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Boston College Eagles vs. Virginia Commonwealth Rams Pick-Odds-Prediction 12/28/13

Virginia Commonwealth Rams (10-3) at Boston College Eagles (4-8)

College Basketball: Saturday, December 28, 2013 at 7:30 pm (Barclays Center)

The Line: Boston College Eagles +8.5 -- Over/Under: See the Latest Odds

TV: Fox Sports 1

The 4-8 Boston College Eagles hope to get their season back on track when they face off against the 10-3 Virginia Commonwealth Rams in the Brooklyn Hoops Winter Festival Saturday at 7:30PM on Fox Sports 1.

Things have been unraveling quickly for a BC team that finished last year strong and were a consensus pick to finish in the middle of the pack in a tough ACC conference.  The Eagles season continued trending in the opposite direction this past weekend as they fell to a below average Auburn team 77-67.  Olivier Hanlan poured in 28 points for the Eagles and Ryan Anderson managed 11 off the bench for BC but no other starters notched double figures.  BC shot it just 69% from the line, an area where they are usually quite strong.  The Eagles committed 21 fouls and turned the ball over 13 times -- an area where they ranked towards the top of the ACC last year, consistently playing efficient ball.  A win against a strong VCU team could go a long way to turning things around for BC.

Boston College Eagles vs. Virginia Commonwealth Rams Pick-Odds-Prediction 12/28/13

Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

VCU rolls into Brooklyn after a statement win over in-state rival Virginia Tech last weekend.  This contest was a laugher from the jump as the Rams poured it on the Hokies and literally reeked havoc on the VT backcourt.  VCU built a 37-8 lead in the first half and never looked back on their way to a convincing, 82-52 win.  The Rams forced the Hokies into 35% shooting for the game, 50% at the line and a whopping 27 turnovers -- almost a turnover per possession.  Melvin Johnson was red hot in this one, leading all scorers with 27 off the bench.  Johnson scored those 28 by knocked down an eye popping 8 three balls and 3 free throws.  The win marked the Rams second in a row.

Some trends to consider -- BC is 2-7 against the spread in their last 9 non-conference games and VCU is 3-7 against the spread in their last 10 overall.

BC is much more talented than their record indicates and while I think they will eventually heat up and get on a streak, VCU is far too athletic and should be able to have their way with BC’s slower lineup defensively.  I expect the VCU pressure defense to overwhelm Olivier Hanlan and wear down his ability to score buckets for the Eagles.  In turn, the Rams should be able to pull away in the 2nd half and squeeze out the cover and win in front of the neutral crowd in Brooklyn.


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