Games to Watch (1/27/2019)

Starting this season, I’ve decided to catalog the most tournament-relevant games to watch (if there are any) each night, along with the tip-off time, TV channel, and projected score of the game when input into my own personal game-scoring model. I will also revisit the projections from the day before to archive their accuracy.

YESTERDAY’S GAMES

Iowa State (14-5) @ Ole Miss (14-4)

Projected Score: Ole Miss – 74, Iowa State – 72
Actual Score: Iowa State – 87, Ole Miss – 73

Florida (11-7) @ TCU (14-4)

Projected Score: TCU – 70, Florida – 65
Actual Score: TCU – 55, Florida – 50

Ohio State (12-6) @ Nebraska (13-6)

Projected Score: Nebraska – 73, Ohio State – 64
Actual Score: Ohio State – 70, Nebraska – 60

Alabama (12-6) @ Baylor (12-6)

Projected Score: Baylor – 72, Alabama – 68
Actual Score: Baylor – 73, Alabama – 68

Pittsburgh (12-7) @ Louisville (14-5)

Projected Score: Louisville – 77, Pittsburgh – 66
Actual Score: Louisville – 66, Pittsburgh – 51

Davidson (14-5) @ Saint Louis (14-5)

Projected Score: Saint Louis – 66, Davidson – 63
Actual Score: Davidson – 54, Saint Louis – 53

VCU (13-6) @ Duquesne (14-5)

Projected Score: VCU – 71, Duquesne – 67
Actual Score: VCU – 80, Duquesne – 74

Kansas (16-3) @ Kentucky (15-3)

Projected Score: Kentucky – 76, Kansas – 71
Actual Score: Kentucky – 71, Kansas – 63

Vermont (15-5) @ Stony Brook (17-3)

Projected Score: Vermont – 69, Stony Brook – 68
Actual Score: Vermont – 73, Stony Brook – 52

Syracuse (14-5) @ Virginia Tech (15-3)

Projected Score: Virginia Tech – 72, Syracuse – 63
Actual Score: Virginia Tech – 78, Syracuse – 56

Auburn (13-5) @ Mississippi State (14-4)

Projected Score: Mississippi State – 76, Auburn – 75
Actual Score: Mississippi State – 92, Auburn – 84

2019 Model Pick Record: 76-30

TODAY’S GAMES

Cincinnati (17-3) @ Temple (15-4)

Tip Time: 12 PM EST
TV Channel: CBS Sports Network
Projected Score: Cincinnati – 71, Temple – 68

Michigan State (18-2) @ Purdue (13-6)

Tip Time: 1 PM EST
TV Channel: CBS
Projected Score: Michigan State – 76, Purdue – 73

Seton Hall (12-7) @ Villanova (15-4)

Tip Time: 2:30 PM EST
TV Channel: Fox
Projected Score: Villanova – 78, Seton Hall – 69

Iowa (16-4) @ Minnesota (14-5)

Tip Time: 5 PM EST
TV Channel: Fox Sports 1
Projected Score: Iowa – 76, Minnesota – 75

Games to Watch (1/26/2019)

Starting this season, I’ve decided to catalog the most tournament-relevant games to watch (if there are any) each night, along with the tip-off time, TV channel, and projected score of the game when input into my own personal game-scoring model. I will also revisit the projections from the day before to archive their accuracy.

YESTERDAY’S GAMES

Michigan (18-1) @ Indiana (12-7)

Projected Score: Michigan – 68, Indiana – 64
Actual Score: Michigan – 69, Indiana – 46

Buffalo (17-2) @ Kent State (15-4)

Projected Score: Buffalo – 82, Kent State – 74
Actual Score: Buffalo – 88, Kent State – 79

Butler (12-8) @ Creighton (11-8)

Projected Score: Creighton – 78, Butler – 77
Actual Score: Creighton – 75, Butler – 61

2019 Model Pick Record: 68-27

TODAY’S GAMES

Iowa State (14-5) @ Ole Miss (14-4)

Tip Time: 12 PM EST
TV Channel: ESPN
Projected Score: Ole Miss – 74, Iowa State – 72

Florida (11-7) @ TCU (14-4)

Tip Time: 12 PM EST
TV Channel: ESPN2
Projected Score: TCU – 70, Florida – 65

Ohio State (12-6) @ Nebraska (13-6)

Tip Time: 12 PM EST
TV Channel: Fox Sports 1
Projected Score: Nebraska – 73, Ohio State – 64

Alabama (12-6) @ Baylor (12-6)

