2020 College Basketball Betting Power Ratings

2020 College Basketball Betting Power Ratings article feature image
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Ben Solomon/NCAA Photos via Getty Images.

In the beginning of each week, I will provide a summary of my updated power ratings, which I update every night as needed after reviewing adjusted box scores. My model rates an average team at 50.0.

I will not only provide the raw data update, but also share the biggest movers of the week in each direction.

To create projected spreads based on the power ratings below, simply take the difference between the two power rating numbers and then add in home-court advantage if the game is not being played on a neutral court.

Home-court advantage can be worth anywhere from 1.5 to 5.0 points based on historical regression, in addition to a myriad of other factors (travel, elevation, etc.) that I consider. You’ll see others use different values when it comes to home-court advantage, but almost everybody would agree it’s diminishing across the board over time.

These power ratings are meant to serve as a starting point, as many other factors come into play before I ever pull the trigger on a bet, such as the matchups for a particular game and potential situational angles.

I’ve had Kansas at No. 1 for quite some time, as I think the Jayhawks are the most complete team in college basketball — led by two potential first-team All-Americans.  Duke and Gonzaga follow Kansas, but then you’ll notice some new blood right behind that trio of schools you’re used to seeing at the top.

To illustrate just how much parity there is in college basketball this season, I only have 2.0 points separating No. 14 and No. 35, so it doesn’t take much to move 10 spots in that range in just one night, depending on the results.

That’s especially the case in the Big Ten, as I have 10 teams in the conference in the top 30 and 12 of the 14 in the top 40 — the most of any conference by far.

College Basketball Power Ratings

Subtract the higher-rated team’s power rating from the lower-rated team’s, then add home-court advantage (HCA), to create a point spread.

For example, Kansas would be about a 5.5-point favorite at home against Duke, but Duke would be a 2.5-point favorite at home vs. Kansas.

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