UMass vs. Providence odds, line: 2018-19 college basketball picks, predictions from model on 6-2 roll

The Providence Friars host the Massachusetts Minutemen on Friday at 7 p.m. ET. UMass (5-4) dropped a tough 82-78 decision to Holy Cross last time out, while Providence (7-2) won at Boston College, 100-95, in overtime. The latest UMass vs. Providence odds have the Friars favored by 9.5, with the over-under, or total points Vegas thinks will be scored, at 149. Before you make any UMass vs. Providence picks and college basketball predictions, you'll want to see what SportsLine's advanced computer model has to say.

This model, which simulates every game 10,000 times, has raked in the winnings for those following its picks. Over the past two years, the SportsLine Projection Model has returned over $5,200 to $100 players on its top-rated college basketball picks. And it enters Week 4 of the 2018-19 college basketball season on a strong 6-2 run. Anybody who has been following it is way, way up. 

Now it's locked in on UMass vs. Providence. We can tell you it's leaning over, but it's also locked in a confident against the spread pick that hits in well over 50 percent of simulations. You can only see that one at SportsLine.

The model knows Providence is young and ever-improving, highlighted by the big win over the Eagles of the ACC. The Friars start three freshmen, and first-year players account for 36 percent of points scored. AJ Reeves leads the frosh, averaging 14.9 points and 46.9 percent shooting from downtown.

But Providence still goes through junior forward Alpha Diallo, who leads the team in scoring (16.8), rebounding (8.8) and assists (3.7). It's also been tough to get a win at the Dunkin' Donuts Center lately. Under coach Ed Cooley, the Friars are 58-2 in nonconference home games. 

Just because the Friars are on a roll doesn't mean they can cover a sizable spread against the up-and-coming Minutemen.

UMass finished just 5-13 in the Atlantic 10 last year, but expectations are high with a solid group of returning players. 

Massachusetts has a team leader to lean on in Luwane Pipkins. The 5-11 sophomore averaged 21.2 points as a freshman last season, including a 30-point outburst in a 72-63 Minutemen win over the Friars. The preseason First-team All-Atlantic 10 guard is averaging 19.9 points, 5.4 rebounds and 6.6 assists through nine games. 

Scoring has not been an issue for UMass, which is averaging 81.2 points per game, tops among A-10 teams. Aside from Pipkins, four other Minutemen average double-figure scoring, including Johnathan Laurent, a 6-6 transfer from Rutgers (11.2) and 6-11, 300-pound junior Rashaan Holloway (10.1) who is shooting 71 percent from the floor and could be a major mismatch.

So which side of the UMass vs. Providence spread hits in over 50 percent of simulations? Visit SportsLine now to find out which side of the UMass vs. Providence spread you need to jump on, all from the model that has crushed college hoops, and find out.

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