Corrigan's Gambling Corner: 4 College Basketball Best Bets - Dec. 15, 2021
Hello, and welcome back to the gambling corner. The college basketball slate is light because many of these schools are on winter break, but there are still bets to be made.
Tonight, we have the four best bets of the night, and with basketball at center stage in the sports world tonight, it should be a fun night of hoops.
If you decide to tail our picks, we just ask that you do so responsibly
Here are tonight's winners.
*Odds via FanDuel Sportsbook
Marshall Thundering Herd at Ohio Bobcats
Even though Ohio lost its best player to the draft in Jason Preston, the Bobcats have been pretty solid this season. They are 7-2 and first in the MAC at the moment, and their frontcourt of Ben Vander Plas and Jason Carter have carried this team on both ends of the court.
On the season, Carter is putting up 13.2 points and 7.3 rebounds per game and Vander Plas is putting up 13.6 and 6.7 per game. Combining those two with leading scorer Mark Sears makes this a fun lineup. Even though Marshall is overwhelming on offense, there is a reason Ohio is giving out 3.5 points tonight.
The Bobcats do not do anything particularly well, but they are ranked 46th in three-pointers made per game. As a slower-paced team, their depth and pace of play could be obnoxious for Marshall tonight.
Marshall is 17th in scoring, 8th in field goals made per game, and the Thundering Herd play at the 4th-fastest pace in all of college basketball. If you have been tracking my picks for a while now, you know how much I favor faster teams, even though Ohio is playing better basketball right now.
Ohio's defense is 103rd in scoring, 121st in scoring margin, and 250th in opponents shooting percentage. The Thundering Herd will dictate the pace of the game, and Ohio does not have the style of play to keep up.
Pick: Marshall +3.5 (-108)
UCF Knights at Temple Owls
Temple was able to beat Vanderbilt on the road after Khalif Battle's season-ending injury, so that is a very encouraging sign for the Owls. Battle was putting up 21.4 points per game on 49% shooting from deep, so this is a big loss.
The next leading scorer is the only player who averages double-figure points, and outside of Battle, Temple is not a very good shooting team. The Owls now need to shift to playing a suffocating brand of defense, and forwards Jake Forrester and Nick Jourdain have been able to clog the middle this season. The problem is, neither of those two players offers anything on the offensive end of the court.
UCF is not the greatest shooting team in the country, but they are 77th in three-pointers made per game and 63rd in total shooting percentage. Temple is 3-1 ATS at home this season, but UCF has covered in six of their last seven on the road. With Temple having no real threat offensively, I will ride with the Knights right now.
Pick: UCF -4.5 (-115)
Alabama State Hornets at UCLA Bruins
The Bruins are the No. 4 team in the country for a reason. UCLA is 18th in scoring, 21st in scoring margin, and they are making over 30 baskets per game. With Alabama State being one of the worst offenses according to KenPom (339th), this one could get ugly very fast.
However, this spread is a little too high for me. There is a reason UCLA is giving out 35 points tonight, but that means UCLA has to constantly kick ass for every second of this game. When looking at Alabama State this season, there are just no redeeming qualities. They do not score, the defense is allowing 82.5 points per game, and there is not a single quality game on their schedule that you can point to for inspiration.
UCLA is not going to have any problems scoring, and when they let their foot off the gas late in the game, look for Alabama State to put up some points, and push this game over the total.
Pick: Over 146.5 (-110)
Portland Pilots at Oregon Ducks
The Oregon Ducks have been an absolutely terrible team to bet on this season. They are 2-8 ATS, and the Ducks are 1-7 ATS in their last eight games played. While Portland is not a better team than Oregon even though the record indicates, the Pilots are 4-2 ATS in their last six against Oregon and Portland is 5-2 ATS in their last seven.
It also helps that Portland is scoring 72.8 points per game, have a positive scoring margin, and are 79th in shooting efficiency. With four players over double-figures in points per game, the Ducks are a serious contender to win this game outright. Oregon is not a good shooting team, they are 204th in scoring, and the defense has no redeeming qualities.
These two teams are trending in opposite directions, and Portland is playing much better than the Ducks right now. I will not take them on the Moneyline, but the spread is way too high for me to be confident in Oregon covering.
Pick: Portland +16.5 (-110)
Parlay Odds: (+1212) 1 unit to win 12.12 units.
Photo: Getty Images