NCAAB Conference Tournaments Best Bets March 6: Furman, Hofstra & Idaho State Worth Backing

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NCAAB Pick: Hofstra -7.5 (-108) at Heritage Sports (visit our Heritage Sports Review)

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Hofstra -7.5 (-108)
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Picks Summary:

  • Furman -4.5 (-108)
  • Hofstra -7.5 (-108)
  • Idaho State +5.5 (-110)

The best sportsbooks have released their NCAAB odds for tonight’s college basketball action.

Three games, in particular, interest me as worth investing in:

  • Chattanooga vs. Furman
  • UNC Wilmington vs. Hofstra
  • Idaho State vs. Montana

For reasons that I will explain, you should play the spread in all three games for your NCAAB picks.

Chattanooga Mocs vs. Furman Paladins

Monday, March 06, 2023 – 07:00 PM EST at Harrah’s Cherokee Center

Regular Season Series

These teams met twice during the regular season. We should effectively discount one of these games, Furman’s 79-58 win at home over the Mocs because the Mocs were missing their best player, Jake Stephens. However, Stephens did play in his team’s home game against Furman.

His presence failed to prevent the Paladins from winning by eight even on the Mocs’ home floor. It’s not like the Paladins were unusually good in that game, either. In fact, their three-point conversion rate was lower than Chattanooga’s.

Chattanooga’s Offensive Focus

Chattanooga is more dependent on making threes than any other team in the nation. The Mocs attempt three-pointers at the nation’s highest rate. They do have guys who can create their own shot – even power forward Demetrius Davis, for example, is good for the occasional step-back three. However, a relatively high number of their three-pointers are assisted.

Much of their offense revolves around the positionless mobility of their players. Their bigs will situate themselves behind the arc to create more driving room inside for their guards.

The dribble drive is a significant method by which Chattanooga will try to generate open looks from behind the arc – Mocs’ players will drive to compel defenders to collapse inside before they kick the ball out to a teammate behind the arc.

Furman’s Defense

Furman matches up well against the Mocs with its strong perimeter defense. The Paladins are attentive in guarding the three-point line.

They’ll position themselves in ways that deter teams from procuring favorable looks from deep. Against ball screens, they’ll employ a hard hedge to drive the ball-handler backward and help impede him from developing a shooting rhythm.

Given such tactics, the Paladins rank second in their conference both in limiting opposing three-point percentages and in limiting the rate at which opponents attempt threes.

Furman’s Offensive Outlook

The Mocs’ last game was an exception – they beat Wofford while holding them to 62 points, but Wofford was amazingly 3-for-23 from deep.

With several guys shooting around or above 35% from behind the arc on the season, Furman will be much more efficient.

Chattanooga often allows 80 or 90 points, and Furman’s top-ranked offense has the arsenal to score these many points.

The Paladins’ array of shooters can replicate the damage that Samford’s just did to the Mocs while Furman is also uniquely efficient inside the arc especially with shooting guard Mike Bothwell and power forward Jalen Slawson.

NCAAB Pick: Furman -4.5 (-108) at Heritage Sports

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Furman -4.5 (-108)
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UNC Wilmington Seahawks vs. Hofstra Pride

Monday, March 06, 2023 – 06:00 PM EST at Entertainment & Sports Arena

Regular Season History

These teams played once in the regular season, a Hofstra win. While Hofstra’s win took place on its home floor, it’s meaningful that it was one of UNC Wilmington’s worst losses on the season.

Mustering only 46 points, the Seahawks lost by 24. Incredibly, they scored all 16 second-half points.

UNC Wilmington’s Offensive Problem

The problem with the Seahawks is that they are too dependent on making free throws. This dependency is problematic against Hofstra because the Pride excel at defending without fouling.

Outside of maybe forward Trazarien White, UNCW lacks players who can pose a threat by themselves.

Overall, there isn’t the firepower to produce an efficient offense, so all Hofstra needs to do is continue defending without fouling.

Hofstra’s Offensive Outlook

Unlike the Seahawks, Hofstra has several guys who can reliably attack the rim independently.

Guard/forward Aaron Estrada, for example, is crafty with his creativity, footwork, and ball-handling skills more than making up for his less-than-optimal athleticism. His ability to create for himself inside helps the Pride rank 91st nationally in field goal percentage at the rim, where they’ll thrive against the Seahawks’ lack of shot-blocking ability inside.

The individual ability of Hofstra scorers will be complemented by their three-point shooting – the Pride boasts several guys who can reliably make 40% or more of their threes in a given game.

Hofstra is also very much a team. Expect dribble handoffs, which help shift the defense to create operating room inside, and pick-and-roll actions to exemplify Hofstra scorers’ collaboration.

NCAAB Pick: Hofstra -7.5 (-108) at Heritage Sports

Idaho State Bengals vs. Montana Grizzlies

Monday, March 06, 2023 – 07:30 PM EST at Idaho Central Arena

Regular Season History Will Not Repeat Itself

Montana swept its regular season series against Idaho, but I think that tonight’s game will go against what a look at the regular season results suggests will happen.

In those two games, Montana went off from behind the arc, achieving an unusually efficient three-point conversion rate. In terms of shot distribution, the Grizzlies are the most dependent team in the Big Sky on making threes, so this unusual efficiency from deep was particularly impactful.

However, the Bengals have an effective perimeter defense, one that allowed it to beat Eastern Washington by eight, for example, even though Eastern Washington is one of the two best three-point shooting teams in their conference. Already in the rematch, the Bengals played Montana much closer, and I expect the Bengals’ improved inside scoring to repeat itself in order to make the third time be the charm.

Among others, expect Miguel Tomley to thrive inside against a Grizzlies’ defense that game after game is struggling to contain opposing point guards. For Bengals fans looking to bet on this game, you can check out our top Idaho betting sites.

NCAAB Pick: Idaho State +5.5 (-110) at Bookmaker (visit our Bookmaker Review)

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Idaho State +5.5 (-110)
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*The line and/or odds on picks in this article might have moved since the content was commissioned. For updated line movements, visit BMR’s free betting odds product.