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College basketball best bets.
College basketball best bets.

A 12-game college basketball slate kicks off a new week. We have highlighted the odds, movements, and our college basketball best bets for Monday.

Though there are 12 games Monday involving Division I teams, five (Western Michigan, Lamar, McNeese, Lipscomb, and New Mexico State) face non-Division I opponents.

Since sportsbooks typically do not release lines for games not involving two teams from Division I, we focus our attention on the seven remaining games for our best bets.

Here are our best bets for Monday’s college basketball slate (odds via Caesars Sportsbook, FanDuel Sportsbook, BetRivers, and BetMGM; pick confidence based on a 1-to-5-star scale).

Monday’s College Basketball Schedule and Odds

(odds via DraftKings Sportsbook)

  • IUPUI (+210) vs. Green Bay (-250)
  • Kennesaw State (-165) vs. Charleston Southern (+140)
  • Albany (+900) vs. UMass (-1700)
  • UMass Lowell (-1250) vs. Long Island University (+800)
  • Kent State (+1000) vs. Gonzaga (-2100)
  • Troy (+900) vs. San Diego State (-1700)
  • North Dakota State (+1000) vs. Portland (-2100)

Monday’s College Basketball Best Bets

  • Spread: Kent State +16 (-110 via Caesars)
  • Spread: North Dakota State +15.5 (-110 via BetMGM)
  • Total: Albany-UMass Under 139.5 (-110 via FanDuel)
  • Upset: Charleston Southern (+160 via BetRivers)

Top College Basketball Picks for Monday

Spread: Kent State +16 (-110) ★★★★

The following are Gonzaga’s total losses over the last six seasons: four, one, two, four, five, and two. Thus, the Bulldogs are in unchartered territory with three losses three weeks before Christmas.

In the latest defeat against Baylor, Gonzaga was held to 63 points, as offensive catalyst Drew Timme scored just nine points on 3-of-6 shooting. Timme had been held to single digits just once in the team’s last 21 games, and Kent State has precisely the type of personnel that can limit him again.

The Golden Flashes protect the rim at an elite level, as opponents have shot just 41.2% inside the arc against them. If the Bulldogs are not consistently getting easy buckets from Timme in the paint, their offensive ceiling is much lower, given this appears to be Mark Few’s weakest collection of guards in quite some time.

Kent State is 20-5-1 against the spread in its last 26 games, including covering nine of its last 11 against teams with a .600 or better winning percentage. One of those covers was against the No. 1 team in the country, as it fell to Houston 49-44 but easily covered as a 19-point underdog.

Caesars and PointsBet are two of the only sportsbooks offering +16, as several competitors are at +15.5. Though the game is in Spokane, back the Golden Flashes early, as the betting public may drive this line down, given Gonzaga’s early season struggles.

Spread: North Dakota State +15.5 (-110) ★★★

Portland made a name for itself at the Phil Knight Invitational by beating Villanova and losing to North Carolina and Michigan State by a combined nine points. However, this is a quick turnaround after playing on Saturday, and we expect a look-ahead factor with a huge non-conference game against Oregon looming two games from now.

The Pilots tend to prepare poorly on short turnarounds, as they have covered just five of their previous 27 Monday games. Conversely, the Bison are 8-2 ATS in their last 10 Monday games, and they covered games as big underdogs against Arkansas and Kansas to start the season, which should make a game against Portland feel like a walk in the park.

All sportsbooks are at +15.5, but take advantage of the -110 odds at BetMGM.

Total: Albany-Umass Under 139.5 (-110) ★★★

Two of Albany’s three wins this season have come against non-Division I competition (Immaculata and Union), and the team has topped 62 points just twice in its other seven games.

Meanwhile, UMass’ five-game winning streak is largely due to buying into Frank Martin’s defensive schemes in his first season at the helm. The Minutemen are holding opponents to just 27.1% from beyond the arc (29th-best in the country) and should suffocate a Great Danes offense that gets more than 36% of its offense from 3-point range.

UMass has held opponents to 64.7 points per game over the last six, a big reason the Under has cashed five times in that span. This number is up slightly from an opening total of 139, so bettors may be wise to wait until early afternoon to see if bettors keep driving the number up.

Upset: Charleston Southern (+160) ★★★

Charleston Southern has lost five of six games, but we can't pass up this value at BetRivers, as the next-closest competitor has the Buccaneers at +146 Moneyline odds.

Kennesaw State does not do much of anything well except hit 3-pointers at a high clip (39.3% ranks 23rd), but it doesn't often use that skill as a strength, as it ranks 247th in the percentage of field-goal attempts coming from behind the arc.

Charleston Southern turns the ball over and grabs offensive rebounds at top-60 rates. In addition, its 5-point road loss at Virginia Tech looks better and better, given that the Hokies have beaten Minnesota and North Carolina by 18 combined points since then.

Where to Bet on College Basketball

Here are our top-rated sportsbooks:

College basketball best bets from 12/5/2022 at 6:12 a.m. ET.