Wednesday’s College Basketball Betting Previews: Nevada-San Diego State, Creighton-DePaul
USA Today Sports. Pictured: Nevada F Jordan Caroline, Creighton G Ty-Shon Alexander
We’re less than a month away from Selection Sunday, and college hoops are heating up with eight ranked teams in action on Wednesday. Among them is No. 6 Nevada at San Diego State following Creighton’s unranked Big East clash against DePaul.
Where’s the value in these two matchup? Let’s break it down.
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Creighton Bluejays at DePaul Blue Demons
- Spread: Pick’em
- Over/Under: 153
- Time: 9 p.m. ET
- TV: Fox Sports Networks
The Bluejays have not only dropped four straight games outright, but failed to cover in three (though all four were decided by seven or fewer points), while the Blue Demons have dropped consecutive games straight up and against the spread.
Greg McDermott’s bunch has amassed the 10th-highest 3-point clip (39.2%) in Division I, led by Ty-Shon Alexander (16.5 points per game). Creighton also owns the 12th-highest scoring rate (40.5%) from that vicinity while DePaul is letting up the 21st-highest 3-point scoring percentage (37.9%).
The Blue Demons’ perimeter defense has been just as deficient in conference play, allowing a 36.3% clip — good for the third-worst in the league. The Bluejays’ tempo has dropped during their Big Ten slate, but expect them to push it in this one and burn the Blue Demons from 3-point territory.
At the other end, DePaul has accrued the Big East’s highest 2-point scoring rate (55.7%) and third-highest free-throw rate (35.0%). But Creighton is letting up the third- and second-lowest scoring percentage in those areas, respectively, so this matchup looks to be a get-right game for McDermott and Co.
Creighton is 9-0 SU in its past nine meetings with DePaul. Expect that trend to continue in Chicago.
THE PICK: Creighton PK
Nevada Wolf Pack at San Diego State Aztecs
- Spread: Nevada -8.5
- Over/Under: 144.5
- Time: 11 p.m. ET
- TV: CBS Sports Network
The Wolf Pack (16-7-1 ATS) are white hot, covering in six straight games, while the Aztecs (13-11 ATS) have done the same in seven of their past nine.
Nevada delivered a letdown at New Mexico on Jan. 5 and nearly lost at Boise State a week and a half later (avoiding it only thanks to Cody Martin’s game-winning 3-pointer in the waning seconds). There’s an opportunity for another tight finish in San Diego, especially against Brian Dutcher’s improved defense.
San Diego State owns the Mountain West’s second-rated Adjusted Defensive Efficiency (99.1 opponents’ points per 100 possessions), allowing the third lowest 2-point clip (47.6%). The Aztecs have the size to matchup against the Wolf Pack’s interior scoring, too, which is first in 2-point percentage (57.9%).
Keeping the 6-foot-7 Jordan Caroline — an offensive mammoth (18.8 points per game) — off the glass will be a difficult task. Overall, Nevada owns the league’s highest defensive rebounding rate (23.2%). But San Diego State has totaled the conference’s second-highest offensive rebounding percentage (32.1%), paced by the 6-foot-10, do-it-all Jalen McDaniels (8.6 rebounds per game).
McDaniels (17.5 points per game) is a handful to defend given that he can attack the rim and stretch the floor (33.3%). Nevada struggled to hold him in check in the teams’ road matchup last season, as he went for 17 point s and 12 rebounds. Eric Musselman’s bunch has yielding Mountain West’s fifth-highest 2-point scoring rate (49.1%), so look for McDaniels to have success inside.
This Aztecs team is up for the task, knocking off the Wolf Pack in each of their past four meetings at home. Grab the points at a nice price.
THE PICK: San Diego State +8.5