NCAAB Odds and College Basketball ATS’s for December 13-15
With the college football regular season now in the rear view, many bettors will begin to turn their attention towards college basketball. Full blown conference play is a little over two weeks away, and the slate this weekend will have you craving for your desk calendar to read ‘March 2020’.
Here are the best games on the docket for this weekend.
Friday’s Best NBAAB Odds and College Basketball ATS
Colorado State on the other hand comes into this season with low expectations, as they are projected to finish in the same spot as they did last season — 9th in the Mountain West. The Rams are led by senior big man, and all-time school leading rebounder, Nico Carvacho (13.3 PPG, 9.9 RPG), but are overall a very young team with a total of five true freshmen expected to receive significant minutes this season.
Look for the Buffs to rebound following two losses to two teams who figure to be dancing in March, but beware on taking the Buffs to cover as they have only covered the spread in 2 of their first 9 games.
Pick: Colorado 70, Colorado State 64
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The Hoosiers on the other hand have had a tremendous start to their season, save for a 20-point conference road loss to Wisconsin. The Hoosiers are paced by true freshman big man Trayce Jackson-Davis, who leads the team in scoring, rebounding and blocks. Archie and the gang are sitting at 9-1 to start the year and were able to bounce back after the loss to Wisconsin with a road win against UConn on Tuesday.
Indiana continues their strong start overall (and against the spread) by notching their first conference win of the season in a blowout victory over the rebuilding Huskers.
Pick: Indiana 82, Nebraska 67
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Saturday’s Best NBAAB Odds and College Basketball ATS
But while the Wolverines will drop in the polls, they still boast a very balanced attack, with four starters averaging double digits in scoring. The are paced by a strong frontcourt with junior forward Isaiah Livers (14.8 PPG, 3.3 RPG) and their 7-foot-1 senior big man Jon Teske (14.3 PPG, 9.0 RPG) leading the way.
Dana Altman’s Ducks (7-2 overall, 7-2 ATS) also look to make some noise throughout the season. Just like Michigan, Oregon played in the ‘Battle 4 Atlantis’ preseason tournament, however they were on the losing end against Gonzaga and North Carolina, albeit by a combined margin of 5 points.
Unlike Michigan, Oregon is not a team that has a great deal of size, but they are a team that can shoot the rock as illustrated by them being ranked 16th in three-point shooting this season. The Ducks rotate 4 guards and are led by the senior tandem of Payton Pritchard (18.8 PPG, 6.1 APG, 39% 3PT) and Anthony Mathis (10.8 PPG, 51% 3PT). Mathis is a grad-transfer from New Mexico where he led the team in scoring in two of his three seasons as a starter. Guards Chris Duarte (32% 3PT) and Will Richardson (62.5% 3PT) also present a matchup problem for opponents with their ability to shoot from deep.
This will be a matchup largely dictated by what team is able to establish their ideal brand of basketball. The Ducks like to shoot the ball from 3 whereas Michigan likes to punish you with their size and defense and grind out suffocating victories.
The game tips off at 9AM pacific time, so there may be a slow start in store for the Ducks. Look for the Wolverines to get back on track following a brief skid with a single digit win that stays under the total.
Pick: Michigan 63, Oregon 60
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In Wiseman’s absence the Tigers have looked to the other members of their prized recruiting class, namely forwards Precious Achiuwa (13.9 PPG, 9.6 RPG) and D.J. Jeffries (12.0 PPG, 4.4 RPG). The Tigers are a very big team, but they are not one that will shoot the lights out from deep as they currently rank 125th in the country for three-point percentage.
Rick Barnes and the Vols (7-1 overall, 4-4 ATS) are coming off a monster 2018-19 season that saw them ranked No. 1 for several weeks and make a deep run in the tournament, and while they did lose a lot of talent with the departures of Grant Williams, Admiral Schofield and Jordan Bone, the Vols still have enough talent to contend for another run in the NCAA tournament.
The Vols have one of the best backcourts in the country with senior tandem Lamonte Turner (13.8 PPG, 7.6 APG) and Jordan Bowden (13.9 PPG, 42.1% 3PT) leading the way. Juniors Yves Pons and John Fulkerson are also contributors for Barnes’ Vols, however like the Tigers, the Vols are not a team that is equipped to shoot the ball exceptionally well (156th overall from three-point range) and instead rely on their size, rebounding and defense to help manufacture extra possessions for points.
It’s fitting that Memphis and Tennessee play on opposite sides of the state because the two teams are mirror images of one another. Memphis is the younger, more athletic version of Tennessee but the Vols are simply better coached and more experienced for a matchup that feels like it could be a Sweet 16 meeting in March.
We will go with the home team with more experience in this Volunteer State battle.
Tennessee 73, Memphis 70.
