NCAA Basketball Picks: New Mexico Lobos vs. Cincinnati Bearcats

New Mexico Lobos at Cincinnati Bearcats
Thursday, 12/27/12, 9:00 PM EST, TV:  ESPN2
Opening Point Spread:  Cincinnati -8
Current Betting Line:  Cincinnati -7.5
Opening Total:  136.5
Current Total:  135
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker

College Football Sportsbook
The New Mexico Lobos are 5-7 ATS as an underdog since 2010

New Mexico saw its season opening 12-game win streak ended in a 70-65 setback to South Dakota State Saturday, as it managed to hit just 37 percent of its shots from the field.  The Lobos are 5-17 all-time against current members of the Big East Conference, but they did manage to come away with a 66-60 victory over Connecticut as four-point neutral-site favorites on Nov. 19.  The program went 5-0 last season versus Big Six conference teams, but is still just 5-7 ATS as an underdog over the last two-plus seasons, which is important to consider when making your NCAA basketball picks Thursday night.

The Lobos have garnered an impressive 10-3 overall mark versus Big Six conference teams away from Albuquerque under coach Steve Alford, which is much better than their 10-36 mark in that situation before his arrival on campus.  New Mexico has managed to put together a 12-1 record to start the season despite shooting just 34.3 percent from beyond the arc.

Cincinnati has a perfect record through 12 games for the eighth time in school history, as it looks to improve its record to 40-3 in non-conference regular-season home games.    The Bearcats have won 10 of their last 12 games by at least 10 points, including eight contests by 15 or more.  The program is led by the play of guard Sean Kilpatrick, who has scored in double figures in every game this season.  Cincinnati is 12-18 ATS at home since 2010, with the UNDER going 19-8 in that situation.

The Bearcats rank second nationally in allowing opponents to shoot just 34.6 percent from the floor, while they sit seventh in out-rebounding foes by 11.3 boards per game.  Kilpatrick headlines a fantastic trio of players on Cincinnati’s roster, s he joins Cashmere Wright and JaQuon Parker to score 56.3 percent of the team’s points.  The program is 316-67 all-time when playing at Fifth Third Arena since it opened in 1989-90, which includes a 13-game win streak at the facility.

Sports bettors will likely back the Lobos due to their 5-1 ATS mark on the road versus a winning home team, while the Bearcats are 3-4 ATS as a home favorite of 6.5 to 9 points.

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