No. 22 Wisconsin Badgers at No. 10 Florida Gators
Wednesday, 11/14/12, 7:00 PM EST, TV: ESPN2
Opening Point Spread: Florida -5.5
Current Betting Line: Florida -6
Opening Total: 122.5
Current Total: 122.5
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker
Wisconsin earned a 87-47 season-opening win over Southeastern Louisiana on Sunday, as it jumped out to a 19-0 lead and never looked back. The Badgers definitely look different this year, as George Marshall became the first freshman to start a season opener since Devin Harris in 2001. It’s still important to note that the program boasts one of the more experienced front courts in the nation with a trio of seniors in Jared Berggren, Mike Bruesewitz and Ryan Evans who have combined to play 288 games. Wisconsin is 8-6 ATS as an underdog the last two-plus seasons.
The Badgers are 22-15 all-time against Southeastern Conference foes, but are just 2-4 in their last six road openers. Under the watch of coach Bo Ryan, Wisconsin has compiled a 110-27 record in non-conference games, but has lost five of six contests in that situation against ranked opponents. The program led the nation in allowing just 53.2 points per game, while leading that particular category amongst Big Ten Conference squads in seven of the past 10 seasons.
Florida has split two games against Wisconsin, with the host winning both games in a home-and-home series in the 1960s. The Gators return three starters from last year’s team that managed to appear in its fourth Elite Eight in the past seven years, which is tied for the second-most in the nation in that span. Guard Kenny Boynton averaged 15.9 points per game and managed to score 22 points in a 84-35 season-opening win over Alabama State. Florida is 2-0 ATS at home when the total is 120 to 129.5 since 2010, which is important to handicap when making your college basketball picks against the spread.
The Gators are 7-8 against Big Ten opponents during the Billy Donovan era, with 10 of those 15 games coming against Michigan State and Ohio State. Boynton is one of just eight players nationally to enter the season with over 1,500 career points and the only one from a power conference. He ranks seventh on the school’s all-time scoring list with 1,611 points.
Sports bettors will likely back the Badgers due to their 8-2 ATS mark versus SEC opponents, while the Gators are 2-5 ATS in November.
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