College Basketball Betting Odds, Picks & Predictions: Thursday (1/26)

Jan 26, 2023 - 11:25 AM

Georgetown ended a 29-game Big East losing streak with a five-point win over DePaul on Tuesday night. After that win, 11 teams entered Wednesday with winless records in conference play this year. Louisville, Texas Tech, IUPUI, Evansville, and VMI all played yesterday, and all lost their respective league games. Of the remaining winless teams in conference play, Monmouth, LIU, and Pepperdine play tonight. Will any of them record their first wins?

(Odds courtesy of DraftKings)

Here are our best bets for Thursday’s college basketball action.

Check out our other top picks for Thursday:

YTD (as of 1/21): 5-10

DraftKings NBA Offer: Bet $5, Win $200

Best College Basketball Bets for Thursday

Hunter Dickinson (Michigan) O/U points vs. Purdue

At the moment, Purdue has separated itself from the rest of the Big Ten with an 8-1 league record, while just two games separate nine other teams with 6-3 to 4-5 conference marks. It will be fascinating to see if the Wolverines at 5-3 can close that gap and put pressure on the Boilermakers for the Big Ten regular season title. However, the most alluring part of this game is the big man matchup of Purdue’s Zach Edey and Michigan’s Hunter Dickinson.

Dickinson torched the Boilermakers in two meetings last year, scoring 50 combined points on 20-of-32 shooting. Granted, Edey did not guard Dickinson on all those possessions, as Purdue also relied heavily upon the smaller Trevion Williams. However, prominent big men like Duke’s Kyle Filipowski (14 points), Gonzaga’s Drew Timme (22), Nebraska’s Derrick Walker (33 in two meetings), and Maryland’s Julian Reese (19) have all hurt the Boilermakers this year.

Edey was limited to just 17 minutes with foul trouble in last year’s meeting in Ann Arbor. If Dickinson can get Edey in early foul trouble again, he should feast on the rest of the Boilermakers frontcourt.

Bet: Hunter Dickinson Over 16.5 (-120 at DraftKings) 

UCLA vs. USC Spread

From a sheer rivalry game perspective, this is too many points to lay in a rivalry game, especially as UCLA is coming off an emotional loss at Arizona, where a win would have all but assured them the regular season Pac-12 title. In addition, USC easily covered as 11-point road underdogs at UCLA on January 5th and has a path to an outright upset this time.

Many argued the Trojans would be vulnerable to the Bruins’ mid-range game in their first matchup, considering UCLA was not likely to challenge USC’s elite rim protection (the Trojans rank third with a 41.7% 2-point percentage allowed). However, USC extended its half-court pressure and neutralized leading scorer Jaime Jaquez (16.1 points per game), as his 12 points were tied for his third-lowest scoring output of the season. The Bruins only committed eight turnovers in their first matchup and out-rebounded the Trojans 36-30, and USC still only lost by two despite shooting 3-for-16 (18.8%) from beyond the arc.

The underdog has covered four of the previous five meetings between these teams, which bodes well for USC’s chances tonight.

Bet: USC +5.5 (-110 at DraftKings)

Arizona vs. Washington State Spread

We cannot trust Arizona on the road after getting blown out in Eugene in its last road game, losing to Oregon 87-68. Though they rebounded for back-to-back home wins, the Wildcats are vulnerable in Pullman. Arizona’s offensive ceiling is as high as any team’s in the country, and it still leads the Pac-12 in scoring by a wide margin (7.9 points better than the next-best team) despite being held to a season-low 58 in its last game. However, the Wildcats will only reach their full potential if point guard Kerr Kriisa plays better. Kriisa has been held to single digits in the previous three games and is a combined 5-for-22 (22.8%) from 3-point range in that span. Unless he and the other Wildcats consistently knock down perimeter shots, Kyle Smith’s squad will be able to focus more defensive attention on Arizona’s mammoth frontcourt of Azuolas Tubelis and Oumar Ballo.

Arizona is 1-8 ATS in its last nine Thursday games, and has failed to cover each of its last six games against teams with a losing record.

Bet: Washington State +5.5 (-110 at DraftKings)

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Mike Spector is a featured writer at BettingPros. For more from Mike, check out his archive and follow him @MikeSpector01.

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