Submitted by Jim Hurley on Sunday, March 11, 2012 at 12:27 PM
The sharp line moves that had hit the board by press time Saturday ended up going 7-3 once all the final buzzers had sounded. The biggest moves almost swept the board. Let’s do a quick review of the highlights from yesterday’s report…then we’ll run through what the sharps are thinking in Sunday’s college basketball action.
SATURDAY’S BIGGEST MOVES:
You’ll recall that MEMPHIS moved from -11 to -12 in the early game, as sharps liked a strong mid major team on its home floor against a tired opponent. Memphis won 83-57
Big dog FLORIDA moved from +9.5 down to +8.5 against Kentucky in the SEC semifinals. They almost pulled an outright upset before falling 74-71
MICHIGAN STATE was bet from -3 to -4 in their Big 10 semifinals against Wisconsin. The Spartans would jump to a big early lead before coasting to a 65-52 win. You’ll recall the OVER was also bet in this game at the opener of 115. You’ll see that was a winner at 115 and 116, a push a 117, but stragglers who didn’t bet the Over until 118 did lose (it closed 119).
In the Big East, LOUISVILLE had been popular with the sharps this week. They were bet up from -1.5 to -2.5 at press time before ultimately finishing at -3. The Cardinals led by 10 at the half and won an ugly grinder 50-44.
We have the only loser in the last of the moves of at least a point. the UNDER in UCSB/Long Beach State failed to get the money in a game where the line moved from 134 down to 132.5 at press time (closing at 132 finally). The final score of 77-64 landed on 141.
The moves of a half point that we documented for you Saturday split out. Xavier and Missouri received sharp support and ultimately cashed tickets in their win/covers over Saint Louis and Baylor respectively. Duke and Louisiana Tech didn’t win for sharps betting early. But, sharps are trying to hit at least 55% over volume with an understanding that it’s impossible to win every bet. They’ll surely take Saturday as it played out over the full slate.
Let’s see what the sharps are thinking in Sunday’s four CHAMPIONSHIP games…
No action on the team side as we go to press. The total has been bet from 142.5 to 143.5, showing us clear OVER sentiment. That may surprise many of you given Florida State’s great defense. Perhaps sharps are expecting a letdown off the upset of Duke, which would prevent the Seminoles from imposing their will on the game.
Kentucky was bet aggressively this morning, with an opener of -6.5 being driven up to -7.5 or -8. That’s striking since sharps bet against the Wildcats yesterday. We take this as an anti-Vanderbilt vote in terms of the personnel matchups…and respect for Coach Calipari in big games. We should point out though that some of this could be position-taking in the anticipation of square money (from the public) on the #1 Wildcats. The public isn’t betting much college basketball yet. But, they do play the top ranked teams as single digit favorites in big TV games. We may see some buyback from sharps at +8, or if the line goes higher before tipoff. Note that the OVER also receives support, with an opener of 136.5 being bet up to 137.5 and 138.
ATLANTIC 10 CHAMPIONSHIP
Xavier opened at -3 vs. St. Bonaventure in the surprise final. Early sharp action took the line to -3.5. This isn’t a game the public is as likely to bet, so we don’t interpret that as position-taking. Sharps like Xavier’s postseason pedigree, even if this particular team may not measure up to recent entries of the past. They won’t be intimidated in a big game spotlight the way the Bonnies might be.
BIG 10 CHAMPIONSHIP
Ohio State opened at -2, with oddsmakers selecting the Buckeyes as the superior neutral court team. Sharps bet Michigan State enough to bring the number down to OSU -1.5. Support for the Spartans once again. Nothing here yet on the total.
That wraps up our look at what the sharps are thinking in Sunday action. The VSM handicappers have minds of their own though, and hot streaks of their own as well! They’re looking forward to handicapping this week’s NCAA Tournament, as well as the NIT, CBI, and Insider tourneys that get going Monday and Tuesday. Make plans to be with us through the week. Your favorite handicapper has great rates that will take you through the full college postseason, or through the NBA Playoffs.
Our next market report will come midweek as we evaluate sharp strategies for all the Thursday and Friday games in the Big Dance. We’ll do our best to help you learn to think like a sharp and bet like a sharp!