Payne Whitney Gymnasium, seen here on Feb. 9, 2019, is this year’s 2,500-seat host for the Ivy League Basketball Tournament.
Payne Whitney Gymnasium, seen here on Feb. 9, 2019, is this year’s 2,500-seat host for the Ivy League Basketball Tournament.|Howard Gensler/Bettors Insider
NCAAB

NCAAB: Ivy Tourney at Yale pits Penn-Harvard, Princeton-Yale

Penn Pick ‘em vs. Harvard (134.5) 12:30 pm; Princeton +10 @ Yale (142.5)

Howard Gensler

Howard Gensler

Penn Pick ‘em vs. Harvard (134.5) 12:30 pm. Right up front I’ll tell you I’m avoiding the line. It seems like a trap. Harvard is the No. 1 seed, Penn is the No. 4 seed, Harvard (17-10, 10-4) beat Penn (19-11, 7-7) both times they played this year and until mid-Friday Penn was a 1-point favorite. Huh? Freshman Mike Wang, who was a difference-maker earlier in the season for Penn, is out. Harvard junior Seth Towns, who’s missed the whole season, remains out. It’s a hard game to figure because most of the matchups favor Harvard, but the Crimson have been going young down the stretch and have been prone to turn the ball over. But in both games this season, Harvard has been able to defend Penn. The Quakers have also defended Harvard, but the Crimson have more depth and more weapons. Neither team runs too much. If Penn is making its FTs and layups and shooting a decent percentage from the field, they’ll definitely be there at the end, but Harvard has not let Penn get good looks from three in the earlier two games (14-54 from deep). Foul trouble could make a difference and would be worse for the Quakers, although Coach Steve Donahue has been finding subs to contribute. I can think of more ways for Harvard to win, but Penn only needs to find one way and the Quakers have played much better over the past couple weeks. Since the two teams are so even, one flukey thing or one bad call could tip it, but I do think the tough defense continues.
Pick: Penn vs. Harvard Under 134.5 and hope it doesn’t go to Overtime.

Princeton +10 @ Yale (142.5). So the 1-4 game is a pick ‘em and the 2-3 is double digits. And rightfully so. Yale beat Princeton both times this season -- 74-60 at home then 81-59 on the road last Saturday. Although the Bulldogs staggered to the wire, losing to Harvard, Columbia and Penn in their final five games, Princeton ended the season losing three straight, to Harvard, Brown and Yale. Was last week’s 22-point thrashing by Yale an omen or was Tiger coach Mitch Henderson refusing to show his hand. With three steady senior starters buffeting juniors Miye Oni and Jordan Bruner, Yale has experience and also has the size to battle Princeton’s vastly improved junior center, Richmond Aririguzoh. Princeton needs senior guard Myles Stephens to clamp down on Oni and for freshman guard Jaelin LLewellyn to have his best game yet.
Pick: Yale -10 Over Princeton and Under 142.5.

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