While playing in the College Basketball Conference in January and February, Thursday games are usually owned by the mid-majors.
But there are still plenty of sites to find your bet value.
Our staff is targeting four different games on Thursday, so dive below for top college basketball odds, picks and best bets.
Thursday’s best bets on fourth-party college basketball
The team logos in the table below represent each of the games the college basketball team is targeting on Thursday’s slate of games. Click on the team logos for a match below to go to a specific bet discussed in this article.
Coastal Carolina across from Old Dominion
Kings is in pure sandwich spot here. They barely pull off an overtime win over Georgia Southern and are preparing for a road game with Marshall (who is still probably the best team in the Sun Belt).
Meanwhile, the hardliners could use the victory. They’re coming off three straight losses, including the last time they dropped a road game to Marshall. With Marshall still probably the best in the Sun Belt, this would be a great talent move.
Both teams play similarly as well. Coastal plays more tempo, but neither team shoots a triple, instead playing inside while smashing the offensive boards.
On defense, both teams pack it in and allow plenty of 3-point attempts, though I wouldn’t expect three to be a big deal here.
Instead, I expect this game to turn out to be a rocky battle, as both defenses pack it in against two internal offenses.
Also, Old Dominion is looking for a victory in getting the plane to Huntington.
Action Network tracked the big, big money on Coastal, with dealers taking over 90% of the betting handle despite getting less than 40% of the betting tickets.
I’d still play this at +7 (-110) or better, but it’ll probably be a little smaller, as the projections make the font there.
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Lindenwood vs. SEMO
The Lindenwood Lions are looking to avoid falling below .500 in a Thursday night conference when they travel to Southeast Missouri.
The Redhawks are 2-2 in conference play and get a big win over Little Rock as they took the lead from the 11-minute mark in the first period.
There is no denying that Lindenwood is one of the worst offensive teams in the country. However, his defense has been the best in team play to date, specifically when it comes to defending on the perimeter.
The Lions have held teams to 30.7% from 3 all season and have been better in the last five, allowing just 27.9% from depth.
Against the Redhawks, their 3-second defense over the break will be key, as SE Missouri State takes 34.4% of its field goal attempts from the area.
Lindenwood ranks at 97 percent over the last five games, with teams holding on to just 27 percent over the break.
I have a few concerns when it comes to shifting and misses, as Lindenwood struggled with both. But the Redhawks were one of the last 10 teams in the country in errors per game, posting 21.9 tackles and sending opposing teams to the line 27.7 tackles per contest.
Lindenwood was the second best free throw team in the OVC (78.3%). Hitting the streak 15+ has been a deciding factor in every win so far this season.
There is also a big difference when it comes to next money bets on lions. While they only draw 25% of the bets, they bring in over 75% of the money.
This only adds to my confidence in Lindenwood, who has covered four of the last five games.
Return Lions at +8.5 or better to keep this guy close in multiplayer.
Wright State vs. Green Bay
by DJ James
The Wright State Raiders are having their easiest test of the season on the road against Green Bay, one of the worst teams in the country.
Green Bay ranks 356th in modified efficiency, including 347th on offense and 358th on defense, according to KenPom. Wright State ranks 226th overall, and while that number isn’t great, it’s much better than Phoenix.
Wright State does a good job: getting the ball in. She made the highest percentage of points inside the arc with 65.9%. Green Bay allows opponents to shoot 54.8% on two throws, so forwards must score at will, shooting 52.3% inside the arc.
Otherwise, forwards rarely turn the ball over (17.9%) and shoot nearly 34% from depth. Green Bay allows teams to shoot 36.2% on the outside, so the Raiders have an alternative to their typical game plan.
Now, Green Bay can only truly score by fouling and shooting free throws. It gets 21% of its points from hitting, but Wright State ranks 37th in the nation in percentage of free throw attempts on defense.
Finally, Wright State ranks 30th in adjusted pace rate. The Raiders use just 15.7 seconds per possession, which ranks 28th in college hoops.
Green Bay is ranked 258, but due to their difficulties defending on the inside, the Raiders must put the ball in the paint and work an open look quickly.
Gonzaga vs. BYU
The BYU Cougars will have a full five days off to prepare for Gonzaga’s undefeated team in WCC play.
This is an important game for coach Mark Pope, who has built one of the best defenses in the country.
The Cougars rank 24th nationally in Modified Efficiency (92.7) by maintaining an advantage on the inside and on the glass. BYU only allows opponents to grab offensive rebounds on 22% of their possessions, which is the fifth lowest rate nationally.
Offensively, the Cougars are slated to make some lead shooting on their home turf. BYU shoots 30.2% from outside, which results in only 31% of its total points coming from long range.
Pope’s team hit their best home run of the season, posting a perfect 8-0 record.
Just as I think this is a great place to support the Cougars, Gonzaga may be getting into this game a little slow. The Bulldogs will play their third game on the road in seven days when they step into the Marriott Center on Thursday night.
In order to neutralize Drew Timme, the Cougars will use freshman Noah Waterman and sophomore Atiki Ally Atiki to give the American big man a slew of different looks.
Overall, BYU—which ranks 64th in the country in total bench minutes (35.8%)—has the depth to make up for the talent gap it will face against Gonzaga.
In addition, BYU will be able to match Gonzaga’s evolving style, as both teams rank in the top 55 in modified pace.
This is a great place to support a BYU team that has been more comfortable this season at home, and sell on a Gonzaga team that is ready to return to its home turf.