College Basketball Picks: Sunday, February 21
There is a small college basketball betting slate for Sunday, though we still have three of the top five teams in the rankings in action. Houston lost during the week so that number is certainly going to change in the next poll, but they are still one of the best teams in the nation.
The Game of the Day is in Columbus, as Ohio State welcomes archrival Michigan in a top-five showdown. It is definitely a sign of the times that Michigan vs. Ohio State is more meaningful on the hardwood than the gridiron. It is a huge NCAA Tournament seeding game in Columbus this afternoon, with both teams are in the hunt for high seeds.
February 21 College Basketball Betting Picks
Cincinnati vs. Houston, ESPN, 1:00 PM ET
College Basketball Betting Matchup: Cincinnati Bearcats (7-7 SU, 3-1 ATS) vs. (#3) Houston Cougars (17-3 SU, 13-6 ATS)
Spread: Cincinnati +13 (-110), Houston -13 (-110)
Total: Over 135.5 (-11o), Under 135.5 (-110)
Money Line: Cincinnati +750, Houston -1200
Cincinnati is a shell of what is used to be under now UCLA coach Mick Cronin. They are on their best run of the season, as they have won four in a row right now. But they all have been close, with the combined winning margin being just 9 total points. They just lost at Wichita State by a closer margin than Houston, but I would not read too much into that.
Houston has three losses, all of which have come on the road. They have yet to lose back-to-back games and they are in a good spot to get a win here. Houston looks awesome in some games, but this is still a team that can be limited. They don’t have the range of talent that some of the other top teams do, so when it isn’t working they can look ordinary. This is a big line, but I don’t want to bet against this team when they are angry. Also, it has come down a point and a half too.
Betting Advice: Take Houston.
Penn State vs. Iowa, FS1, 5:00 PM
College Basketball Betting Matchup: Penn State Nittany Lions (7-11 SU, 9-9 ATS) vs. (#14) Iowa Hawkeyes (16-6 SU, 13-9 ATS)
Spread: Penn State +11.5 (-116), Iowa -11.5 (-106)
Total: Over 157.5 (-110), Under 157.5 (-110)
Money Line: Penn State +520, Iowa -750
Penn State was losing at home to the likes of Nebraska, so it was no surprise that Ohio State came to visit and dropped 92 points in a win in their last game. They have dropped three games in a row and a road game is not going to get them back on track. The Nittany Lions have just one road win all season, so Iowa is likely going to be a tough trip for a team that does not play much defense.
Iowa seems to have gotten back on track after a couple of tough weeks, or maybe they just look good because they don’t have any more games against Indiana. The Hawkeyes have won and covered three straight and Luka Garza has been looking good. It is a bit odd that the Hawkeyes have played in four straight unders, but a little attention to defense is probably a good thing. This is the fourth time this season they have been 11.5 point favorites. They are 2-1 ATS in these games.
Betting Advice: Take Iowa.
Wisconsin vs. Northwestern, Big Ten Network, 7:00 PM ET
College Basketball Betting Matchup: (#21) Wisconsin Badgers (15-8 SU, 10-12-1 ATS) vs. Northwestern Wildcats (6-13 SU, 8-9-1 ATS)
Spread: Wisconsin -6.5 (-110), Northwestern +6.5 (-110)
Total: Over 130.5 (-110), Under 130.5 (-110)
Money Line: Wisconsin -290, Northwestern +230
I am still trying to figure out the Badgers. Are they a team with a decent ceiling or just a high floor? Whatever they are they should get a win on the road on Sunday against Northwestern. It is a nice bit of scheduling to get the Wildcats after a loss to Iowa and even though they are not scoring a lot of points this season they should not have to sweat this one. This opponent is at a perfect time, even on the road.
It was yet another loss for Northwestern in their last game. They actually played one of their better games against Illinois, winning the second half and covering for the game. It is a nice sign that the Wildcats have not given up on the season but it is hard to see them getting out of their rut here. It is hard to believe that this team actually beat Ohio State by a point the day after Christmas. That was the last time they won though. That losing streak continues on Sunday.
Betting Advice: Take Wisconsin.
February 21 College Basketball Betting: Best Bet of the Day
Michigan vs. Ohio State, CBS, 1:00 PM ET
College Basketball Betting Matchup: (#3) Michigan Wolverines (15-1 SU, 12-4 ATS) vs. (#4) Ohio State Buckeyes 18-4 SU, 14-7-1 ATS)
Spread: Michigan +1 (-110), Ohio State -1 (-110)
Total: Over 146.5 (-110), Under 146.5 (-110)
Money Line: Michigan +100, Ohio State -118
Michigan has just the one loss for the season but they still kind of need this win to show they are the best team in the Big Ten. Not only should this be a good game, but I am curious how it plays out. Both teams are interesting because they can play a variety of styles though I think Michigan looks to emphasize center Hunter Dickenson here. Ohio State does not have a player with the size to really guard him.
Doubting Ohio State comes with a warning though as it feels like every other game we are writing that the Buckeyes can’t be this good? Then they go out and win and cover again. They have won and covered all four of their games in February and Chris Holtman is doing his best coaching job since arriving in Columbus from Butler. He has better talent but has the Buckeyes playing like his old Bulldog teams.
Betting Advice: Take Ohio State.
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