It’s shaping up as a wild weekend in the Ivy League where four teams are still alive for the conference title with two games remaining. Two of the contenders–Princeton and Yale–meet tonight at Jadwin Gymnasium at 7:00 PM ET. Lets see what the sportsbook odds makers have listed for us tonight, and decide where we should place our picks in this matchup.
Sportsbooks had opened with Princeton listed at -6 with a total of 129.5 on the NCAA Basketball odds boards, but early sports betting action caused the noubers to fall, as the Tigers are nowfavored by -5.5 with the total at 127.5.
The Bulldogs (19-7, 9-3 Ivy) enter the final weekend of the regular season still alive in the race for the Ivy League title. Yale trails first-place Harvard (10-2) by one game and second place Penn (9-2) by a half game. With Princeton (7-4) also still in the mix, there are numerous scenarios in play.
Yale must win at least one game to have any chance to still be alive come Sunday. Princeton remains mathematically alive heading into the weekend, but the Tigers need lots of things to break right, in order to claim the title. They need to win out, see the Crimson get swept in New York and Penn at least split this weekend.
Regardless of the results, the Bulldogs would seem to have done enough to earn a postseason berth likely in the NIT rather than the NCAA tournament. Yale’s 19 wins are the most for the school in 11 years and another victory either tonight or Saturday would make them just the sixth team in school history to reach the 20-win plateau.
Yale will also be out for a season sweep of Princeton for the first time 2007-08. In the first meeting on February 4, the Bulldogs stifled the Tigers 58-54 holding Princeton to a league low in points and in shooting (33.3 percent).
Head coach James Jones reached a milestone last Saturday, notching his 100th career Ivy victory. He is only the fifth coach in league history to reach the mark.
Yale’s scoring world revolves around Greg Mangano (18.5 ppg.) who shares the Ivy lead in scoring with Penn’s Zack Rosen. Mangano also is the league leader in rebounding (9.7 rpg.), blocks (62) and double-doubles with 13. Austin Morgan is shooting 90.3 percent (84 of 93) from the foul line and Reggie Willhite (59 steals) needs one more to set the single-season school record.
Yale is 11-0 when holding teams below 65 points this season and 13-1 when keeping opponents below 44 percent shooting. The Bulldogs lead the Ivy League in scoring (70.4 ppg.) and rebounding margin (+5.0). The Bulldogs are second in scoring margin (+5.9) and blocked shots (110). In Ivy only games, Yale is second in field goal percentage defense (.403).
The Tigers (16-11 SU, 15-8 ATS) is coming off one of its finest performances off the year beating Dartmouth on Saturday 85-61.
Princeton’s 85 point performance were the team’s most in regulation against a Division I opponent since scoring 89 against Lafayette on Dec. 7, 2002. Princeton’s 65.4 shooting percentage was its highest since shooting 70.3 percent on March 4, 2005 against Harvard.
The Tigers are averaging 68.1 points in Ivy games, which is tops in the league. Ian Hummer is third in the league in scoring (16.2 ppg.) and fifth in rebounding (7.3 rpg.).
Yale is 10-5-1 ATS this season including 6-2-1 on the road. The Bulldogs are 7-1 vs. the number in their last eight games overall and 6-1-1 ATS in their past eight road outings.
The ‘over’ is 13-2-1 in Princeton’s last 16 appearances and the Tigers are 7-2 SU at home and 4-2 ATS.
Harvey’s Take: I’ve got to side with the home team here and I’ll also be looking at a play on the ‘over’ as well.