NCAA Basketball Picks: Maryland vs. Ohio State

Jeff Grant

Wednesday, December 4, 2013 3:29 PM GMT

The Ohio State Buckeyes have one of the best defenses in the country, which will pose a major problem for the Maryland Terrapins Wednesday night. Find out which side we're on!

Let’s take a closer look at the college basketball odds for this Big Ten/ACC Challenge matchup at Value City Arena, with the opening tip scheduled for 7:00 p.m. ET on ESPN.

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A true test

Maryland has won four games in a row since opening up with a 1-2 record, as it prepares to play its first true road contest of the 2013-14 campaign.

The Terrapins have played four games on a neutral floor, which includes capturing the Paradise Jam in the U.S. Virgin Islands by picking up three wins over Marist, Northern Iowa and Providence.

Beating down the opposition

Ohio State is off to a perfect 6-0 start by outscoring opponents by an average of 21.2 points per game, as it prepares to play its fourth consecutive home game after picking up a 99-64 victory over North Florida as 24-point favorites last Friday.

The Buckeyes are second nationally in allowing 53.3 points per game—limiting foes to just 35.3 percent shooting from the field.

Success in this event

College basketball handicappers may have an interest in backing the Terrapins as a double-digit road underdog, considering they’ve put together a tournament-best road mark of 4-1 amongst teams that have played at least four games in this event.

Maryland is 0-5 SU and 2-3 ATS as road underdogs of 9.5 to 12 points, with the OVER going 3-2 in that situation since the 2011-12 season.

Quite a senior class

The Ohio State senior class of Aaron Craft and Lenzelle Smith Jr. has recorded 100 victories in 119 career games since arriving in Columbus, which broke a school record for the fewest possible contests in that category.

Craft needs just 18 assists to own the school record in a career in that statistical category, while Smith Jr. has landed in the starting lineup in his last 82 games.

Prediction

I’m going to recommend that readers play the total for their college basketball picks, as the Buckeyes have fallen under the number in their last two opportunities as home favorites of 9.5 to 12 points, while the Terrapins turn the ball over on 20 percent of their offensive possessions.

College Basketball Pick:  Under