Kentucky (-7.5) over South Carolina- A heartbreaking loss at Florida has pushed South Carolina's losing streak to three. Potent scorer Devean Downey and the Gamecocks will return home tonight to try to reverse their luck against who else? The #1 team in the nation. The brilliant Jay Bilas said on the air last night, "In the old days we used to say, 'If you're wondering who's going to make the run in March, count the pro's.' " Well, Kentucky has at least six to show for, while S.C. counters with only one future pro in Downey. Granted, South Carolina has the home court, the losing streak, and the undefeated top-ranked team on tap as motivation, but all that won't be enough unless John Wall and the boys sleepwalk for 40 minutes.
Northwestern (+11.5) over Minnesota- Both are middle-of-the-pack Big Ten teams with a lot of importance on this game. With the Big Ten flexing it's muscles this year, it has a chance to land five or six teams in the tournament. Northwestern (14-7, 3-4) got a big performance from senior guard Jeremy Nash (22pts) in a win at Illinois on Saturday, and the Wildcats will need a repeat performance if they want to pull off a win at Williams Arena. Minnesota Golden Gophers are 10-1 at home on the year, and are led by Laurence Westbrook who is averaging 19PPG in conference home games. Should be much closer than the spread indicates.
Michigan State (-5) over Michigan- The Wolverines have been a model of inconsistency this season, notching wins over the likes of Connecticut and Ohio State, while falling to mediocre teams like Boston College and Utah. Coach John Beilien's Wolverines welcome back leading scorer Manny Harris who missed the Purdue game due to a suspension. Michigan St. on the other hand has been peaking of late, ripping off eight victories in a row and climbing to #5 in the national polls. Raymar Morgan's consistent play of late has lifted the Spartans, as he's recorded double figures in five of the last seven games. It has a chance to be a real turning point game for Michigan, but it won't be anything but continued disappointment in Ann Arbor.
Last Night: 2-1