With Thanksgiving in the rearview mirror, the non-conference portion of the college basketball season rolls on with two heavyweights duking it out with non-power 5 conference foes. In the first highlighted matchup of this article, Eric Musselman’s Razorbacks defend their home court against Troy after a hard-fought series of games in Maui. For the second matchup, Texas Southen squares off with the mighty Jayhawks of Kansas who are looking to bounce back following a 64-50 loss to Tennessee. For both of these matchups, there is an excellent opportunity for the favorite to score a big win or perhaps an underdog to pull the rabbit out of the hat.
For this article, SBS will be going over what to look for from each squad, along with matchup predictions, and finally some other thoughts on NCAA basketball wagering.
|NCAA Basketball Week Four Games||The Pick|
|Arkansas vs. Troy||Trojans +18||-110||-110||-110|
|Texas Southern vs. Kansas||Kansas -23||-110||-110||-110|
Team Spotlight: Troy Trojans
The Trojans are coming off two straight wins including, a 10-point win over Montana on the road. For an overall record of 6-1, the Trojans have been doing a fine job of putting themselves in positions to win, including a 79-72 thriller over Florida State on the road. With a handful of notable road wins, it would appear that the Trojans have found some kind of spark to knock off big-time teams. Guard Duke Miles is hitting nearly 50 percent of his shots from the field (48.7%) and paces the squad in scoring at 14 points per game.
Team Spotlight: Arkansas Razorbacks
Ranked as the No. nine squad in the country, Arkansas has been one of the dark horse teams in the country to compete for a national championship. Guard Ricky Council IV has been excellent scoring for the Razorbacks (19 ppg) to go along with leading the team in assists at 3.5 assists per game. Forward Trevon Brazile is coming off a great 20-point outburst San Diego State in overtime and is also the team’s leading rebounder. While the Muss Bus fell short against Creighton in Maui, this is still one of the country’s premier teams and a threat to rout any unprepared opponent.
Prediction: Troy presents an interesting matchup for the Razorbacks if they are not careful, but look for Arkansas to cruise at home regardless. That said, take Troy +18 here.
Team Spotlight: Texas Southern Tigers
A team that has been down on its luck as of late, the Tigers are trying to right the ship following a great win over Arizona State at home near the start of the season. Since that great win over the Sun Devils, Texas Southern has been blown out three times (Houston, Oral Roberts, and Auburn) and also soundly defeated (Samford). The Tigers have also been outscored by opponents by an average margin of over 17 ppg as well. Forward Davon Barnes paces the squad with 14.1 ppg.
Team Spotlight: Kansas Jayhawks
The No. 3 ranked squad in the country, the Jayhawks are licking their wounds following a 14-point loss to Tennessee. Prior to that Kansas, had put together an undefeated record at 6-0 and had knocked off the likes of Wisconsin, Duke, and N.C. State. Forward Jalen Wilson has been terrific for Kansas with 22.9 ppg, 9.4 rpg, and has been an excellent offensive force for the Jayhawks. Kansas has been averaging almost 74.4 ppg and has been a great offensive team thus far. Defense is where the Jayhawks are falling short, but this could be a good game for them to put the clamps down and try something new.
Prediction: This will be interesting as Kansas has not really blown out anyone since the start of the season (25-point win over Omaha), so perhaps this is the perfect spot for the Jayhawks to break out.
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