Wednesday College Basketball Betting: Mississippi-Auburn, NJIT-Florida Gulf Coast
Justin Ford-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Ole Miss Rebels
For Wednesday’s betting previews, we travel to a big and little conference.
In the SEC, we examine the surprise team of the year, the Mississippi Rebels, as they travel to Auburn.
Then in the Atlantic Sun, we take a closer look at a hot Florida Gulf Coast team hosting NJIT.
Which teams deserve your financial backing? Let’s take a look.
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Betting Odds: Mississippi Rebels at Auburn Tigers
- Spread: Auburn -8.5
- Over/Under: 156
- Time: 8:30 p.m. ET
- TV: SECN
Mississippi (16-7) has far exceeded expectations this year. The Rebels are 6-4 in the SEC with three big road wins at Mississippi State, Vanderbilt, and Georgia. They are 14-7 overall including a very impressive 8-1 ATS on the road.
Auburn (16-7) has been a disappointment this year sitting only at 5-5 in the SEC. However, the Tigers have been dominant at home, winning all four of their SEC home games by an average of 23.5 points. Auburn is 10-9-1 overall ATS but 7-3 in home games.
Mississippi has been extremely efficient on offense. It is 27th in the nation in adjusted offensive efficiency and eighth overall in free throw percentage. Within the SEC, the Rebels rank third in both categories.
Mississippi is also super efficient from beyond the arc. The guard trio of Breein Tyree (18.5 ppg), Terence Davis (16.2 ppg), and Devontae Shuler (9.3 ppg) all shoot 38% or better from 3-point range.
Auburn ranks 48th in the country in adjusted defensive efficiency but has been just middle of the pack in conference play. The Tigers have allowed opponents to shoot 51.2% from 2P which ranks eighth in the SEC.
On offense, the Tigers live or die from beyond the arc. Auburn ranks first in the SEC with 45.6% of its points coming from 3P. In its 82-67 loss to Mississippi on the road, Auburn only shot 35.9% on 39 attempts from 3P. The over-reliance on the deep ball allowed the Rebels to out-rebound Auburn 45-37.
While Auburn has played well at home in conference, its four home wins were against opponents (Georgia, Missouri, Alabama, Florida) that lack the offensive and defensive balance of Mississippi. This will be a close game that the Rebels could definitely win. The heavy guard alignment allows Mississippi to match the guard play of Auburn.
THE PICK: Mississippi +8.5
NJIT Highlanders at Florida Gulf Coast Eagles
- Spread: Florida Gulf Coast PK
- Over/Under: 139.5
- Time: 7 p.m. ET
- TV: ESPN+
Florida Gulf Coast (10-16) is on fire at home. The Eagles have won their last four games in Fort Myers by an average of 12.5 points. They are just 6-6 ATS but have covered seven of their last eight games, including those four home contests.
NJIT wins with its defense, which ranks 32nd nationally in effective field goal percentage and 22nd against the 3P. However, in its last two road games, they allowed 77 points at Liberty and an inexplicable 63 points to Kennesaw State. The Highlanders have also been out-rebounded 71-53 in those games.
NJIT’s offense has really struggled, though. It ranks seventh in the conference in adjusted offensive efficiency and eighth in offensive rebounding.
Florida Gulf Coast has excelled at 3-point efficiency. FGCU’s 36.4% 3-point percentage ranks 79th in the country and it’s even better (37.7%) within the Atlantic Sun. The Eagles have shot 42% (25 of 60) over their last three home games.
The Eagles will also have a huge interior defensive advantage where they lead the conference in block percentage within Atlantic Sun play.
NJIT plays its third consecutive road game against the hottest home team in the conference. Don’t let the disparity in records fool you, Florida Gulf Coast is playing much better basketball and will protect their home floor in this key Atlantic Sun battle.
THE PICK: Florida Gulf Coast PK