Saturday College Basketball Odds & Player Props: Betting On St. John’s Upset Vs. UConn?

Written By Eli Hershkovich | Last Updated
College Basketball Odds

Among Saturday’s Big East games, top-ranked UConn is lined as a favorite against St. John’s at Madison Square Garden. Thus, Rick Pitino’s Red Storm are underdogs to win outright. Will the Huskies cover the spread, or will the Red Storm stay close? Let’s assess UConn vs. St. John’s college basketball odds, including key metrics and matchups to hone in on.

Click any odds below to place a wager at the best sports betting sites. Here are the best available NCAA basketball odds in your state.

College basketball odds: UConn vs. St. John’s

For UConn fans (and backers) who reside in the Green Mountain State, there are a myriad of promos and bonus codes for first-time users on Vermont sports betting apps.

Situational Spot Favors St. John’s

If you’re unfamiliar with situational spots, this term attempts to uncover conditions in which programs have exceeded or underperformed their normal level of play — relative to the moneyline or spread. For one, the Johnnies have lost four of their last five matchups. Meanwhile, the Huskies are riding a nine-game winning streak. Therefore, this matchup represents a buy-low, sell-high spot on St. John’s — for those who typically buy into this notion.

For reference, the opening odds showcased the Red Storm as four-point “home” underdogs.

  • Related: St. John’s, Rick Pitino Worth Longshot Bet Among Final Four Odds?

Battle On The Boards

This longtime rivalry could very well boil down to which team wins the rebounding edge. Below are the games in which the Huskies failed to meet the betting market’s expectations — or close to it — while struggling to limit second-chance opportunities.

DateOpponentOffensive Rebounds AllowedClosing SpreadFinal Score
12/20Seton Hall14-7.575-60 (L)
12/23St. John’s10-1069-64 (W)
1/10Xavier20-4.580-75 (W)
1/14Georgetown15-2180-67 (W)
1/31Providence13-13.574-65 (W)

Granted, UConn center Donovan Clingan (foot) wasn’t available in those first four matchups. Yet, the Huskies haven’t exactly been elite in this category since Clingan returned on Jan. 17. For context, they rank outside the top 80 in defensive rebounding rate during that stretch.

St. John’s bigs Joel Soriano and Zuby Ejiofor combined for a handful of offensive boards in their first meeting. Moreover, the Red Storm has created second-chance shots at the fourth-highest rate nationally. After Wednesday’s 11-point defeat at Xavier, a duel that was closer than the final score illustrates, expect the Pitino to instill extra emphasis on attacking the glass in this one.

Although Clingan is relatively healthy for this rematch, the same can’t be said for Alex Karaban (ankle). The 6-foot-8 forward reportedly underwent X-rays on Thursday. Outside of “Cling Kong,” Karaban is one of the Huskies’ more reliable rebounders. Even if he plays through the injury, Soriano & Co. must take advantage of his potential limitations.

Should the notion about Karaban come to fruition, it would also force the Huskies to utilize more drop coverage with Clingan. It’s a death sentence against Johnnies guard Dannis Jenkins. Collectively, they’ve produced the 32nd-highest mid-range efficiency versus the average opponent (via Haslametrics).

  • Editor’s note: Karaban will reportedly be a game-time decision.

Utilizing My Power Ratings

Per my college basketball power rankings, these Big East foes are separated by slightly around four points. After accounting for the Red Storm’s slight home-court edge at MSG, the opening spread might be inflated, according to my raw numbers.

Likewise, Haslametrics approximated a final score of 74.5-71.2, favoring UConn. Erik Haslam, who owns and operates this analytics site will return to Outside Shots once conference tournaments start.’s managing editor Stephen Andress joins me each week to preview the weekend slate and discuss betting odds. He is betting on St. John’s.

UConn vs. St. John’s: Player Props

This table will populate when sportsbooks open player props for UConn vs. St. John’s, typically on the day of the game.

Where Can You Bet On College Basketball Player Props?

Arizona, Colorado, Iowa, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia all outlaw betting on college props. other states match the guidance of banning in-state school prop betting.

Virginia allows betting on in-state schools but not props on in-state players. The remaining states with sportsbooks allow wagering (plus live bets) on college props, including in-state programs.

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