NCAAB Predictions & Odds: Stuckey’s 6 Betting Spots for Saturday, Featuring San Diego State vs. New Mexico & 5 More

NCAAB Predictions & Odds: Stuckey’s 6 Betting Spots for Saturday, Featuring San Diego State vs. New Mexico & 5 More article feature image

Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images. Pictured: New Mexico’s Jaelen House.

  • Saturday is here, which means there's plenty of college basketball to bet and plenty of spots for Stuckey to pick.
  • Stuckey found six favorite betting spots for Saturday, including his top picks for San Diego State vs. New Mexico and Michigan State vs. Iowa.
  • Check out all six of Stuckey's top bets for Saturday's college basketball games below.

Each week, I share my favorite circled spots for Saturday's college hoops slate.

As a reminder, I write this article before openers (referenced below) have settled once limits open up, so make sure to follow along in the Action Network App to see what I end up betting since the value in the number holds the most weight.

Here are my favorite six followed by six other quick-hitters I highlighted with briefer analysis. Good luck in whatever you decide to wager on.

YTD: 21-17 (55.3%) +2.74 units

Iowa (-3.5) vs Michigan State

Noon ET · ESPN

This is a tough spot for Sparty after an emotional week on campus. After a huge win over Indiana, they travel to Iowa City to take on a desperate Hawkeyes squad that just dropped two straight on the road.

Going back home should put Iowa back on track. Like most teams in the Big Ten this year, it has thrived in the friendly confines of Carver-Hawkeye Arena, going 7-0 in league play since the turn of the calendar.

On the season, Big Ten home teams in league play have gone a sparkling 71-41-1 (63.4%) against the spread — the most profitable conference by a wide margin. Short home favorites between 1-3 points have fared even better at a ridiculous 18-5 (78.3%) ATS, covering by an average margin of 5.85 points, per Bet Labs.

Iowa also has revenge on its mind from a loss in East Lansing earlier this season. The Hawkeyes (who didn't have Patrick McCaffery available) lost by only two despite shooting an uncharacteristic 3-of-17 from beyond the arc and 6-of-13 from the charity stripe.

Those shots should fall at a higher frequency at home, and they can use their press and zone to cause schematic issues for Michigan State.

This is a great buy-low spot.

Plus, Iowa has gone 98-68-5 ATS (59%) at home in league play since 2005.

Oklahoma State (-1.5) vs. Kansas State

2 p.m. ET · ESPNU

Speaking of home-road splits, the Wildcats are a completely different animal at home this year in front of one of the most underrated home-court advantages in college basketball. To wit, they rank 353rd in Haslametric's "Away From Home" metric, having dropped five straight on the highway in league play.

Fresh off of two massive wins in Manhattan over Iowa State and Baylor, it may be time to sell Kansas State, which still has some negative shooting regression looming, per my numbers.

From a matchup perspective, Oklahoma State can neutralize all of Kansas State's cutting action, as the Cowboys rank in the 97th percentile in that department, per Synergy. The Wildcats also aren't a very efficient offense in transition, which is where teams need to exploit Oklahoma State before it gets its elite half-court defense set.

On the other side of the ball, the Pokes can make a living on the offensive glass — a major area of vulnerability for Kansas State. Having 7-footer Moussa Cisse — who didn't play in the first meeting — will certainly help in that department.

Their bigger guards should also have success driving to the basket against the Kansas State wings, which is a necessity for this offense in the half-court.

This looks like a prime opportunity to sell high on the road-averse Wildcats while buying low on an Oklahoma State team that has dropped three straight.

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Mississippi State (+1) vs. Texas A&M

3:30 p.m. ET · SEC Network

If this isn't the peak of the market on the Aggies, then pencil them into the Final Four. You have to give credit to Buzz Williams for turning around this A&M squad after a 6-5 start to the season, which included a neutral-site loss to Murray State and a home defeat at the hands of Wofford.

However, it has certainly benefited from a fairly weak conference slate to date in a relatively down year for the SEC. The Aggies have also recently enjoyed a favorable whistle and end-game variance during their current six-game winning streak.

