Baylor Hangs with Xavier in Top 25 Tango in Queen City

baylor basketball

Willie Bee

Tuesday, November 28, 2017 2:02 PM GMT

Tuesday, Nov. 28, 2017 2:02 PM GMT

A couple of teams we’ll see dancing in March collide on Tuesday, and it’s Xavier drawing home chalk on the NCAA basketball odds against Baylor.

NCAAB Season Record: 6-7 (-1.35)

Free NCAAB Pick: Baylor +5Best Line Offered: 5Dimes

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Baylor Bears at Xavier Musketeers

We were close to this being a battle of unbeaten along with the only Top 25 clash on Tuesday’s docket. It should still be an outstanding matchup when the Baylor Bears travel to Cincinnati to take on Xavier, Bookmaker dangling the Musketeers on a -4½ spread and scoreboard bettors looking at 143½-144 for the total.

Fox Sports 1 carries the 6:30 PM (ET) tipoff, which has the very distinct feel of a March Madness match. The Bears reach town unbeaten and moving up to No. 16 in both polls, 18th according to Ken Pomeroy. Xavier slipped to 21/20 in the AP/Coaches ranks and 21 on the KenPom list following its first loss of the campaign.

X-Men Coming Off Upset Loss In Las Vegas

After beginning its season with three cupcakes, Baylor is coming off a couple of impressive wins and covers to earn the Hall of Fame Classic crown in Kansas City. Senior center Jo Lual-Acuil Jr. helped the Bears to a rebounding advantage in the triumphs over Wisconsin and Creighton, the 7-footer averaging 14 points a contest and 13th in the country pulling down 11.2 boards. The victories left Baylor 20-1 in non-conference games since the start of last season, the only loss to South Carolina in the Sweet 16 this past March.

Xavier saw its perfect start end in the finals of Las Vegas Invitational, suffering a 102-86 upset at the hands of Arizona State. Favored by 6½ on the NCAA basketball odds, we might not think of that as much of an upset at the end of the season given how the Sun Devils have shot out to a 6-0 record with an high-powered offense.

Rivalry Trends, Final Thoughts & A Free Pick

While the two schools have only met three times, the action is at least fairly recent with the previous meetings taking place in the last eight years. Baylor has won all three, the first to take the ’09 Old Spice Classic, the next in the 2012 Sweet 16 and the most recent a little less than a year ago in Waco. The Bears won that one by 15 to easily cover a -4½ spread at home after winning wagers the first two meetings went to the underdogs. Last year’s collision just had enough to scoot ‘over’ a 135½ total.

Both have a win over Wisconsin, Xavier an 80-70 victor in Madison and Baylor holding on after building a big lead in the first round of the HOF tourney in KC. My gut says this one is close at the end, leaving me to take the points for my free college basketball pick.

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