College Basketball Betting Breakdown, Odds, Picks: On Arkansas’s 3P Regression, Recent Form, More


Rich von Biberstein/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Jose Alvarado

Trying to break down every college basketball game can be next to impossible, making our tools like public money percentages, PRO Systems and Bet Signals so important.

Each day, I’m going to highlight a few interesting betting-related storylines from that night’s college hoops slate, some insights and systems from our Bet Labs database and some notes from our betting market data.

Here’s Tuesday’s breakdown.

Odds as of Tuesday at 12 p.m. ET and via PointsBet, where Action Network users can access an exclusive promotion to get a 200% deposit match (deposit $50, bet with $150). No strings attached. No rollover required.

1. On Arkansas & 3-Point Regression

Arkansas’s opponents are shooting 24.7% from 3-point range against the Razorbacks. That’s No. 1 in the nation and two percentage points clear of the next closest team.

And 24.7% would be the best mark in college basketball in at least 20 years.

While that may be a strength for Arkansas, there has to be some regression looming.

We don’t have access to the same data on open looks and defender distance that the NBA does, so we can’t truly tell how much of this 3-point defensive dominance is good fortune and how much is ability.

But it’s been proven that 3-point percentage has much more to do with the offense than the defense.

Via Ken Pomeroy, whose model says offense controls 83% of the outcome in 3-point shooting, in 2015:

On a game level, there’s a lot of random variance in three-point shooting…It’s simply that a good three-point offense will beat a good three-point defense over the long term. The offense controls most of what can be controlled, but randomness is a huge specter that looms over three-point shooting on a game level.

Coach Eric Musselman did field two units that ranked top 15 in 3-point percentage against in his four years at Nevada. His Razorbacks team is undersized and doesn’t rebound well, but flies to the ball and plays ultra-aggressive defense. So there’s something to Arkansas’ success.

But no 3-point defense is this good, though. Regression will come for Arkansas in the form of a red-hot shooting night from the opposition, whether it’s against Auburn on Tuesday or in the next few weeks.

I wanted Auburn at +2.5 or better, so I’ll pass here.

2. One Up, One Down

College basketball teams get hot and cold. It’s what they do.

But in the case of Georgia Tech-Virginia Tech and Missouri-Texas A&M, we have two extreme examples.

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