NCAA Basketball Pick of the Day for Best Total

Darin Zank

Saturday, December 20, 2014 5:53 PM UTC

Saturday, Dec. 20, 2014 5:53 PM UTC

As we were reminded the other night, playing college basketball OVER/UNDERS can be a dangerous business. But in researching Saturday's NCAAB betting board one total stood out to us. It involves two teams that can play some good defense, meeting on a neutral court in a strange city.

Best College Basketball Total Pick of the Day
In one of just two games Saturday matching two ranked teams 7-2 Oklahoma and 9-0 Washington meet on a neutral court at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. The college basketball betting odds colleg market opened the total on this game at 140, and that number was holding steady in the early betting.

The Match-Up
Oklahoma is off to a 7-2 start to this season, with wins over UCLA, Butler and Missouri and losses to Creighton and Wisconsin. The Sooners are also 5-2 on the UNDERS this season, as they've allowed just 61 points per game. The two games Oklahoma played OVER did so in part because both games reached a point of garbage time, in which the Sooners held big leads, over Missouri and Tulsa. But closer games against Creighton, UCLA, Butler and Wisconsin all played UNDER.

Considering Oklahoma is favored by just 5.5 points over the Huskies, Saturday's game could be close, and that might help it stay UNDER.

Washington is off to a 9-0 start to this season, playing a powder-puff schedule. The Huskies toughest foe so far has been San Diego State, who they beat 49-36 in a real ugly affair two weeks ago. U-Dub shot just 38 percent from the floor, but held the Aztecs to just 20 percent shooting, and just 11 baskets for the game. The teams also combined to make just seven of 33 shots from beyond the arc, as that game never came close to its total of 125.

Since then the Huskies have won two straight, including an 86-38 romp over Grambling Wednesday night. Washington shot 51 percent from the floor Wednesday; odds are the Huskies won't shoot 51 percent against Oklahoma Saturday.

Washington is 4-4 on the totals this season, and has held five opponents to 59 points or less.

On the season Oklahoma is limiting opponents to 36 percent FG shooting, and just 29 percent from 3-point range. Washington, meanwhile, is holding foes to just 33 percent shooting, and 26 percent from 3-point land. U-Dub also ranks second in the country with 8.2 blocked shots per game.

Sooners games have averaged 136 total points this season, while Huskies games have averaged 131 points. With a total of 140 it looks like we might have enough room for the UNDER.

Finally, these two teams are shooting a combined 69 percent from the free-throw line this season. In the college game that's not too bad, but it still leaves room for some much-needed misses, if this game comes down to FT shooting time near the end.

Final Analysis
Both these teams can play some nice defense, and they both rebound well, which limits second chances. If this game plays to right around the spread, with Oklahoma favored by six points or so, there may come a time when the Huskies (if behind by the right amount) call off the dogs, which would avoid all those pesky free-throws in the final minute or so. So in thinking this should be a relatively close game, on a court unfamiliar to both teams, involving two pretty good defenses, we'll go with the UNDER 140 offered at Bookmaker for our best NCAAB total pick for today.

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