The Aggies do three things extremely well:

  1. Force turnovers (50th nationally)
  2. Get to the line (3rd in the country in FTA/FGA)
  3. Offensive rebound (7th in D-I)

They also go underneath on screens, hence why they allow one of the 15 highest 3-point attempt rates nationally. That's ideal in a conference void of shooting. In aggregate, SEC teams have shot 31.9% from deep in league play, which ranks dead last out of 32 conferences, per KenPom.

The good news for Texas A&M is this is another decent matchup on paper since the Bulldogs can't shoot from deep (359th), can get a bit loose with the ball and are vulnerable to offensive rebounds.

By design, it allows as many spot-up jumpers as any defense in the country, which could spell doom for a Mississippi State offense that ranks in the seventh percentile in Points Per Possession on spot-up jumpers, per Synergy.

That said, we may still get value from a pure numbers perspective on the Bulldogs, who continue to fight for their tourney lives. This is still a well-coached team that's playing its best basketball of the season. Over the past month, Miss State has gone 6-4 with all four losses coming by one possession to Kentucky, Florida, Alabama and Missouri (in overtime).

Plus, it's not like Mississippi State doesn't have any advantages here. It should eat up the offensive glass on its abundance of missed shots and boasts a top-10 half-court defense.

The Aggies also aren't great in transition, which is really how you have to attack the Bulldogs. State could also get a friendly whistle in Starkville, which can really swing an A&M game because of its style.

college basketball-odds-picks-predictions-betting-lsu vs mississippi state-february 8
Chris McDill/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: Mississippi State's Tyler Stevenson (left) and Tolu Smith (right).

Navy (+2) vs. Colgate

4 p.m. ET · CBS Sports Network

Colgate travels to Annapolis for its regular-season finale with nothing to play for. The Raiders (16-1 in conference) have already locked up the regular-season Patriot League title in addition to the No. 1 overall seed in the conference tournament.

Conversely, Navy may need this game to lock up the No. 2 overall seed if Lehigh wins earlier in the day. If Lehigh loses, I believe the Midshipmen would hold the tiebreaker, so I'd be a little more hesitant about this spot in case Navy decides to rest any players with no incentive.

However, I don't think head coach Ed DeChellis would do that in a game I believe the Mids really want to win, regardless of postseason implications. Navy has five seniors in its regular rotation that have been with the program since 2020. Over that span, they have gone 0-6 against Colgate, including a loss in last year's conference title game. I think they want this one badly.

Navy lost earlier this season at Colgate by 14 after jumping out to a 20-2 lead. However, it has improved immensely since that early January meeting. After losing five straight league games to start the new year, the Mids have gone 10-1.  They've also gone 5-0 SU and ATS in league revenge spots this season with only Colgate remaining for the sweep:

  • Holy Cross (lost by 11 then won by 18)
  • Lehigh (lost by 5 then won by 12)
  • Lafayette (lost by 9 then won by 19)
  • Loyola Maryland (lost by 2 then won by 12)
  • American (lost by 4 then won by 16)

They won all five of those games by at least 12 points with an average margin improvement of over 21 points from the first meeting. That just illustrates how much Navy has improved since the start of conference play.

San Jose State (+4.5) vs. Boise State

7 p.m. ET · MWC

After holding on for a home victory over New Mexico in a very important game on Wednesday night, Boise State finds itself in a classic sandwich spot at San Jose State before hosting San Diego State in a game that could determine the regular-season league winner.

This will also mark the third game in six days for the Broncos, which isn't ideal for a team with no depth (348th in bench minutes) late in the season and a hampered Marcus Shaver, who got bruised and battered against the Lobos the other night.

After back-to-back double-digit losses, I expect a spirited effort from the Spartans, who only lost by three at Boise earlier this season.

New Mexico (+1.5) vs. San Diego State

10 p.m. ET · CBS Sports Network

You could argue this is a must-win for the Lobos, who sit squarely on the bubble as we get closer to March.

