College Basketball Odds, Picks, Predictions for LSU vs. Arkansas (Wednesday, March 2)
Via Michael Hickey/Getty Images. Pictured: Xavier Pinson.
- The LSU Tigers travel to Fayetteville to face the Arkansas Razorbacks on Wednesday.
- The Hogs are 5.5-point home favorites as they go for the season sweep of the Tigers.
- College basketball betting analyst Doug Ziefel breaks down the matchup and shares his best bet below.
LSU vs. Arkansas Odds
-110o / -110u
-110o / -110u
The SEC has quietly become one of the most competitive conferences in the country. The Auburn Tigers currently lead the conference, but three other teams are hot on their trail with only a few games remaining. One of those teams is the Arkansas Razorbacks.
Eric Musselman and his squad have had an incredible season. They are the number 14 team in the country and hold victories over the three other programs that surround them in the conference standings. But, now they’ll be matched up with a team that was once in their position much earlier in the year.
The LSU Tigers started the season hot with the number one defense in the nation and won their first 12 games in a row. They were then hit with the injury bug shortly after dropping their first game to Auburn. Xavier Pinson, Darius Days, and Theo Pinson all missed time. However, LSU’s big three is all back and looked as good as ever in the Tigers’ most recent victory against Missouri.
However, with a regular-season title now out of reach, do the Tigers have what it takes to knock off the surging Razorbacks?
Expect LSU to Get Physical
The LSU Tigers have been so solid this year because of their physical style of play on defense. In this matchup, they are also going to have to bang bodies on the offensive end of the floor.
In the first meeting between these two teams, LSU was without starting guard Xavier Pinson, and Darius Days got into foul trouble early on. This forced guys like Mwani Wilkinson and Alex Fudge into more prominent roles. The new influx of players in the lineup also forced LSU to rely on what was left of its starting production to supplement the scoring.
LSU’s leading scorer in the first meeting wound up being Eric Gaines, who is their fourth option under normal circumstances. However, with Pinson back, I expect the Tigers to use the size of Days and Eason to get quality shots in the paint.
If there is one place to attach the Hogs, it’s on the inside as they lack the size to stop thicker post players. Just look at what Kentucky’s Oscar Tshiebwe did to them in their last game – 30 points and 18 rebounds. So expect Days and Eason to muck this game up and go at Jaylin Williams.
Look for Hogs to Lean on Notae
JD Notae’s game-by-game performances have directly correlated to the Razorbacks’ wins and losses. Fortunately for them, he has been magnificent. Not only is Notae averaging 19 points per game, but he also contributes rebounds and assists.
He is what makes this offense go, and he was the biggest factor in their narrow victory over LSU earlier this season. Notae had 19 points, four rebounds, and three assists. However, in this matchup, he will have to deal with Xavier Pinson, an excellent on-ball defender who likes to pick his opponent’s pockets.
If Notae struggles, we have seen Jaylin Willams’s role vastly expand since the first meeting as he has scored in double figures in 15 straight ball games. He was also a massive factor on the glass as he hauled in 13 rebounds in the first meeting. However, his impact could be very different in this contest if Days stays on the floor and out of foul trouble.
LSU vs. Arkansas Betting Pick
This is a spot where the LSU Tigers are being undervalued on the road. Their defense looked every bit like it did earlier in the year, and they are matched up against an Arkansas team that has one true scoring option.
If there’s one thing that travels in college basketball, it’s defense, and LSU will bring it. LSU will also try to muck this game up on the offensive end and utilize its size on the inside. While LSU is very much a live dog here, the Bayou Bengals’ style of play will have a larger impact on the pace and, ultimately, the total in this game. Take the under at 140 at DraftKings with value down to 138.5.
Pick: Under 140 (Play to 138.5)
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