four for Miami are on the road, but there is no doubting the fact that this legitimately could be a team that is a No. 1 seed when push comes to shove in the NCAA Tournament if this keeps up.
18.8: The number of points per game that G Markel Brown has put up in his last five games for the Oklahoma State Cowboys. That doesn’t sound all that impressive considering some of the numbers that some of the big boys are putting up this year across the country, but for a man that averages just 14.1 points per game for the season, it’s a little more impressive. The run of good play for Brown coincides with the good run of play for the Pokes as well, as Okie State has gone 5-0 SU and 3-2 ATS in those five games.
56.8: The number of points per game that the Minnesota Golden Gophers have scored in their last six games. Think that something is wrong with the Gophers right now? They were averaging almost 75 points per game over the course of their first 18 games of the year, and now, they seem to labor for every single basket. Granted, some of that is the brutal Big Ten schedule, which features some of the best teams in the nation on the defensive side of the court. However, if you’re legitimately a Final Four team, as many thought that Minnesota had the talent to be this year, there is never an excuse to post four games out of six with just 53 points or fewer scored. That just isn’t going to cut it at this level.
60: The number of minutes that G Eric Atkins played for the Notre Dame Fighting Irish against the Louisville Cardinals on Saturday night in that bizarre 104-101 five-overtime thriller in South Bend. Atkins amazingly only scored 19 points, though he did ultimately lead the team in scoring for his troubles. In that game, five players had double digits worth of rebounds, eight players ended up fouling out, 10 scored in double digits… Heck, we could have done a whole “By the Numbers” piece on this game alone!
1,547: The number of days that it has been since the Kentucky Wildcats were double digit underdogs in a game. You have to go all the way back to November 2008 to find the last time that the squad was a double digit pup, as that year, the Cats were +18.5 against the North Carolina Tar Heels on Tobacco Road. Kentucky was crushed 77-58. The last cover as a double digit underdog that this team had? Back on March 2nd, 2008 against the Tennessee Volunteers as 14.5-point underdogs. On Tuesday, the Cats are getting 10 against the Florida Gators, and many are expecting to see them get blown out of the water in Gainesville.
is a staff writer living in the Orlando area. He has covered NFL, MLB, college football, CFL, AFL, NBA, college basketball, NASCAR, golf, tennis, and the NHL for a number of various outlets in his career, and he has been published by a number of different media outlets, including the Orlando Sentinel and the Wall Street Journal.