College Basketball Best Bets Today: Odds, predictions and picks for Friday, January 27th

By Adam Burke  ( 

January 27, 2023 10:27 AM

College basketball schedule today has 10 games

We go from 70 games on Thursday to 10 on Friday, as most of the nation’s teams get ready for play on Saturday or Sunday. There are 144 games on tomorrow’s slate for my first Saturday article of the series. That seems like a nice, daunting task, but let’s start with Friday and tackle the other one later.

Side note: Turns out Long Beach State is no longer the 49ers. They are the Long Beach State Beach, as discussed during my VSiN Final Countdown appearance yesterday. Themoreyouknow.gif. My apologies for getting the mascot wrong in yesterday’s article and breaking the cardinal rule of college basketball betting - if you don’t know the mascot, don’t bet the team (they covered anyway).

We’ve got five games in the NBA tonight and eight in the NHL, so I encourage you to check out what Jonathan Von Tobel has for daily NBA best bets and what Andy MacNeil has for daily NHL picks.



Here are some thoughts on the January 27 card (odds from DraftKings):

Fort Wayne Mastodons at Cleveland State Vikings (-3.5, 138)

These Horizon League foes just faced off on Jan. 16 and the Vikings won by 12 on the road. Now they’ll host the Mastodons at the Wolstein Center in Downtown Cleveland. That first game was a little bit strange in that Fort Wayne seemed to have a lot of success getting to the rim. On the season, the Mastodons haven’t really done much of that, as their 31% shot share on Close Twos ranks in the bottom 50 nationally. They had 22 attempts at the rim and Cleveland State, a team that ranks in the top 20, had 29.

Cleveland State also ranks in the top 120 in terms of keeping teams from getting those looks on Close Twos. Despite an outlier from Fort Wayne, they still lost the game by 12. That seems like a bad thing heading into the quick rematch. I would think Daniyal Robinson’s team would make the adjustment and defend the interior a bit better.

If that’s the case, Fort Wayne will revert back to taking a bunch of 3s like usual, but Cleveland State is only allowing opponents to shoot 30.5% on triple tries. The Mastodons rank around average in 3P%, so they take a bunch, but don’t necessarily convert at a high rate. Meanwhile, they rank in the bottom 30 in 2P% defensively, including a high FG% against on Close Twos.

Cleveland State was 4-of-19 from 3 and still had 1.133 points per possession in that first game. I don’t see why this rematch should go any different, unless Fort Wayne somehow has an out-of-body experience from 3 and that seems unlikely. Shop around for a 3.5 if you can find one, which can be had at DraftKings and others. Some books are still sitting 4 and I think that’s fine to take here as well.

Pick: Cleveland State -3.5

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Jason Weingarten: Princeton (+10) vs Creighton. View more picks.


The Handle: The American League playoff picture is going to be highly competitive. Look to bet overs on win totals as opposed to a team making the playoffs. View more tips.