Take the 'Under' In Coin-flip Encounter Between Oklahoma St. & Michigan

Jay Pryce

Tuesday, March 14, 2017 4:46 PM UTC

Tuesday, Mar. 14, 2017 4:46 PM UTC

Big Ten title winners Michigan square off against high-flying Oklahoma State on Friday in one of the most anticipated first-round matchups in the Midwest Region. Expert capper gets ready to explain why an Under pick is the best way to go.

   Oklahoma State vs Michigan

Midwest Region, First Round
12:15 pm E.T

Michigan’s scary abandoned airplane takeoff en route to the Big Ten conference championship weirdly seemed to invigorate head coach John Beilein’s bunch. They outlasted 13th-ranked Purdue 74-70 in overtime in the quarterfinals, upset Minnesota 84-77 in the semis, and then routed Wisconsin 71-56 to win the title. Ever since an embarrassing 70-66 home loss to Ohio State as 9.5-point chalk in early February, the Wolverines are 10-2 SU and 9-3 ATS, outscoring opponents by more than 11 points per game.

Oklahoma State experienced a scorching 10-1 SU streak late in the year, but is 0-3 SU an ATS in its last three played after falling to Iowa State 92-83 as 1.5-point chalk in the Big 12 championship. The Cowboys rank first in two significant categories nationally on Kenpom: adjusted offensive efficiency and strength of schedule. Regarding the former, Oklahoma State averaged 85.0 points per game. The key to tournament play, it owns the country’s fifth best free throw percentage with a 78.7 percent rate. Charity stripe success will make or break teams in March. One fact to note regarding Oklahoma State’s tough schedule, it is 1-8 SU and 3-5-1 ATS against ranked opponents. The Wolverines enter Indianapolis No. 23 in the latest AP Poll.

Michigan opened a 3-point favorite across the board for the meeting on Sunday with adjustments going in favor of the Cowboys in early trading. The line is down to -2 at some top-rated online sportsbooks midweek. Picking a side is a tough bet here. This is a matchup of contrasting styles, therefore, the most value may lie in the total. Oklahoma State likes to get up and down the court, but the Wolverines are deliberate and cautious, ranking 339 in Kenpom’s tempo rating. Beilein will dictate the pace, which is a good spot for the total. When the Cowboys play against a winning team that averages 58 field goal attempts per game or fewer, the under is 8-1, staying south of the line by 7.9 points per game. The Wolverines average 54.4 shot attempts per tilt. I would definitely take the Under 154.5 for my college basketball pick.


Free NCAAB Pick: Under 154.5Best Line Offered: at Pinnacle

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