CBB Sharp Report: Wiseguys Betting Pepperdine-Gonzaga, 2 Other Thursday Games
Gonzaga Bulldogs head coach Mark Few. Credit: Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports
- Wiseguys are betting three college basketball games on Thursday, headlined by Michigan-Minnesota (7 p.m. ET on ESPN).
- Sharps are also getting down on Eastern Illinois-Belmont (8 p.m. ET on ESPN+) and Pepperdine-Gonzaga (9 p.m. ET on Root Sports NW).
- Using the tools available at The Action Network, we analyze how pros are betting each game.
Wiseguys stacked bigly last night, cashing all three of their Wednesday plays (Xavier spread, Creighton/DePaul Under and UNC/Duke Under). Sharps will look to stay hot, but this doesn’t mean that they get cocky and double down tonight.
Whether they pop bottles or get taken to the woodshed, the blueprint never changes. Flat betting. Grinders with Blinders. Always.
After analyzing Thursday’s stacked 56-game slate using the betting tools available at Sports Insights and The Action Network, I’ve identified three games receiving sharp action from professional bettors, with start times of 7 p.m., 8 p.m. and 9 p.m. ET.
Betting Terms to Know
Steam Move: Sudden, drastic and uniform line movement across the market caused by an overload of sharp action from respected players.
Reverse Line Movement: When the betting line moves in the opposite direction of the betting percentages. It’s a top smart money indicator.
Line Freeze: When one side is getting heavy betting, but the line won’t budge, indicating sharp liability on the other side.
Juice: The tax or commission that bettors must pay sportsbooks in order for them to accept your wager. A -115 juice means a bettor would have to wager $115 to win $100.
Michigan @ Minnesota
7 p.m. ET | ESPN
Sharp angle: Over (moved from 131.5 to 133)
Casual bettors love sweating overs. After all, it’s just no fun to root for a low-scoring, boring game. Average Joes want to see back-and-forth action with lots of points and then cash in the end.
On the rare occasion that the public loads up on an under, it creates unique contrarian value for wiseguys to go the other way.
In the most heavily bet game of the night, 68% of bets are taking the Michigan-Minnesota under. However, the line has risen from 131.5 to 133. Why would the books raise the total to make it easier for public under backers to cash?
Because they got hit with smart money from pro bettors, forcing them to adjust the total upward despite the lopsided under betting.
According to our Sports Insights Bet Signals, we tracked two separate steam moves on the Over, with sharps banging the Over 132 and then coming back again on the Over 133.
This raised the total up to 134 before buyback hit the market and settled the line back to 133.
Eastern Illinois @ Belmont
8 p.m. ET | ESPN+
Sharp angle: Under (moved from 158.5 to 155.5)
“You down with OVC? Yeah you know me!” – Wiseguys.
This Ohio Valley Conference over/under is flying completely under the public radar, but not with the sharps.
As soon as this total opened, Goodfellas immediately steamed the Under. This means they had such a strong edge they wasted no time getting down, knowing that the total was bound to fall and close at a much lower number.
Currently 82% of bets are on the under, but they account for more than 90% of dollars. On the surface, this looks like a “public” play. However, we’ve tracked only 800 bets on the game. Average Joes aren’t betting this under, they don’t even know it exists.
As a result, despite the lopsided betting percentages, it’s really only sharps making up that 82%.
Pepperdine @ Gonzaga
9 p.m. ET | ROOT Sports NW
Sharp angle: Under (moved from 158.5 to 154)
It’s a misconception that sharps and squares (casual bettors who bet for fun) are never on the same side of a game. While somewhat rare, it does happen.
This late night WCC over/under is a perfect example.
This total opened at a high 157.5. Currently 67% of bets and 79% of dollars are taking the Under, indicating moderately heavy public betting but also overwhelming smart money from respected pro players.
Wiseguys across the market hammered the Under 157.5 as soon as it opened, triggering a trio of steam moves that forced oddsmakers to adjust the total down more than four points.
This under spot has been especially profitable for sharps this season. When the total is high (150 or more) and falls at least one point in a conference game, the under has hit at a 64.2% clip.
Also, the high spread (Zags -28.5) benefits the under as well. Since 2005, when the home team is favored by 14-points or more, falls at least one point and the total is 145 or higher, the under has cashed 57% of the time.