Which spot bets are the wiseguys looking to wager this week?


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Spot bets are classic handicapping practices that have proven profitable no matter what sport you’re betting. Whether it’s a team looking past this week’s opponent, one coming off a hard-fought victory, or a rough patch of schedule, bettors can find value picking their spots. Covers Expert Ben Burns points out his favorites:

Lookahead spot

There’s a Big 12 battle on the horizon with No. 14 Iowa State hosting No. 20 Baylor this weekend. Before those conference powers collide, the Cyclones are home to Texas Tech Wednesday night. Iowa State just dropped a 4-point loss to Oklahoma in Norman and faces another tough task in the Red Raiders, who are 11-1 SU and 7-2 ATS heading into this week.

Texas Tech has won 10 straight since losing the second game of the season to Utah at the Puerto Rico Tip-off back in November. The Red Raiders haven’t played that rough a schedule, fattening up on some mid-major foes, but they do have victories over Miss State, Minnesota, Richmond and Texas. Tubby Smith could add another notable name to that resume if ISU looks ahead to Baylor and past TTU Wednesday.

Letdown spot

The UCLA Bruins, while not ranked, have likely punched their ticket to the NCAA tournament thanks to some big-name opponents already this season. The Bruins took down power programs like Kentucky and Gonzaga, and lost tough games against Kansas and North Carolina. Up next are the No. 6 Arizona Wildcats, who come to Pauley Pavilion on Thursday.

UCLA is set up for a cookie-cutter letdown spot two days later when it welcomes another Arizona school, Arizona State, on Saturday. The Sun Devils had won four in a row before losing a 12-point decision to the Wildcats last weekend. Arizona State won its lone meeting with UCLA last season, stealing a 68-66 win in Pauley in February.

Schedule spot

The New York Knicks are away from the Big Apple this week and playing a short but hectic road schedule. New York visits Atlanta Tuesday night and heads down the coast to play at Miami Wednesday. The Knicks enjoy a day off Thursday before taking on the Spurs in San Antonio Friday night, wrapping a stretch of three games in four nights.

New York has dropped four straight road games SU and went 1-3 ATS in those outings, sitting at 7-11 SU and 11-7 ATS as a visitor on the year. Looking ahead to the San Antonio game, the Knicks are 6-5 SU and ATS against Western Conference opponents and lost 94-84 at home to the Spurs as 7.5-point underdogs back in November.

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