Injuries & Inflated Odds Inspire NCAA Basketball Picks Against the Spread for Monday's Matchups

Darin Zank

Monday, February 2, 2015 3:23 PM GMT

Monday, Feb. 2, 2015 3:23 PM GMT

It's a quiet night in college hoops, but we've got our eyes on a couple of games on the NCAA basketball betting board. Here's our case for a pair of top college ATS plays for Monday night.

 

Green Bay -5.5 vs. Wright State
The Phoenix need a conference road win tonight over the Raiders to keep pace in the Horizon League.

Green Bay won the Horizon's regular-season title last season, and with four starters back it was the preseason favorite for this season. At the moment the Phoenix, at 6-2 in conference play, sit a half-game out of first place. Green Bay had won three in a row, and eight of nine, but lost at Cleveland State Saturday 76-62. The Phoenix shot just 44 percent from the floor, and allowed the Vikings to shoot a hot 57 percent.

Still, a performance like that, in our minds, just sets Green Bay up for a “bounce-back” play next time out.

Wright State, meanwhile, finished third in the Horizon last season, but returned just one starter. So we figured the Raiders for a middle-of-the-pack finish this season. So far, that's about the size of it. Wright State won four in a row back in December, but has lost seven of its last 10 games, going 3-7 ATS in the process. Last Wednesday the Raiders took Oakland to overtime but lost 84-76.

Green Bay just beat Wright State about three and a half weeks ago 79-55, covering as a 10-point home favorite. The Phoenix shot 48 percent from the floor that night, held the Raiders to 31 percent shooting and won the battle on the boards by a 47-29.

Last season Green Bay swept two games from Wright State.

The Phoenix have lost five games this season; so far, they're 4-0 both SU and ATS following those first four defeats. Also, the injury bug has been nipping at Wright State; forward JT Yoho (16 points, six boards per game) went down with a foot injury two weeks ago, and two other contributors are out, too. In expectation of a bounce-back effort we like the Phoenix, so add them to your NCAA basketball picks and give them the points.

Free College Basketball Pick: Green Bay -5.5 at SportsInteraction

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Kansas -7.5 vs. Iowa State
In a big game in the Big 12 the first-place Jayhawks, chasing their 11th straight conference regular-season title, host the second-place Cyclones.

Both these teams lost key personnel from last season, but both still figured to finish in the top three in the Big 12 this season. At the moment Kansas leads the way at 7-1 in conference play, while Iowa State sits just a game back at 6-2.

Iowa State got upset at Texas Tech 10 days ago, making just six of 31 shots from 3-point range in a 78-73 defeat. But the Cyclones then outlasted Texas 89-86, and Saturday beat TCU 83-66, covering as 10-point favorites. Iowa State only led by a bucket at halftime Saturday, but pulled away in the second half.

Kansas has won four games in a row, after beating Kansas State Saturday 68-57. The Jayhawks led by double-digits almost the entire game, and by 16 with five minutes to go, but took their foot off the gas and in the end could only settle for a push as 11-point favorites.

The Cyclones just beat the Jayhawks 16 days ago 86-81, covering as four-point  NCAA basketball odds home favorites. ISU shot 51 percent from the floor, and held Kansas to 43 percent shooting.

These two teams are pretty close in overall ability; Iowa State is a little better at throwing the ball in the hole, while Kansas is a little better at preventing opponents from doing so. But this line is inflated; the Jayhawks, playing at home, are probably favored by at least a bucket or so too much. And realistically, the Cyclones could win this game outright. We'll take the dog and the points in this spot.

Free College Basketball Pick: Iowa State +7.5 at 5Dimes

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