Wednesday's Best Bet
January 3, 2018
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Wednesday's College Hoops Betting Preview
Oklahoma State Cowboys vs. Oklahoma Sooners
We've got a huge showdown in the Big 12 tonight between hated rivals as the Oklahoma State Cowboys visit Oklahoma to do battle with the Sooners.
This rivalry game did not turn out well for the Cowboys in football this season with Baker Mayfield and the Sooners winning by 10 at Oklahoma State, and while this is just the first of two meetings on the hardcourt this year, OK State would love to get one over on the Sooners tonight and then go for the season sweep at home later in the year.
It won't be easy though as Oklahoma as won nine in a row and come in as nearly a double-digit home favorite tonight.
Sportsbetting.ag Odds: Oklahoma (-9.5); Total set at 166.5
Both teams have played some great basketball on the whole this year as both programs have double-digit wins already, with Oklahoma sporting the better record at 11-1 SU. OK State isn't that far behind at 10-3 SU, but all those victories haven't equated to breaking the sportsbooks, as neither team has a winning record ATS.
Some inflated numbers against some cupcake opponents is largely responsible for that, but you can't help but wonder if tonight's spread is a little too high as well.
There is no denying the fact that the nine wins in a row Oklahoma has is quite impressive, especially since they opened up Big 12 play with a 90-89 win as +2.5 underdogs at TCU over the weekend. That win made the Sooners 2-0 SU and ATS as underdogs this year – they beat Wichita State 91-83 as +7 'dogs in mid-December – and the ranking committee has really started to take notice.
The Sooners are an offensive juggernaut in college basketball with 94.7 points scored per game, and with a 50.3% shooting average as a team from the field, you'd better be able to match the Sooners bucket for bucket if you want a chance to beat them.
There aren't many college teams that can score the way the Sooners do – largely because they don't have Trae Young and his scoring exploits like the Sooners do – but playing Oklahoma can also bump up your own scoring average as they give up plenty of points themselves.
In six of the Sooners last 10 games they've allowed 80 or more, and when you play that style of basketball and your offense has an “off-night,” you will likely be playing with fire when it comes to a point spread like this.
Oklahoma State has some scorers themselves as the team averages just under 80 points per game, but a 1-9 O/U record on the year tells me that this team prefers to hang their hat on their defensive play when they can. That defense hasn't been great with two straight games of allowing 80+, (chances are Oklahoma will make it three straight), but if OK State can get stops at critical points of the game and their offense can hang around, then this point spread is definitely too big for a rivalry game like this.
The Cowboys are on a 10-1 ATS run as a program in their last 11 away from home, and that includes a 9-1 ATS run when playing a team that's won at least 60% of their home games at the time.
Oklahoma is a perfect 6-0 SU at home this year so the latter certainly applies, and with three of the last four meetings between these two being decided by four points or less – including OK State winning both meetings last year - taking the points looks to be the way to go.
Oklahoma is just 3-11 ATS in their last 14 at home against a team that wins on the road, and with that run narrowing to 2-8 ATS at home when the Sooners opponent has won at least 60% of their road games like the Cowboys have, I'm grabbing the points and expecting another tight contest that goes down to the wire in this rivalry.
Best Bet: Oklahoma State +9.5
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