Sweet Plays for the Thursday Sweet Sixteen Slate

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Thursday last week, and Friday for that matter, were both very good days in college basketball for me. Saturday and Sunday were not quite as good. Now we are down to the Sweet 16 and ready for some action in the tournament once again. Remember, just because the season is winding down, your bankroll doesn’t need to, and just because a game is on, doesn’t mean you need to bet it.

Florida Atlantic vs. Tennessee, 9:00 ET

Call me crazy but I am not a fan of Florida Atlantic. I understand they were able to get past Memphis (barely) and they were able to beat FDU, a 16-seed that upset Purdue. Even the game against FDU didn’t come particularly easy for them. You also don’t control who you play, and as has been repeated in so many video clips online now: A win is a win. I’m not sure that FAU has the defense that is needed to stop Tennessee. An even bigger question for me though is how will they score against a tough Tennessee defense. Duke, a team loaded with future NBA prospects, struggled to play well enough to advance, lost by 13, and only put up 52 points against the Vols. When Tennessee is locked in on the defensive end, it is really tough to beat them. At one point, Tennessee was the top team in the country and then they kind of went away from what made them successful. They seem to have found it again. I don’t see a single thing that FAU does better than Tennessee and think we are getting a ton of value on Tennessee to win tonight at -5. I think they could win by double digits. If their defense falters, then FAU probably wins outright, but the Vols seem locked in right now.

Gonzaga vs. UCLA, 9:45 ET

This matchup is a lot more even than the first one that I discussed. Gonzaga was ranked very high to start the season and that somewhat faded away during the season due to a rough start. They went all the way to a 30-5 record for the year and are currently riding an 11-game winning streak. Their offense is very talented and revolves around getting a lot of good looks both inside and outside. It is a little hard to describe, but they are patient but fast-paced. As in, they are efficient. UCLA also put together one of the best teams in the country en route to a 31-5 record. They did lose their conference tournament to Arizona, but it was a close game. Prior to that, they were on a 12-game winning streak. UCLA has a better defense than Gonzaga, but I’m not sure they are going to be able to stop the frontcourt of Gonzaga. Of the two teams, I’d argue that Gonzaga is a bit more tested in this situation. I think the Bulldogs have a good chance to win this game. I’d also think that the total correlates with the winner – if the game goes over, I think that means UCLA’s defense struggles and therefore Gonzaga wins. If the total goes under, I think Gonzaga’s offense was stifled or couldn’t get going and we see a UCLA victory. I’m only putting one bet on this one – it is Gonzaga to win at +100.

I don’t really have leans on the other games, unfortunately. That’s what happens when you only have four games for the night.

For more sports betting information and plays, follow David on Twitter: @futureprez2024

Written by David Troy

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