Study group: Sunday's Top 25 NCB betting notes

Mar 9, 2013 |
Check out our quick-hitting betting notes on all of Sunday’s ranked college basketball games:

(19) VCU at Temple (+1.5)

Virginia Commonwealth needs to land a tough road win at Temple to clinch at least a share of the Atlantic 10 regular-season title. The Rams have won three straight to keep the pressure on Saint Louis on top of the tightly-wound standings. The running Rams are 12th in the nation in scoring averaging 78 points and they've rang up at least 90 points eight times on the season. Temple is suddenly the hottest team in the conference. The Owls are 13-3 at home and bring a six-game winning streak into Sunday afternoon's contest. The Owls have an RPI of 41 and would relish another signature win to add to their NCAA Tournament resume. VCU is 0-5 ATS in its last five road games.

(21) Wisconsin at Penn State (+8.5)

Two consecutive losses in the past week knocked the Wisconsin Badgers out of the Big Ten title race. On Sunday, the Badgers will try to avoid finishing their regular season on a season-high three-game losing skid. Penn State, guaranteed to finish at the bottom of the conference, has won two of three after snapping a 14-game losing skid with a shocking home win over No.4 Michigan. The Nittany Lions were blown out by Minnesota on the road after that, but recovered to defeat Northwestern by seven points. Wisconsin defeated Penn State 60-51 at home on Jan. 3 to open conference play for both teams. The Nittany Lions are 5-1 ATS in their last six games overall.

Illinois at (13) Ohio State (-9)

When Ohio State met a ranked Illinois team on Jan. 5, the Illini enjoyed their largest margin of victory against a ranked opponent since 1964. But when the Buckeyes host Illinois on Sunday, they will have a chance to avenge that loss and earn a share of their fourth consecutive Big Ten title. Ohio State began the season 11-2, but endured one of its worst shooting performances against the Illini in a 74-55 road loss. The Buckeyes have since recovered and won four straight – including Tuesday’s 67-58 victory at Indiana – after a 1-3 stretch in February. Ohio State is one game behind Indiana in the Big Ten standings, but can grab a share of regular-season crown with a loss by the Hoosiers at Michigan on Sunday and a win against Illinois. The Fighting Illini are 0-4 ATS in their last four games overall.

(2) Indiana at (8) Michigan (Pick)

Indiana has already secured the top seed in next week’s Big Ten Tournament, but one more win on Sunday at Michigan could wrap up its first outright conference title since 1993. Indiana also owns a league-best 6-2 road record and an 81-73 victory over the Wolverines in Bloomington on Feb. 2, but has lost two of its last three. Michigan has won four of five, with three of the victories coming at the Crisler Center. The Wolverines, who shared the regular-season title with the Buckeyes and Spartans last season, are 17-0 at home this season. Michigan is 1-8 ATS in its last nine games overall.

Northwestern at (12) Michigan State (-19.5)

Michigan State can possibly claim a piece of the Big Ten title when it hosts Northwestern in the regular-season finale Sunday. The Spartans will need Indiana to lose earlier in the day at No. 8 Michigan to put itself in position to share the championship with a win against the Wildcats. Michigan State is coming off four straight games against ranked opponents. The Spartans ended a three-game losing streak with a win Thursday against Wisconsin. Northwestern enters the game on a seven-game slide, their longest losing streak since 2007-08. The Wildcats have lost five players for the season due to injury or disciplinary reasons. The road team is 9-1 ATS in the last 10 meetings.

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