Free College Basketball Picks Thursday 3/5/2020 and Opening Line Report
Mid-majors are starting their conference tournaments already. These high-major teams are fighting for seeding and standings placement in the final week before their conference tournament. The Big Ten features two exciting matchups, while the Pac-12 and American have interesting games that could result in upsets. Here are the early leans for Thursday, March 5 in college basketball.
Nebraska vs. Michigan 3/5/20 (-16.5, 149 )
Nebraska is on a 14-game losing streak and just lost to Northwestern at home to become the worst team in the Big-Ten. Michigan has lost two straight against Wisconsin and Ohio State, but Michigan has been pretty good at home this season against
the spread. When Michigan is on, they play great defense. They hold teams to 68.1 points per game. However, in their last two games, they've allowed teams to average 79 points against. Playing Nebraska will help Michigan get back to their real averages. Michigan should win this pretty easily and run away with it.
Key trends: Wolverines are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 games vs. a team with a winning % below .400.
Early lean: Michigan, Over
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Illinois vs. Ohio State 3/5/20 (-6.5, 131.5)
Illinois was dead in the water, and then they won four straight against the lower tier of the Big Ten. Illinois defeated Penn State on the road, and that has propelled them to wins over Nebraska, Northwestern, and Indiana at home. But Ohio State is a different level than these teams. The Buckeyes have won three straight games after two home wins against Maryland and Michigan and a dominating win over Nebraska, too. Ohio State has been streaky all year, but they're playing their best brand of basketball right now. Ohio State at home would be my pick against the spread.
Key trends: Buckeyes are 5-0 ATS in their last 5 home games.
Early lean: Ohio State, Over
Houston vs. UConn 3/5/20 (+1.5, 131.5)
UConn has won four of their last five games in the American and is now 17-12 on the season. UConn is not an NCAA Tournament team, but they've played well recently, defeating Memphis, USF, UCF, and ECU in their last four wins. The lone loss was a double-overtime loss on the road to Temple. Houston has lost their last two games on the road by one point. UConn will stay in this game as Houston is just 6-5 straight up on the road this season.
Key trends: Huskies are 5-1-1 ATS in their last 7 games as a home underdog.
Early lean: UConn, Under
California vs. Oregon 3/5/20 (-16.5, 130.5)
It's been a rocky ride for California. They're 13-16 straight up this season. They've defeated Washington State on the road but lost to Washington by 25 points right after that. Then the Golden Bears scratched and clawed their way to two more wins at home over Colorado and Utah. It's hard to know which team is going to show up. Oregon has been great at home this season and have won their last three home games by solid margins. Oregon scores 11 more points per game, allows one point less, and shoots four percentage points higher than California. I like Oregon at home here.
Key trends: Ducks are 7-2 ATS in their last 9 home games vs. a team with a road winning % of less than .400.
Early lean: Oregon, Under
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