HomeCollege BasketballCollege Basketball Picks Today February 17 from Matt Youmans

    College Basketball Picks Today February 17 from Matt Youmans

    Matt Youmans shares his favorite college basketball picks for Saturday, February 17.

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    College basketball best bets from Matt Youmans

    VSiN betting analyst and host of VSiN Tonight, Matt Youmans, shares his top college basketball picks for today, February 17.

    Marquette +7 at Connecticut

    With almost 150 games on the college basketball board today, there are better options than betting against Connecticut. The nation’s No. 1 team is full of strengths and has few weaknesses. The sideline antics of Danny Hurley can be annoying, but a hyperactive coach who constantly complains to the officials does not count as a weakness.

     

    The Huskies will not be underdogs for the rest of the season, barring injuries or unforeseen circumstances, and Hurley’s team has a real chance to become the first repeat NCAA champion since Florida in 2007.

    UConn ranks in the top 20 in offensive and defensive efficiency, per Kenpom.com, and fits the profile of a team likely to win it all. The only other teams to rank in the top 20 on both ends of the floor are Houston, Purdue, Auburn, Arizona and Tennessee. Another team close to qualifying is No. 4 Marquette, which ranks 22nd in offensive efficiency and 13th on defense.

    Despite early-season injuries to freshman guard Stephon Castle and 7-foot-2 Donovan Clingan, the Huskies are 23-2 and riding a 13-game win streak, with seven of the victories by double-digit margins. The Golden Eagles have won seven in a row, setting up a beast of a Big East matchup today in Hartford, Conn.

    With elite point guard Tyler Kolek and 6-11 senior Oso Ighodaro, Marquette matches up well with UConn at the most important spots. It might not be a sharp move to bet against the Huskies, yet I will take a shot with the Golden Eagles, who are 4-0-1 ATS as underdogs this season and 21-8-3 as ‘dogs under coach Shaka Smart.

    College Basketball Best Bet: (667) Marquette +7

    Four more college basketball best bets (with betting rotation numbers in parenthesis):

    (722) Maryland +2.5 over Illinois

    This is a payback game for the Fighting Illini, who were upset 76-67 by the Terrapins on Jan. 14. The reinstatement of leading scorer Terrence Shannon (21.1 ppg) has turned Illinois into the second-best team in the Big Ten. Shannon did not play in the teams’ first meeting, when Jahmir Young took over by scoring 28 points. Young again needs to be the best player on the floor for Maryland to win. The Terps, who did not lose at home in conference play last season, are dangerous home ‘dogs.

    (776) Michigan +6 over Michigan State

    At the bottom of the Big Ten, the Wolverines (8-17, 3-11) have been a train wreck, and coach Juwan Howard is seemingly on the way out. However, Michigan remains a talented team that is capable of playing at a high level, as it did in a recent win against Wisconsin. Sophomore guard Dug McDaniel is the team’s leading scorer who plays in home games while serving an odd suspension for road games. It appears the Spartans are improving and turning the corner, but covering this number in a rivalry game is a lot to ask. If the Wolverines are going to give a big effort in support of Howard, now is the time.

    (801) Arizona State +18.5 at Arizona

    It’s not easy to trust the inconsistent Sun Devils, but coach Bobby Hurley will probably get his team to compete in a rivalry game. Arizona State picked up an impressive road win at Utah last weekend. I made this number 14, and while my number might be wrong, the line looks inflated.

    (815) Nevada +2 at UNLV

    Following an inexplicable 90-58 home loss to Air Force on Jan. 23, the Rebels have reeled off five wins in a row. It’s tough to know which UNLV team will show up, but it’s a good bet the Wolf Pack will show up in Las Vegas desperate for a win. Nevada, off of an 83-82 loss to New Mexico on Tuesday, sits on the bubble and needs this one. Led by guards Jarod Lucas and Kenan Blackshear, the Wolf Pack proved they can perform on the road by winning at Utah State two weeks ago.

    Matt Youmans
    Matt Youmans
    Matt Youmans is a Senior Editor of VSiN.com and has been writing for the website and hosting shows on the network since the beginning in January 2017. He currently hosts VSiN Tonight, weeknights from 9 p.m. to midnight ET, in addition to writing weekly handicapping columns.

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