NCAA Basketball Picks Wichita State vs. Indiana State

Jeff Grant

Wednesday, February 5, 2014 2:12 PM GMT

The Wichita State Shockers have been a tremendous road team over the years, but some travel issues may cause a sluggish start against the Indiana State Sycamores Wednesday. Let’s take a closer look at the NCAA basketball lines for this Missouri Valley Conference showdown at the Hulman Center, with the opening tip scheduled for 8:05 p.m. ET on ESPN3.

Winning on the road

Wichita State has put together the best winning percentage in the country when playing on the road the last three-plus seasons—compiling a dominating 33-8 SU record in that situation.

It’s important to point out that the team’s normal day-before departure for a road game was delayed Tuesday—forcing the squad to fly into Terre Haute, Ind., at 7:30 a.m. Wednesday.

Over the last two-plus seasons, the Shockers are 6-1 ATS as road favorites of 3.5 to 6 points in the NCAA basketball odds.

A huge opportunity

Indiana State has won all eight of its games at this venue during the 2013-14 campaign, as it prepares to play just its second home game since mid-January.

The Sycamores have won 24 of their last 31 conference home games, as they attempt to win their 14th matchup in school history against a ranked opponent.

College basketball handicappers will find that the team is 2-1 SUATS as home underdogs of 3.5 to 6 points the last two-plus seasons.

Recent dominance

The Shockers have won 10 of their last 12 meetings against the Sycamores, including a 68-48 blowout victory as 11-point home favorites Jan. 18, while going UNDER the betting total of 136.5.

Wichita State finished with four players in double figures, with Ron Baker scoring a tea-high 16 points.

The road team has covered the number in 11 of the last 13 games between these two MVC rivals.

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Rising to the occasion

The Sycamores need senior guard Jake Odum to rise to the occasion if they plan on pulling off an upset, as he averaged 14.0 points and 5.0 rebounds in road games against Northern Iowa and Southern Illinois last week.

Odum sits ninth on the school’s all-time scoring list, while sitting behind just two players with 554 career assists.

Prediction

I’m going to recommend that readers back the Sycamores in the first half as one of their NCAA basketball picks, as they’ve covered both of their opportunities when revenging a blowout loss of 20-plus points the last two-plus seasons.

Pick: Indiana State Sycamores +2.5 First Half

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