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Mid-Money Madness: Some mid-money MACtion...and Dayton-VCU

Home underdogs and upsets will prevail

NCAA Basketball: Eastern Michigan at Duke Rob Kinnan-USA TODAY Sports

Mid-Money Madness is back to cover another Tuesday night slate. Here’s what we’re looking at:

* Reminder we are bloggers not professional bettors. As always please wager responsibly.

Eastern Michigan (+2.5) vs Kent State: Total 128.5

7 p.m. ET, ESPN+

The MAC has been a total crapshoot this season. There hasn’t been a truly dominant team in the conference and it seems every single game has been competitive. Arguably the team that has been playing the best lately has been Eastern Michigan. The Eagles are coming off a road win against Central Michigan and have won five out of their last six. Eastern is also 7-3 against the spread in its last 10 games. On the other hand, Kent State has struggled against the number going 2-5 in its last seven ATS. Eastern Michigan has been the best defensive team in the conference and its offense is starting to come together. Star center Boubacar Toure has ignited this turnaround. The reigning MAC West player of the week averaged 18.5 points and 9.5 rebounds per while shooting a ridiculous 17-18 from the field last week. The 6’11 Toure will build on last week’s success and will be a huge mismatch against a small Kent State team. The Golden Flashes rank 301st in the country in defensive rebounding percentage, and Toure will be able to feast on the boards. Look for the Eagles to continue rolling.

The pick: Eastern Michigan (+2.5)

VCU (+3) vs No. 5 Dayton

8:30 p.m. ET, CBS Sports Network

This game is definitely a dilemma for us bloggers at Mid-Major Madness. We would love to have three 1 seeds from non-power leagues, but it would also be nice to see three teams from A-10 reach the tournament. In this matchup, the A-10 preseason favorites are up against the wall in a must-win at home against Dayton. It is hard to bet against Obi Toppin, but it’s also tough to bet against VCU at the Siegel Center. VCU has stumbled lately and needs a win against Dayton to put it back in the bubble conversation. This is a misleading line, and many will back the Flyers. However, they have been average against the spread this season, going 6-5 during conference play and 13-11 overall. VCU lost its last two games, including an embarrassing 77-59 loss at Richmond. VCU point guard Marcus Evans is listed as day-to-day but the line suggests he is going to play. However, make sure you keep a look out on his status before playing. Dayton is a legitimate top five team, but this is a bad spot where it is playing a talented, desperate and energized home team. This game is a coin flip but I’m locking in VCU as a home dog out of principle. The Rams win this one outright.

The pick VCU +3 and VCU ML +135

New Mexico (+2.5) vs Nevada

9 p.m. EST, ESPNU

Nevada coach Steve Alford will make his first trip back to Albuquerque since 2013. Alford coached New Mexico from 2007-13, building the Lobos into a Mountain West powerhouse before bolting to UCLA. The Pit will be sold out and it will be rocking. Nevada is coming off an emotional 92-89 overtime victory against rival UNLV and has won five out of seven. Wolf Pack guards Jalen Harris and Jazz Johnson are playing their best basketball of the season. New Mexico has struggled lately, losing five out of six and going 2-4 ATS. The storylines and matchups make this game the most underrated contest on tonight’s slate. Nevada blew out New Mexico in their first meeting, wining 96-74, but the Lobos were without their two best players JaQuan Lyle and Vance Jackson. The Lobos have been plagued by dysfunction this season and head coach Paul Weir is desperate for a positive storyline. A desperate and talented New Mexico will have revenge on their mind and they will be energized by a sold-out crowd in the Pit. New Mexico is a different team at home and a crafty Lyle will be able to draw fouls against a Nevada defense that leads the conference in opponent free throw attempts. The betting public is heavily backing the as a short road favorite. Go the opposite and trust New Mexico to deliver a home win.

The pick: New Mexico +1.5 ML +115

Bonus 3 ML parlay with Eastern Michigan, VCU, and New Mexico pays +975