NCAAB Mid-Major Odds, Picks & Predictions: Keg’s Bottom of the Barrel Bets
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- On Saturday, college hoops starts at 6 a.m. ET and the final game tips off at 10 p.m. ET.
- So, with that in mind, Keg is diving into his biggest edition of bottom of the barrel, with five total picks from mid-major games across the nation.
- Get ready, and also don't forget to read the beverage of his choice for today.
Bottom of the Barrel Picks for Saturday, November 19
Hello and welcome to Feast Week, the biggest college sports week of the year.
From basketball to football, blue bloods to low majors, FBS to FCS, everything and everyone has a massive week going on — so much so it can be difficult to keep track of just how much is going on.
When it comes to college basketball on Saturday, we are presented with a rare opportunity that I think should be taken full advantage of. There's 18 consecutive hours of college hoops. The slate begins at 6 a.m. ET in Dublin, Ireland and the last game tips at 10 p.m. ET in Corvallis, Oregon.
This week's bottom of the barrel will be my biggest ever, with five games that stretch the length of the slate and a beverage that can come in handy from morning to midnight.
Saturday's Bottom of the Barrel College Basketball Best Bets
The team logos in the table below represent each of the matchups that Keg is targeting from Saturday's slate of games. Click the team logos for one the matchups below to navigate to a specific bet discussed in this article.
|Specific bet recommendations come from the sportsbook offering preferred odds as of writing. Always shop for the best price using our NCAAB Odds page, which automatically surfaces the best lines for every game.|
Central Arkansas vs. Rider
Rider is a good team, one of the most experienced in all of Division I. The Broncs return a solid majority of their team from a year ago, and they shoot the ball well.
Unfortunately, in their last game, they just ran into the buzzsaw that has been the Stetson Hatters.
Central Arkansas, like Rider, brings back a solid group from last year's team, but the talent gap is clear between the two squads. The Bears haven’t been good at either end of the floor, ranking outside the top 300 in effective field goal percentage and Adjusted Defensive Efficiency, per KenPom.
In Friday's game against Niagara, the Bears couldn't seem to make a shot, shooting 35.4% from the floor and 30% from 3. Despite out-rebounding the Purple Eagles and having just one more turnover and one more foul than their opponent, the game never seemed in doubt for Niagara.
Rider is a much better team than the Purple Eagles. The Broncs are a much more experienced team than Central Arkansas, and I think they can make quick work of the Bears early Saturday morning.
Back the Broncs at -9 or better early Saturday morning.
Pick: Rider -9 or better
Niagara vs. Stetson
We’re sticking around in Dublin for the next game of the MAAC/ASUN Challenge, as one of the hottest mid-majors in the nation Stetson takes on Niagara.
The Purple Eagles notched their first win of the season on Friday against Central Arkansas. But prior to Friday, they struggled considerably against a bad Bucknell team, losing by 18 as just 1.5-point underdogs.
Niagara is one of the slowest teams in the nation. It doesn't shoot the ball well and it's even worse on defense. Stetson struggles to defend 3s, but that won't be a factor against Niagara, which ranks 336th in college basketball when it comes to 3-point attempts.
I don’t see the Purple Eagles keeping up with the Hatters in this one at all. Stetson's offense has just been too good, and I don’t see that slowing down anytime soon.
Back the Hatters as high as a 10-point favorite.
Pick: Stetson -10 or better
Texas A&M-Commerce vs. Georgia State
The Georgia State Panthers are a solid defensive team with a bad offense, and while they did pull off an upset of Mercer and nearly Georgia Tech, I don’t believe either of those teams are as good as some people give them credit for.
Meanwhile, the A&M-Commerce Lions notched their first win of the season against a very similar team in Air Force, which boasts a strong defense and a seriously lacking offense.
Texas A&M-Commerce’s biggest weakness is its defense — against a bad offense, this team is much better than it looks on paper.
I think we’ll once again see Commerce undervalued here, especially if UNC Asheville rolls it Friday night, which I think is highly likely given what the Bulldogs' offense has done so far this season.
I think A&M-Commerce should be about an 8-10 point underdog against Georgia State, but expect it to open up at +15 or more. The Lions are a bet for me at anything +9.5 or better.
Pick: Texas A&M-Commerce +9.5 or better
Stonehill vs. Holy Cross
I tried really hard to not be on Stonehill again. I don’t want it to seem like I’m just telling you to bet on this team because I like it, but Feast Week could very quickly become Stonehill week.
Between this Saturday and next Sunday, Stonehill will play four games, each opponent better than the last. This is when we will find out just how good the Skyhawks are.
Their first game comes on Saturday night against Holy Cross, a team whose defense grades out as even worse than the Army team that Stonehill beat. The Crusaders' defense won’t be able to do much when it comes to stopping the Skyhawks, and even better for Stonehill, Holy Cross likes to push the pace.
One of the few areas Holy Cross presents an advantage over Stonehill is its 3-point shooting. The Crusaders are hitting 37% from beyond the arc while the Skyhawks allow teams to shoot exactly 37%, as well.
The only problem? Holy Cross rarely actually shoots the deep ball, coming in at 356th nationally in 3-point attempts.
I don’t see us getting the Skyhawks as a big underdog here — maybe +3 or so. But I think Stonehill can win this game outright by a considerable margin.
Take any points you can get with the Skyhawks, and bet the moneyline for 1/3 of your spread bet.
Pick: Stonehill Spread & ML
Portland State vs. Oregon State
The Beavers are 3-0 so far this season. A season ago, they only won three games the entire year.
Portland State is one of the three teams they beat last year.
The Vikings lost a considerable amount of minutes from a season ago, and as a result, are even worse this year than they were last year. And while Oregon State isn't particularly great anywhere, it's been solid offensively and has done great defending around the basket.
Oregon State is the 12th-tallest team in all of college basketball. That's one of the main reasons the Beavers have held opponents to just 35.1% on 2-point shots and are blocking 18.2% of all shots.
To make matters worse for the Vikings, they’ve been awful from beyond the arc, hitting just 26.2% from deep.
I don't see any way Portland State manages to score much at all against Oregon State. Meanwhile, at the other end, I'm not sure the Vikings will be able to stop the Beavers.
I’ll be backing Oregon State to stay undefeated at home and go over its win total from a season ago.
Back the Beavers as high as a 9.5-point favorite in Saturday’s nightcap.
Pick: Oregon State -9.5 or better
Keg's Drink of the Week
You can’t gamble responsibly all day if you don’t start in the morning, and the same goes for drinking.
But to do so you’ll need something that bodes well from sunrise to sundown, and since our first two plays of the day will take place in Ireland, what better than an Irish Whiskey to go along with it.
Get your day started with a nice Irish breakfast shot, move on later to Irish sour and mix in an Irish Slammer if you're feeling up to it.
Or just enjoy one of Ireland’s most famous whiskeys by itself.