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College Basketball Betting Free Picks For Saturday: Taking’ A Whack In The WAC – SportsUntapped.com
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Added March 5th, 2010 by David Glisan

College Basketball Betting Free Picks For Saturday:  Taking’ A Whack In The WAC
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It’ll be a big day of college basketball betting action at sportsbooks from Las Vegas to San Jose, Costa Rica and this WAC game may be one of the strongest plays you’ll find anywhere.  The Western Athletic Conference schedule winds down as conference champ Utah State–who has already clinched the crown–hosts 2nd place New Mexico State.  Both of these teams are called the ‘Aggies’, incidentally.


A lot of sports handicappers fall prey to what an associate of mine refers to as the ‘video game fallacy’.  The premise is that too often games are viewed without regard to the context in which they’re being played–what we handicappers refer to as ’emotional/subjective factors’.  These are things like motivation, fatigue, focus, and all of the intangibles that can impact a team’s performance on a given night.  Video game basketball players don’t suffer ‘letdowns’ or get tired, so bettors that don’t pay attention to them and concern themselves only with the relative strengths and weaknesses of the teams involved are often left holding their head as a ticket that looked like an easy winner based on the matchup goes down in defeat.

Had New Mexico State been able to beat Nevada earlier this week, this would have been the biggest game of the season for both teams.  It would have been Aggies vs. Aggies for the WAC Championship, or at least a share of the title.  As it turned out, however, Nevada won by 10 on their home floor in Reno and with the loss by the New Mexican Aggies the Aggies from Utah clinched the WAC crown. In the process, it rendered this game much less significant.

At least it did for Utah State, who still have a good chance to get an NCAA at large bid regardless of what happens in the WAC tournament.  They’ve got 24 wins and a regular season conference crown, and that’s a pretty compelling argument.  This game is still very important to New Mexico State for a number of reasons.  First of all, they’ve got to worry about 2nd place as a Nevada win over Louisiana Tech and a New Mexico State loss will result in a tie in the standings and with the Wolfpack winning both games against the Aggies (the New Mexico version) this season they’ll get the tiebreaker.  Furthermore, New Mexico State is stuck on 19 wins and would love to get that all important 20th victory before the WAC tournament begins.

Utah State can’t tank this game and the WAC tournament and still assume they’ll get a NCAA tourney bid, but from a motivational standpoint its a tough game for them to get ‘up’ for.  They’ve already clinched the regular season crown and are naturally looking ahead to the start of the conference tournament.  They’ll be facing a team that really needs the victory more at this point for more immediate reasons than bolstering their case for a NCAA tourney invite.  Plus they’re laying 13′ points.  New Mexico State won by 3 on their home court earlier this season, so its not like they’re not able to compete with Utah State.  We’ll take the points with the visitor against a host in a tough motivational spot.


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