For a few minutes, it looked like Tuesday was heading down the same path as Monday, as North Alabama pulled out its best shooting night of the season for 10 minutes after a year of missing over and over on the road. Luckily, the rest of the night went according to plan. Detroit did what it does to everyone in Calihan Hall, Bucknell and Lafayette went overtime yet again and Eastern Kentucky failed to play any defense on the road. Throw in Montana State clinching a share of the Big Sky, and it proved a 5-1 night for me.
We’ve got plenty of plays available, including the dramatic return of Finnish soccer. Here are my best plays for March 2.
HJK HELSINKI-FC HONKA U2.5, -110
Just because my team (KTP) got relegated to the Ykkonen doesn’t mean I don’t still know a thing or two about Finnish soccer. These teams tend to play tight, low-scoring matches, as four of their past five meetings have either finished 1-1 or 0-0. HJK only conceded 19 goals in 27 league matches last season, so there’s plenty of precedent for a lower-scoring affair in this one.
SETON HALL TTU 81.5, -110
Let’s get this out of the way: Georgetown is terrible. Georgetown is really, really awful. But Seton Hall’s offense is getting way too much respect here because of the Hoyas’ ineptitude. The Pirates might have reached 82 against Xavier, but they’d failed to top 75 points in 11 straight games before that, including a 70-63 win over the Hoyas in Washington. Seton Hall should win easily, but 81 points seems to be a bit much to expect.
GEORGE WASHINGTON -6.5, -110
Duquesne is in complete free fall right now. The Dukes are 6-21, they’ve lost 14 straight and they’ve lost nine of 10 by double digits. That includes a 19-point loss to George Washington in Pittsburgh in which Duquesne shot just 28 percent from the floor. The Colonials aren’t a great team, but they have played decently at home and should have enough to cover this modest spread.
MARYLAND -5, -110
Maryland’s been playing pretty well as of late and has its sights firmly set on stealing the No. 10 seed in the Big Ten tournament from Penn State. The Terps have won three of five and one of the losses was by a point at Purdue. Minnesota hasn’t shown up in its past three road games, and even though the Golden Gophers are now in danger of getting caught by suddenly resurgent Nebraska, I don’t think that’s enough of a motivator to keep the Terrapins from cruising to a win here.
WAKE FOREST -10.5, -110
Wake Forest punishes bad defenses. N.C. State’s defense has mostly been a total joke, and the Deacons should be able to complete the sweep of the Wolfpack here. State couldn’t stop anything against Carolina and lost the first meeting with Wake Forest by 18. As long as the Deacons shoot the way they should, they should cover here.