It is officially March, which means the regular college basketball betting season is winding down and the NCAA Tournament is on the horizon. At this point of the season, every game is important as bubble teams are trying to make an impression. Here are three games to check out on Saturday’s card along with our predictions on the betting lines.
Louisville Cardinals @ Syracuse Orange
Odds: Orange -2
The No. 12 Orangemen are trying to halt a two-game slide, while the No. 10 Cardinals have won four in a row and are looking to avenge a 70-68 loss to Syracuse back on January 19th, their lone home loss of the season. The Cardinals have dropped three of their last five at ‘Cuse, but their two wins have come in the last three meetings and they’ve covered the spread three times in those five games. In typical Big East fashion, this should be a tough and bruising game that goes to the wire, but Syracuse just lost their first home game and they won’t want to drop two in a row.
Miami Hurricanes @ Duke Blue Devils
Odds: Blue Devils -7
The game of the day comes from the ACC, where the No. 5 Hurricanes bounced back from a disappointing loss at Wake Forest to beat Virginia Tech by 15, but they’re heading into what should be a vicious environment at Duke, where Miami won for the first time in eight attempts last season. The No. 3 Blue Devils may have gotten caught looking ahead to the ‘Canes as they were shocked by five at Virginia, but they haven’t lost at Cameron this year and after getting destroyed by 27 points at Miami on January 23rd, you know they’ve been looking forward to this game since leaving the floor at “The U”, which has always been more known for football, but they throw in a solid basketball season every now and again. This will be a massive test for the Hurricanes and even though they’ll lose, they’ll hold their own.
Arizona Wildcats @ UCLA Bruins
Odds: UCLA -1
The No. 11 Wildcats are another team that may have been caught looking past their last opponent as they were manhandled by 11 points at USC, while the Bruins may be the most talented unranked team in the country and have won five of their last six games. A win here for the Bruins would surely put them in the conversation for the top 25 and it would complete a season sweep over Arizona, who lost 84-73 to UCLA in Tucson on January 24th. The Bruins have won seven of their last eight at home against the Wildcats, but ’Zona will be eager to come out and show that they’re worthy of a top-10 ranking and a win on the road at UCLA would probably send them into that tier. While Miami-Duke has the higher-ranked teams, this could be the best game of the weekend as both teams like to push the pace, there is some excellent individual talent on display, and the ‘Cats pull out a close game.