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Atlantic 10 Conference Tournament
Betting Preview and Schedule
Some would put the Atlantic 10 down and call it a bad conference. We disagree. This 14 team conference is chock full of teams that can pull an upset on the national stage on any given night. These teams will compete in the A-10 Tournament from March 8-13 with the first round games taking place on campus and the finals in Atlantic City, NJ. This year’s favorite is Xavier (22-6, 13-1). They have put together a very good year despite going only 7 players deep due to injury. The Musketeers posses one of the very best PGs in the nation and his name is Tu Holloway. This kid is a scoring machine and strikes at 84.6% from the charity stripe.
After Xavier bettors should look to the Temple Owls (22-6, 12-2). The preseason favorite would need a miracle to take the regular season championship from rival Xavier, but entering the Atlantic 10 tournament they have as good a shot as winning as any team. Led by senior F Lavoy Allen (11.2 PPG, 7.8 RPG) the Owls have wins over Georgia, Maryland, Georgetown and Richmond. They lost to Texas A&M and Villanova by a combined 7 points. They are more than capable of beating Xavier and any other team in this tournament.
The Duquesne Dukes (17-10, 9-5) are an interesting case. They have dropped 5 of their last 6 games at the time of this writing, but before that they won 11 in a row including a decisive 78-66 win over Temple. The Dukes lead the nation in assists and they can really work the ball around and score. Earlier this year they beat Saint Louis 67-45, but lost to them 62-51 in their next battle. If the HC and seniors can right the ship this team is as dangerous as any, but they certainly have questions to answer. This is not the time of year where you want a team to be cold.
Richmond (22-7, 11-3) is another interesting squad. The Spiders own wins over an ACC, Big East and Big Ten team this year. They are the only team in the conference that can say that. Their 65-54 win over Purdue is perhaps the best win of any A10 team this year. The down side is that Richmond did lose to Xavier by 23 at home and Temple by 20 on the road. They are playing with a lot of confidence and finishing the year well. If they can harness some of their early season success, the Spiders may win this thing.
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The Dayton Flyers (19-10, 7-7) may be worth a look at a price. They played Xavier strong in defeat twice and they must win to make it to the NCAA Tournament. Backers of the Flyers will get their best ball at a great price.
If we take our score prediction model and run Xavier and Temple, the two top A-10 teams, on a neutral floor, the model likes Temple by a score of 66-65. The model likes Xavier over Richmond 67-65 and Xavier over Rhode Island 74-63. Also note that the top teams, Xavier, Temple and Rhode Island are all playing a few points above their regular season ratings while Richmond is playing right at their season rating. Duquesne is playing almost 6 points below their regular season rating.
Lastly, with the Championship rounds being played in Atlantic City, just a short 40 minute drive down the pike from Philly, expect Temple to be the crowd favorite with plenty of support from their fans. That could make all the difference in the world in a title game that figures to be close as it is.
We'll call for the slight upset here and we'll go with Temple to win the Atlantic 10 Tournament in 2011.
Here is the A-10 Tournament Schedule
2011 Atlantic 10 Tournament First Round
Tuesday, March 8th, 2011 (Locations on College Campuses, Time TBD)
Game 1 - #8 Seed– #9 Seed
Game 2 - #5 Seed – #12 Seed
Game 3 - #6 Seed – #11 Seed
2011 Atlantic 10 Tournament Quarterfinals
Friday, March 11th, 2011
#8/#9 Winner – #1 Seed - 12:00 PM
#5/#12 Winner – #4 Seed - 2:30 PM
#6/#11 Winner – #3 Seed - 6:30 PM
#7/#10 Winner – #2 Seed - 9:00 PM
2011 Atlantic 10 Tournament Semifinals
Saturday, March 12th, 2011
2011 A 10 Basketball Tournament Semifinals Game 1 - 1:00 PM
2011 A 10 Basketball Tournament Semifinals Game 2 - 3:30 PM
2011 Atlantic 10 Tournament Finals
Sunday, March 13th, 2011
Winner Semifinal Game 1 vs Winner Semi Final Game 2 - 1:00 PM
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