Saturday College Basketball Betting: St. John’s vs. CCSU, Purdue vs. Texas

Saturday College Basketball Betting: St. John’s vs. CCSU, Purdue vs. Texas article feature image

Credit: Jamie Rhodes-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Purdue Boilermakers center Matt Haarms (32).

As we head into the first weekend of the college basketball season, it’s important to remember some big changes across the national hoops landscape.

The three-point line has been moved back from 20 feet, 9 inches to the new distance of 22 feet, 1.75 inches This seems to have affected scoring as betting the unders has hit at a 64.5% (109-57-3) win rate.

We are also tracking a myriad of coaching changes across the country including Mike Anderson bringing his full-court pressure defense to St. John’s University.

Saturday College Basketball Betting

Odds as of Saturday morning and via PointsBet, where Action Network users can access an exclusive promotion to get a 200% deposit match (deposit $50, bet with $150).

Let’s support each change with a bet on two of Saturday’s college basketball matchups.

  • St. John’s (-24) vs. Central Connecticut State — 4:00 p.m. ET
  • No. 23 Purdue (-8) vs. Texas — 7:00 p.m. ET

CCSU at St. John’s Odds 

  • Spread: St. John’s -24
  • Over/Under: 151
  • Time: 4:00 p.m. ET
  • TV: FS2

Head coach Mike Anderson has already had an impact on the style of play in Queens. The Red Storm throttled Mercer in their home opener, 109-79.

St. John’s scored 50 or more points in each half, lead by LJ Figueroa (18 points, four steals) and Mustapha Heron (25 points, four of six from 3P).

Anderson’s pressure provides a dimension that teams simply are not ready for early in the season, and playing on campus at Carnesecca Arena provides another huge obstacle for Central Connecticut State.

The Blue Devils are predicted last in the Northeast Conference, and head coach Donyell Marshall faces a challenging task of replacing four lost starters from last season’s 11-20 team.

Central Connecticut suffered a 74-59 loss at home to Hartford in the season opener. Last year, the Blue Devils ranked 301st in offensive efficiency and 313th in defensive efficiency (KenPom).

They also ranked 264th in offensive turnover percentage, which is a problem against Anderson’s pressure defense.

This is a talent mismatch in favor of St. John’s, with Figueroa and Heron having an offensive repertoire that Central Connecticut State will not be able to contain.

I will give the 24 points in the loud and intimidating confines of Carnesecca Arena.

The Pick: St. John’s -24 [In New Jersey? Bet now at PointsBet]

Texas at Purdue Odds

  • Spread: Purdue -8
  • Over/Under: 134
  • Time: 7:00 p.m. ET
  • TV: FS1

This game features two defensive-minded coaches in Shaka Smart of Texas and Matt Painter of Purdue. The casual bettor will likely back the over with both teams coming off comfortable wins with 69 or more points.

We will go the other way in what should be a rock fight up in West Lafayette.

Last season, Purdue fell a few points short of upsetting Virginia and reaching the Final Four. The backbone of that team was a strong defense.

The Boilermakers ranked 34th overall in adjusted defensive efficiency and 33rd overall in block percentage. Juniors Nojel Eastern (7.5 ppg, 1.1 spg) and 7-foot-3 Matt Haarms (9.4 ppg, 2.1 bpg) provide a tough guard-center defensive presence.

Meanwhile, Texas was even better defensively, ranking 30th in the country against the 2P, and 26th overall in adjusted defensive efficiency. They have greatly been bolstered by the return of junior Andrew Jones, who underwent treatments for leukemia.

Texas plays at deliberate pace, ranking only 320th in the country last season, and will definitely need to slow down the Boilermakers in their home arena.

With the unders hitting above that 64% rate, this profiles as a slow-paced defensive battle between two well-coached teams.

The Pick: Under 134 [In New Jersey? Bet now at PointsBet]

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