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College Basketball New Mexico Lobos at St Louis Billikens Preview: Start Time, Odds, Free Pick

Kendall Williams Demetrius Walker #40 and Kendall Williams #10 of the New Mexico Lobos celebrate as they walk off the court after defeating the UNLV Rebels 72-67 in a semifinal game of the Conoco Mountain West Conference Basketball tournament at the Thomas & Mack Center March 9, 2012 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

College Basketball on Monday and we will see the New Mexico Lobos travel to Missouri to take on the St Louis Billikens. The game is scheduled for a 12:00 pm (Eastern) start time and will be televised on ESPN 2. Currently the odds for the game have St Louis favored by 4.5 points while the total sits at 123.5.  Check out Sportsbook Spy to see who the Public is taking on all of today's games.

Free Analysis: Saint Louis, which has played exclusively at home for this entire month and has dates against Savannah State and UMass ready to kick off the new year in this building as well, could go undefeated in December if this game falls the right way. The Billikens have put together six straight victories and seven in the last eight games overall, thanks partly to a 68-41 thrashing of SIU- Edwardsville last Friday. The Billikens scored the first points of the game against SIUE and never looked back as the defense for SLU dominated the visitors for a full 40 minutes. SIUE made a total of just six field goals in the first half, 15 for the game which was one less than the team had turnovers. Mike McCall dropped in a game-high 16 points for the hosts, followed by Dwayne Evans who tallied 14 points, while Cory Remekun responded with six points and a game-high 10 rebounds for the Billikens as well. The leading scorer for the program in each of the last three outings, McCall is coming up with a respectable 11.8 ppg which is second only to Evans with his 12.3 ppg, to go along with a team-best 6.7 rpg. Coming off the bench exclusively, Cody Ellis gives the group a spark with his 10.6 ppg, although his mere 33.0 percent shooting form the floor still leaves a lot to be desired. The Billikens are ranked 43 for offensive field goal percentage shooting 46.3% while attempting 49.2 shots per game. The Billikens shooting percentages include 72.7% for free throw percentage and 37.7% for three point percentage so far this season.

As for the Lobos, a team which began the campaign as one of three schools in the Mountain West Conference that was nationally ranked, they were stunned by South Dakota State at home in The Pit three days before Christmas, 70-65, marking their first loss of the season. Scoring just 22 points in the first half, the poorest effort of the season thus far, the Lobos were lucky to be trailing by just four points at the break against an undefeated Cincinnati squad. In the second half, UNM survived just 3-of-8 at the free-throw line in order to slip by with the one-point road win. Kendall Williams tallied a game-high 16 points, Alex Kirk delivered 15 points, seven boards and three blocked shots, followed by Tony Snell with 10 points in the close call. For the second straight game and the fifth time this season New Mexico was held below 40 percent shooting from the floor and instead of dominating at the free-throw line the group was just 6-of-11 at the charity stripe. Williams, who has camped out at the line early on this season, converting 74-of-89 (.831), not only leads the team in scoring with 14.9 ppg, he is also tops with 66 assists and 17 steals, demonstrating that he's willing to do whatever it takes to get this team into the win column. The Lobos are ranked 199 for offensive field goal percentage shooting 41.9% while attempting 52.2 shots per game. The Lobos shooting percentages include 75.1% for free throw percentage and 34.5% for three point percentage so far this season.

Free Pick: I love the Under in this one, especially the way both teams play defense. The Lobo's come in allowing just 59.6 ppg in their last 5 games and they just held a good Cincinnati offense to 54 points on 31% shooting in their last game. St Louis does shoot the ball well (46.3%), but they play at a slow pace and thus score just 66.23 ppg. On the other side we have a Billikens team that allows just 55.4 ppg overall and 53 ppg at home and while the Lobo's do score 70 ppg, they are not a great shooting team, hitting just 41.9% of their shots overall and 39.8 ppg on the road. Both teams will play at a slow pace and that along with the defense will keep the scoring low. 

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