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    09/07/2011 10:47 PM
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NCAA Basketball Picks Big East Creighton Bluejays vs Providence Friars

NCAA basketball on Saturday and it is the finals of the Big East Tournament. In this matchup we will see the Creighton Bluejays take on the Providence Friars at Madison Square Garden in New York. The game has a start time of 8:30 pm (Eastern) and will be televised on Fox Sports 1. Vegas odds have the Bluejays listed as 7.5 point favorites, while the total sits at 147.

Stat Pack:  The Providence Friars got here by beating St John’s Thursday night and then last night they took out Seton Hall by a 70-64 count. The Friars are now 22-11 on the year overall and 12-8 in conference play. Providence averages a solid 73.5 ppg on 42.6% shooting, which is 263rd in the nation. They do hit their free throws, ranking 2nd in the nation at 77.8%. The offense is led by Bryce Cotton, who averages 21.3 ppg, while also dishing out 196 assists on the year. LaDontae Henton (14.1 ppg), Kadeem Batts (12.5 ppg) and Tyler Harris (11.6 ppg) also average in double figures for the Friars. Defensively, the Friars are average as they come in allowing 69.9 ppg, which is 170th in the nation, while teams shoot 44.3% vs them, which is 208th in the nation. This is a decent rebounding team, ranking 79th at 36.9 rpg.    

The Creighton Bluejays got to the finals by beating Depaul and Xavier.  The wins now have Creighton at 26-6 on the year. Creighton is one of the top offensive teams in the nation, as they rank 18th in scoring (80.2 ppg), 3rd in shooting (50.1%) and 1st in 3 point shooting (42.8%), plus they are also 15th in free throw shooting (75.1%). The offense is led by the best player in the nation in Doug McDermott, who averages 26.8 ppg, while also leading the team in rebounding at 7.0 rpg. Ethan Wragge is the only other player on the team that averages in double figures for the Bluejays at 10.7 ppg. Wragge (48.4%) and McDermott (45.6%) are both deadly from long range, while both also hit 82% or better from the free throw line. Defensively this is a solid team as they allow just 67.2 ppg on 41.9% shooting.

Pick: Going with Creighton to get a nice easy win in this one. The Bluejays have the best playing in the nation on their team and he is a big reason that this on one of the best overall offenses in the nation. Providence is a decent defensive team, but still it wont be enough, cause their offense just won't put enough points on the board to get the cover here.

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