Long Beach State 49ers at Creighton Blue Jays
Saturday, 2/18/12, 10:00 PM EST, TV: ESPN2
Opening Point Spread: Creighton -5.5
Current Betting Line: Creighton -4.5
Opening Total: 150.5
Current Total: 151
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker
Long Beach State will take its 12-game win streak to Creighton on Saturday inside the CenturyLink Center Omaha, as the program will be playing for the first time in a week. The 49ers will be participating in a BracketBusters contest for the third time in four years, which includes a 74-56 victory over the Montana Grizzlies last year. Offensively, the team has three starters that are averaging double figures, with senior guard Casper Ware leading the way in averaging 17.1 points per game. Long Beach State is 4-1 ATS versus non-conference opponents.
The 49ers will be looking to register back-to-back 20-win seasons for the first time since 1974 with a victory in this high-profile matchup. Ware is certainly a player to watch, being named one of 11 finalists for the Bob Cousy Award, which is given to nation’s best point guard. It’s also important to note that head coach Don Monson will reach the 250-win milestone with a victory in front of a nationally-televised audience.
Creighton is 22-5 on the season and has tallied a 12-4 mark in Missouri Valley Conference play as it steps back into a non-conference affair in this contest. The Blue Jays are led offensively by sophomore forward Doug McDermott, who ranks third nationally in scoring 22.7 points per game. The program is 3-1 all-time against Long Beach State, including a 2-0 mark in Omaha. Creighton is 16-5 ATS in its last 21 home games.
The Blue Jays are coming off an impressive 88-69 win over the Southern Illinois Salukis as 6.5-point road favorites, snapping a three-game losing streak. Creighton shot a season-best 75 percent from the field in the first half and shot an even better 80 percent in the final 20 minutes. The program has always fared well when playing on the ESPN family of networks, posting a 32-17 record in its last 49 games in that situation. A big crowd is certainly expected, with the team attracting six of its 11 largest crowds in program history this season.
Bettors will likely back the 49ers due to their 7-3 ATS mark versus winning teams, while the Blue Jays are 4-9-1 ATS versus teams with a winning road record.
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