CBB Picks: Take Stanford, Iowa, Creighton on large Thursday slate

My Thursday college basketball card has a bit of everything.

It starts off with a mid-major conference leader that has been undervalued by the odds makers all season long.

There are a few games on the docket with astronomically high overs, but they can be reached because of the pace of the teams involved in those contests.

The card wraps up with two Pac-12 mismatches and a team on the west coast that we should be paying more attention to.

Thursday CBB Picks

Overall Record: 197-225-3 (4-3 Wednesday)

Towson at UNC Wilmington (+3) (6 p.m. ET, CBS Sports Network)

UNC Wilmington might be my most bet on team in college basketball this season.

The Seahawks are 7-3 against the spread in their last 10 games and they have been undervalued by the books for most of the season.

UNCW beat Towson by four points in overtime on January 22 and it has not lost at home in CAA play.

This is one of those plays where you have to stay loyal to the team you have been riding all season.

Michigan at Iowa (-5) (7 p.m. ET, ESPN)

This is where I subscribe to the Big Ten home teams theory.

Iowa won four of its last five home games by nine or more points. The Hawkeyes took care of business against Indiana, Penn State, Minnesota and Nebraska.

Michigan has not been great on the road. The Wolverines have losses by six or more points at Rutgers, Illinois, Michigan State and Purdue. They also snuck out a one-point win over Penn State.

The combination of those two runs of form leads me to the Hawkeyes.

North Texas (-2.5) at Florida Atlantic (7 p.m. ET, ESPN+)

North Texas wins its games through tough defense.

The Mean Green give up 55.5 points per game and they rank 26th in defensive adjusted efficiency.

UNT held four of its last five opponents under 60 points and Florida Atlantic could face the same fate on Thursday.

LIU (-3.5) at Saint Francis (PA) (7 p.m. ET)

LIU comes into Thursday off an 11-point win over Bryant, who is one of the two top teams in the NEC.

The Sharks play at the sixth-fastest pace in Division 1 and their offense could smother Saint Francis (PA), who has five losses in its last six games.

I'm riding with the team with the better offense and in the better form.

James Madison at Charleston (Over 153.5) (7 p.m. ET)

James Madison and Charleston both average over 75 points per game and they give up above 72 points per contest.

I'm all in on the over with the strong offenses and below average defenses going up against each other in the CAA.

Charleston ranks first in adjusted tempo and JMU is 81st in that category. The two sides should push the pace and score at a high clip.

Western Illinois at South Dakota State (Over 160.5) (8 p.m. ET, ESPN+)

South Dakota State won the first meeting with Western Illinois, 93-75.

SDSU and WIU both rank in the Top 51 in adjusted tempo. South Dakota State is 11th in adjusted efficiency.

Both teams need to be on fire from the start for an over this high to hit, but they play at such a fast pace that there is a strong chance for it to hit.

Oral Roberts at North Dakota State (Over 154.5) (8 p.m. ET, ESPN+)

Oral Roberts scored 85 or more points in four of its last five games.

North Dakota State posted over 70 points in every game of its five-game winning streak.

Oral Roberts ranks 43rd in adjusted tempo and NDSU has been consistently strong on that end of the court despite not having a ton of strong metrics.

I expect a high quality of play and a score in the mid 70s for the second and third place teams in the Summit League.

Colorado (-2) at California (9:30 p.m. ET, Pac-12 Network)

Colorado is on a three-game winning streak with victories over teams in the bottom half of the Pac-12 standings.

California applies to that trend and it could be in a let down spot after it upset Oregon on Saturday.

Colorado averages six more points per game and it scored over 80 points in every game of its winning streak.

Creighton (+110) at DePaul (10 p.m. ET, CBSSN)

Sorry, I just can’t trust DePaul being a favorite in a Big East game against any team other than Georgetown.

Long Beach State (-6.5) at CSU Northridge (10 p.m. ET, ESPN+)

Long Beach State is 10-0 against the spread in its last 10 games.

LBSU is the class of the Big West and it beat CSU Northridge by 16 points in their first meeting this season.

LBSU’s offense is worth watching when you look at potential double-digit seeds in the NCAA tournament. It ranks 25th in adjusted tempo and averages 73.7 points per game.

Utah at Stanford (-4) (11 p.m. ET, ESPNU)

Stanford handled its business against the bottom of the Pac-12 recently.

The Cardinal beat Oregon State and California by a combined 18 points.

Utah is 2-13 in Pac-12 play and its defense has been awful lately. The Utes allowed at least 70 points in each of their last five losses.

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