Winthrop vs. Gardner-Webb - 3/6/20 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction

Winthrop vs. Gardner-Webb - 3/6/20 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction Photo by Melina Myers-USA TODAY Sports

Gardner-Webb Runnin' Bulldogs (16-15) at Winthrop Eagles (22-10)

College Basketball: Friday, March 6, 2020 at 6:00 pm (Dedmon Center)

The Line: Winthrop Eagles -5.5 -- Over/Under: 150.5 Click Here for the Latest Odds

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The Winthrop Eagles (22-10, 16-3 Big South) will meet the Gardner-Webb Runnin’ Bulldogs (16-15, 12-7 Big South) in Radford, VA for a Big South Conference Tournament Semifinal match-up at the Dedmon Center. Gardner-Webb and Winthrop split their two games this season, with each school winning on their own home floor by 4 points.

Gardner-Webb is 7-3 both straight up and against the spread in their last 10 games. Gardner-Webb is 9-7 both straight up and against the spread in conference games this season. Gardner-Webb has averaged 72.7 points per game and allowed 69.5 points per game, and the Runnin’ Bulldogs have shot 45% from the field, 36.2% from 3 and 69.1% from the free-throw line in those games.

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Gardner-Webb has won 8 of their last 9 games, and in their last game the Runnin’ Bulldogs defeated UNC Asheville 72-62 in the Big South quarterfinals as a 5-point favorite. Gardner-Webb is ranked 214th by KenPom, with the 182nd ranked offense 265th ranked defense in the nation. Gardner Webb has 4 players who average double-digit scoring, and they are led by Sophomore guard Jose Perez, who averages 15.2 points, 6.5 rebounds and 4.2 assists, and Senior forward Eric Jamison, who averages 14.5 points and 6.1 rebounds per game.

Winthrop is 7-3 straight up and 2-8 against the spread in their last 10 games. Winthrop is 14-3 straight up and 7-10 against the spread in conference games this season. Winthrop is scoring 81.6 points per game and surrendering 71.8 points per game to opponents, and the Eagles have shot 46.3% from the field, 34.9% from 3 and 63.6% from the free-throw line in those games.

Winthrop has won 4 of its last 5 games, and in their last game the Golden Eagles defeated South Carolina Upstate 106-70 in the Big South quarterfinals as a 13-point favorite. Winthrop is ranked 137th by KenPom, with the 126th ranked offense and 180th ranked defense in the country. Winthrop is led by Senior guard Hunter Hale, who averages 13.6 points, 3.4 rebounds and 1.8 assists per game, and Senior forward Josh Ferguson, who averages 11.5 points, 6.5 rebounds and 1.1 assists per game.

Winthrop is 8-2 straight up and 4-6 against the spread in their previous 10 games with Gardner-Webb, with the over going 6-4 in that stretch. The over is 7-3 in the last 10 for Gardner-Webb and 8-2 in the last 10 for Winthrop.

Gardner-Webb is the defending tournament champion of the Big South, and these teams have played each other very tight in recent match-ups. Winthrop has been awful against the spread lately, but I still expect the Eagles to find a way to win the game. I will just stick with the trends and take the over in a game I expect to be fought very hard throughout, but I like Gardner-Webb to cover the spread as a small underdog in this spot too.

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