College Basketball Odds & Picks: Three Man Weave’s 3 Best Bets for Wednesday (February 23)
Sean Gardner/Getty Images. Pictured: Tari Eason.
- Today’s college basketball slate is packed with solid action across the board.
- Ky McKeon of Three Man Weave dished out three of his best bets for Wednesday, including Creighton vs. St. John's and LSU vs. Kentucky.
- Check out all of Three Man Weave's best bets and predictions below.
We have a loaded college basketball slate on this fine Wednesday as teams are jockeying for position in terms of conference tournament seeding. And guess what? There’s plenty of betting value across the board.
Ky McKeon of Three Man Weave joined us today to dish out his three best bets. His action starts in the Big East as Creighton travels to St. John’s before going to Davidson vs. Duquesne in the A-10. Then, to close things out, he’ll make the trip to Rupp Arena for Kentucky vs. LSU.
Check out all three of McKeon’s best bets for this Wednesday night college hoops slate below.
Wednesday College Basketball Best Bets
The team logos in the table below represent each of the matchups that our college basketball staff is targeting from today’s slate of games. Click the team logos for one of 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.|
Creighton vs. St. John’s
By Ky McKeon
Creighton has played its way onto most bracketologists’ Field of 68.
Five straight wins have vaulted the Jays into fourth place in the Big East. A win tonight at St. John’s would give Creighton the sweep over the Red Storm, but the latter are playing well lately, covering seven of their past nine games.
Though young, the Jays have proven their ability to win on the road. Creighton has wins at Marquette, UConn, DePaul, and Georgetown in conference play. St. John’s is tough at home but just 6-10-1 against the spread this season. Oddsmakers appear to be giving the Johnnies a little too much respect.
Consider this: Creighton was a -3.5 favorite at home against St. John’s on Jan. 19. Math and typical home-court advantage suggest this spread should be closer to St. John’s -3. A 5-point spread is a nice gift from the oddsmakers.
The reason for the difference, aside from opinions on teams getting better or worse, could be the status of Creighton star freshman Arthur Kaluma. He has missed the last four games with injury and is certainly an important piece.
The Jays though are 2-0-2 ATS without Kaluma — they can still cover this game if he’s on the shelf again.
Creighton was on fire in Game 1 (14-of-27 from deep), while St. John’s was ice cold (5-of-20). That’s likely to regress, but it’s worth noting the Red Storm don’t really rely on outside shooting, while the Jays prioritize it.
Creighton turned the ball over 19 times in Game 1, and that’s a concern tonight once again. The Jays also crushed the offensive glass (grabbed 44.1% of their misses), which should be repeatable tonight.
St. John’s could not score inside the arc in Game 1, which ended up being detrimental to its efforts. The Johnnies score most of their points inside the arc, particularly near the rim where they rank inside the top 30 nationally in field goal attempt rate (Hoop-Math).
Creighton is built to stop this preference. The Jays hold the nation’s 17th-best FG% allowed at the rim and own the Big East’s second-best 2PFG% in conference play. They are big and have quality rim protectors.
Creighton’s defense should be the difference tonight. The Jays are built to stop what St. John’s wants to do offensively. On the other end, Creighton needs to hit a typical number of outside shots to keep pace, something it should be able to do considering only two teams in the league allow a higher rate of outside shot attempts than St. John’s in league play.
Even if Kaluma is a no-go, take the points with Creighton.
Pick: Creighton +5 or better
Davidson vs. Duquesne
By Ky McKeon
This one is straightforward. One team is competing for an NCAA Tournament berth and A-10 title. The other is completely broken.
Davidson is just 1-8 against the spread in its last nine games, but the Cats are still playing elite-level basketball. If they hit an average number of 3s against Duquesne in the first matchup (38.9% on the year, eighth-best in country), they would have covered easily.
Instead, Dave hit just 32% of its 3PA and took its foot off the gas after leading by 17 early in the second half.
Duquesne is utterly lost. The Dukes have lost 12 in a row and are just 2-10 against the spread over that span. Five straight Dukes losses have been by double digits, and only two of their losses in the past 12 games have been by less than 10.
This team plays and acts like it does not like each other. I saw it up close earlier in the season in person. Chemistry is poor, and on-court product is poor.
That should be enough to just lay the eight or nine points and be done with it, but we can talk a few matchup edges too.
Davidson point guard Foster Loyer might be out for this game after missing last contest. That’s a considerable blow after Loyer put up 24 points in the first meeting. But Dave has plenty of weapons and just flexed its muscles by crushing Saint Louis by 21 sans Loyer. Conclusion: I’m not worried if Loyer is out.
Duquesne has no answer for Luka Brajkovic inside. Though the Dukes have some brawn with center Tre Williams, they lack size. Brajkovic had a field day in Game 1 and should again.
There’s also no answer for Davidson wing Hyunjung Lee, an A-10 star who should find a clear path to 20 points tonight.
Davidson head coach Bob McKillop runs some of the most gorgeous offense you’ll see in college basketball. A broken, disjointed team like Duquesne cannot stop it. Davidson is the A-10’s best offensive team on an adjusted efficiency basis. Duquesne is the A-10’s third-worst defense.
On the other end, Duquesne is the league’s worst offensive team. It cannot take advantage of Davidson’s oft-shaky defense.
Pick: Davidson -8.5 (Play to -9)
LSU vs. Kentucky
By Ky McKeon
LSU looks to do the impossible by sweeping Kentucky in a season in which the Wildcats are making a serious push for a 1-seed in the NCAA Tournament.
The Tigers won Game 1 with defense, and that’s the ticket to beating the Cats in Round 2 as well. LSU held UK to just 13-of-34 (38.2%) inside the arc and held National Player of the Year frontrunner Oscar Tshiebwe to just eight points.
Part of LSU’s success can be attributed to UK’s poor shot selection in general. Despite being a good offensive team, UK can be seduced by tough 2s. Per ShotQuality, the Cats rank just 326th in the country in “Rim and 3 Rate,” an aptly named metric that measures how often a team shoots the two best types of shots in the game.
UK coughed up the ball 15 times in the first matchup, which was likely partially due to point guard Sahvir Wheeler being limited to four minutes of playing time. Wheeler is questionable to play again tonight, as is freshman phenom TyTy Washington.
If both Wheeler and Washington are out, UK gets mighty thin at ball handler, and that is bad news against a locked-in pressure defense.
Transition stops will be key of this game for the Tigers, especially at Rupp, where the crowd will be on their opponents’ side. Per Synergy, Kentucky uses the second-most possessions in the country via transition and scores at a high rate. LSU boasts the best transition defense in the nation, allowing just 0.73 points per possession in the open floor.
LSU’s offense has been a struggle all season, so the Tigers will need to make this game ugly, slow, and scrappy. If they can do that, anything above 7 is plenty for a cover. No Wheeler and/or Washington would help tremendously.