NCAAB: Gonzaga and Duke on upset watch
Don’t wait until late Friday night to see the spreads for Saturday. Start hunting for college basketball upsets now, with BetAmerica's weekly upset picks.
#16 Michigan State at Michigan, Noon ET (Fox)
This is Michigan’s third appearance in the BetAmerica moneyline special. So far we’re batting .500. This weekend the Wolverines will host their rivals, fresh off a heartbreaking Spartans loss. Cassius Winston just needed to knock down a free throw to tie it up with Penn State in the final seconds, but the 86% free throw shooter could not close the deal.
The rivalry aspect of this game should create chaos. In college basketball, chaos always benefits the home team. This is the right place for the Wolverines to secure a significant résumé-building win.
#2 Gonzaga at Saint Mary’s, 10 p.m. ET (ESPN)
If Gonzaga is going to lose another regular-season game, it’ll be the road at Saint Mary’s. The Zags’ annual trip to the Bay Area is typically contentious. Although I ultimately believe Gonzaga will find a way to win, go ahead and take Saint Mary’s and the points in a game that should go down to the wire.
#7 Duke at North Carolina, 6 p.m. ET (ESPN)
Duke should be a double-digit favorite over the Tar Heels. The wobbly wheels of Roy Williams’ program are on the verge of popping off, and North Carolina might be headed to the NIT. That’s why it’s a great time to take the Tar Heels.
Cole Anthony returned from a six-week injury absence last Saturday and scored 26 points in a one-point loss to Boston College. Two days later he missed 17 shots, yet the Tar Heels still almost upset a top 10 Florida State team on the road. This is setting up to be Anthony’s enormous breakthrough on the national stage, a proving ground for him to earn a spot at the top of the 2020 NBA Draft.
Rivalry games are weird. Ride with the home dogs with the best player on the floor.
Virginia at #5 Louisville, 4 p.m. ET (ESPN)
There are only seven Division I basketball teams that shoot three-pointers worse than Virginia. There are only three Division I basketball teams that shoot three-pointers better than Louisville. That all will change Saturday.
Since Louisville joined the ACC, Virginia has a 10-1 record against the Cards. The lone loss came at the buzzer on an improbable Mangok Mathiang 12-footer in 2015. Even when the Cards led by five with six seconds to play and an NCAA Tournament berth on the line back in 2018, they could not seal the deal.
Just like Kentucky, the Cavaliers are living rent-free in Louisville’s head. This is the Cardinals' best opportunity yet to knock out Virginia, just like this year was their best opportunity to knock out Kentucky. In case you forgot, the Cards lost that game in overtime. I expect a similar result Saturday.