College Basketball Betting Odds and Picks: Missouri Tigers vs. Florida Gators

No. 17 Missouri Tigers at No. 10 Florida Gators
Saturday, 1/19/12, 2:00 PM EST, TV:  ESPN
Opening Point Spread:  Florida -13
Current Betting Line:  Florida -13.5
Opening Total:  133.5
Current Total:  134.5
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker

The Florida Gators rank third nationally in scoring defense
The Florida Gators rank third nationally in scoring defense

Missouri looks for its second victory against a top 10 opponent, while it makes its first trip to the state of Florida since 1977.  The Tigers have won three of their last four games, including a 79-62 victory over the Georgia Bulldogs as 13-point home favorites, while going OVER the total in four of their last five opportunities.  Defensively, the team ranks ninth in the Southeastern Conference in allowing 64.6 points per game, which could be a problem against one of the better teams in the nation.  Missouri is 6-1 ATS in its last seven road games, something to consider when looking over the college basketball odds page Saturday.

The Tigers have won seven of their 10 games against ranked opponents under head coach Frank Haith, including a 4-2 mark versus those in the top 10.  Missouri is still unsure of the status of senior forward Laurence Bowers, as he’s still trying to recover from a sprained MCL in his right knee.  Since the 2008-09 campaign, the program has compiled a solid 27-10 record in the month of January, including three wins over nationally-ranked foes.

Florida will meet Missouri for the first time in program history, coming off an impressive 68-47 victory over the Texas A&M Aggies as 10-point road favorites, while going UNDER the total in two consecutive contests.  “We’re just so locked in on defense right now,” stated Gators center Patric Young.  The Gators rank third in the country in surrendering just 51.7 points per game, as they held Aggies star Elston turnover to four points on 1 of 10 shooting.  Florida is 6-2 ATS in its last eight home games.

The Gators haven’t given up more than 20 points in the first half of an SEC game this year, while they have four of five starters averaging in double figures scoring wise, which makes them an attractive option when making your NCAA basketball picks.  Florida leads the conference in averaging 8.1 3-point makes per game, while it shoots 48.4 percent from the field overall.

Sports bettors will likely back the Gators due to their 4-0 ATS mark in their last four conference games, while the Tigers are 1-4 ATS after a spread victory.

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