Josh Nagel is a Reno-based analyst who has worked in the Nevada sports handicapping industry for more than 16 years. He has covered the wagering industry on a variety of platforms, and also has won numerous sports handicapping contests. He specializes in college sports and prides himself on consistency. Last year, he hit a documented 61 percent of his college football picks, 59 percent of NFL selections and 58 percent of college basketball selections for SportsLine. From 2010 to 2014, Nagel picked college football games for the Reno Gazette-Journal, also at a 61 percent accuracy rate. His work also has been featured in USA Today, on Covers.com and Poker News. He is the former managing editor of the Reno-based gaming and entertainment magazine Best Bets.
LAST 5 CBB ML PICKS
5-0 LAST 5 CBB ML PICKS | +500
This spread has moved nearly three points off the opening number, and I'll take the value provided Monday on the favored Cavaliers. I've long maintained coach Tony Bennett's approach is great for bridging the talent gap in ACC play but a concern for next-level success, and the past few games have shown why. However, Miami struggles on offense as well and will be without suspended guard Ja'Quan Newton, who scores 15 per game. Let's buy low on a get-right game for the Cavaliers, as I expect a strong effort here.
5-0-0 in last 5 CBB ML picks | +500
This total feels a tad low since both Texas Tech and Iowa State have been on an up-tempo swing of late, heading into their meeting Monday night. The Cyclones have averaged 83.6 points in winning and covering their past three games, while the Red Raiders have played Over four times in covering five straight. They combined for just 119 points in their first meeting, as cold shooting felled both clubs. Look for them to pick up the production and send this Over on Monday.
The improving Spartans have won three of four since their first meeting with Purdue, an 84-73 loss that gave them a three-game losing streak in the Big 10. That game was tied at halftime before the Boilermakers pulled away down the stretch, winning the rebounding battle 36-23. Purdue has won four straight and appears to have figured out its woes on the road, with two wins against quality teams. But this is too many points to lay against what should be an inspired Spartans club.
The Bruins should have the upper hand in their rematch Saturday with the rival Trojans. They got some much-needed momentum with an 82-79 win over Oregon, and followed it with a comfortable win over Oregon State. The Trojans caught UCLA in a flat spot in their first meeting, and used their own hot shooting to post an 84-74 home win. Look for UCLA to return the favor Saturday and win this on by double figures.
For most of the season, much-improved San Francisco has been a little overvalued in the market. This culminated with the Dons closing as a three-point home favorite against BYU in their last outing, and they were crushed 68-52. I like the Dons better as a massive underdog Thursday against a top-ranked Gonzaga team that is coming off a big win against rival St. Mary?s. Although the Bulldogs have been merciless against lower-tier WCC opponents, San Francisco is a respectable foe and put up a solid effort in a 95-80 home loss in the first meeting.
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