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College basketball picks and predictions for Tuesday's season openers from across the country. Matt McCuen gives us his three favorite bets for tonight

College Basketball Picks: 3 Best Bets for Tuesday's Season Openers

It is finally time for college basketball again! Today feels like Christmas morning for many, like myself, who could not wait for college hoops to return, and here it is. This is a massive slate today as we will see tons of action across the nation. The fans get to make their comeback tonight after a challenging year last season due to COVID safety protocols. The arenas will once again be filled and play a factor, as we know, in these games and the betting lines. I have three plays tonight I will be betting on as I believe I found some great spots for these games.

The latest college basketball odds

Tuesday's College Basketball Picks

Kentucky vs. Duke Prediction

Kentucky vs. Duke odds

The first game I am looking at will occur at the World's most famous arena, Madison Square Garden. This early-season showdown will feature two blue bloods of college hoops as the Kentucky Wildcats battle against the Duke Blue Devils.

This game will feature a pair of Hall of Fame coaches in John Calipari and Mike Krzyzewski. Duke will be coming into this one as the slight favorite, but I love the other side here, and I will take the dog tonight with the Kentucky Wildcats at +105.

Coach Cal had a down season last year but was active this offseason in the transfer portal. The Wildcats landed a few big names in the portal, which will immediately impact this team. For starters, they landed in-conference transfer Sahvir Wheeler. Last season, Wheeler was a standout at Georgia, averaging 14 points per game while dishing out seven assists.

Kentucky also added former Davidson standout Kellen Grady in the transfer portal. Teams battled for Grady in the portal, but he ultimately ended up in Lexington. Oscar Twisbe, a standout big man for Coach Huggins at West Virginia, finds his way to Kentucky as well and will be one of the best defensive big men in the county while also having a solid offensive game to go with it.

The Wildcats also landed sharpshooter CJ Fredrick in the portal, who was a former Iowa Hawkeye. Frederick will come off the bench and be a productive scorer for Coach Cal. This is not to mention the typical great recruiting Kentucky does as they bring in star recruit Ty Ty Washington. They will be returning Keion Brooks Jr to this lineup to go along with these highly respected portal players. The value here on Kentucky is far too much. Duke did not do enough in this offseason to improve their roster and take their team to the next level, other than bringing in star recruit Paolo Banchero. They will return three starters from what was an average team last season. Aj Griffin, the 29th overall prospect this season, will be a player to watch from the Blue Devils.

Kentucky vs. Duke Pick

Akron vs. Ohio State Prediction

Akron vs. Ohio State odds

The next one I am looking at features one of the more disappointing teams from last season, the Ohio State Buckeyes, as they play host to the Akron Zips from the MAC Conference. The Buckeyes fell short this past year in the first round of the tournament, losing to Oral Roberts in one of the more shocking upsets in March.

The play I am looking at here is an under play in the first half. Ohio State is a gritty, tough team who I believe will have to hang their hats on the defensive end this season. They have some tough defenders on this squad, most notably big man Kyle Young. I see the pace of the season's first game is a bit slower here, and I think this Ohio State defense will hold down the Zips' offense today. I feel Akron is a team that can be competitive in this game but will have to control the pace and defend well throughout. I think we see around sixty points at the half, and we can sneak in an excellent first half under sweat to start the year.

Akron vs. Ohio State Pick

Lafayette vs. Syracuse Prediction

Lafayette vs. Syracuse odds

The last play I am looking at today is another first-half under. The Syracuse Orange went on a huge run in March, ending up as one of the season's most surprising teams. Their run for glory ended up short at the hands of the Houston Cougars in March, but it was a great season.

This will be a bit of a new-look roster for Coach Boheim as he saw a few of his star players hit the transfer portal last season. Quincy Guier, Alan Griffin, Robert Braswell, and Woody Newtown all transferred out of Syracuse while losing Marek Dolezaj from last season. The Orange will lose six of their top-eight scorers from last season and will be looking for answers in the early season on offense. Lafayette, on the flip side, is projected as the number six seed in the Patriot. I do not see them finding a flow early in this game on offense vs. Syracuse's famous zone defense. I think this number is far too high, and we can cash this in.

Lafayette vs. Syracuse Pick

Article Author


Matt McCuen is a native of Delco, PA. He has been working in the sports gambling industry and creating content for the last few years. He is an expert in numerous different sports, including the NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL, and collegiate sports. You can follow Matt on Twitter at @DeadPresPicks.


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