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January 17, 2017

There are two college pick tonight.

#1: Take Georgia -5 spread against Vanderbilt for 3% of the bankroll.

The Georgia Bulldogs are 11-6 this season and they are coming off an overtime loss at Florida that ended their 2-game winning streak. It was a tough loss for the Bulldogs to take and one that we expect will motivate them ahead of this contest. On the season, Georgia is averaging 73 points per game and shooting 44.4 percent from the floor. Where they have been much more successful however has been on the defensive side of the ball, holding their opponents to just 67.6 points on 39.4 percent.

The Vanderbilt Commodores are one of the more up and down teams in the nation as you never know what you are going to get when they step on the floor. At just 8-9 on the season, they have had some success, but they have also had many failures. The Commodores are only as good as their deep ball as they shoot 39.5% from beyond the arc. They are one of the most skilled shooting teams in the country, however when their deep shot hasn't fallen, it has seriously cost them this season.

The Bulldogs will also have the advantage on the glass tonight as they are one of the best rebounding teams in the conference averaging just under 40 boards per game. If the Commodores are missing their shots, we expect Georgia to crash the glass and limit them to single shot possessions which could be key in mounting a lead on the scoreboard. The Bulldogs have been terrific at home this season while Vandy has been mediocre at best on the road. We expect the Georgia players to come into this matchup with a chip on their shoulder after their latest loss as they clamp down on the defensive end and go on to collect a comfortable win and cover.

#2: Take Mississippi State +14 spread against Kentucky for 3% of the bankroll.

The Kentucky Wildcats are a herald and storied program in the world of College Basketball and their name alone carries quite a bit of weight. Given their reputation of being a powerhouse team, they have to expect that they are going to get each team's best when they step on the court, especially when they take to the road to play in a hostile environment. This is an absolute monster game for the Mississippi State Bulldogs and one that Kentucky certainly cannot take lightly. Ben Howland’s squad enters the game playing their best basketball of the season. At 12-4 on the year, they come into this one on a three-game winning streak, as well as winning six of their last seven.

There is a ton of talent on the Bulldogs this season and while they may not be able to match Kentucky score for score, they should be able to do enough to keep this game closer than expected. Sophomore guard Quinndary Weatherspoon is fourth in the SEC in scoring, averaging 17.9 points per game while shooting 49.7 percent from the field and 47.1 from three-point range (9-for-12 in the last two games from deep). Sophomore forward Aric Holman (team-high 6.8 rebounds per game) and freshman guard Lamar Peters both average 10.4 points per contest (with Peters averaging 13 in SEC contests and Holman 11.5). Senior guard I.J. Ready is second in the SEC with 5.1 assists per game, third in assist-to-turnover ratio (2.6) and fourth in steals at 2 per game. He is the 4th double digit scorer on this team, averaging 10.1 points per game this season. 

What makes Kentucky so good is their ability to recruit and reload top tier talent nearly each and every season. They are an extremely young team, but they also have talent. That is very similar to this year's Mississippi State team. They are one of the most inexperienced teams in the nation, however they also have arguably the highest ceiling as we don't believe we have seen exactly how good this team is as of yet. While beating Kentucky is a huge mountain to climb for this young team, we expect that they will surprise some people with how competitive they will be in this contest. The Bulldogs will fire their shots, but ultimately, we don't believe they will have enough bullets in the chamber to ultimately outduel the Wildcats. While they will likely fail to get the outright victory, they should keep things close enough to cover this generous number.

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