Take Oklahoma State +4 as NCAA Basketball Pick

Jeff Grant

Monday, February 17, 2014 2:49 PM GMT

The Oklahoma State Cowboys desperately need a victory without the services of their star player, as they prepare to take on the Baylor Bears Monday night. Let’s take a closer look at the college basketball odds for this Big 12 Conference showdown at the Ferrell Center, with the opening tip scheduled for 9:00 p.m. ET on ESPN.

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Troubling times

Oklahoma State is 0-6 SUATS over its last six games heading into this Big Monday matchup, as it looks to bounce back from a 77-74 setback to the Oklahoma Sooners as four-point home favorites last Saturday.

Cowboys star point guard Marcus Smart will be serving the final game of a suspension handed down by the Big 12 after an altercation with a fan at Texas Tech, but the program still leads the league in outscoring opponents by a +12.5-point margin.

Over the last two-plus seasons, the team is 0-6 SU and 1-5 ATS as road underdogs of 3.5 to 6 points.

Battling

Baylor has put together a two-game winning streak, including a 87-73 overtime victory over the Kansas State Wildcats as five-point home favorites last Saturday, while going OVER the betting total for a third consecutive contest.

The Bears have four of five probable starters averaging in double figures, with senior forward Cory Jefferson leading the way at 12.6 points a contest.

Since the 2011-12 campaign, the program has gone 2-4 SUATS as home favorites of 3.5 to 6 points.

Get to the line

The Cowboys are certainly capable of pulling off a SU underdog win without the services of Smart, but they’ll need to get to the charity stripe to make it happen.

Oklahoma State paces the Big 12 in free throws made and attempted, but Baylor has done a good job of playing defense without fouling this season.

Leading at the break

College basketball handicappers need to keep an eye on the halftime score, as the Bears have won 54 of 57 gates when holding an advantage on the scoreboard after 20 minutes of action since the 2011-12 campaign.

Baylor is 15-15 SU at home in this series—capturing wins in the last seven meetings in that situation.

Prediction

I’m going to recommend that readers back the Cowboys as one of their NCAA basketball picks, as the point spread looks to appealing to back the Bears in this spot.

Baylor is 2-5-1 ATS in its last eight games versus teams with a winning record.

Pick: Oklahoma State Cowboys +4

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