College Basketball Picks: Florida Gators vs. Texas A&M Aggies

No. 10 Florida Gators at Texas A&M Aggies
Thursday, 1/17/12, 7:00 PM EST, TV:  ESPN2
Opening Point Spread:  Florida -9.5
Current Betting Line:  Florida -10
Opening Total:  122.5
Current Total:  122.5
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker

The Florida Gators have four starters averaging in double figures offensively
The Florida Gators have four starters averaging in double figures offensively

Florida has won four games in a row, including a 74-52 victory over the LSU Tigers as 11-point road favorites last time out, while going UNDER the total for the first time in four opportunities.  “Just wait until we have everybody healthy,” commented Gators center Pat Young.  The Gators are expected to have Mike Rosario back in the lineup for this affair, as he’s one of four probable starters averaging double figures for this squad, with senior guard Kenny Boynton leading the way in scoring 13.8 points per game.  Florida is 14-10 ATS on the road the last two-plus years, which can’t be ignored when making your college basketball picks against the spread Thursday night.

The Gators are in the midst of a stretch of playing four of five games away from Gainesville, as they’ve been led by their defense the entire year, allowing just 52.0 points per game.  Florida is shooting a solid 48.3 percent from the floor this season, as it leads the Southeastern Conference in averaging 8.1 3-pointers made per game.  Boynton ranks first among active players in the conference with 1,782 career points, while hitting 295 shots from beyond the arc.

Texas A&M also enters on a four-game win streak, which includes an impressive 83-71 win over the Kentucky Wildcats as 15-point road underdogs, while going OVER the posted total of 127.  The Aggies were led offensively by Elston Turner, who scored a career-high 40 points, as he’s now reached double figures in scoring in 38 of 47 career games.  He has gotten some help from junior guard Fabyon Harris recently, as he’s posted double-figure points in five of his last six games.  Texas A&M is 15-9 ATS at home over the last two-plus seasons, which is something to consider when looking over the college basketball odds page.

The Aggies are 66-13 at Reed Arena since the start of the 2008-09 season, which includes a solid 23-11 mark at home.  Texas A&M ranks just behind Florida in defense, surrendering just 59.4 points per game.  The squad must continue to take care of the basketball, averaging 9.7 turnovers over their last three games, as Florida leads all conference members in that category.

Sports bettors will likely play the total, as the OVER is 7-3 in the Gators’ last 10 road games versus a team with a winning home record.

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