Football is over, meaning it's time to start hitting basketball even harder now. A few interesting conference battles stand out in today's betting action – where are we going with our college basketball picks?
NCAA Basketball Picks of the Day
Oklahoma Sooners vs. Iowa State Cyclones
Props to the work Lon Kruger has done in his first season at the helm of the Oklahoma basketball program, but tonight we think his Sooners could have trouble keeping pace with Iowa State on the road.
At the moment, we find the Cyclones favored by five points for this home conference tilt. The O/U is listed at 141.
Last year the Cyclones beat the Sooners 80-69 at home to cover as 7.5-point NCAAB odds favorites, though they won't have Scott Christopherson, who drilled five threes in the win, as well as either Royce White or Chris Allen.
However, Iowa State has done a great job of filling in the missing pieces. Transfer Will Clyburn averages a team-high 15.0 points and is coming off a dominant performance in which he logged 28 points and 10 rebounds in a big win over Baylor. Another transfer, former Michigan State guard Korie Lucious, is contributing effective minutes too, while freshman Georges Niang has stepped right into a big role as well.
Throw in other players like Melvin Ejim, Tyrus McGree and Chris Babb and you've got a team that's proven they can do some real damage, especially on their own court.
That's mainly why we feel the Cyclones will cash tonight. They're 12-0 SU at home this season with standout wins over Kansas State and Baylor, and have covered ATS in three of their previous four matchups inside Hilton Coliseum.
Oklahoma has been one of the surprise teams in the country, but we're questioning whether they can keep up with an Iowa State team that's averaging a ridiculous 83.0 PPG on 47.0 percent shooting at home. Let's add the Cyclones to our college basketball picks for the night.
College Basketball Picks: Iowa State Cyclones -5
Texas Longhorns vs. West Virginia Mountaineers
Though the OVER has hit in four straight road games involving Texas, we feel the better college basketball betting value lies on the UNDER for their visit of West Virginia tonight.
Right now the basketball odds have the total at 124. If you like the look of a spread line better, you can find the Mountaineers favored by five points at most books.
Why not an ATS pick for us? Well, it's hard to trust either team here. West Virginia is just 7-10-2 ATS on the season and has lost five of their last seven games straight up, while Texas has been even worse at 2-6 SU over their last eight.
Without Myck Kabongo (suspension), the Longhorns have struggled to find a cohesive offensive identity this season. They're also set to be without Jonathan Holmes (7.7 PPG and 7.1 RPG) until at least early March due to a broken hand.
Buckling down defensively has been the only way the Longhorns have been able to score wins this season. On the season they've allowed 60.8 PPG on 35.8 percent shooting.
And while the Mountaineers haven't been nearly as effective on defense, they face a team that's unlikely to take advantage. Texas is putting up just 63.4 PPG this season and they have only two players averaging in double figures (Sheldon McLellan and Julien Lewis).
Plus, when West Virginia really focuses, they can get the job done defensively. They held Kansas to only 61 points last week and then followed that up with a 77-61 W over Texas Tech over the weekend. We're taking the UNDER.
NCAA Basketball Picks: UNDER 124