College Basketball Sweat Barometer Update, Heat vs. Raptors NBA Spread Pick

Joe DuffyAnalyst IFebruary 16, 2011

Miami will likely win, but not cover says NBA handicapper
Miami will likely win, but not cover says NBA handicapperMike Ehrmann/Getty Images senior sports handicapper Matt Rivers has a Wednesday winner on the Toronto Raptors (+9) vs. Miami.

Sure Toronto is one of the weaker teams in the entire NBA and Miami is light years the superior squad on the court. But this is not a very good spot for the Heat and to ask them to play for a second straight day, travel north of the border and then win going away by double digits just seems too extreme for me.

The 15-40 Raptors certainly can’t compete in an apples-to-apples type of a scenario.

If things were equal then I understand this number as LeBron James, Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh are just way too good as the 39-15 or whatever record would indicate. But Erik Spoelstra’s boys just played in Indiana last night and are in a third game in four-day scenario which included a rough one in Boston over the weekend.

The Raptors have been off since their Sunday home win against the Clippers and should be perfectly rested. A team doesn’t want too many days off but a few is never bad and with Andrea Bargnani, Jose Calderon, Demar Derozan and at least some talent, not a ton, but some, I will grab this home dog against a potentially dog-tired Heat team and take my chances.

We saw the Los Angeles Lakers implode in a similarly difficult situation at Charlotte on Monday night and this may not be a carbon copy but it could be in that realm.

Top expert pick on this game: Toronto +9

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Now to the latest update on the Margin of Cover standings.  Renamed “sweat barometer” in Chad Millman of ESPN’s column, MOC is similar to scoring margin, but it is measured by how much a team covers or fails to cover the point spread.

Many sports handicappers believe MOC is invaluable in isolating under and overvalued teams.   To the top of the NCAA basketball standings (12 lines games minimum):

Team                                      Spread Record                     Margin of Cover

Texas                                      15-5                                       5.9

George Mason                        20-5                                        5.4

Duquesne                              12-4-1                                      5.3

Yale                                         8-4                                        5.0

Idaho                                      14-7-1                                     4.2      

San Francisco                         14-6                                        4.0

Now to the bottom—or to the top of teams for bettors to fade:

Team                                      Spread Record                     Margin of Cover

Central Florida                        5-12                                        -5.4

Michigan State                       8-15                                        -5.1

South Alabama                      7-12                                        -4.5

Texas Tech                           8-13                                        -4.1

Western Illinois                     3-15                                         -4.0

Source: supplied by Grandmaster Sports Handicapper Joe Duffy, CEO of, the top sports betting site in the world.