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The Zags (10-1 overall, 6-4-1 ATS) enter this matchup with two wins already notched against ranked Pac-12 opponents Oregon and Washington, and their lone loss on the season came in the ‘Battle 4 Atlantis’ title game against 5th ranked Michigan. The 2019-20 version of the Zags looks just like you’d assume a Mark Few team would look like – full of size, athleticism and scoring.
They are paced by the outstanding frontcourt of Filip Petrusev (15.8 PPG, 8.5 RPG) and Corey Kispert (13.7 PPG, 41.5% 3PT) and when healthy Killian Tillie is still a lethal threat from the perimeter (13.7 PPG, 40.7% 3PT). The Zags backcourt will look noticeably different with Josh Perkins and Zach Norvell no longer there, but they are still getting outstanding production from sophomore guard Joel Ayayi (10.1 PPG, 6.1 RPG) and senior guard Ryan Woolridge (9.9 PPG, 58% 3PT).
Meanwhile Arizona (10-1 overall, 6-5 ATS) is coming off one of its worst seasons in recent memory, a season that was marred by controversy from offseason accusations swirling around coach Sean Miller. The controversy has since passed and Miller has reloaded Arizona into a Wildcats team we are accustomed to seeing again.
Arizona is outstanding offensively, boasting a top 15 unit in two-point and three-point percentage. This was on wide display in their 99-49 rout of Nebraska Omaha on Wednesday night. The lone blemish on the ‘Cats resume to date is a 5-point loss at the hands of Baylor.
The Wildcats boast a trio of freshmen that have been playing lights out at the start of the year. Zeke Nnaji leads the team in scoring (15.9 PPG), rebounding (6.7 RPG) and blocks (1 BPG), while the guard tandem of Nico Mannion (14.9 PPG, 41.7% 3PT) and Josh Green (12.9 PPR, 32% 3PT) give Arizona a lethal combination with the ability to stretch the floor. This is a team that likes to get up and down the floor and attack you inside and out.
This is going to be an absolute joy to watch and has all the feelings of a possible West Regional Final matchup. The Zags and ‘Cats each have a ton of size and talent and love to run up and down the floor. Look for the scoring to be high in this one and for it to come down to the final minute of the game.
If there’s been a bugaboo for either of these teams, it has to do with Arizona’s performance on the glass. The Wildcats rank 113th in the country in offensive rebounding percentage and 155th in defensive rebounding percentage, whereas Gonzaga ranks 35th and 6th respectively. This could be the difference in a very tight matchup and was the difference in Arizona’s lone loss of the season.
We’ll take the road Zags to squeak out a close one and move to 3-0 over ranked Pac-12 opponents this season.
Pick: Gonzaga 80, Arizona 77
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While most of the attention has been on Ohio State’s football team, the Ohio State basketball team is quietly crawling their way to the top of the polls as well. The Buckeyes (9-0 overall, 1-0 Big Ten, 8-1 ATS) are currently one of just 5 unbeaten teams in the country and have been absolutely stellar to begin the season with a pair of 25-point wins over then 10th ranked Villanova and then 7th ranked North Carolina. They are also 1-0 in conference by virtue of a 106-74 home win over Penn State.
Chris Holtmann’s Buckeyes are led by big man and future NBA player Kaleb Wesson (14.1 PPG, 9.3 RPG, 82% FT, 44.8% 3PT) and their young backcourt of D.J. Carton and Duane Washington Jr. Kaleb Wesson’s older brother Andre brings senior leadership off the bench for the Buckeyes.
Their opponent on Sunday will be the Minnesota Golden Gophers (4-5 overall, 0-1 Big 10, 5-3-1 ATS) who are in the middle of new rebuild under coach Richard Pitino. The Gophers were projected to finish 12th out of 14 teams in the Big Ten this season, and so far they appear to fit that projection. Their lone conference matchup of the season to date was a 20-point road loss at the hands of Iowa, with their best outings being close losses to Utah (73-69) and DePaul (73-68).
The Gophers are lead by 6-10 sophomore center Daniel Oturu (18.0 PPG, 11 RPG, 3.5 BPG) and 6-2 sophomore guard Marcus Carr (13.0 PPG, 6.7 APG, 5.7 RPG). The Gophers are a very young team with only one senior on their roster, and they are not a deep team by any stretch as they usually go only 3 deep on their bench.
Richard Pitino spent a large portion of last season on the proverbial hot seat, and after a rally to get Minnesota back into the NCAA tournament it appears that Pitino has a new lease on life as Gophers head coach. His young Gophers team is in for a long afternoon however, as this Buckeyes team is simply superior to them by every measure.
This is an Ohio State team that will be chasing a #1 seed all season and one that could see itself at the top of all the polls come Monday. Look for the Bucks to roll and move to 10-0 on the season.
Pick: Ohio State 80, Minnesota 68
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