NCAA Basketball Top Betting Opportunities

NCAA Basketball Top Betting Opportunities

Written by on December 20, 2022

Did you think COVID was gone in the United States? It’s going to be around for a while, and it’s going to affect college basketball.  A matchup Thursday between Rhode Island and Milwaukee has been canceled because of a COVID-19 outbreak within the Rams’ program. And weather also could be an issue this week, too, with a bomb cyclone hitting the USA. Iowa State’s home matchup Wednesday vs. Omaha is off because of the potential for severe weather. Here are two games that will be played on Wednesday for your NCAAB bets.

Purdue’s First Home Game As Top-Ranked Team

New Orleans at No. 1 Purdue (-32.5)

Non-conference matchup at 9 PM ET on ESPNU. This marks the first time that the Boilermaker basketball program will play a home game as the nation’s No. 1 team. Purdue’s previous three games as the No. 1-ranked team have come on the road (Rutgers) and at two neutral sites (Brooklyn, Indianapolis).

Purdue is looking to extend its non-conference, regular-season winning streak to 23 games, dating to a Dec. 8, 2020, loss at Miami, Fla. The win streak is the longest in the country by nine games (13 – New Mexico, Connecticut). Purdue is looking for a 12-0 start for the first time since 2009-10.

One year after ranking second in the country in rebound margin, Purdue now leads the country in rebound margin (+12.8). The Boilermakers are outscoring their opponents 147 to 69 in second-chance points (13.4 to 6.3 points per game).

Purdue has made 192 free throws this season, while opponents have shot just 116. Purdue has made 112 more free throws (192 to 80) this season, the second-highest discrepancy in the country (North Carolina +123, Purdue +112, Denver +106, Iowa +103, New Mexico +103). Purdue has held 23 straight opponents to 75 or fewer points, the third-longest streak in the country (North Texas 43, Houston 27).

The Boilers’ star is Zach Edey. Through 11 games this year, he has more blocked shots (24) than personal fouls (20). He has also played 30 minutes nine times this season after not doing it once in his first two seasons. Edey is averaging just 2.3 fouls / 40 minutes. Over the last four games, Zach Edey has produced 94 points and 73 rebounds. He is the first player since Oklahoma’s Blake Griffin (Nov. 2008; 104 points, 79 rebounds) to have at least 94 points and 73 rebounds in a 4-game span.

The 7-4 junior leads Purdue in minutes (31.8), points (22.6, 5th in the nation), rebounds (13.9, 1st), blocked shots (2.2, 22nd) and turnovers (2.1). He shoots 62.8% from the field (24th) and 71.6% on free throws. Edey already has nine double-doubles this year.

New Orleans is a Southland team that is 3-7 so obviously the Privateers have no shot of winning here but Purdue might take them for granted. UNO has played a few good programs this year, losing 89-53 at Butler and 91-62 at LSU.

The Privateers were selected to finish third in the Southland this year after a 18-14 2021-22 season where they fell to the McNeese Cowboys in the semifinals of the Southland Conference Tournament. Tyson Jackson and Simeon Kirkland received preseason second team all-conference status. Jordan Johnson leads UNO in scoring (14.5), 3-pointers (44.4%) and assists (3.8).

No. 20 TCU vs. Utah (+1)

Non-conference matchup at 9 PM ET on the Pac-12 Network. It’s technically a neutral-site game in Salt Lake City.

TCU enters on a seven-game winning streak since its only loss of the year, a truly unexplainable 64-63 home defeat to Northwestern State on Nov. 14. – With a season-high 23 assists, No. 21 TCU had its largest win in eight years with an 88-43 victory over Mississippi Valley State Son Sunday. The last team TCU defeated by at least 45 points was also Mississippi Valley State, by a margin of 53 points on Nov. 24, 2014.

Emanuel Miller returned to play after missing the previous game and scored 11 points and had five rebounds. Under Jamie Dixon, TCU has gone 68-11 in November and December combined. Under Dixon, TCU is 79-12 against non-conference teams and 55-5 against those teams in Schollmaier Arena.

TCU has at least nine wins through 10 games for the fifth time in the seven years Dixon has been coach. In the 105 seasons prior to Dixon becoming head coach, TCU has had nine wins in 10 games seven times. Big 12 Preseason Player of the Year Mike Miles Jr. leads the team with 17.7 points per game. Miles has scored 10 or more points in 12-straight games that he has played.

TCU is one of the top rebounding teams in the Big 12 and ranking first with 13.1 offensive rebounds per game second in the conference with 39.8 rebounds per game. The Frogs lead the Big 12 and rank second nationally with 20.6 fastbreak points per game. TCU ranks fourth in the Big 12 and 25th nationally in defensive efficiency (91.2).

Utah is second nationally 2nd in REB/Game (43.58), 3rd in DREB/Game (32.08), 4th in defensive FG% (.350), 6th in defensive 3FG% (.257), 16th in blocks per game (5.6), 21st in scoring defense (59.6) and 24th in rebound margin (+8.1). Rollie Worster is just 1-of-4 guards nationally to average at least 10.0 points, 5.5 rebounds and 5.0 assists with at least a 2.0 assists/turnover ratio and .475 shooting percentage.

Wednesday’s contest will be the 22nd meeting all-time between the two programs. This will just be the fourth time Utah and TCU have squared off on a neutral court. The first two came in Las Vegas as part of the WAC Tournament (March 8, 1997) and Mountain West Tournament (March 12, 2009) while the third match-up occurred last season in Ft. Worth, Texas, at Dickies Arena (Dec. 8, 2021).

The Utes look to get back into the win column against TCU after dropping last year’s game 76-62. Miles had one of his best games in that contest for the Horned Frogs, scoring 28 points with eight rebounds and four assists on 9-of-17 shooting from the floor and 7-of-8 from the line.

Expert picks

  • TCU and Utah ATS

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