Daily Dunk: Best College Basketball Bets Today (Back Houston at Allen Fieldhouse vs. Kansas)

Jan 20, 2024; Houston, Texas, USA; Houston Cougars guard Jamal Shead (1) reacts towards guard Mylik
Jan 20, 2024; Houston, Texas, USA; Houston Cougars guard Jamal Shead (1) reacts towards guard Mylik / Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

It's as good of a college basketball slate you will see on Saturday with three top 10 matchups on the docket.

There are going to be plenty of eyes on the hardwood, including Houston's road trip to Kansas, who is a rare home underdog against the Cougars top ranked defense. However, are you paying up to get the Jayhawks as a dog? I break that maquee matchup down as well as two others in this edition of the Daily Dunk.

Get all my college basketball plays on my betstamp @ rw33 here, where I'm 83-61-3 (+17.87U)

New BETMGM users, sign up below and get $158 in bonus bets when you make a first wager of just $5! Get started now!

Best College Basketball Bets Today

  • Texas vs. TCU (-4.5)
  • Houston (-1) vs. Kansas
  • St. Mary's (+4) vs. Gonzaga

Texas vs. TCU Prediction and Pick

TCU kept rolling on Tuesday, covering as four point favorites against Texas Tech (after opening north of five), and I like the Horned Frogs to keep it going in Fort Worth on Saturday.

While Texas has done a good job of limiting transition opportunities, the team is 310th in opponent transition rate, but you can score on the Longhorns in the open court, who are 268th in points allowed per possession in transition, per ShotQuality. Further, the team is 310th in points allowed per possession at the rim. Both keys to the TCU offense.

TCU wants to run and get inside. The team is top 40 in rim rate, finishing at a top 20 clip and can dominate Texas on the defensive glass, where the Longhorns rank 198th in the country. TCU is top 20 in the nation in offensive rebounding rate.

I believe at home the Horned Frogs can dictate the terms of this game and win on the interior as this has been a Texas team that plays far worse on the road, ranking 303rd in Haslametrics away from home rating.

I'll lay it with TCU at home.

PICK: TCU -4.5

Houston vs. Kansas Prediction and Pick

Much will be made about how rare it is that Kansas is a home underdog (this is the third time in the Bill Self era that the Jayahwks are catching points at Allen Fieldhouse). But this isn't some hidden edge that you are going to get a storied program catching points. As I've noted in our daily best bets column, you are paying a huge tax on situational spots this season.

Further, Kansas has some injury questions ahead of this matchup. Kevin McCullar missed the team's most recent game against Oklahoma State, possibly with an eye ahead to this weekend, but he's incredibly important as a secondary ball handler against an aggressive Houston defense that forces the ball out of primary ball handlers hands.

The Cougars are turning opponents over on more than 25% of possessions and force teams to shoot from the perimeter, allowing a near-43% three-point rate. The Jayhawks are outside the top 100 in turnover percentage and are reliant on getting inside, posting a 30% three-point rate this season (322nd in the country). However, you can't get inside on this Cougs defense. I don't believe the Jayhawks have the personnel to do it, even at home.

I believe this is a clash of styles and the Cougars can overwhelm the Jayhawks with its stingy defense and do enough on offense to get a road win. I'll take the discount with the best defense in the country.

PICK: Houston -1

St. Mary's vs. Gonzaga Prediction and Pick

Arguably the biggest games in the mid-major ranks is out west on Saturday night with the St. Mary's Gaels traveling to Gonzaga.

Randy Bennett's group has been smashing teams in WCC team play, and I believe the team's elite defense can keep a lid on the Gonzaga offense. The Gaels drop defense does an incredible job of shutting off the paint for opponents, allowing a top 20 average shot distance, which is impactful against a rim reliant Bulldogs team that is top 100 in average shot distance and shooting 63% on two's in WCC play.

However, Gonzaga is sixth in WCC three-point percentage and have struggled against high-end competition.

The Bulldogs are 0-4 against quad one opponents and posted an adjusted offensive efficiency that ranks 155th in the nation, according to Bart Torvik. Meanwhile, the Gaels are 3-3 against Q1 opponents, but have maintained a stingy defense that is top 20 in adjusted efficiency.

This is a clash of two elite mid-majors, but I give an edge to St. Mary's defense to keep this one close with the teams ability to play this game in the halfcourt and for its emerging offense to take advantage of a Gonzaga defense that is 285th in open three rate this season, per ShotQuality.

PICK: St. Mary's +4

Game odds refresh periodically and are subject to change.