College Basketball

College Basketball Best Bets for Today, January 14th

Reed Wallach
Nov 24, 2021; Nassau, BHS;  Virginia Commonwealth Rams forward Vince Williams Jr. (10) dunks against Syracuse
Nov 24, 2021; Nassau, BHS; Virginia Commonwealth Rams forward Vince Williams Jr. (10) dunks against Syracuse / Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports
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A winning night indeed. 2-1 on best bets as we start to find our footing in conference play, let's see if we can get another solid set with three best bets for Friday's short, but intriguing slate.

Again, college basketball is a long season with a ton of variance. Those days happen over the course of the winter and I'll keep sticking to my process. No need to change it up.

All odds are courtesy of WynnBET Sportsbook.

For more plays posted before and after publish, you can check out all of them in real-time here.

Column Record: 13-18-2 (-6.7 Units)

Virginia Commonwealth (+2.5) vs. St. Bonaventure

You can read my full write up on this one here, but I believe that the Bonnies are still getting by on their A-10 title last season.

In short, St. Bonaventure runs essential a five-man rotation and is coming off an overtime game against La Salle in their first game back in nearly a month due to COVID-19 Protocols.

Also, VCU's offense is being underrated since the return of Adrian Baldwin. The team has gone from a bottom of 50 O to middle of the pack since the return of their lead ball handler to go with their top five defense.

I believe the Rams overwhelm the tired Bonnies and win this one outright.

PICK: VCU +2.5, play to +2

Richmond (-1) vs. Davidson

Full write up here, but this feels like a good time to jump ship from the Davidson bandwagon after 12 straight wins.

These are two similar teams but I believe that the Spiders offense is being undervalued, ranked 31st per ShotQuality, which is just steps behind the highly touted Davidson one that is 25th. The Wildcats are second in three-point percentage this season, but Richmond allows a middle of the pack 35% three-point rate.

Meanwhile, Davidson allows the 15th highest rate of three's and the home team is due for a few bounces.

I like a veteran Richmond to get a statement win at home after dealing with a slow start and some COVID-19 issues within the program.

PICK: Richmond -1, no further

Michigan (+9.5) vs. Illinois

Here we go again with the Wolverines. Granted, I would wait to play this until we see who is available for Michigan, but assuming they are near full strength this matchup does set up nicely for them. You can read more about my thoughts on this one here, but here's a snippet:

The Wolverines can compete with the Illini on the perimeter given they have done a good job of defending it and forcing the ball inside. Hunter Dickinson is going to have to compete with Kofi Cockburn down low, but I believe that Juwan Howard's club can limit the play of Trent Fraizer and the Illini sharpshooters.

Michigan is a bit underrated from beyond arc, hitting on just below 37% of their tries, and Illinois doesn't turn their opponents over at all (outside the top 300 nationally), so the Wolverines offense can operate with little ball pressure.

I'd wait for lineup news tonight, but this number feels a little inflated against a Michigan team desperate for a win. Illinois had to come from behind to beat Nebraska on Tuesday and play Purdue in a battle of two of the top teams in the conference on Monday, so this could be a sandwich spot for Brad Underwood's club.

PICK: Michigan +9.5, play to +9, wait for injury news ahead of tip

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