NCAA Basketball Picks: West Virginia vs. Missouri

Jeff Grant

Thursday, December 5, 2013 1:08 PM GMT

Thursday, Dec. 5, 2013 1:08 PM GMT

The Missouri Tigers have taken care of non-conference opponents at home in recent years, as they prepare to face off against the West Virginia Mountaineers Thursday night.

Let’s take a closer look at the NCAA Basketball odds for this Big 12/SEC challenge matchup at Mizzou Arena, with the opening tip scheduled for 7:00 p.m. ET on ESPN2. 

From way downtown 

West Virginia has put together a 6-2 record through its first eight games of the 2013-14 campaign, as it comes off a 96-47 blowout victory over Loyola-Maryland Monday.

The Mountaineers have hist 10 or more three-pointers in six of their affairs—after knocking down such a number just five times a year ago.

College basketball handicappers will find that the program is knocking down 46.5 percent of its shots from beyond the arc, but Missouri is holding foes to a 29.1 percentage on the defensive end in that category. 

Returning home 

Missouri is looking for an 8-0 start for the third time since 2006-07, while it also looks to push its homecourt winning streak to 23 games.

The Tigers are a dominating 37-1 at home under head coach Frank Haith, while they’ve won 70 consecutive games on this floor by an average of 26.3 points against non-conference opponents.

Making a statement

Mountaineers point guard Juwan Staten has 60 assists and just nine turnovers this season, while he’s also part of a backcourt that averages 36.7 points per game. 

Shooting guard Eron Harris completes that group on the floor—scoring 14 or more points in every game thus far. 

A trio of guards

It’s important to point out that Missouri has a trio of talented guards in its starting lineup, with juniors Jabari Brown and Jordan Clarkson combining to average 38.7 points per game, while senior Earnest Ross chips in with 13.4.

The Tigers have used the same opening lineup in all seven of their games, which is impressive due to only one starter returning from last season’s 23-11 team.

[gameodds]14/251448/?r-1=43-19-349/us[/gameodds]

Prediction

I’m going to recommend that readers back the Tigers with their NCAA basketball picks, as they’ve covered the number in their last four games against Big 12 opponents. 

College Basketball Pick:  Missouri Tigers -5.5

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