Last week’s college basketball action was as wild as we’ve seen this season. Six teams ranked in the AP Top 25 went down last Saturday — including five in the top-15 — all while the likes of North Carolina and Kentucky took hits as their respective seasons continued to slip away from preseason expectations. Now this Saturday sets up to potentially be just as consequential.
A total of 19 ranked teams are scheduled to play Saturday in a day that will be busy from noon until midnight, nine of which are on the road in potential trap spots.
Our panel of experts is on the case to break down every major game with picks straight up and against the spread, so if you want to scratch that gambling itch, let us give you the edge with some analysis and thoughts below.
This Houston team is on an absolute tear and already has a 26-point victory over Temple on the resume. The Owls should be more competitive this time as they play on their home court on the heels of consecutive league victories. Still, the Cougars are an elite defensive squad poised to capitalize on Temple’s offensive struggles. Prediction: Houston 74, Temple 59 — David Cobb
Oklahoma State has not been blown out or overwhelmed by anyone this season and is good enough to give Baylor the same type of challenge the Bears faced in games against Texas Tech and Kansas. But the Cowboys probably aren’t quite good enough to pull the upset Prediction: Baylor 86, Oklahoma State 79 — David Cobb
No. 15 Ohio State at No. 10 Wisconsin
The Big Ten is brutal and unpredictable, as was demonstrated again Thursday night when Indiana upset Iowa on the road and held the high-powered Hawkeyes without a field goal for 11 minutes in the second half. So while Wisconsin appears to be trending in the right direction and Ohio State is coming off a close loss, there’s really no sense into trying to read the meaning of recent results. This has the makings of another brutally contested conference game, and the Badgers get a slight edge only because of their defense, which should be able to manage an Ohio State team getting increasingly 3-point happy. Prediction: Wisconsin 68, Ohio State 66 — David Cobb
When: 4 p.m. | Where: KFC Yum! Center in Louisville, Kentucky
TV: ESPN | Live stream: fuboTV (Try for free)
Neither Duke nor Louisville has a ton of momentum at its sails right now — Duke has lost its last two in close road contests and Louisville has also lost its last two. But the Cardinals have been better on the whole this season, they’re more experienced, and they’ve got the benefit of playing this one at home. I’ll lay the points with them here primarily as a show of faith in Carlik Jones, Louisville’s senior who is playing at an All-ACC level right now. Duke is just 1-2 on the season against the spread in a road environment, and Louisville is 5-5-1 against the number as a favorite. Prediction: Louisville 73, Duke 70 — Kyle Boone
When: 8:30 p.m. | Where: Thompson-Boling Arena in Knoxville, Tennessee
TV: SEC Network | Live stream: fuboTV (Try for free)
Tennessee had a wake-up call earlier this week when it got shellacked — by 26 points — on the road against a shorthanded Florida team. But that outcome is aberrational in nature given how UT has played this season. It has been one of the SEC’s best and most consistent forces. As it returns home seeking a bounceback, I expect it gets exactly that — in impressive fashion to boot as it reasserts itself as one of the SEC’s true contenders. The Vols are 8-4 against the spread as a favorite and get it done here with a double-digit dub. Prediction: Tennessee 72, Missouri 61 — Kyle Boone
No. 23 UConn at No. 11 Creighton
When: 12 p.m. | Where: CHI Health Center Omaha in Omaha, Nebraska
TV: Fox | Live stream: fuboTV (Try for free)
UConn remains without star James Bouknight, one of the best scorers in all of college basketball. So without him, I can’t pick the Huskies on the road — at least not straight up. Their only quality outing in his absence came against Butler two weeks ago, and since, they’ve lost to St. John’s at home and narrowly squeaked a win over DePaul. Good spot here for the Bluejays to establish some much-needed confidence after dropping their second straight earlier this week. Going to meet in the middle and take UConn against the number but Creighton to win comfortably. Prediction: Creighton 76, UConn 70 — Kyle Boone
So who wins every college basketball game today? And which underdogs pull off stunning upsets? Visit SportsLine now to get picks for every game, all from the unbiased model that simulates every game 10,000 times, and find out.