#13 Butler managed to contain Marquette and the nation’s leading scorer Markus Howard on Friday night, defeating the Golden Eagles 89-85 in overtime.
On Saturday, some of the best teams in college basketball clash in the Big 12/SEC Challenge.
Here’s a look at today’s NCAA games:
BET OF THE DAY:
#15 Kentucky Wildcats (+4.5) @ #18 Texas Tech Red Raiders, 6:00 PM:
- Kentucky and Texas Tech have both struggled ATS this season at 810. Stat courtesy of Statschecker.
#15 Kentucky (14-4) used efficient shooting to pick up a second straight win and push them past the Georgia Bulldogs 89-79 on Wednesday. The Wildcats were sharp knocking down over 50 per cent of attempts from the field.
Ashton Hagans and Nick Richards carried the workload for the Wildcats. Hagans had a game-high 23 points with nine assists and four steals, whereas Richards added 20 points, eight rebounds and three blocks.
#18 Texas Tech (12-6) snapped a two-game winning streak after losing 65-54 on the road to TCU. The Red Raiders were ice-cold from three-point range, shooting 23 per cent compared with the Horn Frogs’ 40 per cent.
Team-leading scorer Jahmi’us Ramsey led the team, scoring 15 points, making five rebounds and one steal.
Kentucky has been competitive on the road this season with a 2-1 away record, their only defeat coming by just three points. I’m anticipating a close back-and-forth meeting between two teams that match up well, but favor a win for Kentucky, a superior team that should at least keep this close enough to cover (+4.5).
2u - Kentucky Wildcats (+4.5) @ -110
Baylor Bears (+2) @ Florida Gators, 8:00 PM:
- Baylor has been the best in the Big 12 ATS this season with a 116 record. Stat courtesy of Statschecker.
#1 Baylor (16-1) won a 15th consecutive game and remained perfect in conference play in defeating Oklahoma 61-57.
Despite a cold shooting night, the Bears outlasted the Sooners thanks to the efforts of MaCio Teague and Freddie Gillespie. Teague scored a team-high 16 points with three steals, while Gillespie contributed a double-double with 12 points and 15 rebounds.
The Florida Gators (12-6) saw a four-point lead at the half slip away and were edged out 84-82 on the road by LSU.
Four starters for the Gators scored 15 points or more, including Keyontae Johnson, who scored a team-high 16 points with nine rebounds, and Andrew Nembhard who put together a double-double with 15 points and 10 rebounds.
Baylor is the best team in the nation thanks largely to their dominant defense which ranks sixth best, allowing 58.5 ppg. My expectation is Baylor’s depth and defense will be the difference maker in this matchup.
1u - Baylor Bears (+2) @ -110
#22 Arizona Wildcats @ Arizona State Sun Devils (+5.5), 7:00 PM:
- Arizona State has won 10 of the last 11 night games at home. Stat courtesy of Statschecker.
#22 Arizona (13-5) won a second straight game after rolling past #20 Colorado 75-54.
Four of the Wildcats starters scored 12 or more points, including Dylan Smith, who scored 13 points with four rebounds and three assists, and Zeke Nnaji who totaled a double-double with 12 points and 12 rebounds.
Arizona State (11-7) snapped a two-game losing streak in a big way, taking down Utah 83-64. The Sun Devils were lights out, shooting over 60 per cent from three-point range and 50 per cent from the field.
Guards Rob Edwards and Remy Martin both went off. Edwards totaled a game-high 24 points while knocking down 5-of-6 threes, and Martin added 20 points and six assists.
This game has in-state bragging rights on the line, and I’m expecting a close call following recent blowouts for both teams. I’m taking the home team with the points to narrowly cover the spread (+5.5).