6 p.m. at Gainesville, FL
Penn State +10½ at Florida (137)
The Gators are playing their third straight home game in the NIT and with a victory will establish a single-season school record 19. Florida’s downfall in not making the NCAA tourney was a 5-7 record down the stretch leading up to the NIT. In this tourney, Florida has cruised to wins at home of 22 against Jacksonville and 14 against Miami of Florida.
Penn State was thought to have had an NCAA bid locked up after beating Illinois for a second time. The Nittany Lions turned that rejection into a pair of NIT home wins over Rhode Island and George Mason by 11 and 4 points respectively. Ever since that 38-33 debacle with Illinois, the Nittany Lions have scored over 61 points in seven straight, while allowing 70 or more in 4 of the last 5.
Penn State lost at Purdue by 14, at Michigan by 20 and at Ohio State by 14. Florida, with that 18-1 home mark, is comparable to those NCAA tourney teams at the O’Connell Center. We would think different on the road. FLORIDA / OVER.