December 22, 2016
There is one college hoops play tonight.
Take LSU +11 spread against Wake Forest for 3% of the bankroll.
A lot of talk is being made about how this is the LSU Tigers first true road contests of the season and while that has no doubt had an overall effect on the oddsmakers formation of this spread, we do feel that this number has been largely inflated due to this fact. Playing on the road is no easy feat and teams do often (somewhat) struggle when playing away from home, however the Tigers are a veteran group and come into this contest on a four-game winning streak. As a team, they are averaging 75.1 points per game led by Sophomore Guard Antonio Blakeney (16.9 points per game and 4.3 rebounds per game) and Junior-College Transfer Duop Reath (14.4 points per game and 6.2 rebounds per game).
What we believe is going to be the deciding factor in LSU covering this number is the fact that they have a balanced inside-outside game. The Tigers are a team that prefers to play on the inside and get the ball to their big men down low. This results in the team being able to take high percentage shots, while not settling for jump shots. Wake Forest on the other hand is a team that also has an inside-outside game, however they have relied heavily on the three-ball. If they end up struggling with their outside shot in this contest, it's going to make things difficult for them to pull away enough on the scoreboard to cover this rather large number.
The Demon Deacons are also a team that tends to start fast in games, build up a big lead and then play conservative down the stretch. They are outscoring their opponents by an average of 13 points in the first half, yet their margin of victory in their contests is nearly half of that. They have shown a tendency to allow their opponents to close the gap in the second half of games and we wouldn't be surprised if that was the case once again in this contest. LSU is a talented team, however spotting them nearly double-digits is a dangerous proposition. There are many ways for this team to find a way to stay within this number, being making it a closely contested game throughout, or by finding a way to sneak in the backdoor late in the game. That being said, there is only one way that Wake Forest covers this number and that would be largely due to a blowout. While the deacons have certainly improved this season, we don't believe they are quite at the point where they will blow out a quality team such as LSU.
With this being the last game for both teams on their non-conference slates, we expect both to want to come away with a final victory before heading into conference play. If LSU can continue with their game plan of getting the ball down low into the paint, they should be able to provide enough offense to keep up with Wake on the scoreboard. We expect one way or another, the team will find a way to keep within this number and keep this matchup closer than expected.
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