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BOILERHONK’S PONKS FOR THE FIRST ROUND

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It’s STILL the most wonderful time of the year!

Update for Thursday’s games:

Here’s the slate! Lines courtesy DraftKings. All times central, duh.

3/17, 11:15a CT - 11 Michigan Wolverines (-1) v. 6 Colorado State Rams (O/U 137.5) in Indianapolis, IN
3/17, ~2:10p CT - 12 Richmond Spiders (O/U 150) v. 5 Iowa Hawkeyes (-10.5) in Buffalo, NY
3/17, 6:20p CT - 12 Indiana Hoosiers (O/U 126.5 | +130) v. 5 Saint Mary’s Gaels (-3) in Portland, OR

Michigan is a team I have no faith in. Just casually blowing their conference tournament game against Indiana. In retrospect, they didn’t need that game, which is incredible. They’re facing Colorado State, a school playing with everything mounted against them. You lost an hour this past week? They lost THREE. Not getting that time back. There are some fine numbers pointing Michigan’s direction (8-4 straight up as neutral site favorite under Howard, CSU 3-7 as neutral site dog under Medved) but I’m not really about those. I see this being a defensive game with the Rams focused on slowing it down. UNDER 137.5

OVER 150 for Iowa/Richmond. It’s 6-1 in neutral site Iowa games where Iowa’s favored the last two seasons.

I like IU to keep their hot streak going. I like the under (over is 3-8 in Randy Bennett-coached NCAA Tournament games). Indiana +130 & UNDER 126.5

3/17, 11:40a CT - 13 South Dakota State Jackrabbits (O/U 147.5) v. Providence Friars (-2) in Buffalo, NY
3/17, 12:45p CT - 9 Memphis Tigers (-3) v. 8 Boise State Broncos (O/U 133.5 | +130) in Portland, OR
3/17, 1:00p CT - 16 Norfolk State Spartans (O/U 137.5) v. 1 Baylor Bears (-20.5) in Ft. Worth, TX
3/17, ~1:45p CT - 14 Longwood Lancers (O/U 132) v. 3 Tennessee Volunteers (-18) in Indianapolis, IN
3/17, ~3:15p CT - 16 Georgia State Panthers (O/U 152) v. 1 Gonzaga Bulldogs (-23.5) in Portland, OR
3/17, ~3:30p CT - 9 Marquette Golden Eagles (O/U 152) v. 8 North Carolina Tar Heels (-3.5) in Ft. Worth, TX
3/17, 5:50p CT - 12 New Mexico State Aggies (O/U 132) v. 5 Connecticut Huskies (-6.5) in Buffalo, NY
3/17, 6:10p CT - 15 Saint Peter’s Peacocks (O/U 132) v. 2 Kentucky Wildcats (-18) in Indianapolis, IN
3/17, 6:27p CT - 9 Creighton Blue Jays (O/U 120.5) v. 8 San Diego State Aztecs (-2) in Ft. Worth, TX
3/17, ~8:20p CT - 13 Vermont Catamounts (O/U 139) v. 4 Arkansas Razorbacks (-5) in Buffalo, NY
3/17, ~8:40p CT - 10 San Francisco Dons (O/U 136.5) v. 7 Murray State Racers (-2) in Indianapolis, IN
3/17, ~8:50p CT - 13 Akron Zips (O/U 128.5) v. 4 UCLA Bruins (-13.5) in Portland, OR
3/17, ~8:57p CT - 16 Texas Southern Tigers (O/U 132) v. 1 Kansas Jayhawks (-21.5) in Ft. Worth, TX

Quick hitters:

South Dakota State v Providence OVER 147.5
Boise State +130 v Memphis
Longwood +18 v Tennessee
New Mexico State v Connecticut UNDER 132
San Diego State -2 v Creighton
Vermont v Arkansas OVER 139
San Francisco +115 v Murray State


My son is now 1 year old. What a world. He’s adorable. But he’ll need money for college assuming he doesn’t grow up to be a 6’4” point god or TikTok star and it still costs a pretty penny to attend.

So it’s time to keep feeding that 529 and what better way* to invest than college football picks.

Note: there are much better ways to invest money and neither I, nor BHGP, are liable for any losses you may endure as a result of any “advice.”


The PONKS return after a SAD WEEKEND of Big Ten Tournament action but only if you’re more tied to your bank account than the glory of a tournament championship. That was delightful. Normally I’m a guy who disregards the B1G tourney because what fun is putting stock in something Iowa has struggled in since I was on Math Team in high school? Well, now I guess I’ll put more stock in those performances. Unless Iowa STINKS. The recap is at the bottom, and I’m gonna add to it as this post gets hilariously blown out as we bear witness to 36 basketball games over the next four days.

Giddy up!


