The Monday, February 22 CBB lines are live on BetRivers.com, and with less than three weeks until Selection Sunday, teams are running out of opportunities to get off the NCAA Tournament bubble. Monday night provides three high-major matchups with major bubble ramifications.
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Rob Dauster, a longtime national college basketball writer, and co-founder of the Field of 68 Podcast Network breaks down the February 22 CBB lines, focusing on Syracuse at Duke, Oregon at Southern Cal, and Texas Tech at Oklahoma State.
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- #18 USC & #19 Texas Tech both win. Was +149. Now +170.
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Monday, February 22 CBB Lines & Predictions
SYRACUSE (13-6, 7-5) at DUKE (10-8, 8-6), 7 p.m. ET
MONEYLINE: Duke -265, Syracuse +215
SPREAD: Duke -6
OVER/UNDER: 148.5 points
Click here for the full list of Duke-Syracuse odds.
This is a weird matchup today, as two of the very best college basketball coaches in the history of the sport face off in a battle where neither team is anywhere near their usual level of success. Syracuse is currently sitting at 13-6 on the season and 7-5 in an ACC that doesn’t have a true Final Four threat in the mix. Duke, on the other hand, is 10-8 overall and 8-6 in the league, which is a far cry from where we expected them to be after they entered the season as a preseason top 10 team.
But here’s the catch: both of these teams are playing their best basketball of the season right now.
Syracuse has won three in a row and six of their last eight games, erasing a 1-3 start in the conference after the first two months of their season got disrupted by multiple COVID pauses. Duke has won three straight games, is coming off of a win over Virginia on Saturday, and looks like a different team without Jalen Johnson on the roster.
So what should we make of this matchup?
I tend to lean towards Duke in this spot. I think Matthew Hurt is the ideal weapon to utilize against the Syracuse zone, and with D.J. Steward, Jeremy Roach, and Jaemyn Brakefield playing well, I think the Blue Devils will have success against the Cuse zone. That said, I’m not sure Duke is going to be able to get stops against the Orange, who actually have some talent and athleticism on the wings.
So while I like Duke here, I think that the best bet may actually be The Over here.
OREGON (14-4, 9-3) at #19 Southern Cal (18-4, 12-3), 9 p.m. ET
MONEYLINE: USC -186, Oregon +155
SPREAD: USC -4
OVER/UNDER: 140.5 points
Click here for the full list of USC-Oregon odds.
A showdown between two of the top three teams in the Pac-12 on a Monday night?
For my money, Oregon is one of the most underrated teams in the country right now. They finally have their three best players healthy and are back to playing their best basketball after a month of COVID pauses. Their computer numbers are weighed down by bad losses from when they were coming out of those pauses.
While Oregon is underrated from a perception standpoint, Bet Rivers has seemed to have caught on. Maybe they read this column, I don’t know. But this line opened with USC as a 3.5-point favorite, and it has since moved to four. I make this line closer to 2 or 2.5, depending on how you value home-court advantage in the middle of a pandemic, so there is a little value on the Ducks. I’ll be on them here, but I’m not as comfortable with this bet as I have been in the past. For starters, it’s a nice buy-low spot on USC after their loss to Arizona on Saturday, and the Trojans actually match up fairly well with the Ducks. Their bigs — Evan Mobley and Isaiah Mobley — can chase around the smaller Oregon forwards on the perimeter, and they should have a very real advantage in the paint.
So I like Oregon, but I don’t love Oregon.
#18 TEXAS TECH (14-7, 6-6) at OKLAHOMA STATE (14-6, 7-6), 9 p.m. ET
MONEYLINE: Texas Tech -157, Oklahoma State +130
SPREAD: Texas Tech -3
OVER/UNDER: 138 points
Click here for the full list of Texas Tech-Oklahoma State odds.
I’m not as bought in on the Red Raiders as others. I think that they lack the kind of NBA-level talent we saw out of Chris Beard’s best teams. Oklahoma State does have a pro, the potential No. 1 pick in Cade Cunningham, and they have already beaten the Red Raiders in Lubbock. (Although, if you remember, that game was the result of a terrible foul call as Cunningham shot a three at the end of regulation, down by three. OSU won in overtime.)
Oklahoma State’s zone can wreak havoc on the way that Tech wants to run offense. Combine all of that with the fact that Isaac Likelele is going to be matched up on Mac McClung, and I love the Fighting Mike Boyntons here.