NCAA Basketball Pick: Memphis Tigers vs. Louisville Cardinals
Memphis Tigers vs. Louisville Cardinals Gambling Odds from Bookmaker
NCAA Basketball Spread: Louisville -8.5
It’s not John Calipari vs. Rick Pitino, but when the Memphis Tigers travel to take on the Louisville Cardinals it will be a battle of two very talented teams. Memphis has underperformed expectations so far this year. The Tigers are just 5-3 after losing at home to Murray State earlier this week. Louisville is all the way up to number four in the polls after their 9-0 start to the season. Can the Tigers knock off the Cardinals or will Louisville move to 10-0?
Memphis is definitely not short on talent. The Tigers struggled through last season before putting it together in the Conference USA Tournament. Memphis dropped out of March Madness in the closing seconds against Arizona, who made a deep run in the NCAA Tournament. Joe Jackson was a star in high school, and he is developing into one of the nation’s best point guards. Jackson averaged 9.9 points per game last year, but he is averaging 13.4 points per game so far this season. Will Barton is the Tigers leading scorer so far in 2011. Barton has picked up his game in a big way this year. He is shooting 56% from the floor, and he is putting up 20.4 points per game. Tarik Black gives the Tigers a dominating player in the post, but he has been getting into foul trouble far too often this year. The problem so far this year for the Tigers has been their defense. Memphis is allowing opponents to score 72.1 points per game. The team has struggled to keep opponents off the offensive glass.
This Louisville team has been built around strong defensive play. Gorgui Deng is a great shot blocker in the paint. Deng has blocked four or more shots three times already this year. Peyton Siva is a speedster who puts a lot of pressure on the ball at all times. Opponents are shooting just 34.6% from the floor against the Cardinals. Louisville is giving up just 52.7 points per game. Offensively, the Cardinals have five players averaging better than nine points per game. Kyle Kuric leads the way with 12.7 per contest. Kuric is one of the best rebounding guards in the nation. Chris Smith can stretch the defense with his shooting ability. Siva is great at driving the lane and drawing the defense. Chane Behanan is a freshman that has made a big impact on both sides of the floor already this year.
Look for Louisville to win this one, but the spread is a little too high for my liking. The under is 13-3 in Louisville’s last 16 games.
Free College Basketball Pick: Under 135.5
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