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3 COLLEGE BASKETBALL PICKS FOR WEDNESDAY

After a 2-1 showing yesterday, we're back with three more college basketball picks for a large Wednesday slate.



Providence +3.5 (-110) vs Xavier

This game is likely to be a battle. These teams are tied on top of the Big East at 9-2 and have aspirations of making noise in the tournament. I can't overlook the home-court advantage for Xavier. Normally 3.5 points is something I would lay with a home team in a close conference game, but there is one big reason I'm going the other way today.


Zach Freemantle, Xavier's second-leading scorer (15.2 ppg) and leading rebounder (8.1 rpg) is out with an injury. Even with Freemantle in I'd expect this to be a very competitive game. Xavier certainly has the pieces to win this game at home, but this is a significant blow. I'm playing the spread, but I think Providence might even pull out a road win.




Tennessee -5.5 (-110) vs Florida

This is road team number two on the day. Not usually a winning strategy, especially in conference play, but this number seems too short. To their credit, Florida has played well in the conference season, going 6-2 ATS (Tennessee is 5-3). What I can't ignore is the strength of schedule.


In their last game, Florida lost to a good Kansas St team by 14 (yes, that was in Manhattan). They have two good wins against Missouri and Mississippi State, but other than that they just haven't beaten anyone who can sniff Tennessee's class. This is the number two team in the country. Granted, Tennessee hasn't had any major tests on the road in conference, so that is a factor to consider. However, when they play at their best they did beat Mississippi State by 11 on the road (the team Florida just beat by 2). Maybe home court will be too much here, but I'll roll with the more skilled team that has significantly higher upside to cover the spread.




Abilene Christian vs Seattle (-5.5)

After taking two road teams it's time to zero in on one team playing at home. ACU is 2-6 ATS on the road and 3-5-1 in conference play. Seattle is 5-2 ATS at home and 5-4 in conference. Seattle will be happy to be back home after losing two straight on the road. They are currently second in the WAC, half a game back of Utah Valley. This is a good team that has dropped two straight. I like backing teams in that spot, especially at home.


This is also a fade on ACU. Their closest road game in conference play was a 7-point loss to SFA. This is a long trip and they aren't a very good team. I would have expected this line to be 8.5 or 9, so I think 5.5 is a great line. I look for Seattle to get back on track at home with a convincing win over a below-average ACU team.

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