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No. 1 Syracuse at Providence. Basketball Free Pick.

Number One Syracuse Basketball
Taking Cuse -13.5

Top-ranked and unbeaten Syracuse is on upset alert on Wednesday night when the Orange visit Providencein Big East action. Bet on the game at WagerWeb.com.

The Orange improved to 15-0 on Tuesday with an easy 87-68 win at DePaul. With 7-foot Fab Melo altering numerous shots and blocking six others, the Orange took control in the first half, built a 19-point lead and then coasted.

“Our defense was really good in the first half and that was the game,” coach Jim Boeheim said. “The second half was just trading baskets.”

Kris Joseph, scoreless in his previous game, a victory over Seton Hall to open Big East play, had 22 points Sunday night as the Orange (15-0, 2-0 Big East) got their fast break going and consistently drove for layups. C.J. Fair added 16 points, Dion Waiters had 13 and Melo scored 12. Syracuse opened 18-0 last season and the Orange’s best start under Boeheim was 19 straight wins to kick off 1999-2000.

Providence (11-4, 0-2) had a rough opening week in conference play, getting blown away by St. John’s and then losing 49-41 to Georgetown. Against the Hoyas, LaDontae Henton had 13 points and 11 rebounds to lead Providence, which shot 25.5 percent from the field, the worst the school has ever shot in a Big East game. The Friars have lost 17 straight conference road games and 23 straight road games to ranked teams. The Friars scored only four points in the first 11 minutes and managed only six field goals while committing eight turnovers in the first half.

This will be the 55th meeting between Providence and Syracuse, with the Orange holding a 44-10 edge in the series. The Friars have posted a 6-21 mark versus the Orange at Providence, a 3-19 record at Syracuse and a 1-4 mark on neutral courts. The teams met once last season with the Orange taking an 81-74 decision on December 28, 2010 in Syracuse. The last Friar win was on January 28, 2009, a 100-94 victory at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center.

The Friars have posted a 2-10 mark all-time versus No. 1 ranked teams. The Friars’ two victories over top-ranked teams were an 82-81 double overtime win over Michigan on December 29, 1976 at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center and an 81-73 win over Pittsburgh on February 24, 2009 at the Dunkin’ Donuts Center. The win over Pittsburgh also marked the last time the Friars faced the No. 1 team in the nation.

SA Take: Line should be a little higher by our estimation. Maybe 15-17 points. And even though the public is all over Syracuse here (69% of the bets) we still have to take the number one team -13.5.

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Wednesday, January 4th, 2012 2012-previews-picks, College Basketball Betting

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