We’ll start with these tournament winner odds for esses and gees:

Purdue Boilermakers 20-1
Iowa Hawkeyes 22-1
Illinois Fighting Illini 50-1
Wisconsin Badgers 80-1
Michigan Wolverines 150-1
Ohio State Buckeyes 200-1
Michigan State Spartans 100-1
Indiana Hoosiers 300-1
Rutgers Scarlet Knights 350-1

Historically, not a huge fan of these wagers and don’t love any of the odds here (not just the Big Ten). The good teams are poopy returns and the bad teams are hedges-in-waiting. Looking at it from the latter perspective, Wisconsin makes the most sense in that respect. Sure, Colgate could shoot them out of the gym, but the path after that is hilariously easy: either a coachless team or an offenseless team. Then Auburn, probably, but the game will be in Chicago. Then another home court advantage against whomever comes out of the top side of the bracket. They’re gonna Dick Bennett their way into a Final Four berth while Johnny Davis continues not to make threes!

(this tweet was sent when Keegan had six 3s against Indiana)

As far as the First Four’s slate, here’s where it stand. Non-Rutgers lines courtesy DraftKings.

3/15, 5:40p - Texas A&M Corpus Christi Islanders (O/U 136) v. Texas Southern Tigers (-3.5)
3/15, ~8:10p - Indiana Hoosiers (-4.5) v. Wyoming Cowboys (O/U 132.5)
3/16, 5:40p - Wright State Raiders (-3.5) v. Bryant Bulldogs (O/U 155 | +140)
3/16, ~8:10p - Notre Dame Fighting Irish (-1) v. Rutgers Scarlet Knights (O/U 132)

Texas A&M-CC is 9-3 ATS as an underdog this season, but 5-7 straight up. The over in those scenarios is 8-4. 12 of their last 16 games have gone over 136. For Texas Southern, they’ve gone over 136 in 6 of the last 8. OVER 136 & Texas A&M-CC +3.5

Wyoming is 2-5 ATS after a loss this season. It’s a trend I like but one thing to watch is Graham Ike vs. Trayce Jackson-Davis. Ike draws fouls at a top 10 rate. Jackson-Davis is top 50ish. I think Ike struggles against the TJD. Indiana -4.5

All I know about Wright State and Bryant is that Wright State is playing less than 20 minutes from home but Bryant’s star, Peter Kiss, is absolutely insane. The First Four can’t keep a kid like that out, even if it’s a pseudo-road game. Bryant +140

The final game is gonna be slow as molasses in January. Notre Dame and Rutgers are two teams comfortable playing very slow basketball. Rutgers two games last year were played in the 60s. The only way this one gets over 132 is if we go to overtime. UNDER 132


Overall: -4.85u (10-14)

NCAA Tournament: -0.1u (2-2)
Big Ten games: +1u (1-0)

-1.1u: Texas A&M-CC +3.5 vs. Texas Southern 1.1u to win 1
+1u: Texas A&M-CC vs. Texas Southern OVER 136 1.1u to win 1
+1u: Indiana -4 vs. Wyoming 1.1u to win 1
-1u: Bryant +140 vs. Wright State 1u to win 1.4
Notre Dame vs. Rutgers UNDER 132 1.1u to win 1

Big Ten Tournament -4.75u (8-12)

-1.1u: Iowa vs. Purdue OVER 151.5 1.1u to win 1
+1.25u: Iowa +125 vs. Purdue 1u to win 1.25

-1.1u: Indiana vs. Iowa UNDER 144.5 1.1u to win 1
+1u: Indiana +6 vs. Iowa 1.1u to win 1
-1.1u: Michigan State vs. Purdue UNDER 142.5 1.1u to win 1

-1.1u: Illinois -5 vs. Indiana 1.1u to win 1
+1u: Iowa vs. Rutgers OVER 144.5 1.1u to win 1
+1u: Michigan State +3 vs. Wisconsin 1.1u to win 1
+1u: Michigan State vs. Wisconsin UNDER 138 1.1u to win 1
-1u: Penn State +340 vs. Purdue 1u to win 3.4
-1.1u: Penn State vs. Purdue OVER 135.5 1.1u to win 1

-1.1u: Indiana vs. Michigan UNDER 136 1.1u to win 1
-1.1u: Michigan -2 vs. Indiana 1.1u to win 1
-1.1u: Northwestern vs. Iowa UNDER 148 1.1u to win 1
+1u: Iowa -7 vs. Northwestern 1.1u to win 1
-1.1u: Maryland vs. Michigan State UNDER 139.5 1.1u to win 1
+1u: Penn State vs. Ohio State OVER 132 1.1u to win 1

-1u: Nebraska +170 vs. Northwestern 1u to win 1.7
-1.1u: Nebraska vs. Northwestern OVER 144.5 1.1u to win 1
+1u: Penn State -3.5 vs. Minnesota 1.1u to win 1