Last week was the first edition of the Degenerate Friday MAAC action, and it went well going 4-1 overall. This week, we’re going to start with a game that is seeing some reverse line movement, and I’m going to play right into that like a good little square bettor.
Marist at Quinnipiac (-3)
Quinnipiac opened this one at -5 and the line has moved down two points despite the majority of the bets and money coming in on the home team. At kenpom.com Quinni is the second best team in the MAAC at #224, 10 spots below Rider, a team that Quinni just beat by 10 at home.
At pregame.com 62% of the cash and 75% of the bets are on the home favorite. At sportsline.com the percent of bets goes up to 77% and at actionnetwork.com 74% of the bets and 65% of the money is on Quinnipiac.
So why did the line move down two points? I have no clue. In this case the sharp play would be to go with Marist thinking that Vegas knows something a square like me doesn’t. There is no one listed on the injury report for either team, maybe there is a sickness going around the Quinni locker room?
Marist is 13-11 ATS compared to Quinnipiac at 13-9. Marist is also just 5-7 in conference compared to Quinnipiac at 8-5. Finally, Marist is ranked 26 spots below Quinnipiac at kenpom.
I probably shouldn’t be betting this game at all. But what the hell, it’s a degenerate Friday and I’m taking the better team laying the short number at home.
The Square Pick: Quinnipiac -3 – 0.5 units
Monmouth at Rider (-7.5)
Rider is getting a lot of respect here, and it might be somewhat warranted as they rank as the best team in the MAAC at overall efficiency.
Monmouth, meanwhile, started the year with so many losses that it barely fits onto my screen. I don’t know if I’ve ever seen this many consecutive L’s:
After counting those losses up to 12, I am forced to reference the fact that I witnessed the Cubs losing 14 games to start the 1997 season. How sad is that.
Lately, however, Monmouth has been much better, winning four straight games and going 9-4 in conference play to put them in first place in the MAAC.
Rider is getting just 38% of the bets and only 28% of the money in this game. So, of course I’m with the public again on this one.
The Square Pick: Monmouth +7.5 – 0.5 units
Manhattan at Niagara
Ah the epic rivarly between the Jaspers and the Purple Eagles. The Manhattan Jaspers are one of the worst offenses in America, as only five teams are worse in offensive efficiency. They are also one of the slowest teams in the country, with an adjusted tempo of 340 out of 353 teams (which is why we cashed last week’s best bet under with ease).
Niagara tries to play at a faster pace, ranking 80th in adjusted tempo, but their offense isn’t anything special ranking #216 in offensive efficiency. Sportsline.com projects this game with Manhattan winning 72 – 61, but I don’t see them getting into the 70’s tonight.
The last time these two teams played, Manhattan won 90-80 which is surprising giving the ineptitude of their offense. In typical fashion, I’m seeing this score after I bet the under on this game which is currently at 130. The problem with the under is that Niagara is almost as bad on defense (#337) as Manhattan is on offense (#349).
I still like the under here. In that previous matchup Niagara hit 38.9% on 3-pointers, which is 3.5% higher than their season average. They went 47.3% on field goals compared to an average of 41.9% on the season. They also took 25 free throws and hit 21 of them, good for 84.7% compared to a season average of 74.8%. And they accomplished all of this against by far the highest rated defense in the MAAC.
In order to score 90 points, Manhattan shot absolutely lights out, going 63% from the field and hitting 59% of their 3-pointers.
I find it pretty impossible to believe that either team can repeat their performances of the past game, and I’m riding with the under.
The Square Pick: UNDER 130