Saturday College Basketball Odds, Picks & Predictions: Three Man Weave’s 3 Best Bets
Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images. Pictured: Jared Grasso (Bryant)
- Matt Cox of Three Man Weave has three best bets for Saturday's college basketball slate.
- Those bets include an early game featuring NC State, a high-paced affair in South Florida and a low-major game.
- Dive in below and formulate your own NCAAB betting card.
This week, Saturday's college basketball slate isn't even as close to as strong as Friday's board.
But that doesn't mean there isn't value to be found from a betting perspective.
In fact, Matt Cox of Three Man Weave believes there are three games you should be targeting on Saturday.
Dive in below and get ready for the second Saturday of the new season.
Three Man Weave's Saturday 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 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.|
Elon vs. NC State
By Matt Cox
Now is not the time to elope with Elon.
This is a straight fade of the falling Phoenix. Under first-year head honcho Billy Taylor, Elon is in the fetal stages of its program rebuild. Former boss Mike Schrage opted to take his talents to Duke, where he advises Jon Scheyer at one of the premier blue blood programs.
Taylor, a Fran McCaffery disciple at Iowa, inherited a mess of a rebuild in the wake of Schrage’s departure. From a personnel lens, only a few remnants from the moderately successful old guard remain.
There’s a modicum of offensive skill on the perimeter, but defensively, it’s a disaster in the making.
On Thursday, the Phoenix allowed a bottom-feeding North Dakota squad to run circles around them. The visiting Fighting Hawks scored a blistering 1.17 points per possession despite shooting just 8-for-28 from long distance.
Taylor explicitly admitted to experimenting with multiple defensive schemes in desperate search of a solution. Answers won’t be discovered against NC State, a talent rich and hungry Wolfpack bunch that is firing on all cylinders.
They scored 107 points against FIU last outing and poured in 99 against a slow-paced Austin Peay team on opening day.
Behind blossoming NBA talent Terquavion Smith, the Pack are built to slice through mediocre and below-average defenses. Elon’s defensive unit may not qualify for either.
What is QuickSlip?
QuickSlip is an Action Network feature that allows users to automatically pre-load their bet slip at FanDuel Sportsbook.
Utah Tech vs. Idaho
By Matt Cox
Fading newly-promoted Division-I programs has not been a wise betting strategy in college basketball.
This game involves Utah Tech, the artist formerly known as Dixie State, which is embarking on year three of its official transition to D-I. Head coach Jon Judkins is 55% against the spread the last two years, per TeamRankings.com. He knows how to coach, and he knows how to cover.
In the face of those headwinds, we’re stubbornly fading the Trailblazers this afternoon. This is largely a spot/situational handicap, as it will take a Herculean effort from Utah Tech to not crack on Saturday after a strenuous week on the road.
After a comfortable home win last Saturday over Cal State Northridge, the Trailblazers had one day off before a trip up to Seattle — there, they competed with the Huskies, losing by 11 and sneaking inside the number for a cover.
Then, it was down to Tucson, Arizona, where the reigning Pac-12 champions were waiting on Thursday. Utah Tech raced up and down with Arizona in a 79-possession affair, but were promptly dispatched by the host Wildcats, 104-77.
Less than 48 hours later, UTU will now take to the hardwood for the fourth time in seven days in its fourth different venue.
Idaho is not Goliath, but the host Vandals look competent this year, aided by key interior enforcer Isaac Jones. His presence will be key to neutralizing Tanner Christensen, a former Vandal who will be out for revenge against his old team.
In a game that means next to nothing for Utah Tech, expect the jetlagged Trailblazers to fold in this meaningless non-conference game.
Pick: Idaho +4.5 (Play to +2)
Bryant vs. FIU
By Matt Cox
Bryant’s hyper-paced offense is well known in the college hoops zeitgeist, and thus, it’s largely accounted for in the betting markets. Bryant’s two Division I games this year closed with totals of 151 and 161.
On Thursday, the Bulldogs lost by 11 to Florida Atlantic, putting up a pedestrian 74 points in 84 possessions.
The second number is the one to key in on. Overs are not won on pace alone, but 84 possessions is a blinking light indicator that the Bulldogs were flying up and down the floor despite the relatively lower point total.
Bryant had trouble converting those possessions into points against FAU’s interior length. On Saturday, however, that shouldn’t be an issue against FIU.
The Panthers boast a premier shot blocker in 7-footer Seth Pinkney, but his impact is negated by his team’s turnover-obsessed pressure on the perimeter. Put simply, the Panthers gamble to a fault on defense, routinely leaving unmarked shooters all over the floor.
This is where Bryant can feast from the outside, with a barrage of transition triples.
The lone concern is Bryant carrying tired legs after playing a war with FAU on Thursday. However, the travel toll is a breeze, as FIU is merely an hour bus ride south from FAU’s Boca Raton campus.
FIU is the undetected value component to this handicap. The Panthers’ average offensive possession length through two charted Division I games ranks third fastest in the nation, per KenPom. Look no further than FIU’s final score against NC State from Tuesday: 107-74.
The early money will likely bet this total into the 160s, but don’t be afraid to take a bad number. Another 200-point total is in play for the blistering-paced Panthers.