Friday, November 27, 2020, Sanford Pentagon, Sioux Falls, South Dakota, 1:30 p.m. ET
Western Kentucky vs. West Virginia Betting Preview: West Kentucky (no line as of 8:30 A.M. Eastern), West Virginia (no line as of 8:30 A.M. Eastern)
Western Kentucky Hilltoppers Betting Preview
The Hilltoppers (2-0) find themselves bidding to win their first in-season tournament since 2001, and they weren’t even supposed to be involved in the Bad Boy Mowers Crossover Classic at all. Western Kentucky, which replaced Creighton after the Bluejays dropped out due to multiple positive COVID-19 tests, posted six-point wins over Northern Iowa and Memphis to advance to the championship game.
Charles Bassey had 11 points and eight rebounds in the 93-87 victory over Northern Iowa on Wednesday and added 21 and 14, respectively, in a 75-69 triumph over Memphis the following day. The junior center previously has starred against West Virginia, collecting 13 points and 15 boards in Western Kentucky’s 63-57 victory in the semifinals of the Myrtle Beach Invitational in 2018.
Taveion Hollingsworth, who also had 13 points in that clash versus the Mountaineers, erupted for 26 points Wednesday in the Hilltoppers’ victory over the Panthers. The senior guard made 10 of 13 foul shots in that encounter for Western Kentucky, which is 46 of 55 from the charity stripe this season.
West Virginia Mountaineers Betting Preview
The 15th-ranked Mountaineers (2-0) haven’t been shy on the interior as they have advanced to the championship game of the tournament. Junior forward Derek Culver recorded his 17th career double-double with 23 points and 15 rebounds while Oscar Tshiebwe added 11 and 16, respectively, in West Virginia’s 78-66 win over Virginia Commonwealth on Thursday.
Culver, who also had 14 boards in the Mountaineers’ 79-71 victory over South Dakota State on Wednesday, averaged 8.6 rebounds last season to trail only Tshiebwe (9.3) on the team. Tshiebwe, a sophomore forward, had just seven points and three rebounds while dealing with foul trouble in the season opener.
Sean McNeil has posted consecutive 16-point outings for West Virginia. The junior guard, however, is 11-for-31 from the field, including 6-for-18 from 3-point range.
Hilltoppers vs. Mountaineers Betting Prediction
Although victorious on Thursday, West Virginia was far from perfect as it committed 21 turnovers after making just three in its season opener. The Mountaineers, however, can overcome those blemishes with a determined effort on the glass.
Bob Huggins’ charges will do precisely that to walk away with win on Friday and gain momentum entering their Wednesday against top-ranked Gonzaga.
Western Kentucky vs. West Virginia Betting Pick:
West Virginia 72, Western Kentucky 64
Hilltoppers vs. Mountaineers Best Bet
West Virginia has struggled to find its touch in its first two games, shooting 40 percent from the field (56 of 140) and 29.2 percent (14 of 48) from 3-point range. Another tough battle is on tap on Friday, with the under likely being the best bet.
Western Kentucky vs. West Virginia Best Bet: UNDER point total (no line yet)
–Field Level Media