NCAA Basketball Picks of the Day Suggest Laying the Chalk

Steven Suarez

Tuesday, December 30, 2014 4:35 PM GMT

How should we best approach tonight's college basketball betting odds? Let's run over a couple of matchups that look to be riddled with value.

Oklahoma State Cowboys vs. Missouri Tigers
Our first stop is in Kansas City, where Missouri and Oklahoma State will do battle on a neutral court inside the Sprint Center. Current NCAA basketball odds have the Cowboys squarely in the driver's seat -- they're favored by either 9.5 or 10 points depending on where you look.

Oklahoma State is currently 9-2 this season, with losses to South Carolina and Maryland. The Cowboys have been idle since that defeat to the Terrapins, so they'll be eager to return to the court after a nine-day layoff. They've got the talent in place to return in style, as Le'Bryan Nash and Phil Forte III are averaging a combined 34.3 points per game on the year, while Anthony Hickey Jr., and Michael Cobbins have been putting up good numbers too.

As for Missouri, they've endured a rough start to their season. The Tigers are sporting a losing record (5-6) right now and enter tonight having dropped three of their last four games. They've really had a hard time replacing the departed Jabari Brown, Jordan Clarkson and Earnest Ross, with Johnathan Williams III and company simply not having the firepower to move on without skipping a beat. Of course, a new coach with a different system is going to bring with it an entirely fresh set of challenges, so this Missouri squad appears to be one we should stay away from with our college basketball picks.

And, we'll do just that this evening. The Cowboys have far more chemistry (and overall talent) this season, and they should be able to win on the neutral court with relative ease. It may seem like a lot of points on the surface, but we believe Oklahoma State is the right side.

NCAA Basketball Pick: Oklahoma State Cowboys -9.5

Find out which NCAA Basketball underdogs offer the best value today!

William & Mary Tribe vs. North Carolina Tar Heels
The Tar Heels are rolling right now, so we can see why they're such heavy favorites for this home encounter with the Tribe. The board shows North Carolina giving away 16.5 points this evening. The total is at 145.5 points.

Following a loss to Kentucky (who hasn't lost to the Wildcats?), the Tar Heels have responded by winning three straight, with the highlight coming in the form of a 82-74 neutral-court win over a solid Ohio State team. They most recently crushed UAB by 31 only a few days ago, so they're clearly in good spirits. Marcus Paige, Kennedy Meeks and Brice Johnson have been three of the standouts, but the versatile J.P. Tokoto has had some great games as well.

It should be tough sledding for William & Mary up against the Tar Heels tonight. The Tribe are 6-4 on the year, and while they were competitive in three of those four defeats, they got absolutely crushed by the only ranked team they played in Florida. Marcus Thornton has paced the team with a 19.3 PPG average through 10 contests, but Omar Prewitt and Daniel Dixon are also averaging in double figures.

What it comes down to tonight is a pure gulf in talent, however. We don't anticipate North Carolina having much trouble at all overwhelming William & Mary en route to a cover against the spread. The Tar Heels are scoring 80.9 points per game on average and have been one of the most dominant rebounding teams in the country - they're ranked second on the glass (45.0 boards per contest), so that's obviously going to be a massive advantage here against the undersized Tribe. Don't hesitate to add North Carolina and all that chalk to your college basketball picks.

NCAA Basketball Pick: North Carolina Tar Heels -16.5 at BetOnline