Harvard and Yale meet in the finals of the Ivy League Tournament on Sunday at noon ET. The Bulldogs are 4.5-point favorites, with the total at 145. Both teams had matching 10-4 records in the conference, but Harvard swept the season series to earn the top seed; Yale is the 2-seed. It’s the biggest rivalry in the league and for the first time it has center stage of a conference tournament final with an NCAA Tournament bid on the line. So before you make your Harvard vs. Yale picks, be sure to check out the predictions from SportsLine guru Michael Rusk.
Rusk built his name by exploiting flaws in public betting. With his economics and statistics background, Rusk uses multiple algorithms pooling with recency bias to produce profitable picks. That’s exactly what “The Prodigy” has been doing recently with his strong 28-16 run on his college basketball picks. Anyone who has followed him is way up.
For Sunday’s showdown, Rusk knows that one big advantage for Harvard is its perimeter shooting. In the first two matchups against Yale, the Crimson hit 43.5 percent of their shots from beyond the 3-point line. Bryce Aiken has been their biggest catalyst all season, averaging 21.9 points per game. After a difficult performance in the first game, he bounced back to have a big night at Yale on Feb. 23.
Aiken hit 6 of 11 from the field and 3 of 6 from 3-point range, while also hitting 13 of 15 from the free throw line for 28 points in an 88-86 win. The Crimson led the conference in 3-point shooting, so if they can get another big game from Aiken and supplementary scoring from beyond the arc, they should control the action Sunday.
But just because the Crimson swept the regular-season series, doesn’t mean they are a lock to cover the spread.
The Bulldogs were the top scoring team in the conference, averaging 77.3 points per game during league play, and ranking 26th in the nation with 80.5 points per game. Yale also shoots it well from deep, hitting 37.3 percent from the 3-point line. However, the Bulldogs use that ability to space the floor to create opportunities to slash and establish in the post, where they do the majority of their damage.
Paul Atkinson, Jordan Bruner and Blake Reynolds have good size and strength on the interior that they will look to exploit against a smaller Harvard lineup. Yale is also the more veteran team, so it will look to use the experience edge to adjust its plan of attack after making serious ground from its 16-point loss on Feb. 1 to the two-point loss on Feb. 23.
We can tell you Rusk is leaning to the under, but his much stronger play is on the spread. He has identified a critical X-factor that causes one side of the spread to hit hard. You absolutely need to see it before locking in any college basketball picks.
Who wins Yale vs. Harvard? And which critical X-factor makes one side of the spread a must-back? Visit SportsLine now to find out which side of the Yale vs. Harvard spread you should be all over, all from the expert crushing his recent college basketball picks.
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