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La Salle Explorers vs. Virginia Commonwealth Rams - 1/25/14

Virginia Commonwealth Rams (15-4) at La Salle Explorers (11-7)

College Basketball: Saturday, January 25, 2014 at 12:00 pm (Tom Gola Arena)

The Line: La Salle Explorers +2 -- Over/Under: See the Latest Odds

TV: ESPN2

VCU will put its two-game winning streak on the line when it travels to play La Salle on Saturday afternoon. The Rams impressed Wednesday night with an 80-66 win over Dayton, while the Explores have won five of their last six.

Shaka Smart’s team is finally starting to click this season. The Rams have won seven of their last eight, have a couple of key wins on the road and that defense is playing better than ever. VCU is holding opponents to just 23.9 percent from beyond the arc during the last three games. Just think about that number for a second. And while the offense took a while to get going earlier in the year, VCU has now scored at least 80 points in three of its last five games.

La Salle Explorers vs. Virginia Commonwealth Rams - 1/25/14

Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

That’s a deadly combination if you ask me.

La Salle is quietly 3-1 against Atlantic 10 competition and has had a nice little run this season. But it has yet to earn a marquee win. It’s also a brutal 1-4-1 against the spread on its home floor. The offense has drastically picked up as of late, shooting above 46 percent in the last five games and scoring above 70 points in five of its last six. Still, the Explorers don’t do anything great and have had a hard time all season beating the better teams on their schedule.

I have to back VCU and that feisty defense. It’s a team that’s starting to prepare for a nice NCAA Tournament run and is starting to fire on all cylinders. La Salle is 4-11-1 against the spread in its last 16 games, which includes a 2-6-1 against the spread record in its last nine home games.

VCU will make you money once again. 

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VCU -2

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