Free College Basketball Picks from Expert Handicapper: West Coast Game Prediction
Betting college basketball is all about winning the games you put your hard earned money on. The national media is caught up in all the glamour teams on the East Coast and throughout the heartland of the country. However, as an expert handicapper and professional sports bettor living and working in the Pacific Time Zone of Las Vegas, I still find the best value betting the late starts out on the West Coast.
Last week's free West Coast college hoops pick for Doc's paid off with a total line bet on the 'over' for a matchup in the Big West between Hawaii and Cal State -Northridge. This week, I have turned my attention to a conference that is near and dear to my heart; the Mountain West.
West Coast College Hoops Betting Overview
The No. 4 Gonzaga Bulldogs have been the pride and joy of West Coast college basketball this season playing out of the West Coast Conference. Media experts may point to a softer schedule for this Mid-Major power, but with an early victory against Duke on the resume, it does not matter how bad the Bulldogs beat up on their conference foes.
Covering huge double-digit spreads game after game is hard to do no matter what conference you play in. Gonzaga has failed to cover in its last two games, but at 18-2 straight-up, it is still a profitable 14-6 against the spread.
The Mountain West's Nevada Wolf Pack is ranked No. 7 in each of the major polls with a SU record of 18-1. They have been able to put a bad road loss to New Mexico in the rear view mirror in a quest to win both the regular season and MWC Tournament title. I have been touting the Wolf Pack as a legitimate Final Four team all season long and I am not backing down from that stance one bit.
Pac-12 fans have been waiting for a team to make a run into the national rankings, but the big three of Washington, Arizona and Arizona State are still on the outside looking in. The Huskies are starting to make a charge at 7-0 SU and 6-0-1 ATS in their last seven games. A road test this Thursday against Oregon could garner some national attention as long as they win.
West Coast College Hoops Free Pick of the Week
Turning back to Nevada and Wednesday night's late start at home against Colorado State, this could be a tough spot for the Wolf Pack to cover as heavy 19.5-point favorites. Game time on CBS Sports Network is set for 11 p.m. (ET).
Nevada is a perfect 9-0 SU at home and 6-3 ATS, but it has failed to cover in three of its last five games overall. Since settling for a push as six-point home favorites against Arizona State on Dec. 8, the Wolf Pack have only been able to cover in four of their last 11 games. With next Tuesday's road rivalry against UNLV next on the schedule, there is also the chance they look past this matchup given Colorado State's SU 7-11 record that includes a 2-3 start in MWC play.
Another concern is the size of the spread. Going back to an early season game against Tulsa as a 14-point favorite, Nevada is 2-5 ATS when closing as a double-digit favorite.
The Rams may have a losing record overall, but they continue to play teams tough, especially in conference play. They kept things close enough on Saturday to cover as 17-point road underdogs in a 87-72 loss to Utah State. Colorado State also covered a 16-point spread on the road against Fresno State in a 78-67 loss on Jan.5.
The Rams are a perfect 5-0 covering the closing number in the Mountain West so far and I have them covering again against Nevada.
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