Best Mid-Major Games To Bet (December 4th)
At the bottom of the barrel Week 3
Low to medium college basketball pick for Saturday, December 4th
When I had my first interview with Ryan Collinsworth – the college sports editor for Action Network – one of the first things he asked me was what I preferred to bet on. While this was possibly the best interview question I’ve ever had, it was also the easiest:
Weak to medium-sized basketball.
It has always been fascinating to me; everyone knows the blue bloods, the big names, but what about the Campbell Fighting Chamels? What about the guy who averaged 25 points per game at JUCO last year?
A lot of people forget about the lower college basketball lectures, but it’s something that I enjoyed and managed to bet on these less popular programs.
So let’s move on to the “Extra / Added” page of the sports betting odds table and take a look at some of the games that no one is talking about on the college basketball slate for week 3 on Saturday.
Oakland vs. IUPUI
The Horizon League is my favorite mid-major conference, and it’s not closed. Is it because I lived betting in Northern Kentucky for two years? Maybe, but the fact remains that this is one of the most underrated sneakers in the country.
Oakland travel to Indianapolis on Saturday to face the IUPUI in the second-largest possible conference lag in that league.
The Oakland Grizzlies are 6-2 this season and currently lead the conference, while the IUPUI Jaguars are 1-6 and second to last, ahead of only Robert Morris.
In the Grizzlies’ last game against UIC, five different players finished in double digits en route to their 81-77 victory to start the championship.
Jamal Cain heads the Grizzlies, which was named Gulf Coast Showcase MVP, while also being the most recent Lou Henson National Player of the Week winner.
Cain is one of only two players in the country averaging over 22 points and 11 rebounds per game. He’s also 19th nationally in interceptions per game, while tied for sixth in college basketball for doubles-doubles this season.
Oakland is 6-2 ATS this season, while IUPUI comes into the game at just 2-4. And while it can’t be ignored that this will be Oakland’s first game as a three-point plus favorite, the Jaguars are awful.
I have no problem taking the Grizzlies here, and I would take them down to -17.
To take: Oakland -14.5 (play to -17)
Miami (OH) v Indiana State
When some think of Miami, they think of the beaches and a great Cuban sandwich. When I think of Miami, I think of a small town outside of Cincinnati and one of the 50 most seasoned college basketball teams.
The Miami Redhawks from Ohio travel to Terre Haute on Saturday to face the Sycamores of Indiana State. Miami (OH) comes into this game after a relentless loss to longtime rival Cincinnati, while Indiana State has lost its last four games by an average of 18 points.
Indiana State’s three wins came against Green Bay (in its first game of the season), a non-Division I program in Hanover and Old Dominion (77-36) in an MTE event where the Sycamores seemed unable to miss.
But that said, I think Miami (OH) is clearly the better team here, as most recently shown against Cincinnati (they lost by one point). The Redhawks are a 2.5 point favorite, and I would take them down to -3.
To take: Miami (OH) -2.5 (Play -3)
Loyola Chicago vs. DePaul
On Saturday, the long-awaited return of the Red Line Rivalry will come after a hiatus of nearly a decade.
The Loyola Chicago Ramblers will venture across town to take on the DePaul Blue Demons. This rivalry was scheduled to resume last year, but was called off due to planning issues related to COVID-19.
Freshman head coach Tony Stubblefield may be new, but it doesn’t take a seasoned vet to know the Ramblers have been the Chicago City varsity team for some time.
And what better way to make a name for yourself in the city than to topple Sister Jean and her March Madness Cinderella team at your first reunion.
While Loyola returns four starters from last year’s tournament squad which went 26-5 this season, he lacks Javon Freeman-Liberty.
Freeman-Liberty is a must-have sneaker and maybe my favorite player at the moment. He’s currently averaging 23.5 points, 9.2 rebounds, 4.7 assists and 2.2 steals per game, all of which rank in the Big East’s top-five.
But playing against the Ramblers won’t be a walk in Lincoln Park, as they are currently 6-2 this season, with the two losses coming against the top 25 teams. The Ramblers rank 20th in college basketball, by KenPom, in adjusted defensive efficiency and fifth overall in effective field goal percentage.
That being said, I think it’s the game that the rest of the country firmly sets their eyes on Freeman-Liberty, and I expect him to put on a show. Therefore, I take DePaul +5.5 and also make a small bet on the money line.
Choice : DePaul +5.5 | DePaul ML
Bottom-of-the-barrel drink recommendation
And finally, our drink recommendation for the weekend.
With two Chicago-based teams restoring the Red Line Rivalry, I can’t tell you how much I would love to bring MalÃ¶rt back into the limelight. Unfortunately, I don’t think my body can handle it.
Therefore, we’ll be removing another of my favorites at Woodford Reserve, a rich bourbon with some citrus notes.
Having said that, let’s have a Saturday and good luck this weekend.