ESPN Streak for the Cash Picks and Analysis-January 4

The Valparaiso Crusaders and NCAA Tournament hero turned head coach Bryce Drew are one of the best picks on today’s Streak for the Cash Board. Find all my picks for January 4 here in this post. Photo by Robert Mayer-USA TODAY Sports

Today’s Streak for the Cash board features 17 picks including the return of the PGA Tour in the Hyundai Tournament of Champions. The early golf picks join a pick from the Spanish Primera Division and the Kontinental Hockey League in the daytime picks setting up for a full night of college and NBA basketball. The college football bowl season continues as well tonight with the Cotton Bowl in a nice Big 12-SEC matchup.

Last night’s crazy Streak for the Cash sports games which included an injury by a player falling on a waitress, a game-winner that didn’t count, and an ultra-rare one-point safety in the Fiesta Bowl. What does tonight’s sports scene have in store for us? Here’s the picks I like the most for today:

Streak Picks for 1/4

8:30- 5 goals or fewer: These KHL over/unders are always extremely close with research supporting both sides. The under is slightly favored and in six of their eight meetings the result has been under. Stay away unless you’re on a short streak or start the day in the red. Confidence Meter: 3

3:30- Real Betis win or Draw: Real Betis isn’t well-known but are up to fifth in La Liga after 17 games. They’ll take on Real Zargoza in this one who they beat in three of the four matches last season. Zargoza is 7-1-9 coming into this one while Betis is 9-1-7 meaning a draw is unlikely, but given their recent history I’ll go with Betis. Confidence Meter: 5

Aug. 25, 2012; Farmingdale, NY, USA; Rickie Fowler hits out of the rough on the 14th hole during the third round of The Barclays at Bethpage State Park. Mandatory Credit: Debby Wong-USA TODAY Sports

3:35- Rickie Fowler or Tie: Fowler and Jason Dufner are two of the breakout stars the last couple years on the PGA Tour. Dufner had a better season last year, but with the tie I’ll take Rickie in this nine-hole prop. Confidence Meter: 4

5:55- Steve Stricker: Stricker is one of my fantasy golf picks for the week and is the only player in the field who has won this tournament before. I think he’s a great pick to get another win to start the season here so he’s my round one pick. This is an 18-hole prop do you’ll be locked in for a while if you take this one. Confidence Meter: 5

7:03- Valparaiso by Double Digits: The Vikings bring a 6-5 record to Valparaiso as they take on the Crusaders who hare 10-5 but lost their first Horizon League game to Loyola of Chicago on Wednesday. Cleveland State was crushed by Kent State on Wednesday and have lost four of their last six, all by double digits. Valpo needs a bounceback win and are 13 point favorites. Confidence Meter: 6

7:35- Detroit Pistons: While the Hawks are the more popular pick and at first glance would seem to be the favorite, don’t sleep on the Pistons at home. Detroit is 9-8 at home and are actually favored in this one as they look for their fourth win in a row. Atlanta has  Confidence Meter: 4

8:03- Tennessee Volunteers: The Vols host Memphis in the Tigers first true road game as thy  head to Knoxville where Tennessee is 6-0. Memphis has won their last four after falling to Louisville by nine in their only loss in their last eight games. Tennessee has bounced back after a pair of ugly road losses to win their last four including wins over then-#23 Wichita State and Xavier. Confidence Meter: 5

8:05- Indiana Pacers: The Celtics are struggling mightily and need to find a way to get back the their defensive mindset that will allow them to win games like this. Indiana has found a defensive identity and has won six of seven and nine of their last 11.Boston has dropped four in a row since Christmas and overall have lost eight of ten including their last two home games. I’m from the Boston area originally and want Boston to win, but I can’t find enough reasons to back them with the pick here. I won’t pick against them for my streak, but I think Indy’s the right pick. Confidence Meter: 4

Dec 01, 2012; Fort Worth, TX, USA; Oklahoma Sooners defensive back Tony Jefferson (1) reacts after stopping the TCU Horned Frogs on a fourth down play during the second half at Amon G. Carter Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

8:05- Oklahoma: In what should be a shootout, I think the Aggies and Johnny Football fall to Bob Stoops and the Oklahoma Sooners. This shapes up to be one of the best bowls of the year and could easily go either way. I’ll take OU based on experience and the fact that their defense has been better this season than A&M’s. Confidence Meter: 5

8:10- Heat win by Double Digits: The Heat took over in overtime and beat Dallas by 10 last game in overtime. They host the Bulls tonight  who bounced back from a 10-point loss to Charlotte on New Years’ Eve to edge the Magic in Orlando on Wednesday. The Bulls have been struggling losing three of five with only the win in Orlando and a 10-point win over Washington. The three losses in that time were all by double-digits and with Miami at home I think they can cover this spread. Be careful though, the Vegas line is only at 8. Confidence Meter: 5

Nov 2, 2012; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Los Angeles Clippers forward Blake Griffin (32), center DeAndre Jordan (6) and guard Willie Green (34) react as Los Angeles Lakers guard Kobe Bryant (24) watches at the Staples Center. The Clippers defeated the Lakers 105-95 Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee/Image of Sport-USA TODAY Sports

10:45- LA Clippers: The Clippers are officially the home team in this matchup of building-mates and will look to bounce back from consecutive losses after winning 17 in a row. The Lakers have struggled all year despite Kobe’s greatness and currently sit at 15-16 having lost  two of their last three since Christmas. The Lakers can win, but  the Clippers will be determined to get back in the win column and have too much athleticism for the self-admittedly “old” Lakers. The Clippers took their earlier meeting by 10. Confidence Meter: 6

January Outcomes

Yesterday’s picks (click here to review): 3-4

Overall Record: 12-9

Confident Picks (5+): 7-2

Longest Personal Streak: W1

Current Personal Streak: L1

Topics: Bowl Picks, College Basketball Picks, College Football Picks, NBA Picks, PGA Tour Picks, Streak For The Cash Picks

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