LATE NIGHT POWER-SLAM ~ 11-4 OVERALL THIS WEEK + $46K NCAAB RUN!
Saint Mary's-California vs. BYU,
02/01/2020 22:00 EDT,
Score: 79 - 81
Point Spread: -6/-102 BYU
8* BYU (10:00 ET): As I went over on Thursday, the West Coast Conference has basically become “Gonzaga & everyone else competing for second place.” This has been the case going back many seasons. Since their arrival into the WCC mix back in 2011, BYU has finished either second or third in the conference every season. Of course, the other perennial challenger to Gonzaga is St. Mary’s. Sure enough, St. Mary’s & BYU come into tonight in 2nd and 3rd place respectively in the WCC. But I’ve got a strong preference here.
While unranked, most power rating systems (including my own!) consider BYU to be a Top 25 team (in the country) this year. KenPom has them #18 while BPI (ESPN) has them #27. All three of the Cougars’ WCC losses have come on the road, two of them coming by three points or less and the other at Gonzaga. They have revenge here having fallen at St. Mary’s 87-84 back on January 9th. Sure enough, I cashed St. Mary’s (-2.5) in that game, which went to overtime. But things should turn out much differently here in Provo where BYU is 10-1 SU and outscoring teams by 22.3 PPG.
Three of BYU’s losses this year came against Gonzaga, San Diego State and Kansas. All three of those teams are currently projected to be #1 seeds in the NCAA Tournament. All three losses came when BYU’s best player, Yoeli Childs, was suspended. They were also without Childs when they lost to St. Mary’s, one of four losses by either one point or in overtime for the Cougars. The bottom line is that this team is better than its WL record as we saw in a 27-point win (107-80 over Pepperdine) on Thursday as Childs led the way with 21 pts. This time St. Mary’s has to contend with him and I think the number here speaks volumes. 8* BYU