Saturday's Top 25 NCAAB cheat sheet: Late games

Jan 31, 2014 |
Saturday's Top 25 NCAAB cheat sheet: Late games
Xavier Thames leads the Aztecs with 17.6 ppg and 2.7 apg.
Photo By - USA TODAY Sports
Xavier Thames leads the Aztecs with 17.6 ppg and 2.7 apg.
Photo By - USA TODAY Sports
Here's a quick look at the marquee late games on Saturday's NCAA basketball schedule:

Click here for our early game cheat sheet.

Massachusetts Minutemen at St. Joseph's Hawks (-2.5)

Minutemen point guard Chaz Williams, who struggled with foul trouble against St. Bonaventure, was the difference in the first meeting, scoring eight points in the final six minutes as the Minutemen erased a nine-point deficit. In the most recent game, Williams went 3-of-10 from the field and had 11 points and six assists. The Minutemen have won four of the last five meetings and lead the series 34-29.

St. Joseph's forward Halil Kanacevic had eight points and 11 rebounds against Dayton to surpass 1,000 points and 900 rebounds in his career, which included his freshman season at Hofstra. The victory was the second on the road in conference play for the Hawks, who also lost at Richmond. The Hawks have won five of six since losing at Massachusetts Jan. 8.


* Minutemen are 10-4 ATS in their last 14 road games.
* Hawks are 2-5 ATS in their last seven Saturday games.
* Under is 6-1 in Massachusetts' last seven games vs. Atlantic 10 foes.
* Home team is 6-1 ATS in the last seven meetings.

Duke Blue Devils at Syracuse Orange

Blue Devils freshman sensation Jabari Parker endured an inconsistent month of January, but closed on a high note with three straight double-doubles, including 21 points and 11 rebounds in Monday's 80-65 victory over Pittsburgh. Parker is the team's leading scorer (18.8) and rebounder (8.1) while Rodney Hood (17.4 points) has emerged as a terrific complement to Parker.

The Orange, who hold a one-game lead over Virginia and sit 1 1/2 games up on Duke and Pittsburgh, have won 15 games by double digits. Two big reasons why are the play of freshman Tyler Ennis (12.3 points, 5.4 assists) and senior C.J. Fair (16.7 points, six rebounds), both of whom play big minutes on a nightly basis. Reserve center Baye Moussa Keita had six points, eight rebounds and five blocks in Wednesday's victory over Wake Forest.


* Blue Devils are 4-0 ATS in their last four games vs. the ACC.
* Orange are 5-0-1 ATS in their last six games.
* Over is 17-8 in Duke's last 25 Saturday games.
* Under is 25-9 in Syracuse's last 34 games following an ATS win.

Colorado State Rams at San Diego State Aztecs

The Rams learned earlier this week that they will gain the services of Louisville transfer Chane Behanan next season and that will only make a solid rebounding club even better. Colorado State outrebounds opponents by 5.3 per game with forward J.J. Avila (18.4 points, 7.6 rebounds) and guard Daniel Bejarano (16.5 points, nine rebounds) leading the way.

SDSU point guard Xavier Thames averages a team-high 17.6 points and has scored more than 20 points five times, including recording 23 points and matching a season best with five steals in the earlier victory over Colorado State. A suspect shooter in the past, Thames has made a career-best 39 3-pointers while shooting an impressive 45.9 percent from behind the arc.


* Rams are 3-7 ATS in their last 10 Saturday games.
* Aztecs are 5-2 ATS in their last seven games following an ATS win.
* Under is 17-5 in Colorado State's last 22 games.
* Home team is 5-2-1 ATS in the last eight meetings.

Iowa Hawkeyes at Illinois Fighting Illini

Coach Fran McCaffery questioned his team’s toughness after the Michigan State game as the Hawkeyes were held to 28 points in the paint. Illinois can’t match the Spartans’ physical style, so forwards Aaron White (averaging 13.5 points, 6.5 rebounds) and Melsahn Basabe (6.6 rebounds) should find the terrain a little smoother Saturday. Forward Jarrod Uthoff has been the team’s top reserve, averaging 8.9 points.

