Big East NCAA basketball betting action continues with another fantastic showdown at KFC Yum! Arena on Monday night, where the Louisville Cardinals try to top the Syracuse Orange.
It is amazing that the ‘Cuse still have just one defeat this year in the gauntlet known as the Big East schedule. They have five straight wins since getting beaten by the Notre Dame Fighting Irish, though they haven’t played a game like this one on the road in quite some time. With a full squad at his disposal, Head Coach Jim Boeheim has a lot of different combinations that he can put on the court. Kris Joseph and Dion Waiters are the two top scorers on the team with 14.3 and 12.4 points per game respectively. However, Brandon Triche, Scoop Jardine, CJ Fair, Fab Melo, and James Southerland are all guys who can go off for 10+ points on any given night. All five of these players are averaging between 7.2 and 9.7 points per game, and they make up one of the only teams in the land that can boast having seven legitimate threats to take over a game in the nation. The ‘Cuse have to be careful in this one as we said though, because they have had one of the easier schedules in the conference, and this is as tough of a road test as they will have all year long.
Head Coach Rick Pitino knew that his team needed to make sure that it won some games in conference to be safe for March Madness, and that is exactly what the Cards have come out and done. They could have folded up shop in what has been a brutally tough portion of this schedule, but instead, the team has come out and dropped six straight victories and covers since getting stomped by the Providence Friars and Marquette Golden Eagles on the road in the middle of January. In this stretch, Louisville has at scored at least 73 points in all but one game, and in four of the six, the opponents have been held down to 66 points or fewer. Wayne Blackshear, one of the jewels of this past year’s recruiting class, was able to play his first game with the Cardinals on Saturday, and he scored 13 points in 220 minutes. If he can keep this up, he will be one of the five men averaging double digits in scoring per game, and that doesn’t even include Peyton Siva, one of the best point guards in the entire country.
The Final Word: Syracuse is going to get picked off from time to time in games like this one whether it likes to admit it or not. The Orange are the real deal, but so is Louisville, and with 20 wins already at its disposal, we see no reason why the Redbirds can’t figure out how to get to 21 on Monday. There is a reason that the Cardinals have won seven straight SU and are 6-0-1 ATS in the last seven in this series.
Syracuse Orange @ Louisville Cardinals Pick: Louisville Cardinals
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.