There is a tradition in college football called the “Bailout Game,” the latest kick-off on any Saturday night. If your best hunches have had it and your prime parlays have went to pot, the Bailout Game is that final chance to somehow salvage it all. Hawaii hosts many gridiron contests that kick off 60 or 120 minutes after the next latest game, so the proud Rainbow Warriors often serve as America’s last chance for a won wager.
“Bailout Game” is not thrown around as much in basketball betting, but if any game in 2019 qualifies on the hardcourt, then Saturday night’s tip-off in Halawa has to be the one.
In a contest that begins at 12 AM Sunday in New York City (and after virtually all other college basketball has ended for the evening) the Hawaii Rainbow Warriors are favored by (-3.5) points over visiting California Santa-Barbara in a game with a (136) Over/Under total.
Reading the Rainbow
Don’t sell Hawaii short in any sport. The Rainbow Warrior program is making strides in football and basketball, and the men’s hoops squad currently stands at 13-7 overall with wins over Pac-12 opponents Utah and Colorado. Junior guard Eddie Stansberry leads the team with 12+ points per game, and added 14 more in a 74-57 thrashing of Long Beach State on Thursday night.
The Rainbow Warriors are hosting a toughie. UCSB is 15-5 overall and tied with Hawaii for 3rd place in the Big West conference. Ar’Mond Davis is a senior guard who can rebound, hit from long range, and sink free throws. 6’9″ Malian freshman Amadou Sow provides power and scoring minutes at the forward position, and could develop into a crucial weapon in the NCAA or NIT tournament. Sow scored 22 points and posted 9 rebounds in a 72-64 win over UC Riverside on January 12th.
Hawaii has coasted to victory in its last pair of outings, but the “Gauchos” of UC Santa Barbara will be coming off a dramatic disappointment. Joe Pasternack’s cagers hosted an excellent UC Irvine squad on Thursday night and matched the Anteaters shot for shot. The game sat in a 56-56 deadlock after 40 minutes…but the Gauchos would lose by 4 points in OT.
NCAA Basketball “Bailout” ATS Prediction
Hawaii is not the true favorite on Saturday night (or Sunday morning). The physical presence of Sow and an under-appreciated UCSB defense will make the difference in an upset win for the visitors.
Pick the Gauchos to cover the points.
Image from Twitter.