College Basketball Betting Picks: Our Experts’ 5 Favorite Wednesday Bets
Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images. Pictured: E.J. Crawford
- Looking for college basketball picks on Wednesday's conference tournament slate? You've come to the right place.
- Our experts have broken down their five favorite college hoops bets of the day, including full analysis for each.
- Check out the picks they're making below, including spread bets on Iowa State vs. Oklahoma State and Iona vs. St. Peter's.
Never be afraid to dig deep into a college basketball card to find betting value. What you might find could be frightening — like betting a pair of games in the MAAC Tournament — but it may also make you some money.
Our staff has circled games in Boise and Atlantic City for their favorite Wednesday bets, in addition to a few from the major conferences.
Here’s what we’re betting on Wednesday.
Wednesday College Basketball Betting Coverage
- Arkansas vs. Vanderbilt & Georgia vs. Ole Miss
- Oklahoma State vs. Iowa State & TCU vs. Kansas State
- How to Bet All 4 Pac-12 Tourney Games
- A10 Tourney: Fordham vs. George Washington
Wednesday College Basketball Betting Picks
- Odds: Clemson -4 vs. Miami
- Over/Under: 133
- Time: Noon ET
- TV: ESPN
With the Tigers opening as a 2.5-point favorite, we’re seeing a slight overreaction from the market with Hurricanes point guard Chris Lykes (face injuries) likely out for a second straight game.
Lykes does mean plenty to Miami’s attack, generating the third-highest shot percentage in ACC play. But Jim Larrañaga’s bunch has experience playing without him, showcased by its four-point win over Syracuse on Saturday while tallying 1.05 points per possession with freshman Isaiah Wong orchestrating the offense.
[Big Ten Tourney Promo! Bet $10 on Wednesday night’s Indiana-Nebraska game and win $10 for EVERY 3-pointer made.]
Moreover, Clemson isn’t a team that turns over opponents on a regular basis (eight-highest turnover percentage in conference play), so the Hurricanes lack of ball handlers isn’t as big of a concern.
I’m expecting this one to be a tight game down the stretch despite the Tigers’ size advantage, and they’re the second-worst free-throw shooting unit (65.7%) in the ACC during league play while the Hurricanes have generated the second-highest clip (77.0%).
Pick: Miami +4
- Odds: Northern Arizona -4
- Over/Under: 143.5
- Time: 4:30 p.m. ET
- TV: ESPN+
A glance at the records of these two teams would indicate Northern Arizona should be a bigger favorite in this Big Sky first round game. Idaho State may have just seven wins on the season, but has been profitable away from home at 10-6 against the spread.
In this head-to-head, only one game since 2016 has been decided by more than 4 points. The Bengals rank 56th in experience and know the Northern Arizona team quite well after playing seven times in the past three years.
These teams split the season series, with Northern Arizona winning the Feb. 6 battle in overtime. Neither team led by more than three points after the start of the second half, and this game should be no exception in the history of this series.
🏀 TIME TO BALL! 🏀
The four-day, 10-game #BigSkyMBB Championship tips off Wednesday!
— Big Sky MBB (@BigSkyMBB) March 8, 2020
The key to this game is limiting Northern Arizona star Cameron Shelton. Idaho State has been successful in defense of the sophomore, limiting Shelton to under 50% shooting through both contests this season.
Northern Arizona gets a majority of its points from 3-point range, but Idaho State’s best defensive metrics come from beyond the arc. The Bengals have been horrific in defending the paint, but that is not a weakness the Lumberjacks can exploit.
Idaho State may be catching Northern Arizona at the right time. The Lumberjacks have lost three of their last four to finish conference play, being out hustled in rebounding and transition defense.
Northern Arizona has not recorded a block through the past three games, either. Look for Idaho State to enjoy the short trip to Boise one last time for a roster dominated with upperclassmen. This series have been decided by the smallest of margins and I don’t expect anything different from CenturyLink Arena on Wednesday.
