We might have to break the rules a little for this Monday, because there just aren’t that many good games available for moneyline picks. I’m hoping I don’t have to break them too much, because I’ve hit my past 10 Monday plays. But when a two-game ML parlay still comes out to -1000, there’s only so much you can do.
So we’ll find value wherever we can tonight. Here are my best plays for December 19.
UTAH STATE -12.5/SOUTHERN INDIANA -13 PARLAY, -110
That’s how big of a disparity we’re discussing here. For Southern Utah, one big reason they jumped to Division I was games like today. The Screaming Eagles realized they’re better than the likes of IUPUI and Eastern Illinois, and now they get to play those teams as a DI member. They have acquitted themselves well in year one. The Screaming Eagles played competitive basketball at Notre Dame and whacked Southern Illinois, and they shoot and defend the 3-pointer well. They should do well against the Jaguars on a neutral floor.
As for Utah State hosting Weber State, I’m happy for former Weber coach Randy Rahe that he didn’t have to suffer through this nonconference season. Rahe retired in May, and the Wildcats are still deciding which pieces go where. Utah State, meanwhile, boasts a 9-0 record and always makes life tough on teams in the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum. It’s been a while since I was in the Cache Valley (and the last time I was here, this happened), but I know quite well that Utah State’s tough on its guests. Both should be comfortable cashes.
MARSHALL ML, -450
At least the juice is a little better here, but there’s still no value on the moneyline. And that’s because the Thundering Herd should run all over Connecticut. Considering their recent past, the Huskies did wonderful work in getting to six wins. But their wins came against very weak opponents. They beat Fresno State without Jake Haener and a checked-out Liberty, and the other four wins came against Florida International, Massachusetts, Boston College and Central Connecticut State.
Those last four won a combined five games all year over FBS teams. Connecticut lacks the run game needed to slow down Marshall and won’t be able to move the ball on the Herd. Marshall should take this easily.
NEW HAMPSHIRE ML, -250
If you’re looking for excitement, you’ve come to the wrong place. And that’s just fine with New Hampshire. The Wildcats cannot shoot well at all, but they are excellent defenders. Plus, they make their free throws when they get sent to the line. Holy Cross fouls far too often and should give the Wildcats plenty of chances. New Hampshire looks good.
COYOTES ML, -120
Montreal hasn’t won in regulation since Dec. 6 and now travels to the desert. The Coyotes have played tough in their tiny building, having won three of four at home. The loss came on a back-to-back, but they’ve had a day to recover since then. The small juice on Arizona makes a lot of sense.
ISLANDERS ML, +135
With Colorado battling injuries and struggling on home ice, the value on New York is too high to pass up. The Islanders already beat the Avalanche on Long Island and should be ready to go after knocking off Vegas last time out. The Avalanche still don’t have their scorers back on the ice and the Islanders have an elite goaltender in Ilya Sorokin. New York makes sense.
PACKERS ML, -360
I have zero confidence in the Rams going into Green Bay’s snow and putting up a fight. Los Angeles has virtually no shot to reach the playoffs and Green Bay at least has a slim hope. The Packers will need at least three out of the Giants, Commanders, Lions and Seahawks to collapse down the stretch, but at least it’s possible if they win tonight. They should come off the bye and grab a victory.