Four West Coast ranked teams play Thursday night college basketball.
But our team is targeting past games, including a Top 25 team heading on the road in Conference USA and a Big Ten game on ESPN2.
Dive below for the top four college basketball prospects, best bets and picks for Thursday’s roster.
Top 4 college basketball bets for thursday
The team logos in the table below represent each of the games the college basketball team is targeting on Thursday’s slate of games. Click on the team logos for a match below to go to a specific bet discussed in this article.
Northern Kentucky vs. Robert Morris
Northern Kentucky He had a complete and all-out collapse at home in his final game against Milwaukee. The Scandinavian went into the locker room at halftime to 47-27 and ended up losing the game by one.
It also snapped a four-game winning streak in multiplayer for one of the best teams in Horizon this season.
The Norse leads the conference in modified defensive efficiency and tipping opponents into the top 10 in the country.
Robert Morris He is eighth in the conference in turnover percentage on offense. Robert Morris is also near the bottom in offensive rebounding percentage and free throw rate, two areas of weakness in Northern Kentucky.
Robert Morris also runs 94% of his offensive combinations into the half court, but puts up just 0.99 PPP in conference play, seventh in sight.
Northern Kentucky is in the top four on the horizon on halffield defense, so this isn’t a good game for the Colonials, much like their previous meeting on December 3.
In that game, Robert Morris shot 46% from behind the arc and 50% from two-point range, but only managed to muster 56 points and a 0.90 ppp.
The reason for this is that Northern Kentucky has done better. I forced a whopping 16 turnovers, which ended up being the difference in the game.
Northern Kentucky’s offense has petered out at times, but they hit 3s at a high level and shatter attacking glass at a good rate. The Norse take 3 seconds on 41.4% of field goal attempts during team play and are third to Horizon in offensive rebound percentage.
Robert Morris is the best two-point field goal defense in the conference, but allows 38.5% from behind the arc.
That’s a good place for the Scandinavian to end Robert Morris’ three-game winning streak, so I like the value on it at -2.
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Rice vs. Louisiana Tech
by Brett Bond
These two teams met for the first time rice on January 5, which ended in an overtime victory for Louisiana Tech. The Owls closed as the 2.5-point favorite in that match, and the streak has now flipped to -4 in favor of the Bulldogs.
How do you explain this change?
Since that contest, Rice has won four of their six in Conference USA, including a win at North Texas. This is also the same program that beat WKU and UTEP away from home while taking No. 10 Texas to overtime at Moody Center.
Meanwhile, LA Tech has only covered that spread in conference play on four occasions, with two of those coming in overtime and the second against UTSA.
I also think the Owls should have success offensively against a Bulldogs defense that has struggled this season, ranking just outside the top 290 in EFG% (294) and 3-point defense (345).
My arrangement brings this closer to Pick’em, so I’ll continue to support Rice on the road in C-USA.
Michigan vs. Northwestern
Michigan You’ll be looking to bounce back from the losing streak when you travel to Evanston, Illinois, to bear North West A team that exceeded expectations.
After a close five-point loss to No. 1 Purdue, the Wolverines were blown out by Penn State, 83-61.
During this two-game stretch, both Jett and Jace Howard missed time with injuries, limiting the Wolverines’ team which ranks 277th nationally in minutes off the bench.
Fortunately, their leading scorer, Jett, came back against Penn State and led the team with 21 points.
In addition to her restored health, Michigan has been great at rebounding points this season. The Wolverines are 3-0 after the losing streak, with wins over Minnesota, Maryland and Northwestern by an average of 19 points.
On the offensive end, look for Michigan to be able to break down the Northwestern defense that has been the catalyst for this Wildcats team.
Northwestern ranks 26th in adjusted defensive efficiency, as a result of its opponents converting on 22.4% of their possessions (30th nationally). The Wolverines weren’t subject to changes, finishing fifth nationally with just 9.8 tackles per game.
In addition to the interest in basketball, Michigan will see some outside shooting lead against the Northwestern defense allowing 39.5% of its opponents’ points to get beyond the arc, the 10th highest in the country.
On the other end, Michigan’s defense is poised to stop an offense from the Northwest that has been inconsistent.
The Wildcats get 20.4% of their points from charity tape, which is significant against a Michigan team that allows opponents to score only 15.3% of their points from this area.
Finally, the Wolverines defense against teams that can create high-percentage shots from inside the 3-point line is revealed. They allow 53.8% of their points on the inside.
This is an area Northwestern struggled with, scoring just 45.8% of its points from the two-point range.
Overall, look for Michigan to take advantage of this opportunity given its newfound health and advantages at both ends of the floor.
Florida Atlantic vs. UAB
By Tanner McGrath
I know we are all sick and tired of fading out Fau. But unfortunately, all the Owls do is cover, as they are now the best 15-4-1 ATS in the nation.
Unfortunately, we are fading owls again. Even better, against potentially reductive uab Team.
Hold your nose.
If you want to know how overrated FAU is, the ShotQualityBets model puts UAB the best in the house by 9.5 points Thursday night. We get around 10 points of value based on the quality of the shots captured and allowed.
Getting close to PK here is a gift.
Specifically, ShotQuality is dropping the Owls for a lot of inside defensive slop.
And UAB deserves to win.
Four of the Blazers’ five C-USA losses have come on one possession, including two in overtime and one for this Owls team in Boca Raton.
We may not get Jordan “Jelly” Walker, but I’m not sure how important that is. UAB has a +13.6 net rating with Walker on the floor, but still has a +10.6 net rating with him. The Blazers improved seven points per 100 possessions defensively with Walker still on the bench.
It’s a good place for FAU to drop one after their 20-game winning streak, and UAB deserved a home win after some close losses in a revenge spot.
Expect the Blazers to rely on their defense to get this done, while forcing negative running back on the Owls defense.