Free NCAA Basketball Picks: Arizona Going Out As 13 Point Chalk Over ASU

Willie Bee

Wednesday, February 17, 2016 4:13 PM UTC

Wednesday, Feb. 17, 2016 4:13 PM UTC

A slump by the Ducks has the Pac-12 race wide open once again, and the Arizona Wildcats are on a roll as favorites on the NCAA basketball odds Wednesday night vs. Arizona State.

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NCAA Basketball Pick: Arizona -13.
Best Line Offered: at 5Dimes


It's something of a slow week in the Pac-12 where several teams are getting some extra rest of just one game on their slates. That suits Arizona head coach Sean Miller just fine as he gets his Wildcats ready for a push to win the regular season title and gain that No. 1 seed for the conference's postseason tournament.

Arizona is among those teams playing a single contest this week, but it's a big one with the rival Arizona State Sun Devils coming to Tucson for Wednesday's battle. ESPN2 will carry the broadcast from McHale Center beginning at 9 PM (ET), Arizona going out as 13 point chalk on the morning line at 5Dimes, the total sticking on the opening 147 tally.

The Pac-12 race heated up thanks to Oregon getting skunked in Bay Area visits to California and Stanford a week ago. The Ducks are knotted with Arizona at the top of the conference standings, each 9-4 in league play, with Colorado and Utah a game behind that pair. USC and Cal are both only a half-game behind the Buffaloes and Utes.


'Cats Aiming For 1st Season Sweep Of ASU Since 2013
There has been a lot of basketball since these two squared off on January 3 in Tempe to begin their Pac-12 schedules. Lined as 3½ point road favorites on the NCAA basketball odds, Arizona overcame a 9-point first half deficit en route to a 94-82 win, giving UA a 147-82 advantage in the all-time series. The Wildcats managed to hold off a late charge by Arizona State by scoring 15 points at the charity stripe in the final minute-&-a-half.

Gabe York and Alonzo Trier paced Arizona with 22 and 20 points, respectively, as the Wildcats shot nearly 56% from the field and connected on 7-of-12 from outside. Tra Holder scored a game-high 24 for ASU while Obinna Oleka added 17 off the bench, the Wildcats outscoring the Sun Devils 27-16 at the free throw line to stop a 2-game skid in Tempe.

The final had more than enough to get past a 139 point total, the second consecutive 'over' in the series, both of those games played at Arizona State. Last season's contest in Tucson was a lopsided 73-49 victory for Arizona, the Wildcats opening a 20-point first half lead to easily cover a 14 point spread. The final fell a dozen points shy of a 134 point total.


Grand Canyon Teams Get Time Off Before Taking On Colorado, Utah
Tonight's clash begins a tough trio of road games for Arizona State (14-12 straight up, 12-12-1 against the spread). The Sun Devils do get the benefit of having a little more than a week off before heading to Utah and Colorado next week, then close out the regular season at home opposite Stanford and California.

Bobby Hurley's squad was home last week for a pair against the LA teams, and things started well with a 74-67 win over USC as a 1 point favorite. A strong second half led to that triumph, but the Sun Devils ran out of steam and time in the second half two days later, dropping a 78-65 decision as small home chalk once again.

Arizona (21-5 SU, 14-12 ATS) will also get a week off before heading to Colorado next Wednesday followed by a Saturday trek to Utah. The Wildcats have reeled off five consecutive wins since losing to Oregon, beating USC and UCLA a week ago. Arizona was, however, unable to cover those games as double-digit chalk, both contests skipping 'over' the totals.

With Arizona picking things up and ASU so inconsistent on offense, my free NCAA basketball pick will be to lay the points on the Wildcats.

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