Within Wednesday’s college basketball slate, the Ducks and Beavers face off for the third time in this campaign — this time in the first round of the Pac-12 tournament. Let’s dig into my college basketball best bets for this matchup.
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Oregon Ducks vs. Oregon State Beavers
Dana Altman’s bunch swept the regular season in-state rivalry, yet the Ducks will be without their point guard Will Richardson (non-COVID illness) for this contest and if they advance further. Is there value in the Beavers as a result?
- All of Eli’s College Basketball Best Bets
Oregon State’s Mismatches Minus Richardson
Not only does Richardson lead his team in assists per game (3.6) and perimeter shooting (39.9%), but his length and ball pressure is also a chief variable in Altman’s press and matchup zone. Although fellow guard Jacob Young represents a ballhawk in his own right, Richardson’s absence should make life less difficult for the Beavers’ backcourt of Jarod Lucas and Dashawn Davis.
Moreover, OSU’s pick-and-roll action is one of its most successful sets despite its overall inconsistency (via ShotQuality). Oregon already struggles to defend it, and missing Richardson’s ability to fight through ball screens is a blow.
- Conference Tournament Futures Bets
Ducks’ Motivation A Factor
While Oregon won nine of its first 10 Pac-12 games, it dropped six of eight to end the regular season. The Ducks need to win the league tournament for a ticket into the big dance — with an at-large bid out of the question.
Given the Ducks’ poor body language along the way, their drive in this tournament is up for debate. You could make the case that Beavers are in the same boat, yet they were competitive down the stretch despite their single victory in Pac-12 play.
We’ll know which Oregon team decides to show up early on. OSU possesses the length to battle Altman’s unit on the glass and dictate a methodical tempo. If 6-foot-8 senior Warith Alatishe (knee) plays, his limited contribution would be a bonus in the rebounding department.
Oregon – Oregon State Betting Pick
Plug your nose and back the three-win Beavers. Wayne Tinkle’s crew likely won’t deliver a Pac-12 tournament run like last season, but it should find a way to at least hang within three possessions.
Best Available Line: Oregon State
Eli’s College Basketball Best Bet: