By Charles Jay, TotalActionExtra http://betanysports.eu/hh30/
Those who are following March Madness, and this reporter in particular who is in the midst of a $1 million (simulation) challenge with the sportsbook at BetAnySports, are wondering what kind of effect an NCAA Tournament snub may have on the Iowa Hawkeyes as they play host to the Indiana State Sycamores in the first round of the NIT.
The game gets underway at 7 PM ET in Iowa City. Here is the setup:
NIT First Round
Indiana State Sycamores (18-14 SU, 15-14 ATS) at Iowa Hawkeyes (21-12 SU, 20-9 ATS)
Wednesday, March 20 – 7 PM ET
Carver-Hawkeye Arena, Iowa City
Indiana State was humbled by Creighton in the quarterfinals of the Missouri Valley Conference tournament, while Iowa, which was hoping to get an NCAA invitation, came up short against Michigan State in the Big Ten tourney, and lost out on a Big Dance slot.
In the March Madness betting odds, the Hawkeyes are big favorites in the game:
BetAnySports NIT betting odds:
Iowa Hawkeyes -11.5
Indiana State Sycamores +11.5
Over 133.5 Points -110
Under 133.5 Points -110
Indiana State is a team that produced a lot of upsets earlier in the season. The Sycamores beat Miami, Ole Miss, Wichita State and Creighton, and defeated Northern Iowa twice. They were also pretty competitive against the likes of New Mexico and San Diego State But these guys really lost their way offensively. Going into the Missouri Valley tournament, they had lost five straight conference games, an barely got by Evansville in the opener before going meekly against Creighton. In their last two games they have scored 94 points on 32% shooting. They have covered just one of their last nine games and have just been awful shooting the ball.
But then we come to the case of Iowa, and whether it is worth it for BetAnySports customers to lay this kind of price with them. We know they are carrying a lot more momentum than Indiana State is; in fact they have covered six games in a row and have held each of those six opponents under 40% from the field. This includes Indiana, Michigan State and Illinois, all of whom are in the NCAA Tournament . They have not been bad on the home court, covering eight of the last ten on the board. This comes down to whether this club wants to make some kind of a statement, after being snubbed by the NCAA Selection Committee (after a 21-12 season) or whether they are still dwelling on the disappointment.
Greg Lansing, the head coach for Indiana State, spent a long time as an assistant at Iowa, so you know he doesn’t want to show up and get embarrassed. But it might be wishful thinking for him to think his team will have solved the offensive problems in the eleven days since its exit from the MVC tourney. Then again, they haven’t had this much time in between games to correct problems all season. And they all say that this break was just what they needed. Point guard Jake Odum has hit three field goals over the last two games; Manny Arop, the Gonzaga transfer, has generally missed the mark, hitting 32% over the last five contests. Those guys are talented, so there is upside. We have to be aware of what Indiana State is capable of, and we have seen their list of victims.
We are going to go ahead and take the points with Indiana State in our Charles Jay / BetAnySports March Madness Challenge, to the tune of a $20,000 wager (for entertainment purposes only, of course).
Get the best odds, and reduced juice, on March Madness at BetAnySports, and pick up basketball winners at TotalActionExtra (http://www.totalactionextra.com)!
Wager on NBA basketball right now at BetAnySports, and for hoops winners, turn to TotalActionExtra http://betanysports.eu/hh30/