Tip Time: 12 PM EST
TV Channel: ESPNU
Projected Score: Baylor – 72, Alabama – 68

Pittsburgh (12-7) @ Louisville (14-5)

Tip Time: 2 PM EST
TV Channel: ACC Network
Projected Score: Louisville – 77, Pittsburgh – 66

Davidson (14-5) @ Saint Louis (14-5)

Tip Time: 2 PM EST
TV Channel: CBS Sports Network
Projected Score: Saint Louis – 66, Davidson – 63

VCU (13-6) @ Duquesne (14-5)

Tip Time: 2 PM EST
TV Channel: ESPN+
Projected Score: VCU – 71, Duquesne – 67

Kansas (16-3) @ Kentucky (15-3)

Tip Time: 6 PM EST
TV Channel: ESPN
Projected Score: Kentucky – 76, Kansas – 71

Vermont (15-5) @ Stony Brook (17-3)

Tip Time: 7 PM EST
TV Channel: ESPN3
Projected Score: Vermont – 69, Stony Brook – 68

Syracuse (14-5) @ Virginia Tech (15-3)

Tip Time: 8 PM EST
TV Channel: ESPN
Projected Score: Virginia Tech – 72, Syracuse – 63

Auburn (13-5) @ Mississippi State (14-4)

Tip Time: 8:30 PM EST
TV Channel: SEC Network
Projected Score: Mississippi State – 76, Auburn – 75

1-3-1 Sports Midweek Review

THE 1-3-1 MIDWEEK REVIEW

1 Thought From the Games Earlier this Week

Texas A&M looks like the only SEC team capable of advancing past the first weekend. The Aggies currently sit alone atop of the SEC, though LSU, South Carolina, Kentucky, and Florida are all within two games. Having seen the majority of SEC teams play this season, (thanks a lot for the SUPER HIGH-QUALITY basketball, ESPN!), I can safely rule out all other teams in the conference from receiving an at-large tournament birth. Now that we’ve narrowed the field down to five eligible bachelors for that pretty lady in March, we can talk about who’s likely to advance the furthest. The answer: Texas A&M, but only by default. LSU will be lucky to make the tournament with their abysmal Non-Con SOS, and if they do so, it’ll most likely be on the Ben Simmons hype train – hello TV ratings! South Carolina appears to be quite the fraud, having gone 4-3 after starting 15-0 with their Charmin soft early season slate. Who saw that coming!? (Spoiler Alert: 1-3-1 Sports Midweek Review on January 14th, 2016) Kentucky has lost three of six, including games against SEC bottom-feeders Auburn and Tennessee, and they no longer have talent quite like the Harrison twins and Karl-Anthony Towns. Finally, there is Florida, who may be the best bet to prove me wrong; their distinct flaw is an offense that becomes very complacent and stagnant too frequently.

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3 Games to Watch this Week

i. Columbia @ Yale (Friday @ 5 pm EST, TV – FS1)
I have to admit, I’m a real sucker for watching quality mid-major and low-major college basketball. A televised game between the two leaders of the Ivy League, both of whom are undefeated in conference… count me in! The highlight of this game for me will be the opportunity to finally see German guard sensation Maodo Lo. Though he is a senior, I have yet to see him play; he may be the key to leading the Lions to the NCAA tournament for the first time since 1968. I feel like the blurb highlighting this game would be incomplete without a reference to these two teams also featuring some of the smartest basketball players in the NCAA. For some, it even runs in the family. The younger sister of Columbia’s senior leader Grant Mullins, Missy, plays basketball at fellow Ivy league school and academic juggernaut Harvard. The cousin of Yale’s Brandon Sherrod, Derek, is an offensive tackle in the NFL who graduated from Mississippi State with a degree in financial risk management, and a 3.54 GPA to boot.

ii. Michigan State @ Michigan (Saturday @ 2 pm EST, TV – CBS)
This is one of the most heated rivalries in not only the Big 10, but in all of college basketball. The recent resurgence of the bad blood has been facilitated by the Wolverines experiencing great success under John Beilein. This year is no different, as the two teams have a combined 36-10 record and both sit in the upper half of the Big 10 standings. The Wolverines will look to avoid back-to-back home losses after the debacle against Indiana earlier in the week. A loss in this one could cause a bit of panic in Ann Arbor in regards to making the tournament, and rightfully so – the Wolverines have struggled mightily against quality competition (2-5 against the RPI top-50). On top of that, there has been nothing definitive that could generate realistic optimism regarding the return of team captain and leading scorer Caris Levert. The Spartans are dealing with a significant injury of their own, as point guard Lourawls “Tum Tum” Nairn is likely to miss his sixth straight game due to a painful case of plantar fasciitis.

