We have betting tips for three of the best college basketball games on Tuesday, which kicks off the season.
Our feature games include Kansas vs Michigan State, Akron vs Ohio State and the highly anticipated Kentucky vs Duke.
College Basketball Picks
Akron Zips vs Ohio State Buckeyes @ Value City Arena
The Ohio State Buckeyes are heavily favoured to beat Akron, but covering the 16.5 points spread won’t be easy.
The Buckeyes were beaten by Illinois in the Big Ten Championship last season before losing in the first round of the NCAA Tournament to Oral Roberts. It was a big upset result, so they’ll need to rebound this season.
Playing at home is a positive, but Akron is local, so the underdogs could make a fist of it in the first game of the year.
The Zips didn’t play well after losing four of their last five games. Their only recent win came against Bowling Green before losing to Buffalo in overtime.
They are paying double-figure odds to beat Ohio State outright, but the +16.5 could be worth entertaining. It could be a close game to kick off the season, so take the visitors with the sizable line.
Akron has taken most of the money with the spread, so there is confidence with punters.
Bet: Akron Zips +16.5
Kansas Jayhawks vs Michigan State Spartans @ Madison Square Garden
Michigan State is the home team and it will have more support, but with it being played in New York, it’s a neutral venue.
The Spartans aren’t ranked to start the season, but they are always tough to beat. They took UCLA to overtime in the NCAA Tournament last season, and that form was franked.
They also defeated Michigan, who were playing outstanding basketball at the time. It’s solid form as they welcome No. 3 Kansas into town.
The Jayhawks are always well-favoured to start the year, but the ranking looks spot on. They are one of the best recruiting teams in the country and head coach Bill Self should have the youngsters ready to fire.
We thought Kansas would be slightly shorter in betting markets. They are paying $1.46 in moneyline markets and the spread is 4.5. We’re happy to back both options, as we think the Jayhawks should win by around eight points.
Kansas always plays well at the start of the season, and Michigan State might need a few weeks to find its groove.
Bet: Kansas Jayhawks –4.5
Kentucky Wildcats vs Duke Blue Devils @ Madison Square Garden
We love when Kentucky and Duke battle on the hardwood and the bookmakers can hardly split them.
Duke is the current $1.85 favourite and it’s slightly better ranked at No. 9, with Kentucky filling the tenth spot.
The Blue Devils are looking to give Coach K something to cheer in his last season, and they should be much-improved after a disappointing and interrupted last season.
Kentucky was also a touch below its best last year, but many teams were in the same boat with COVID playing havoc to schedules.
We think the Blue Devils will be better-prepared to win, and playing at MSG should give them the edge.
We’re happy to take the $1.85 as we think those odds will firm on game day. Duke could end up paying around $1.65, so take the value available.
Bet: Duke Blue Devils
After graduating from the University of Auckland (BA – English), Daryl was thrown into the world of sports and horse racing journalism.
Having worked as a racing journalist for two years, he decided to move into the online world of horse racing and sports writing. Coupled with his love of US sport, Daryl’s picks have been featured on various websites around the world and viewed by millions of readers. After years of honing his craft, Daryl became a professional punter in 2009 – with a focus on horse racing, NBA, NFL, and college sports. When he’s not working, Daryl tries to avoid making bogeys on the golf course.