Thursday Trend: Make Your Free Throws, Mar. 25
The Sweet 16 is here and it is going to be glorious. The bag is super mixed on the teams we are going to see play on Saturday and Sunday. I appreciate the fact that Oral Roberts is still here so I can write some dirty jokes, I love that the Pac-12 essentially ran at 50 percent the whole year and then turned it on for March, and I love that the Big 10 and Big 12 are burning.
Before we fully jump into things, let me just reiterate that March Madness is the fucking greatest. I saw a video on Twitter of a dog who picked a bracket based on which paper he ran to first and this fucking cockerspaniel has a better percetnage than me right now. I love this sport.
Just like the last version of the Trend, there are too many games going on to just provide you with one stat to look at for one game so I will be a really nice guy and give you a couple of things to look at that really pop out to me.
Baylor: They like to score
JJ Watt asked if Baylor was lob city after the Wisconsin grad saw his team get run over in the Round of 32. Baylor got slept on because they didn’t look as strong coming off their COVID absence at the end of the season but a week off really refreshed this team. They are fast, they can shoot, and they have really athletic big men who can impose their force.
The Bears have put up at least 70 points in each of their last 7 games. The OVER has hit in six of their last seven. Against Hartford, the UNDER hit, but that was because the 16 seed scored just 55 points. Against Wisconsin, those two went for 139. Villanova is the opponent for Baylor on Saturday and the OVER has hit in each of their first two postseason games in the bubble. Nova scored 84 and 73 in games on and two, respectively. The total for the game on Saturday has been set for 141.
This is going to be a close game regardless and the toughest battle of the season for Baylor and that means free throws will be extremely important. Nova is a team that shoots about 76 percent from the line and Baylor just trails that at 69 percent. If this game comes down to shots, I like them both to convert. 141 is steep but do-able for two teams that are both scoring a ton of points right now.
Really Dependable Oral
Whether you’re a man or woman in a relationship, or a casual basketball fan, having some dependable Oral is important. And the Golden Eagles really fit the bill. Believe it or not, this school of 4000 kids that seems kind of like a cult and has some serious ethical issues is a really good free-throw percentage team. So good in fact, they literally rank number one in the NCAA. That is actually as surprising as getting really good Oral.
Anyways, those buckets mean a ton because if we’ve noticed a trend in the tournament so far, it’s that teams who hit at the free-throw line move on. During the regular season, Oral Roberts shot 82 percent from the line. Against Florida, they shot 82 percent and against Ohio State they shot 77 percent. It is worth noting, the Buckeyes shot just 50 percent from the line that game.
The Golden Eagles face Arkansas on Saturday and they are 11 point underdogs. I have taken Oral Roberts to cover in both games and they were both a breeze. This line seems way too big now but that’s just me. Arkansas is shooting 72 percent from the line through two games but ranke 76th in the nation during the regular season. I always lean with a team that can shoot well and that’s a good reason to stick with good Oral.
Hello degens. My play tonight is to bet against the Lakers, always. Without Lebron and Anthony Davis, it just doesn’t make sense to ever back this team right now. Tonight, they have the Sixers, a team that has covered their last 8 of 9 and have covered in 2 of 3 with the third being a push. The Sixers are rolling right now with three straight wins and six points doesn’t seem like much to cover.