CBB Picks: Take Temple, Arizona on Monday slate

One of the hottest covering teams in college basketball resides in the Philadelphia area.

The Temple Owls are on a five-game covering streak and they sit in a great spot to extend that run to six on Monday night.

The Owls head south to face a South Florida team that sits near the bottom of the American Athletic Conference standings. Temple had success on Saturday against Tulsa, the other one-win team in AAC play.

Temple quietly snuck up to third place in the AAC standings behind Houston and SMU and it needs an easy night in Tampa to begin a tough stretch of four road trips in the next five games.

In addition to Temple, I'm on a few mid-major teams in favorable spots and I'm fading two bad teams coming off emotional wins on Saturday.

Monday CBB Picks

Overall Record: 167-190-1 (10-8 Saturday)

UNC Wilmington at Hofstra (Over 145) (5 p.m. ET)

The spread on the CAA battle between UNC Wilmington and Hofstra is confusing.

UNCW is 10-1 in conference play, but it is over 80 spots beneath Hofstra on the KenPom rankings and it has not been favored often by the odds makers.

UNCW won the first meeting by six points on its home court, but Hofstra went 3-for-18 from three-point range.

Hofstra still scored 72 points while shooting 46 percent from the field in that game, which is why I'm more comfortable in taking the over in case this becomes a close game and UNCW covers.

Hofstra and UNCW both rank below 300th in three-point defense, and if the Pride shoot better from three-point range this time around, we could see both teams easily reach the high 70s.

Holy Cross at Colgate (-16.5) (6 p.m. ET)

All of the metrics applied to the Holy Cross-Colgate matchup suggest the host Raiders will run away with Monday's game.

Colgate ranks ninth in three-point offense and 34th in effective field-goal percentage on KenPom.

Holy Cross sits 344th in two-point offense, 333rd in effective field-goal percentage and 335th in adjusted efficiency.

Nothing about Holy Cross' offense inspires confidence against the Patriot League leader. Colgate covered three of its last four games as a double-digit favorite and it comes in hot with back-to-back 80-point performances. Colgate has the better offense and that should show over 40 minutes.

Temple (-4) at South Florida (7 p.m. ET, ESPN+)

Temple is one of the hottest teams in the country when it comes to covering the spread.

The Owls covered in each of their last five games and they are 8-2 against the spread in their last 10 games.

Aaron McKie's team won six of its last seven contests and it should extend that run against a poor South Florida team that lacks in offensive firepower.

South Florida failed to score more than 55 points in its last four trips to the hardwood. and it ranks below 330th in five offensive metrics on KenPom.

Chattanooga (-4.5) at Mercer (7 p.m. ET, ESPN+)

Mercer has not played well against the two best teams in the Southern Conference.

The Bears lost by nine points to Chattanooga on Saturday and they fell by double figures in their two losses to Furman.

Chattanooga shot four percent better from the field and three-point range than Mercer in Saturday's game and it can gain the edge on Monday if it continues to shoot like that and improves on its 11-for-16 mark at the free-throw line.

Chattanooga is one of the better mid-major teams that you haven't heard of and it should enforce its dominance again versus Mercer.

James Madison at Drexel (-3.5) (7 p.m. ET)

Drexel is 4-0 ATS in its last four, but all of those covers came as a road underdog.

The Dragons switch roles to the home favorite for Monday's clash with James Madison, who is trending in the wrong direction.

James Madison gave up 85 or more points in its last three losses, the first of which came at home against Drexel, and it failed to put away Northeastern in its lone win over the last four.

Drexel is playing the better basketball right now and its offense should have a strong night against a struggling JMU defense that it already took advantage of once.

Montana State (-9.5) at Idaho State (8 p.m. ET, ESPN+)

It is hard for a 4-16 team to have a let down spot, but that is where Idaho State lands on Monday.

Idaho State upset Montana on Saturday by 23 points.

The Bengals face a quick turnaround to deal with Montana State, who ranks higher in the Big Sky standings than its in-state rival.

Montana State held Idaho State to 40 points in their first meeting on New Year's Day and a similar outcome could happen between the programs that are separated by 310 places in two-point percentage on KenPom.

Arizona (-12) at Arizona State (9 p.m. ET, FS1)

Speaking of let down spots.

Arizona State sits in the ideal spot to fade after it exhausted all of its energy in a triple overtime home win over UCLA on Saturday.

The emotional and physical fatigue from Saturday's win could hurt the Sun Devils in their second meeting of the season with Arizona.

The Wildcats beat the Sun Devils by 11 points on January 29 and they are far and away the better offensive team. Arizona averages close to 20 more points per game.

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