Free NCAA Basketball Picks: Oklahoma Fired-Up & Ready To Beat LSU

Charles Stark

Saturday, January 30, 2016 12:37 PM UTC

Saturday, Jan. 30, 2016 12:37 PM UTC

It has become obvious who the two best players are in NCAA basketball, at least the two with the most type, today they meet when Oklahoma travels to LSU. Let's review the NCAA basketball odds.

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NCAA Basketball Pick: Oklahoma -4.5
Best Line Offered: at Pinnacle


NCAA basketball odds experts have made Oklahoma a -6 road favorite and I can see how people would want to take the points, with the total around 164.5.  However, I believe the Sooners have too much for LSU and I look for them to win this game by small double digits. LSU has not faced a team with the type of overall talent that Oklahoma has on both sides of the floor. For one of my selections I will back Oklahoma laying the semi-small number.


Oklahoma Sooners
Oklahoma comes in averaging 85.8 points per game while shooting 47.7% from the field, and allowing 71.4 points per game on 39% shooting from the field. On the season they are 9-8 overall against the spread and 5-4 on the road. They bring so much to the table with the ability to hurt you in so many ways, and this is arguably the best team that Oklahoma has ever had. Honestly, I have not been a fan of Lon Kruger in the past because I thought his teams always lacked defensively. However, he has done an excellent job this season with this team and I really like their chemistry and how he has coached them so far.  Offensively Oklahoma averages 29.9 field goals made per game, and 11.2 three-pointers made per game, ranking fourth in the country in both categories. They also rank third in scoring, and lead the country averaging 46.7% from beyond the arc. Defensively they have also been solid statistically, with the only issue really being the amount of shots they allow per game, but that is a statistic that just shows the pace they like to run. On this side of the ball they rank 18th in the country in opponent shooting percentage, and only allow opponents to shoot 42.7% on their two point shots, as well as just 31.7% from beyond the arc. Even with a high pace they have solid defensive statistics which is highlighted by ranking seventh in the country in opponent shooting efficiency. They have no major competition coming up next to make them lose focus, and reports are this team is excited to take on LSU.


LSU Tigers
LSU is averaging 81.3 points per game while shooting 46.9% from the field, and allowing 75.6 points per game on 43.7% shooting from the field. On the season they are 5-13 overall against the spread, and 4-6 at home. It seems to me their poor against the spread record is a direct reflection of the public wanting to back superstar Ben Simmons, this makes me a little bit wary because they have lost their last six against the spread (making them "due"). However, the value completely lies on backing Oklahoma in my opinion so I look for them to make it 0-7 against the spread in their last seven games. LSU has won their last five games at home, but only one time this season have they faced a team that is comparable to Oklahoma, and that is Texas A&M, although an argument could be made for Kentucky. Offensively they are one of the best teams in the SEC and rank in the top part of the country in overall shooting percentage, two point shooting percentage, and field goals made per game (22nd). However, they are facing an Oklahoma team that defends the interior about as well as anyone in the country. From beyond the arc LSU only shoots 32.5% which ranks in the bottom part of the country. On the defensive side, although they like to go up-tempo like Oklahoma, they don't defend like Oklahoma. LSU ranks in the bottom half of the country in some of the most important defensive categories including opponent shooting percentage, opponent feel goals made per game, and opponent two and three point shooting percentage. Even though they are at home they are going to have an extremely difficult time stopping Buddy Hield and company.

This line, although not that big, makes sense with all the hype around Ben Simmons, as well as how good LSU has played at home this season. Nevertheless, they have not faced a team like Oklahoma this season and I think they are in for a tough night. For one of your NCAA basketball picks I recommend backing Oklahoma minus the points and look for them to win this game by around double digits. Unless there is some serious home cooking Oklahoma should win this game going away.

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