CBB Picks: Take Under in Alabama-Tennessee SEC Clash, More

The over/under for the Alabama Crimson Tide's visit to Knoxville to face the Tennessee Volunteers makes no sense.

There's no way a projected total should sit at 148 points for a battle of two notoriously strong defensive teams.

It feels like we are getting a gift from the betting gods to bet the under in a matchup that will most likely be dictated by defense.

The same style of game could play out in College Station, Texas, as the Arkansas Razorbacks and Texas A&M Aggies do battle.

The Arkansas-A&M clash is vital for the NCAA tournament resumes of both teams, and I am leaning toward the underdog in what could be a one-possession game for most of the 40 minutes.

Wednesday CBB Picks

Overall Record: 116-115-6

Alabama at Tennessee (Under 148) (7 p.m. ET, ESPN2)

Most of your attention in the early slate of games should be on the Alabama-Tennessee clash.

Tennessee was a favored team to win the national championship early in the season, but now Alabama looks like the SEC's best title hopeful.

Despite their struggles, the Vols have still played respectable defense. They held Vanderbilt, Florida and Auburn all under 70 points.

Rick Barnes' team ranks first in three defensive metrics on KenPom. Alabama sits in the top five of four key metrics, including first in three-point defense and second in two-point defense.

The Tide and Vols will have to work for every basket and I think this game finishes somewhere in the 60s or very low 70s. That should give us some cushion with an under bet.

Virginia Tech (-7.5) at Georgia Tech (7 p.m. ET, ACC Network)

I have a weird obsession with how good I think Virginia Tech's basketball team could be.

At their best, the Hokies can outscore any team in the ACC, which is why I think they are a dark horse to win the ACC tournament.

The task on Wednesday night is to blow out a reeling Georgia Tech team. Eleven of the Yellow Jackets' 13 ACC losses were by eight points or more.

IUPUI at Oakland (-14.5) (7 p.m. ET, ESPN+)

This is mostly a fade of IUPUI, who just lost 103-71 and 86-47 in the last week.

The Jaguars are close to packing it in for the season and I think those two dreadful defensive performances carry over into Wednesday against an Oakland team that averages 10 more points per game on offense.

Army at Colgate (Over 145.5) (7 p.m. ET, ESPN+)

I initially looked at Colgate on the spread in this game because the Raiders won four of their last five games by double digits.

However, I'm more drawn to the over because Army and Colgate both shoot over 48 percent from the field and they combined for 152 points in their first meeting on January 9.

Winthrop at Gardner Webb (-8) (7 p.m. ET, ESPN+)

Winthrop is 2-5 straight up against the top four teams in the Big South. Four of those defeats were by eight points or more.

The Eagles are vulnerable against those sides because of a defense that gives up 73.6 points per game.

Gardner Webb comes into Wednesday on a seven-game winning streak in which it held six opponents to 65 points or fewer. I think the Bulldogs' defense becomes the difference-maker in this game.

Missouri State (+10) at Bradley (8 p.m. ET, ESPN+)

The margins are so tight in the top half of the Missouri Valley Conference, where six teams have 10 or more conference victories.

Missouri State's offense is far less dynamic than Bradley's, but its defense only gives up 63.3 points per game and it has held seven of its last nine opponents under 70 points.

I'll trust the Bears' defense to keep the margin within single digits in a game that might come down to the wire.

Davidson at Saint Louis (-6) (9 p.m. ET, CBSSN)

Davidson has not played well in the Atlantic 10 all season.

The Wildcats are 4-8 with three of their wins coming on the road against Fordham, La Salle and UMass. They will not have the same road magic play in their favor in St. Louis.

Saint Louis needs to bounce back after losing three of its last four. A win would help the Billikens for A-10 tournament seeding. I think they make a statement at home against an average-at-best visiting team.

Arkansas (+3.5) at Texas A&M (9 p.m. ET, ESPN2)

My pick of Arkansas has more to do with feel than actual numbers.

Arkansas just went on the road and beat Kentucky to solidify its NCAA tournament resume and it can do the same thing in College Station.

Texas A&M is putting together a solid run in the SEC at 10-2, but it has not played Alabama or Tennessee yet and it has a loss to Auburn.

I just can't trust the Aggies yet because five of their seven losses, one of which was to Arkansas, came against teams in the KenPom top 60.

Sponsored Content

Sponsored Content