Baylor (16-1) at Florida (12-6)
When: Saturday, January 25th, 2020
Where: Exactech Arena,
Time: 8:00 ET | TV: ESPN
Opening Odds: Pickem/129
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The number one spot in College Basketball polls have not been kind to many teams this season and the Gonzaga Bulldogs dropped from the perch of the AP Poll this week despite not losing. The team that took Gonzaga’s spot are the Baylor Bears, who are No. 2 in the coaches poll behind the Bulldogs. Baylor is seeking their 16th win in a row when they visit the Florida Gators as part of the Big 12/SEC Challenge Saturday night. The Bears’ 5-1 record in the challenge is the best mark by any team in either league and now they’re running through their own conference. Baylor beat Oklahoma on Monday for their sixth straight Big 12 victory in a row – the first time in school history they’ve done that. It is also their best start in conference play since they started 10-0 in 1948 when they were part of the Southwest Conference. The Gators are in a stretch that began with a 69-47 home win over No. 16 Auburn before coming up short to the lone undefeated SEC team – LSU. Florida has shown signs of great defensive play this season, but at times have lost focus, especially on the road.
Baylor’s defense has been consistently good all season, ranking sixth in the country in points allowed (58.5) and have forced at least 15 turnovers in 10 of their 17 games. Leading scorer Jared Butler (16.1 points) missed his first 10 shots and finished 2-of-13 from the floor, including 0-for-6 from 3-point territory after making at least two in his previous three games. Junior guard MaCio Teague led the Bears with 16 points against the Sooners despite hitting just 4-of-13 from the field. Leading rebounder Freddie Gillespie (9.3) is tied for second in the Big 12 with seven double-doubles after a 12 and 15 outing Monday. Baylor will put their 6-0 conference record on the line Wednesday at Iowa State.
The Gators sit tied for third in the SEC (4-2) and would love a win over a top-ranked team to improve their NCAA resume. The offense has picked things up recently, averaging 83.4 points over their last seven contests. Leading scorer and rebounder is Virginia Tech graduate transfer Kerry Blackshear Jr. (14.8 points, 8.7 rebounds), who ranks second in the SEC with eight double-doubles. Andrew Nembhard (11.0 points, 6.1 assists) recorded a double-double versus LSU with 15 points and 10 assists, while sophomore guard Noah Locke (10.5 points) extended his three-pointer streak to 15 games. Florida hosts Mississippi State on Tuesday.
This is not going to be an easy contest for Baylor on Saturday night. There isn’t a clear-cut No. 1 team in the country this season and top-ranked teams have had some bad luck thus far. This is going to be a great defensive battle and I like the total to go under.
Pick: UNDER 130.5
Bears are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 games following a ATS loss.
Bears are 5-0 ATS in their last 5 Saturday games.
Bears are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 road games vs. a team with a home winning % of greater than .600.
Bears are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games overall.
Bears are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games following a straight up win.
Bears are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games vs. a team with a winning straight up record.
Bears are 6-2 ATS in their last 8 games vs. a team with a winning % above .600.
Bears are 11-4-1 ATS in their last 16 games as a road favorite.
Bears are 35-16-2 ATS in their last 53 road games vs. a team with a winning home record.
Bears are 34-16-1 ATS in their last 51 road games.
Gators are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games overall.
Gators are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games vs. a team with a winning straight up record.
Gators are 7-2 ATS in their last 9 games as an underdog.
Gators are 6-2 ATS in their last 8 games following a straight up loss.
Gators are 5-2 ATS in their last 7 games vs. a team with a winning % above .600.
Gators are 2-5 ATS in their last 7 Saturday games.
Gators are 2-5 ATS in their last 7 home games vs. a team with a road winning % of greater than .600.
Gators are 2-6 ATS in their last 8 home games vs. a team with a winning road record.
Gators are 5-15 ATS in their last 20 home games.
Gators are 3-12-1 ATS in their last 16 games as a home underdog.
Over is 4-0 in Bears last 4 games as a road favorite.
Under is 6-0 in Bears last 6 games vs. a team with a winning % above .600.
Under is 5-1 in Bears last 6 overall.
Under is 5-1 in Bears last 6 games following a straight up win.
Over is 16-5 in Bears last 21 road games vs. a team with a winning home record.
Over is 19-7 in Bears last 26 road games.
Over is 12-5 in Bears last 17 road games vs. a team with a home winning % of greater than .600.
Over is 12-3 in Gators last 15 games as a home underdog.
Over is 10-3 in Gators last 13 overall.
Under is 26-9 in Gators last 35 games following a straight up loss.
Over is 5-2 in Gators last 7 games following a ATS win.
Under is 30-12 in Gators last 42 Saturday games.
Over is 5-2 in Gators last 7 games vs. a team with a winning % above .600.
Under is 9-4 in Gators last 13 games as an underdog.
Under is 11-5 in Gators last 16 home games.