College basketball schedule today has 50 games
Our new daily college basketball feature rolls on with 50 games on the betting card for Wednesday. We didn’t have a CBB article along the lines of what Jonathan Von Tobel is doing with daily NBA best bets and Andy MacNeil is all over with his daily NHL picks, so that’s what I started on Monday and will do for the foreseeable future as college hoops starts to garner a lot more interest with college football winding down.
Here are some thoughts for the December 7 card (odds via DraftKings):
Bobby Hurley’s bunch is still looking to find its offensive stride from beyond the arc, but you have to take notice of a team shooting 29% from 3 that is off to an 8-1 start. The Sun Devils already have four wins over top-100 teams per Bart Torvik and now face a SMU club that is down a ton from previous seasons. The Mustangs lost a ton of senior production and leadership from last season’s team and have had a multitude of issues thus far.
SMU has scored under one point per possession in six of eight games thus far, with the two games coming against Texas A&M Commerce and Lamar. The Mustangs are 320th in the nation in eFG% on offense and rank in the 290s in 3P% and 2P%. Against an Arizona State team that currently ranks 11th in adjusted defensive efficiency, fourth in eFG% defense and sixth in both 3P% and 2P% defense seems like a suboptimal matchup for SMU.
Not only are the Mustangs adjusting to the losses of Kendric Davis, Marcus and Michael Weathers and Emmanuel Bandoumel, who all played at least 63% of the minutes last season and combined for 53.8 of the team’s 74.4 points on a nightly basis, but they also have a new head coach in Rob Lanier. It’s been a slow start for SMU and I think that continues tonight.
Pick: Arizona State -5.5
Missouri State isn’t on the same level as last season, losing leading scorer Isiaih Mosley to Missouri and senior Gaige Prim to eligibility, but this is a hard-nosed defensive team that should find its way offensively. In a game like this that will be a slow-paced rock fight, Missouri State doesn’t have to go above and beyond. They need to do better than 57% from the free throw line and it would help if they can keep creating turnovers like they have with a 21.9% TO% on defense.
Saint Mary’s has dropped three in a row after starting the season with six wins. I don’t think Randy Bennett is worried about blowing Missouri State out, so much as he’s worried about figuring out his team and his substitution rotations with some new faces and new focal points without Matthias Tass and Tommy Kuhse from last year’s NCAA Tournament team.
The slow pace of this game and Missouri State’s defensive prowess make me think the Bears can hang around. Saint Mary’s also has a huge neutral-site game in Phoenix on Saturday, so my guess is they’re worried about smoothing out the rough edges and getting a win rather than embarrassing a team in a game probably played to a limited number of possessions.
Pick: Missouri State +14.5
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