Our successful betting streak for Tennessee basketball came to an end with our picks last Saturday against the South Carolina Gamecocks…by half a point. Talk about a brutal beat.
We had the Vols covering the 16.5-point spread against them on FanDuel but also took the over 127.5. UT did cover easily, but the game hit the under, as the Vols won 85-42, resulting in just 127 points scored.
That ended seven straight picks, if you count the cover in that game, that we got right. Now, after acing a test on the road, Tennessee basketball is back home for an in-state rivalry matchup.
Yes, the Vanderbilt Commodores head to town. Like South Carolina, Vanderbilt is struggling at 8-7. As a result, FanDuel is once again high on the Vols.
The line in this game is Tennessee -17.5 while the moneyline is Tennessee -4000 and Vanderbilt +1400. In terms of the over/under, it’s up from last game to 132.5.
Rocky Top was able to move past the overreaction pollsters had on them last week, getting to No. 5 in both polls. Vandy, in its fourth year under Jerry Stackhouse, is 8-7. So what does all this mean?
Well, in their six games against Vandy under Stackhouse, Tennessee basketball has only covered a 17.5-spread twice. They are 1-2 against that spread at home, and that includes two really bad teams Stackhouse had.
Meanwhile, despite struggling this year, Vandy has been in tons of close games, and it’s not just about the Memorial Gym magic either. They just lost by three on the road to the Missouri Tigers, who are 13-2 and ranked No. 20.
In fact, Vanderbilt has only lost two games by double digits all year. They haven’t lost any game by more than 12 points, and their last three losses are all within four points.
Simply put, this team is unpredictable but keeps things close. As a result, despite playing at home, it makes the most sense to take Vanderbilt +17.5 in this one.
As for the over/under, well, Vandy has slightly higher scoring games than South Carolina, and their offense has hit over 80 each of their past three games. Like Tennessee basketball, they are getting better on that side of the ball.
Because of that, despite the Vols’ elite defense, the Over 132.5 is probably a solid bet here. UT will still win comfortable, but Vandy will score enough to keep it within the spread and hit the over.