College Basketball Odds, Picks, Predictions for Wyoming vs. Fresno State (Sunday, February 6)
Photo by AAron Ontiveroz/MediaNews Group/The Denver Post via Getty Images. Pictured: Hunter Maldonado (Wyoming)
Wyoming vs. Fresno State Odds
-110o / -110u
|Fresno State Odds|
-110o / -110u
Fresno State and Wyoming weren’t supposed to be here. The Mountain West “party crashers” spoiled many of the preseason narratives rotten.
Nevada, a popular darkhorse pick to win the league, is nowhere to be found near the top of the current standings. San Diego State, the perennial favorite under Brian Dutcher, is sandwiched in the middle, boasting a meager 4-3 record.
With the usual suspects vulnerable, Wyoming and Fresno State have seized the void atop the MWC leaderboard. This tilt on Sunday carries serious conference race implications, but those pale in comparison to their NCAA Tournament at-large implications.
Per bracketmatrix.com, the Cowboys are clinging to one of the last spots in the field — an 11-seed — while the Bulldogs are on the outside looking in.
It’s been a dreamy week for the Pokes. In a 72-hour span, Jeff Linder’s bunch amassed wins over Colorado State and Boise State in Laramie, vaulting the Cowboys into second place in the MWC.
Wyoming must bottle that home magic and transport it to the Valley imminently, where a daunting challenge awaits it: Orlando Robinson. Fresno State’s interior stalwart is a near impossible cover for anyone, but the Pokes may be able to hold their own.
The fiery Graham Ike and bouncy Jeremiah Oden are, in tandem, capable of competing, though both are surrendering a few inches in length to the rangy Robinson.
It’s a tall task, but this game likely comes down to which team can generate more paint touches as an offensive launchpad.
Fresno has lost only once at home this year, a heartbreaking overtime defeat at the hands of Boise, the MWC’s top dog. Historically, Fresno hosts one of the stronger home court advantages on the West Coast, the prevailing reason why the early betting line pegs the Bulldogs as a 3.5-point favorite.
On Sunday, the key for Fresno is simple: don’t leave the big fella out on an island by himself.
Ironically, head coach Justin Hutson will aim to isolate his star in space. Oft times, he’s a focal point on the low block. Other times, he’s a deceptive weapon in pick-and-pop action.
Still, he needs help, and aid must be at the ready tonight against Wyoming.
Point guard Isaiah Hill and power wing Anthony Holland are the indispensable cogs in Robinson’s supporting cast.
Hill must put pressure on Wyoming’s guards, attacking downhill early and often to penetrate the teeth of the defense. Holland must cash in when the ball finds him in rotation, a task he’s delivered on repeat this season.
Wyoming vs. Fresno State Betting Pick
Given the tough matchup for Wyoming’s frontline against Robinson, Linder may elect to re-route the offense through his swiss-army knife creator, Hunter Maldonado. He’s the X-factor mismatch against Fresno’s quasi 4-guard lineup orbiting around Robinson in the lane.
The Pokes are in a groove right now, plain and simple. This is a dangerous spot — one that should not be taken for granted — but NCAA Tournament at-large berth aspirations still hang in the balance.
Psychologically, one would think that lowers the risk of a seismic let down on the road.
Take the Pokes with the points.
Pick: Wyoming +3.5
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