Pick: Idaho State +4
- Odds: Oklahoma State -6
- Over/Under: 142
- Time: 7 p.m. ET
- TV: ESPNU
This will be the third time Iowa State has played Oklahoma State this season, with the two teams defending their respective home courts.
However, the Cyclones roster will look significantly different from their 89-82 home win back on Jan. 21. Iowa State has been without star point guard Tyrese Haliburton since Feb. 10 with a wrist injury. In addition, sophomore guard Rasir Bolton and senior guard Prentiss Nixon are suffering from injuries, with Bolton’s status especially cloudy.
Oklahoma State is playing its best basketball of the season, winning three games in a row and six of its last eight. The Cowboys are just 14-17 against the spread (ATS), but have covered seven of their last 10 games. They should feast off an Iowa State defense that ranks last in conference play in adjusted defensive efficiency and effective field goal percentage allowed, as well as 2P% and 3P% allowed.
The Cowboys are a balanced team on offense generating only 26.7% of their points via the 3P, while ranking inside the top 100 with a 73.2% team free throw percentage.
Oklahoma State is finally back at full strength after point guard Isaac Likekele (10.6 ppg, 5.6 rpg, 4.4 apg) missed several games with mononucleosis.
The Cyclones desperately need leading scorer Rasir Bolton (14.7 ppg) to play, but his effectiveness will likely be limited regardless. Iowa State has lost five of its last six games and its only victory away from Ames came in a 104-89 neutral-court win over Alabama on Nov. 28.
I’m taking the Cowboys to comfortably cover a line that has grown to -6 against the shorthanded and struggling Cyclones.
Pick: Oklahoma State -6.5
- Odds: Manhattan vs. Siena -6.5
- Over/Under: 133.5
- Time: 7 p.m. ET
- TV: ESPN+
Both Siena and the MAAC as a whole are so buried beneath power conference tournaments this week that you won’t find many prognosticators spending time previewing this quarterfinal matchup. It’s a shame because Siena is one of the best mid-major stories going, and has a chance to make a run to the Big Dance just as the NCAA is slapping the program with violations, including financial improprieties.
The Saints have won 12 of 13 straight up, and nine of 13 against the spread. They’ve done it with a well balanced offense that boasts four starters averaging more than 11 points per game.
Jalen Pickett runs the point and after some early season struggles and a benching, he’s grown up considerably. The dynamic combo guard is now averaging 15/6/4 and his backcourt mate Manny Camper is averaging a double-double (13.6 ppg, 10.4 rpg). Camper isn’t the only one doing work on the glass, the Saints are an elite mid-major rebounding team and rank 36th nationally in offensive rebounding rate.
As much as I like Siena, and look forward to taking a moneyline flyer on them as a 15-seed next week in the NCAA Tournament, this play is mostly about fading Manhattan. The Jaspers are absolutely terrible offensively. They’re in the bottom five percent of college basketball in the following metrics:
- Offensive Efficiency
- Shooting %
- Shooting Efficiency
- Free Throw %
Manhattan leaves lots of points on the table by missing foul shots and surrenders 23.7 FTA per game (329th). And just for fun, the Jaspers went 7-10 ATS at road/neutral sites. Sign me up for some Siena.
Pick: Siena -6.5
- Odds: Saint Peters -2 vs. Iona
- Over/Under: 134
- Time: 9:30 p.m. ET
- TV: ESPN+
Death, taxes and Gaels in the MAAC Tournament. It’s just what coach Tim Cluess does, having brought the Gaels to seven straight MAAC finals and winning the past four.
Iona lost both regular season meetings to St. Peters but both came down to the wire as the Peacocks won by a combined four points. I think Iona gets is revenge here and moves on to the MAAC semis.
I also added a half unit in Iona in the first half, which I like to do with teams that played the day before on a neutral court against teams that didn’t. Iona should be better adjusted.
Pick: Iona +2