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2009 NCAA Tournament Betting Tips

BEWARE OF THE OBSCURE IN THE NCAA TOURNEY

The Name North Dakota St. Bisons is probably about as obscure as it gets in the world of college basketball. They may be in the works of being perhaps the most under the radar school in NCAA Tournament history. The Bison are known by few, but you can ask Minnesota, and USC if this team can play on a high level.

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The Bison had a 5 point lead at USC early this season at halftime, before losing by 4 points, despite shooting a season worst 36%. They went to Minnesota, and the Gophers had their best shooting night of the season, at 62% but the rest of the stats were even, and the Bison lost by 14. They have 3 other losses, 2 of those by a single point, one in OT. So what makes this team special? It is a quick, talented experienced team, and that will make them dangerous come tourney time, if they can make it, as the only way they get in is by winning their conference tournament, never easy, despite the talent. They currently rank 17th in the country in 3pt shooting, and 27th in FG percentage. They are led by ben Woodside, who has already topped the 2,000 point mark for his career.

Woodside is a 5’11” waterbug, that can score off dribble drives, or deep, as he is connecting on 43.5% from beyond the arc, as well as dishing out 6.2apg. there is also 6’5″ Brett Winkelman who averages 18.5ppg and 7.1 boards a game. 

Winkelman will join the 2,000 pt club before the season is over, so they have a very rare combo of 2,000 point scorers. Winkelman, as well as doing the dirty work inside, can shoot the 3, connecting on 39.1%. Then there is Mike Nelson, the 3rd 1000 point scorer, who by tourey time will be well over 1500 points for his career. Nelson shoots 40.8% from deep. The Bison already beat their top competitor in the Summit, Oral Roberts, and sits on top with an 11-1 mark. Oral Roberts is 9-2. The Bison are 16-5 on the season, but their RPI is all the way up to #64.

Keep this name in mind, because if they punch their ticket to the Big Dance, the Bison could make life miserable for a top team. It would be likely they are a 14 or 15 seeded team if they should make it to the dance. It’s been a longtime since a #15 seeded team took down a #2 seeded team. Number 2 seeds are 92-4 against the 15 seeds in the last 24 years, with the most recent winner, Hampton over Iowa St. in 2001.

The other 3? Coppin St. over S. Carolina in 1997, S. Clara over Arizona in 1993, and Richmond over Syracuse in 1991. The secret to success? All those 4 upset-minded teams came into the tourney winning at least 9 of their last 10, and their last 3 in a row, but a regular season winning percentage of under .800, because they played some tough teams out of conference, and had balanced scoring.

Those types of 15 seeds have been 4-11 vs #2 seeds, while the rest are 0-82!

Keep a watchful eye out for the Bisons, they may be coming to a newspaper headline near you!

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