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NCAA Basketball Betting: There are a lot of ‘gimme’ games for teams in the Top 25 this week, but that doesn’t mean we can’t find some meaningful matchups that could have an affect deep into March Madness. There are some teams from power conferences that are playing some quality mid-majors and intriguing games between power conference teams that will keep you occupied all weekend long.
For the first time in a long time, no one is expecting much out of the Virginia Cavaliers heading into this season. Virginia is unranked despite making it to the NCAA Tournament in each of the last four seasons. This team doesn’t have the veteran talent it once did, but Tony Bennett has a way of getting teams to respond to him. UVA is already off to a 2-0 start and could get to 4-0 before it starts facing power conference teams. As for VCU, the Rams have a new coach in Mike Rhoades. Rhoades came to VCU from Rice after Will Wade left for LSU in the offseason and it will be interesting to see how the team responds to him.
Kansas may be riding high after knocking off a young Kentucky team, but the Jayhawks need to focus before taking on South Dakota State this Friday. The Jackrabbits have made it to the NCAA Tournament in four of the last six seasons and they came close to knocking off Maryland two years ago. Bill Self should have his team prepared to meet the challenge, but if they look past SDSU, we could have a game on our hands.
Sometimes it takes a bit for John Calipari’s kids to get going and this seems to be one of those years. Kentucky wasn’t impressive against Utah Valley, just barely squeaked by Vermont, and then lost to Kansas. The Wildcats have not been able to create much offense and freshmen Kevin Knox and Quade Green are struggling. East Tennessee State made the NCAA Tournament last year and could give Kentucky a decent game.
Michigan State is the real deal. Despite the loss to Duke, the Spartans proved that they have what it takes to make some serious noise in this year’s tournament. Turnovers killed them against the Blue Devils though and you can bet that Tom Izzo has said as much in practices. Keep an eye on their game against Stony Brook this week. They should paste the Sea Wolves, but it’s always interesting to see how team’s respond after a loss.
The Trojans got an unexpectedly tough test from North Dakota State earlier in the week and now must face a team that is notoriously tough to take down at home. Vanderbilt has an old school arena that some teams find hard to shoot in. The Commodores will be hungry too after getting upset by Belmont earlier in the week. This is Bryce Drew’s second year at Vanderbilt and he will be looking to make another NCAA Tournament appearance.
CBB Games of the Week for the Weekend of November 17
Virginia vs. VCU, Friday, November 17
South Dakota State at Kansas, Friday, November 17
East Tennessee State at Kentucky, Friday, November 17
Stony Brook at Michigan State, Sunday, November 19
USC at Vanderbilt, Sunday, November 19
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