New Mexico may have bottomed out in the market after losing six of its past eight games. However, if you dig a bit deeper, it didn't have Jaelen House for a pair of those losses, which you can essentially throw out the window.

Two of the other four losses with House came against Nevada by a combined four points, including a three-point loss in double overtime. The remaining two came on the road against Boise State and Utah State as underdogs. Things aren't as bad as they seem in Albuquerque.

Meanwhile, San Diego State has won five straight to essentially lock up its spot in the dance.

The Aztecs will be dangerous in March, but it hasn't always been pretty away from home. They've won four of their past five road games, but one came in overtime at Colorado State, while two others came by just two points at Fresno State and Utah State. They are a bit overdue to have end-game variance go against them on the road.

SDSU also has a massive game on deck against Boise State that could decide the Mountain West regular-season title, but I actually expect a focused effort after losing at home to New Mexico earlier this season.

The problem is New Mexico matches up fairly well with San Diego State's elite defense. House and Jamal Mashburn Jr. can use their quickness and pull-up games to exploit SDSU's drop coverage against ball screens.

The Pit should be an absolute zoo, which could lead to a few key calls going New Mexico's way.

A must-win isn't always a must-buy and can sometimes work against a team that finds itself on the bubble for a reason. For me, that's not the case here. I'm buying.

6 Speed Round Spots

  • Last year, South Dakota State became the first program in Summit League history to finish with an undefeated conference record. One year later, Oral Roberts will look to become the second on the road in Brookings, South Dakota. The Jacks were embarrassed at Oral Roberts earlier this season but have found their footing of late during a current seven-game winning streak. They also have one of the most underrated home courts in college basketball. Since 2005, South Dakota State has gone 71-40-1 ATS (64%) at home in conference play. That makes the Jacks the most profitable team in that situation over that span. Rounding out the top five are Michigan, Middle Tennessee, Iowa and Bradley. Max Abmas and ORU will have to earn this one in Frost Arena.
  • It could be a decent spot to back Georgia, which might have bottomed out in the market after back-to-back complete blowout losses to Alabama and Arkansas. Ultimately, the Dawgs need to get out in transition to have a chance, and they can certainly do that against Missouri. Plus, fresh off an important overtime win at home, the Tigers could come out a bit flat on the road, where they have performed considerably worse this season.
  • USC finds itself in the dreaded back end of the mountain road swing against Utah after facing Colorado on Thursday. Since 2005, teams playing their second straight road game in Utah with three or fewer days of rest have gone just 16-29-3 ATS (35.6%). Although, the Trojans did recently see the return of Joshua Morgan, who matters immensely to their post defense). Meanwhile, the Utes will likely still not have the services of Gabe Madsen.
  • After back-to-back double-digit losses in the Sunflower State, I'd imagine Baylor bounces back at home in a revenge spot against Texas, which has looked much more vulnerable away from Austin. In the first meeting, Baylor didn't have Langston Love or Jonathan Tchamwa Tchatchoua in a contest that went right down to the final minute despite the Bears shooting just 8-of-26 from 3.
  • Winners of five straight, Kansas may open up a bit too high at home against West Virginia. The Jayhawks, who picked up two emotional wins last weekend against Baylor and TCU, could come out a bit flat to start against a West Virginia squad they already blew out in Morgantown. There are still depth issues with Bill Self's squad, which could rear its head in the form of fatigue (both emotional and physical) down the stretch. WVU should have success on the glass on both ends, which it will have to lean on as a still-desperate team.
  • Speaking of potentially coming out flat, Marquette may not have its normal insanely high energy level at the jump against lowly DePaul. The Golden Eagles are fresh off two emotionally draining victories over Xavier and Creighton by a combined three points to take a commanding two-game lead in the Big East standings with just three games remaining. Conversely, the Blue Demons have lost nine straight after upsetting Xavier. However, they still appear to be playing hard and have gotten a bit healthier in recent weeks. It's just hard to imagine this isn't the very peak of Marquette's market value.
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