Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 10:05 AM

Top 25 Betting Recap

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Each week until March Madness we'll take a look at how the Top 25 fared from college basketball, but straight up and against the number, while also taking a look at their upcoming schedule.

Before we get started, a big thank you for reading all season! Hopefully you have been cashing some winners along the way, and this column has played at least a small part.

Middle Tennessee (23-5 SU, 15-10 ATS) made its debut in the Top 25, and apparently the Blue Raiders want to stay for a while. They rumbled past Louisiana Tech (16-14 SU, 10-16 ATS) and Alabama-Birmingham (17-12 SU, 10-13 ATS) by an average of 21.0 points per game. Last season, Kermit Davis' group made it to the second round of the NCAA Tournament for the second consecutive year, and in the 2018 installment they might be disappointed if they don't make it to the Sweet Sixteen. This is a team which might find itself in the neighborhood of the five-line when March Madness rolls around, and they could go from the hunter to the hunted at this rate.

Virginia (26-2 SU, 18-6-1 ATS) sits atop the rankings and they are showing no signs of slowing down. It's likely that regardless of what happens in the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) Tournament, the Cavaliers are going to be on the one-line, perhaps the overall No. 1 seed if they make it to the title game of their league event. It will likely be a battle for that top overall spot with Michigan State (28-3 SU, 15-14-2 ATS) for that top overall seed. The Spartans have the luxury of starting their conference tournament a week earlier due to a scheduling conflict at Madison Square Garden with the Big East Tournament. So the compressed conference schedule means the regular season is now over, and the conference tournament begins next week. It might be the only advantage Sparty has, as they and their conference brethren face a lengthy layoff between the league tournament and the Big Dance.

Texas Tech (22-7 SU, 13-12 ATS) is sliding at an inopportune time. They have seven losses overall on the season, but they're in the midst of a three-game losing streak. They haven't covered in any of the outings, either. It's not a good time for the Red Raiders to skid, but at least they still have time to right the ship before the conference tournament and NCAA Tournament. As a result of the TTU skid, Kansas (19-8 SU, 14-13 ATS) clinched at least a share of its 14th consecutive Big 12 title. Rock Chalk has won four consecutive games, and they have covered three in a row. One of the losses this past week by the Red Raiders came at the hands of the Jayhawks, and KU covered a 2 1/2-point number on the road with the outright win in Lubbock.

Cincinnati (25-4 SU, 14-11-1 ATS) is hurtling toward a high seed in the NCAA Tournament, and this team has the look of a sleeper laying in the weeds. Not many are talking about the Bearcats nationally, but they continue to do well. After a couple of hiccups recently against fellow Tournament-bound teams Houston (22-6 SU, 14-9-1 ATS) and Wichita State (23-5 SU, 12-14 ATS), the Bearcats bounced back with a couple of league victories at home. They won by an average of 16.5 points per game, too. Speaking of the Cougars, they smashed East Carolina (10-17 SU, 10-10 ATS) by 51 points on Sunday, 109-58. Houston is harkening back to the days of Phi Jamma Slamma, when the Cougars dominated in the early 1980's. It has been a long time since the Cougars have won an NCAA Tournament game, however, last winning an NCAA game in 1984. Their last tournament appearance came in 2010, so if you like Cinderella stories, Houston might be a team to root for.

Ohio State (24-7 SU, 15-14 ATS) rebounded this week with two victories, including a thrilling double-overtime win at Indiana (16-14 SU, 18-12 ATS). The Buckeyes have struggled away from Columbus, however,going just 1-2 SU and 0-3 ATS over their past three road assignments. They have been a bit hard to figure for total bettors, too, as they followed up a five-game 'under' streak from Jan. 30-Feb. 15 with a three-game 'over' stretch from Feb. 18-23. Next up for the Buckeyes will be a foray into the Big Ten Tournament in New York City. Officially, they have won the conference tournament four times, as their fifth championship in 2002 was vacated. Last season it was Michigan (24-7 SU, 19-10-1 ATS) doing the honors. The Wolverines might be flying high heading into the tourney, winning and covering five in a row heading into this week, while going 8-2 ATS over their past 10.

While Nevada (25-5 SU, 15-12-2 ATS) has failed to cover in each of their past two outings, the Wolf Pack have rattled off five victories in a row, and they're 14-2 SU across their past 16 games dating back to just before Christmas. Many haven't been as fortunate to see Nevada play, as the Mountain West doesn't get nearly the same kind of exposure as some of the larger conferences, but they might be a team that sneaks up on some when March Madness begins. Another team not many get to see on a regular basis, but could be a surprise team in the tournament is Rhode Island (23-4 SU, 15-9-1 ATS) from the Atlantic 10.  The Rams have dominated the A-10, going 15-1, and they're 15-0 SU at home this season. URI has covered eight of their past nine at home, too, which is something to remember heading into Senior Night on Tuesday against St. Joseph's (13-15 SU, 13-12-1 ATS).

Rank Team Past Week (SU, ATS) Last 10 ATS Upcoming Week Schedule
1 Virginia 2-0, 1-1 7-2-1 at Louisville, Notre Dame
2 Michigan State 2-0, 1-1 2-6-2 Big Ten Tournament
3 Villanova 1-1, 1-1 6-4 at Seton Hall, Georgetown
4 Xavier 1-0, 1-0 7-3 Providence, at DePaul
5 Duke 2-0, 2-0 7-3 at Virginia Tech, North Carolina
T6 Gonzaga 2-0, 1-1 3-7 West Coast Conference Tournament
T6 Texas Tech 0-2, 0-2 5-5 at West Virginia, TCU
8 Kansas 2-0, 2-0 5-4-1 Texas, at Oklahoma State
9 Purdue 2-0, 1-1 1-8-1 Big Ten Tournament
10 North Carolina 2-0, 1-1 6-4 Miami-Florida, at Duke
11 Cincinnati 2-0, 1-1 6-4 at Tulane, at Wichita State
12 Auburn 1-1, 1-1 7-3 at Arkansas, South Carolina
13 Wichita State 2-0, 0-2 5-5 at UCF, Cincinnati
14 Arizona 1-1, 1-1 4-6 Stanford, California
15 Clemson 1-1, 0-2 5-5 Florida State, at Syracuse
16 Ohio State 2-0, 1-1 4-6 Big Ten Tournament
17 Michigan 2-0, 2-0 8-2 Big Ten Tournament
18 Rhode Island 2-0, 1-1 6-4 St. Joseph's, at Davidson
19 Tennessee 2-0, 2-0 6-4 at Mississippi State, Georgia
20 Nevada 2-0, 0-2 4-5-1 at UNLV, at San Diego State
21 West Virginia 2-0, 1-1 4-6 Texas Tech, at Texas
22 St. Mary's (CA) 2-0, 1-1 4-6 West Coast Conference Tournament
23 Houston 1-1, 1-1 7-2-1 at SMU, Connecticut
24 Middle Tennessee 2-0, 2-0 7-3 Western Kentucky, Marshall
25 Florida State 1-1, 0-2 4-6 at Clemson, Boston College

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