Alabama vs Purdue Odds, Picks and Predictions: Making Hay in Canada

When Alabama and Purdue meet at Coca-Cola Coliseum on Saturday, it'll be a homecoming of sorts for Purdue big man, Zach Edey. Our college basketball betting picks expect the big man to put on a show and help the Boilermakers come away with a win.

Dec 9, 2023 • 08:25 ET • 4 min read
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Zach Edey Purdue Boilermakers
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Toronto sports fans finally caught a glimpse of the superstar they've been waiting for as Zach Edey and the Purdue Boilermakers touched down in Canada for a game against the Alabama Crimson Tide.

Edey has led Purdue to an 8-1 record and the No. 4 spot in the AP Top 25 and he'll get to play in his hometown against the Tide who sit just outside the rankings.

College basketball odds opened with the Boilermakers as 5.5-point favorites and the Over/Under at 161. Here are my best free college basketball picks and predictions for Purdue vs. Alabama on Saturday, December 9.

Alabama vs Purdue best odds

Alabama vs Purdue picks and predictions

This game is technically on a neutral site at Coca-Cola Coliseum in Toronto but the crowd should be firmly on the side of hometown hero Zach Edey and the Purdue Boilermakers. Edey is the reigning Wooden Award winner and he's the favorite to win the award again as he's averaging 23.7 points, 11.2 rebounds, and 2.9 blocks per game. 

The Boilermakers were upset on the road against Northwestern last week but that's the only loss on their resume. They've racked up wins against Gonzaga, Tennessee, and Marquette who all rank in the Top 10 of the KenPom ratings and they're fresh off a 19-point rout against an Iowa side that was 37th. 

The Alabama Crimson Tide have faced three Power 6 opponents in Ohio State, Oregon, and Clemson (none of whom rank in the Top 20 at KenPom) and lost to the Tigers and Buckeyes. They struggled to defend in those contests allowing 89.3 points per game on 53.1% shooting. They also allowed  Indiana State to drop 80 points on 50.9% shooting earlier this season. 

The Crimson Tide have been filling up the hoop thanks to guards Mark Sears (19.8 points per game on 57/52/82 shooting splits) and Aaron Estrada (16.4 ppg on 50/45/78 shooting). However, those shooting percentages are unsustainable long-term so expect regression from both players especially against a Purdue squad that holds opponents to 26.9% shooting from deep. 

Big man Grant Nelson has played well since transferring from North Dakota State but he doesn't have the size or strength to handle Edey and Alabama has done a poor job of defending at the rim. 

Poor backcourt play led to the Boilermakers getting stunned in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament last season. However, guards Braden Smith and Fletcher Loyer have been far more consistent as sophomores and they've been joined by transfer Lance Jones who gives them another ball-handler and outside shooter. 

With Edey down low and those three guards spreading the floor, Purdue should be able put up points against a Tide squad that ranks just 161st in the country in defensive efficiency. On the other side of the floor, the Boilermakers rank an impressive 33rd in defensive efficiency and should be able slow down Alabama's up-tempo-attack. Take Purdue to win and cover in Edey's homecoming. 

My best bet: Purdue -5.5 (-110 at Caesars)

Alabama vs Purdue same-game parlay

Purdue -6

Zach Edey Over 21.5 points

Mark Sears Over 15.5 points

Edey is averaging 23.7 ppg despite playing limited minutes in blowout games. He should get plenty of burn today in what will be a competitive game in front of his hometown fans. The Tide have rarely faced offensively competent bigs this season but they haven't done a good job of protecting the paint and they foul at a high rate. That should mean lots of buckets for Edey down low and plenty of trips to the charity stripe, where he converts at a 71% clip. 

Sears is coming off a modest 13-point performance against the Red Wolves, but he played just 24 minutes and spread the ball around in a blowout win. He scored at least 17 points in each of his previous six contests while averaging 22 ppg and will doubtless look to take more shots in a game of this magnitude.

Learn how to bet a same-game parlay with these helpful tips and strategies.

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Alabama vs Purdue spread and Over/Under analysis

This line hit the board at DraftKings on Friday afternoon with Purdue installed as a 5.5-point favorite with the Over/Under at 161.

The Boilermakers won the regular season and Big Ten Conference tournament titles last season but were shocked as a No. 1 seed in the opening round of March Madness. With all five starters returning led by Edey, big things are expected of them this season. While they were upset by an underrated Northwestern team last week they bounced back with a 87-68 win against Iowa and they are 6-2-1 ATS to begin the season.

The Tide also won their regular season and conference tournament last season and advanced to the Sweet 16. However, they lost five of their six top scorers from a year ago with Sears being their only returning starter.

With Alabama's high-scoring, shaky defense, and blazing-fast tempo it's little surprise that this total opened as high as it did. The Over has gone 6-2 in Alabama's eight games this season while also going 6-2 in Purdue's previous eight contests.

Alabama vs Purdue betting trend to know

The Crimson Tide are 0-4 ATS in their last four games while the Boilermakers are 4-1-1 ATS in their previous six. Find more college basketball betting trends for Alabama vs. Purdue.

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Alabama vs Purdue game info

Location: Coca-Cola Coliseum, Toronto, ON
Date: Saturday, December 9, 2023
Tip-off: 1:30 p.m. ET

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