Sunday College Basketball Betting Previews: Indiana-Arkansas, Virginia Tech-Purdue
Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Romeo Langford
- Eli Hershkovich breaks down his best bets for Sunday's college basketball slate.
- See which sides of Indiana-Arkansas and Virginia Tech-Purdue he likes, plus one total.
Following Saturday’s mediocre college basketball slate, the action heats up on Sunday.
Two intriguing contests feature a couple of Big Ten programs, with Indiana traveling to Arkansas and Purdue facing Virginia Tech in the Charleston Classic. Let’s dissect which teams present more value.
>> All odds as of Saturday evening. Download The Action Network App to get real-time odds and track your bets
Betting odds: Indiana at Arkansas
- Spread: Indiana -3.5
- Over/under: 149.5
- Time: 3:30 p.m. ET
- TV: ESPN
Marquette’s defense proved it has a ways to go in Bloomington as the Hoosiers (2-0 against the spread) lit the Golden Eagles on fire this past Tuesday to the tune of 1.28 points per possession. The Razorbacks (2-0 ATS) aren’t a slouch on that end of the floor, ranking No. 44 in KenPom’s Adjusted Defensive Efficiency, but they’ll have a difficult time slowing down Indiana’s Romeo Langford.
The 6-foot-6, 215-pound freshman owns the 70th-highest 2-point percentage (78.3%) in the nation, having no difficulty with creating space off the dribble. The Hoosiers have produced the best 2-point clip (70.6%) in the country as well, thanks to their excellent ball rotations.
That’ll set up plenty of drive and kick opportunities, including for the 6-foot-11 Evan Fitzner (71.4 3-point percentage), who is one of the Hoosiers’ best weapons off the bench.
Arkansas’ offense, which ranks No. 74 in Adjusted Offensive Efficiency, hasn’t regressed as much as many expected after losing three of its top scorers. Nevertheless, the Razorbacks have increased their turnover rate (20.8%) by 5.8 percentage points from last season, and their primary option Daniel Gafford has amassed a 34% turnover rate himself. Indiana will dominate in transition as a result.
THE PICK: Indiana -3.5; Over 149.5
Betting odds: Virginia Tech vs. Purdue
- Spread: Purdue -1.5
- Over/under: 152.5
- Time: 8:30 p.m. ET
- TV: ESPN2
This one has the feel of a Sweet 16 matchup, with the Hokies (3-0 ATS) and Boilermakers (3-1) ranking No. 16 and No. 23 in the AP Top 25 poll, respectively.
I’ve been more impressed with Purdue than I originally thought as its offense (No. 7 AjO) hasn’t been limited despite losing four starters from a season ago.
Carsen Edwards sheesh pic.twitter.com/eItpjZKbbA
— Basketball Society (@BBallSociety_) November 17, 2018
Then there’s Carsen Edwards. The 6-foot-1, 200-pound guard can pull-up from anywhere on the floor (45.2 3-point percentage), and he’s just as lethal in the lane because of his quickness. Virginia Tech has length in its backcourt, but Justin Robinson and Wabissa Bede will still struggle to contain the Naismith Award candidate.
Ball State guard Taylor Persons exposed the Hokies in a similar fashion on Thursday before he was limited in the second half with a back injury.
The Boilermakers will have an advantage on the glass, too, generating the 11th-highest Offensive Rebounding Rate (41.7%) in Division I. Much of that is a credit to the 7-foot-3 Matt Haarms, who has replaced former Purdue center Isaac Haas without missing a beat.
Both teams own a below average tempo, showcasing their prowess in halfcourt sets. They’re also efficient from all over the floor, ranking in the top 50 in Effective Field Goal Percentage. However, Nojel Eastern’s expanded role for Purdue has allowed him to demonstrate his sound on-ball defense. He’ll play a key role in disrupting Virginia Tech’s offensive attack.
THE PICK: Purdue -1.5