Houston Cougars vs. Louisville Cardinals Point Spread Pick
Point spread: Louisville -19
The Houston Cougars and the No. 18 Louisville Cardinals will battle it out this Thursday night at the KFC Yum! Center in a matchup between two of the top four teams in the AAC. Tip-off is scheduled for 7 p.m. (ET) and the game will be broadcast nationally on CBS Sports Network.
Cougars vs. Cardinals Game Overview
The Cougars knocked-off Connecticut and South Florida in their first two conference games, but came up just short against Cincinnati in a 61-60 loss on Jan. 7. This will be their first game since that loss after an extended nine-day break. Houston is 10-6 straight-up on the year with a 7-4 record against the spread. It has covered in four of its last five games and the total has stayed UNDER in seven of its last eight contests.
To get a road win in a very tough place to play, the Cougars will need a big night from TaShawn Thomas. He leads the team with 17 points and 8.9 rebounds while hitting 62.9 percent of his shots from the floor. Houston is already missing its second leading scorer Danuel House with a knee injury and LJ Rose has missed the last four games with a sprained foot. The Cougars are averaging 72 points a game, but this number has dropped to 64 in their last four outings.
Louisville fell six spots in the most recent AP poll as a result of last Thursday's 73-67 loss to No. 17 Memphis as a 10.5-point home favorite, but it did bounce back with a 71-63 victory over SMU this past Sunday. The Cardinals came nowhere close to covering the 13.5-point spread at home against the Tigers and they are now 1-4 ATS in their last five games. Louisville is 14-3 SU on the year with a 7-8 record ATS. The total has stayed UNDER in three of its last five games.
This team still revolves around the play of senior guard Russ Smith, who leads in both points (18.1) and assists (4.9). He has gotten some solid support from Montrezl Harrell and Chris Jones. Harrell is averaging 11.9 points while pulling down a team-high 8.4 rebounds and Jones chipping in another 11.3 points a game. Wayne Blackshear is the team's biggest scoring threat from the outside with a 41.3 shooting percentage from 3-point range. Louisville is averaging 83 points a game and shooting 46.8 percent from the field.
Houston vs. Louisville Betting Trends
The Cougars are 4-1 ATS in their last five road games and 4-0 ATS in their last four games against a team with a SU winning record. The total has gone OVER in nine of their last 13 games on the road.
The Cardinals are 8-3 ATS in their last 11 games following an ATS loss and 15-7 ATS in their last 22 games against a teams with a SU winning record. The total has gone OVER in 14 of their last 18 home games.
These two last met in 2005 with Houston coming away with a 70-67 victory as a 12-point home favorites. All time in this series, Louisville is 6-1 SU and 4-3 ATS.
Houston at Louisville Spread Pick
I went against Louisville in last Thursday's free NCAAB pick and cashed in, but this time around I am laying the huge spread and taking the Cardinals in a romp. Rick Pitino has had four days to get his team ready after a couple of shaky performances and with House and Rose listed as doubtful for Houston, the stage is set for a big night at the KFC Yum! Center.