iii. Baylor @ West Virginia (Saturday @ 8 pm EST, TV – ESPN2)
These two top-15 teams need a victory in this game to keep pace with top-ranked Oklahoma in the Big 12 conference race. This match-up offers quite the contrast, as Baylor’s potent inside-out, slow tempo offense will be matched up with West Virginia’s fast-paced, press-oriented defense. West Virginia leads the country in steals per game, averaging over 10 – the ability to turn teams over at high rates is a demonstrated staple of Bob Huggins’ teams in recent years. Baylor ranks 141st in the nation in turnovers per game, so they’ll have to be smart with the ball if they want to go into Morgantown and steal a victory. The counter to the turnover issue could end up being the rebounding advantage Baylor should have inside. Baylor is 4th in the country in offensive rebound percentage, pulling down 41% of offensive rebounds that are available to the team; the Mountaineers will need to find bodies and block out to prevent second-chance opportunities.

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1 Bold Prediction for the Week

Diamond Stone continues his coming out party and meteoric rise up NBA draft boards with a great performance in a Maryland victory over Purdue. Freshmen phenom Diamond Stone has slowly been getting more playing time from Mark Turgeon, and the increase of his contributions to the success of the Terps has coincided with the bump in minutes. He will have an opportunity to prove his worth when the Boilermakers roll into town on Saturday. Purdue’s strength is definitely inside, led by senior big man A.J. Hammons, who is coming off of a 32 point, 11 rebound, 4 block game in a lopsided victory over Nebraska. Though he may not lead the team in any one category, I think that Diamond Stone will use his skill set to be a key contributor. This can be achieved by limiting Hammons and making key plays down the stretch, both of which may not show up in the box score, on the way to a Maryland victory.

Prediction:

Maryland – 73
Purdue – 67

The Daily 1-3-1 (February 11th)

1  Thought from the Games Last Night

Can a 3-point overtime loss (on the road) to an in-state rival (that’s also a tournament team) really drop you a seed line?

I don’t know if I have a definitive answer to that question just yet, because I have to see how the rest of the week’s games play out. However, the Jayhawk faithful may not like the conclusion I am leaning towards at this very moment. Last night’s loss in Manhattan was the sixth loss of the year for Kansas, and it’s hard for me to see an 18-6 team deserving a 2-seed, even with the brutally tough schedule they’ve played to this point.

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3  Games to Watch Tonight

i. (15) Michigan @ (22) Ohio State, ESPN – 9 PM
The stakes aren’t quite as high when these two bitter rivals meet on the hardwood as opposed to the gridiron, but I’m sure the game is bound to get quite chippy. These two teams are also trending in opposite directions. After a demoralizing home loss to Penn State, Ohio State has righted the ship with 3 wins in a row, including road wins against Wisconsin and Iowa. Michigan, on the other hand, has loss two of three, after starting 8-0 in conference.

ii. Oklahoma State @ (19) Texas, ESPN2 – 7 PM
The Marcus Smart shoving incident was blown way out of proportion, but that’s a tangent I may address on another day. Nonetheless, Smart’s three-game suspension is going to have a major impact on the Cowboys, who have to prevent the wheels from completely falling off in his absence. In their first game sans their star, OK State faces a stern road test against the surprising Longhorns. It’s not an NCAA tournament game, so I’m sure Rick Barnes will actually have the squad ready to roll this evening.

iii. (3) Florida @ Tennessee, ESPN – 7 PM
Tennessee is that relative that you’re pretty sure has bipolar disorder – you just keep your mouth shut and enjoy the entertaining portion of their performances. Florida is that affluent, well-spoken relative that has had a great deal of consistent success in their life. The family is having a cozy little get-together in Knoxville tonight; we’ll see if the bi-polar relative smashes out the windows on the affluent relative’s Mercedes, or if the affluent relative will overwhelm all their cousins with their general aura and power.

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1  Bold Prediction for Tonight’s Slate

The Gators go on the road and hang a 15+ point beatdown on the Volunteers, further muddling Tennessee’s perplexing bubble résumé.

Billy Donovan’s squad is far better than every other team in the SEC, save Kentucky. Whether that speaks more about the lack of depth in the SEC, or the strength of Florida, I’m not sure… I guess we’ll find out in March!