Against The Spread Pick
These are a pair of teams who are looking for a win to keep their dreams of an NCAA Tournament berth alive. The Gamecocks have been as hot as anyone in the SEC over the second half of conference play and they are 7-3 straight up in their last 10 games. They picked up a much-needed win over George in a high scoring (94-90) win in overtime on Wednesday to boost their hopes after a couple of losses in a row. Their best player is sophomore guard AJ Lawson, who averages 13.5 ppg. Alabama has been an up and down team over the last month after falling from 12-7 to 15-13. The loss of junior guard John Petty Jr. who is doubtful for this contest shouldn’t be understated when looking at the betting line as he averages 15.0 points and is also important in the rebound game with 6.6 boards per outing. This means that even more pressure will fall on his guard partner Kira Lewis Jr. and his 17.9 points and 5.1 assists each time out. Take South Carolina plus the points here with Petty in doubt and with their more consistent play down the stretch in conference play.
Over Under Pick
These two teams have both been solidly on the side of the over this season but the line here is really high. The Gamecocks are 15-11-2 in the over/under play and they are 6-3-1 away from home. They are also 6-4 overall in their last 10 and 3-1 on the road in this metric. The Crimson Tide have been even more friendly to bettors backing the over as they are 17-10-1 on the season and they are 8-5 in home games. This record though is not backed up by their play in the last 1o games as they are 4-6 overall in the over/under play and a very lethargic 1-4 in their home contests. It feels like Bama may have peaked a little too early this season and while they are not exactly limping to the finishing line they will be missing the firepower of Petty here in their bid to reach the over. As a result of this injury, I like the under as a strong play here.