North Dakota -4.5 at Idaho State O/U 153.5
While doing research on today's college basketball card, I came across an article on Idaho State and its struggles against North Dakota which was referred to as a "nightmare matchup." The results certainly bear that out as UND has won the last four matchups by scores of 89-64, 84-76, 76-60, and 84-49. Now, the spot for Hawks tonight is not a good one. They've won six of seven, just wrapped up a three-game homestand, and have a showdown at first place Weber State on Saturday. Bad matchup but less than ideal spot has me more interested in the total. Idaho State sports one of the worst defenses in the Big Sky as it allows 57.2 eFG% and 1.14 points per possession. And when asked to face the three top offenses in the league, each team essentially scored at will. Eastern Washington hung 92 points on 74 possessions. Weber State scored 85 and 96 on two 73-possession games. And as previously mentioned, North Dakota needed only 71 possession to net 89 points. It's mid-February, you are 3-9 in league play, and guaranteed a berth to the conference tournament...a defensive renaissance seems unlikely. The good news is, the Bengals have found way to score on their home court with an average of just shy of 80 ppg in five games in Pocatello. And like a lot of Big Sky schools, North Dakota shows a big home/road split defensively: 69.8 ppg allowed at home, 81.5 ppg allowed on the highway. Price is decent enough to come in with a play on the over.