NCAA Basketball Picks for In-State Rivals: OK State/Oklahoma

Darin Zank

Saturday, January 17, 2015 3:11 PM GMT

Saturday, Jan. 17, 2015 3:11 PM GMT

Our top-value NCAA Basketbal pick for day focuses on a rivalry match between Oklahoma & Oklahoma State. OU has won four of the last five meetings straight-up, covering the spread in seven of the last eight encounters.

Cowboys-Sooners Betting Odds
Most shops we surfed opened this game with Oklahoma favored by seven points, the total offered at 130.5, and both those numbers were holding steady in the early betting.

Bettors who believe Oklahoma State might win this game outright could get +255 on the moneyline. Visit SBR's live NCAA Basketball odds page to find the best prices available.

 

Cowboys-Sooners: Background
Oklahoma State, whom we expected (preseason) to finish in the bottom third of the Big 12 this season, went 9-2 through non-conference play, with victories over Oregon State and Memphis and losses to South Carolina and Maryland. The Cowboys then opened Big 12 play with wins at Missouri and over Kansas State, then lost at Iowa State 63-61 but covered as eight-point dogs. OSU then topped Texas 69-58, covering at home at -3, but last time out, Tuesday night, the Pokes lost at Kansas 67-57, missing on the cover as eight-point underdogs.

The Cowboys shot 47 percent from the floor against the Longhorns, and made nine of 17 shots from 3-point land. But they only shot 31 percent against the Jayhawks, and made just three of 16 shots from long range.

Such are the ups and downs of college basketball, and thank goodness for them. For us, they're a key handicapping tool.

Oklahoma, whom we thought was worthy of an NCAA Basketball pick in the Futures market back in November, started 9-3 this season, with wins over UCLA, Butler and Missouri and losses to Creighton, Wisconsin and Washington. The Sooners then began conference play with wins and covers over Baylor and Texas. But OU then lost at home in overtime as 12-point favorites against Kansas State, and last time out, Tuesday night, the Sooners got smoked at West Virginia 86-65, coming nowhere close to covering as four-point dogs on the road.

Oklahoma shot just 40 percent against the Wildcats, then shot 42 percent against the Mountaineers, and committed 22 turnovers. The Sooners trailed West Virginia by 13 points at halftime, by 20 with 12 minutes to go, and never got closer than 15 after that.

But might a performance like that set Oklahoma up for a “bounce-back” play next time out?

Review our analysis of NCAA Basketball betting odds for the Five Power Conferences.

Cowboys-Sooners Recent History
Last season Oklahoma swept two games from Oklahoma State, winning 88-76 as a four-point home dog, and 77-74 as a four-point road dog. But those games involved several key people on both sides who won't be on the court in Norman tonight.

 

Cowboys-Sooners Key Stats
Oklahoma State is shooting just under 45 percent from the floor this season, but holding opponents to just 37 percent shooting. Oklahoma is shooting just under 44 percent from the field, while also holding foes to 37 percent FG shooting.

 

Cowboys-Soooners Betting Trends
Oklahoma State is 4-7 on the totals this season, as Cowboys games have averaged 130 points.

Oklahoma is 5-8 on the totals, as Sooners games have averaged 133 points.

Five of the last six meetings in this series have played OVER the totals.

 

Cowboys-Sooners Free Pick
While we're leaning toward a bounce-back play with Oklahoma, the line on the Sooners is probably inflated by a bucket or so. Still, our take is that OU is the better team, and likely to win this game. And if they win this game we give them a 75 percent chance at covering this spread. So we'll take the Sooners, and give the points.

Free College Basketball Pick: Oklahoma -6.5 at Bookmaker

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