College basketball Top 25 Saturday betting cheat sheet

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USA Today Sports

(1) Kentucky Wildcats at South Carolina Gamecocks (+11)

*Andrew Harrison has not always been the most loved player, but he is ready to put that behind him. “I’ve heard it all. I’m just starting to get my confidence back knowing I’m the starting point or whatever and knowing I can play as well as anybody.”

*Since winning their final seven non-conference games – including the victory over Iowa State – the Gamecocks have shot 29.2 percent from 3-point range. “We haven’t handled success real good,” coach Frank Martin said.

(14) Kansas Jayhawks at (18) Texas Longhorns (-3.5)

*The Jayhawks are far from the tallest team you will see and that is why they are practicing their passes down low. “

We actually have drills in practice where the only passes we can throw are lobs,” coach Bill Self says. “We spend a lot of time emphasizing that.”

*The Longhorns have posted a double-digit rebounding margin 13 times and rejected at least eight shots 11 times this season.

TCU Horned Frogs at (17) West Virginia Mountaineers (-9.5)

*In order for the Horned Frog to win, they will need to control the glass. In TCU’s 14 victories this season, the Frogs have out-rebounded the opposition by an average of 10.5 boards. In its four losses, TCU is getting out-rebounded by an average of 8.7 rebounds a game.

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Coach Huggins preaches that his teams need to outwork their opponents, something the team has been inconsistent with this season. “[Texas] just outworked us,” guard Gary Browne said. “You see the rebounds. They got us by more than 10. It’s something we know we have to do.”

Florida State Seminoles at (15) North Carolina Tar Heels (-16.5)

*One needs to wonder when the grind will catch up with the Seminoles, as coach Leonard Hamilton said the team has had “two or three days off” in the last 25 days.

*Freshman guard Justin Jackson is starting to put it together. “At the beginning of the season, I thought too much,” Jackson told reporters. “I tried not to mess up. Now I’m just playing and if the shot is open, I take it. If not, I pass the ball or set a screen.”

(12) Iowa State Cyclones at Texas Tech Red Raiders (+9.5)

*Iowa State’s has had four different leading scorers in their five conference games the team has had four different leading scorers. The Cyclones have had eight different players lead them in scoring this season.

*The shots haven’t been falling for Tech since the beginning of conference play, with TTU averaging just 55.0 points per game on .346 pct. shooting from the field.

(20) Oklahoma Sooners at (21) Baylor Bears (-2)

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Buddy Hield buried four 3-pointers and had his only double-double this season with 20 points and 10 rebounds in the first meeting with Baylor.

*If Baylor will look to avenge their loss to Oklahoma earlier this month, they will need secondary scoring. two players combined for 41 points (65 percent) of the teams offense in the first game against the Sooners.

(5) Wisconsin Badgers at Michigan Wolverines (+10.5)

*Since taking over the starting point guard position, Bronson Koenig has averaged 12.0 ppg with his 4.33 A/TO ratio second in the NCAA.

*The Wolverines will be without Jr. Chris LeVert for the remainder of the season. LeVert has started his last 55 games for the Wolverines and was leading the team in scoring, rebounds, assists, steals and minutes. 

Richmond Spiders at (22) Dayton Flyers (-5.5)

*The Spiders have been falling apart on the road this season, being outscored by 7.5 points while going 0-6 SU (2-4 ATS)

*Despite the Flyers not boasting a single player over 6’6″, they have only been outrebounded by 1.5 rebounds per game in their past nine. 

Pacific Tigers at (3) Gonzaga Bulldogs (-24.5)

*Despite going a mere 2-6 straight up in their last eight, Pacific is only sporting an average scoring margin of -3.5.

*Gonzaga has now joined in the analytics trend. “I find it so fascinating. It’s a different aspect you can learn from,” said Kevin Pangos, who rarely paid attention to analytics before this season.”

(7) Arizona Wildcats at California Golden Bears (+12.5)

*Coach Cuonzo Martin continues to try an instill a new mentality for the Cal program. “He wants us to have more pride, especially on the defensive end,” senior forward Dwight Tarwater said. “Coming out with more of a sense of pride and toughness.”

*The Wildcats have fared very well in their first phase of Pac-12
conference play, going 5-1 straight-up ahead of their matchup with
Stanford.

Arizona State Sun Devils at (25) Stanford Cardinal (-6.5)

*Arizona State’s bench has proven to be a huge asset this season. The Sun Devils’ bench is averaging 26.6 points, led by forward Jonathan Gilling (7.8).

*The Sun Devils finally picked up their first road win of the season Thursday against Cal, which was also the first time Arizona State has won back-to-back games since Dec. 23 and 28.

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