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College basketball expert Matt McCuen is here with his three favorite bets for Friday's loaded slate of games.

College Basketball Picks: 3 Best Bets for Friday's Games

I am back with my three best bets today for this Friday’s College Basketball slate! The first play I will be looking at will be a first-half under in an affair between the Ohio Bobcats and the Kentucky Wildcats.

Ohio vs. Kentucky Prediction

Ohio vs. Kentucky odds

The Bobcats come into this team looking to be one of the best teams in the MAC this season, entering this game sporting a record of 3-0. The Kentucky Wildcats saw a lot of change in the offseason as Coach Cal was aggressive in the transfer portal and landed stars in Kellen Grady, Oscar Tshibwe, and Sahvir Wheeler.

The Wildcats jumped out to a 2-1 start to the season, with their only loss being to the Duke Blue Devils. After a disappointing 2021 season, Kentucky will look to rebound this year, coming into the season as the favorite to win the SEC. This is a game I am taking the first half under in as I believe this is a tad too high.

This is a defensive-minded Kentucky team, and I think they will make it difficult for Ohio to get into aflow-on offense early. The rim protection for Kentucky has much improved from a season ago, and this is an active defense that is tough to score against. Kentucky improved but still is not a great shooting team, and I do not see the three-ball killing us on either side here in the first half.

Let’s sweat another first half under!

  • Pick: Ohio/Kentucky 1H under 71 @ -108

George Mason vs. James Madison Prediction

George Mason vs. James Madison odds

The second play I am looking at will be another first half under. This will be a battle between the George Mason Patriots and the James Madison Dukes. These teams have both started this season well, both playing to undefeated records thus far.

George Mason, the visiting team, will come into this game supporting a record of 4-0 as the hometown James Madison Dukes will come into this one sitting 3-0. This will be a battle of the unbeaten and is expected to be a competitive game from start to finish.

George Mason has been led by transfer D’Shawn Schwartz, who is averaging 17.5 points per game. D’Shawn has been the spark the Patriots needed this season and will look to continue his stellar play tonight. This is a game all about pace; I do not think James Madison will play with enough pace to get this number over.

George Mason plays at an average pace themselves, so I do not believe this will turn into a track meet. This will take some great outside shooting to go over, and this is a chance I am willing to take.

  • Pick: George Mason/ James Madison 1H under 70  @ -122

Duke vs. Lafayette Prediction

Duke vs. Lafayette odds

The final play I will be looking at will be my third first half under! We will have to buckle up for this, but I believe the number is slightly inflated. The Duke Blue Devils will play host to the Lafayette Leopards.

The Blue Devils have looked like one of the best teams in the county this season, led by star freshmen Paolo Banchero. Banchero looks like the current favorite to be the number one pick in the NBA draft. Duke is also getting some great play out of fellow freshmen Trevor Keels and sophomore guard Jeremy Roach.

This is a talented bunch for Duke coming off a disappointing 2020 season. They are poised to make a run this season and compete for a national championship. Duke has held their last three opponents under 27 points in the first half, and this will be their worst opponent of the season. This is also a game that earlyDuke may sleepwalk through a bit and affect their scoring in the first half. This is a bet against Lafayette finding any flow on offense and a bet on Duke not exploding. We may have to sweat but should cash in at this number.

  • Pick: Lafayette vs. Duke 1H Under 71 @ -115

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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