Drake transfer Rayvonte Rice ended an extended  slump in Sunday’s 56-46 loss at Indiana by scoring 20 points on 7-of-11 shooting, including four 3-pointers. The Illini will look to slow the game down against the high-scoring Hawkeyes and hope the frontline of Jon Ekey and 6-11 center Nnanna Egwu can avoid foul trouble. Guard Joseph Bertrand is seeking a bounce-back game after missing 10 of his 11 shots against the Hoosiers.


* Hawkeyes are 8-1 ATS in their last nine games following an ATS win.
* Illini are 1-5 ATS in their last six games vs. Big Ten foes.
* Under is 5-1 in Illinois' last six games following a loss.
* Under is 5-2 in the last seven meetings.

Central Florida Knights at Louisville Cardinals (-20.5)

The Knights are coming off an encouraging 69-59 loss to No. 22 Memphis on Wednesday, when senior guard Isaiah Sykes collected 24 points, 12 rebounds and five assists. Sykes, who scored 19 points against Louisville in the first meeting, is the only AAC player in the top 15 in the league in scoring, rebounding, assists, steals and field-goal percentage.

Point guard Chris Jones returned against Cincinnati after missing three games with an oblique injury and scored six points on 3-of-11 shooting. Freshman Terry Rozier started for the fourth straight game in place of Jones and had 10 points and zero assists in 22 minutes, but Jones is expected to return to the starting lineup as early as Saturday.


* Knights are 0-7 ATS in their last seven games.
* Cardinals are 9-3 ATS in their last 12 games following an ATS loss.
* Over is 9-3 in Central Florida's last 12 Saturday games.
* Under is 19-6-1 in Louisville's last 26 games following a win.

Gonzaga Bulldogs at San Francisco Dons (+6)

The Bulldogs blew a 10-point lead in the game's final minutes before Sam Dower rescued them with a 3-pointer with two seconds to play to give them a 54-52 win at Santa Clara. Dower had taken just nine 3-pointers before hitting the game-winner for the Bulldogs, who scored a season-low 54 points. Gonzaga rolled over San Francisco earlier in the season despite missing starters Dower and Gary Bell Jr.

San Francisco has won three straight to move into second place in the WCC. San Francisco never trailed knocking off Portland last time out to complete a season sweep of the Pilots. Portland is the only conference team to beat Gonzaga this season. Saturday's game wraps up a five-game homestand for the Dons who are 11-4 on their home court.


* Bulldogs are 17-5-1 in their last 23 games following an ATS loss.
* Dons are 10-4 ATS in their last 14 Saturday games.
* Under is 5-0 in San Francisco's last five games against teams with winning records.
* Underdog is 5-1 ATS in the last six games.

Arizona Wildcats at California Golden Bears (+4)

A key for the Wildcats will be how well their frontcourt can hold up against California’s, which features one of the top rebounders in the Pac-12 in Richard Solomon, as well as a solid sidekick in David Kravish. Aaron Gordon will have to play as big as he did Sunday against Utah, when the 6-9 freshman for the Wildcats produced 10 points and 12 rebounds in the nine-point victory.

Solomon and Kravish should do their part on the glass, leaving it up to Justin Cobbs and Tyrone Wallace to continue stepping up offensively. Cobbs scored 21 points against Arizona State and, in the process, moved past three former Golden Bears on the program’s all-time scoring list to No. 19. Wallace matched his career high with 20 points against the Sun Devils.


* Wildcats are 16-7 ATS in their last 23 games.
* Golden Bears are 4-0 ATS in their last four home games vs. teams with winning road records.
* Under is 25-5 in Arizona's last 30 Saturday games.
* Over is 9-2 in the last 11 meetings in California.

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