What Happened Last Night
Two SEC teams played in Madison Square Garden last night, and both lost, though one certainly had mitigating circumstances. (The other... not so much.)
- Boston College 72, Auburn 71: Ummm... ouch. Boston College came in at 4-5 with losses to a pair of sub-300 teams, but Auburn couldn’t manage to keep them off the offensive glass; BC grabbed 14 of their own misses, which helped them overcome 22 turnovers and an 11-of-19 performance at the foul line to come away with a last-second win. That said, Auburn didn’t help itself by committing 16 turnovers of its own and shooting 37 percent from the floor. But freshman Danjel Purifoy had a career-high 27 points in the loss, including what could have been a pair of game-winning free throws.
- Seton Hall 67, South Carolina 64: South Carolina picked up its first loss of the year, but (a) Sindarius Thornwell didn’t play for the second game in a row, and (b) South Carolina still had a chance to win late against a pretty good team. The Gamecocks held Seton Hall to 35 percent shooting and forced 17 turnovers, but also allowed Seton Hall to grab 18 offensive boards (Frank Martin is not going to be happy about that one.) PJ Dozier has stepped up his game in Thornwell’s absence, posting 20 points for the third game in a row.
|Tennessee Tech at Tennessee||7:00 PM||SEC Network/WatchESPN|
|North Carolina Central at LSU||9:00 PM||SEC Network/WatchESPN|
Tennessee Tech is 4-7 with the wins coming over Alabama A&M (twice) and a pair of non-Division I teams; Tennessee probably shouldn’t have any trouble dispatching the Golden Eagles in the early game. The nightcap is a different matter: LSU’s coming off a two-week layoff and North Carolina Central, you might remember, beat Missouri a couple of weeks ago. LSU should still win, but this might be worth a watch to see if it gets interesting.
Odds and Picks
Yesterday: 1-1 ATS; Season to Date: 32-54-1 ATS
(Hey, I’ll take a backdoor cover by Seton Hall last night with the way my picks have been doing of late...)
- Tennessee Tech (+16.5) at Tennessee: On the one hand, Tennessee Tech’s not very good, and Tennessee’s covered five straight ATS and is pretty clearly better than (admittedly low) preseason expectations. On the other, this seems like a prime spot for a letdown two days after a near-miss at UNC. I think Tennessee will win this but not cover 16 and a half.
- North Carolina Central (+11) at LSU: If there’s one thing we know about LSU, it is that they are completely unpredictable. This seems like a prime spot for a classic “get a 20-point lead and then mindlessly let the other team come back and get a backdoor cover.” Or, potentially, a “blow winnable game against team you should beat.” Either way, I don’t think LSU will cover 11 in this game.