New Orleans at Utah State Odds And Pick: Jump Aboard This Total Trend

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New Orleans Privateers guard Derek St. Hilaire (Photo by David Rosenblum/Icon Sportswire)

It is with great pride that we reveal one of college basketball’s juiciest wagering angles, a nugget that has paid dividends for many seasons.

New Orleans games to go ‘over’ the total.

It would be tidy to attribute this jewel to coach Mark Slessinger, who took over in 2012. Since then, among teams that have played at least 100 lined games, the Privateers lead the country in ‘overs’, at 69-36-3 (65.7%).

New Orleans is the lone team with an ‘over’ rate better than 60%.

From the Big Easy, with love.

New Orleans Privateers (3-6, 5-3 ATS)

The Privateers visit Utah State in Saturday action, with tipoff set for 9 p.m. ET at Dee Glen Smith Spectrum in Logan, Utah.

This tendency to the ‘over’ predates Slessinger, back to coaches Joe Pasternack, Buzz Williams, and Monte Towe. Must be something in Lake Pontchartrain, on whose coast UNO resides, because Privateers games are never dull.

Since 2003, among programs that have played more than 250 games that have been lined by oddsmakers, New Orleans is No. 1 in games going ‘over’ their totals at 160-112-4 (58.8%).

Trailing New Orleans over that span is Oral Roberts (183-129-3, 58.7%), North Dakota (153-113-3, 57.5%), Buffalo (287-219-8, 56.7%), and Oakland (200-158-6, 55.9%).

Privateers games are 6-2 to ‘over’ this season, but they don’t exactly lead the nation in style. They have a top-40 tempo but are poor on offense and very poor on defense.

They sink 3-pointers at a 37% clip, top-60 in the country, but don’t attempt enough bombs. Only Cal State Bakersfield attempts fewer shots from beyond the arc, per overall field-goal attempts, than New Orleans. And that’s among 358 Division-I programs.

The main Privateer is Derek St. Hilaire, a senior guard and ex-Jacksonville State dynamo who scored at least 17 points in each of his team’s first eight games.

Utah State Aggies (6-3, 5-3 ATS)

The Aggies are primed to play the high-scoring game, especially on their own court, as their games are also 6-2 to ‘over’ this season.

First-year coach Ryan Odom’s charges excel at shooting everywhere — beyond the arc, inside the arc, and at the line.

And if his name sounds familiar, it should. Odom directed Maryland–Baltimore County over Virginia, the first time a 16-seed ousted a No. 1 in the NCAA Tournament, in Charlotte on March 16, 2018.

Oddly, Utah State foes have been sinking freebies at an 81.7% rate, the second-highest opponents’ rate in the nation, to Green Bay’s 84.1%.

Justin Bean, a 6-foot-7 senior forward, went for 33 points in consecutive games this season, against Penn and Richmond, and he’s averaged a bit more than 20 in his past five. He has also had 19-, 16- and 15-rebound games this season.

New Orleans at Utah State Betting Lines and Pick

This line opened at Circa Sports in Las Vegas at Utah State -19  and a total of 148.5, with the total bet up to 149.5 in early wagering.

Per KenPom.com’s ratings, which many sportsbooks use to help establish opening lines, the total comes in around 148. We liked ‘over’ that number.

If you’re on board with the play, shop around the betting market for the lowest total.

About the Author

Rob Miech

Veteran sportswriter Rob Miech covers soccer and does features for Gaming Today. He has written about college hoops for the Las Vegas Sun, CBS SportsLine and the Pasadena Star-News. He is the author of four books, including Sports Betting for Winners.

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