Our free College Basketball picks are out for Wednesday, January 5th, 2022! Make sure you check our expert College Basketball picks before the action kicks off.
Look below to find our free College Basketball picks for the best games on today’s schedule!
Nebraska @ #10 Michigan State – 7pm ET
Nebraska is 6-8 going into this one and they will be desperate to pick up a conference win. The Cornhuskers have had a rough start as they are 0-3 inside the Big Ten Conference. Meanwhile, it’s nearly the exact opposite for the Spartans of Michigan State as they are 12-2 and 3-0 in conference play. Those numbers will certainly be reflected in the final of this one.
Nebraska will travel to Michigan to face Michigan State on Wednesday night in the NCAA. They are coming into this game after suffering 6 losses in their last 7 matches. The Cornhuskers have had a tough period in December with their sole win coming against Kennesaw State. Their overall record this season is 6-8 which is considerably better than the last season. Then, they finished off with 7 wins and 20 losses in the last place of the Big 10 Conference. Now, it seems that Nebraska will once again end up at the bottom of the table, but this time everyone expects to see an improved record.
Michigan State has been fantastic this season. They hold a 12-2 record with both of the losses coming off against top 10 teams. The Spartans lost to Kansas, 87-74, in their opener for the current campaign. Two weeks later, after 5 straight wins over the likes of UConn, Loyola Chicago, and Butler, they were outlasted by the best team in the last two years – Baylor. Gabe Brown leads the way for the Spartans with 14.6 points per game, while Marcus Bingham Jr. helps his team in defense which is their main strength in this campaign. I think that we will once again get the opportunity to see their masterclass in defending the basket which will make the game a low-scoring one. Hence, I will go with the option for “under points” here.
Denis’ College Basketball Pick: Under 150 (-110)
Nebraska is bad. Bad. They were arguably the worst team in the Big Ten last year, and based on what we’ve seen so far this year, they’re determined to take that crown once again. They’ve lost seven of their last eight, and the only win in that stretch came against Kennesaw State. That doesn’t bode well for this Cornhusker team as they get ready to travel over to East Lansing to take on one of the best teams in the conference.
— Michigan State Athletics (@MSU_Athletics) January 4, 2022
The Spartans enter this one at 12-2, which is a great record given the schedule they’ve played to this point. Both of their losses have come to Top-10 teams in Kansas and Baylor, who are the defending champions and look as if they have a serious chance to repeat this season. With a few wins over decent teams like Butler, UConn, and Louisville. With that resume, and with the experience of having already played the best team in basketball, along with a few other quality opponents, I think the only play here is to take Sparty in a big way at home over what may be the worst team in the conference.
Noah’s College Basketball Pick: Michigan State -16 (-110)
The Nebraska Cornhuskers are coming into this game with a record of 6-8 on the season as they have underperformed up until this point so far. Now they will be faced with their toughest test to date as they will face a top 10 team in conference play. The Cornhuskers are desperate for a victory in this one as they have started 0-3 in Big Ten Conference play. They come into this game on a one-game losing streak and have been on the losing side in six of their last seven games dating back to the beginning of December. They will need to play a near-perfect game if they want to pick up a top 25 upset on the road in this one against the Spartans of Michigan State.
The previously mentioned Michigan State Spartans come into this game with a record of 12-2 on the season. Michigan State is also nationally ranked inside the top 10 in the country at the number ten spot as we move in 2022. Michigan State is currently on a seven-game winning streak and has not lost a game since Black Friday. That loss came to Baylor in the finals of the Bad Boy Mowers Battle 4 Atlantis. Their first loss of the year came in their first game of the season, which means the Spartans have been the victor in eleven of their last twelve games. They are currently 3-0 in Big Ten Conference play as well. As for the result of this game, I have them picking up conference win number four as well.
Tony’s College Basketball Pick: Michigan State -16 (-110)
#12 Houston @ South Florida – 7pm ET
This one could be the most lopsided game of the evening. As the powerful Houston Cougars are set to take on a weak South Florida Bulls team that has had a rough year. Houston enters this one ranked 12th and with a record of 12-1 while South Florida is 5-7 and nowhere near the top 25 at the moment.
Houston has lost just twice this season, but it happened against their direct rivals from Wisconsin (65-63) and Alabama (83-82). The team has been perfect in the rest of its fixtures, but these narrow losses took the better of them. They occupy the top spot in the American Athletic Conference with 12 wins and 2 losses and will face the team at the bottom of the table, South Florida. The Bulls are 5-7 this season which puts them in a bit of a disarray. They suffered a huge upset against South Carolina State, losing the game 64-65. On top of that, they find it hard to score more than 60 points as this becomes a really rare occasion.
The 12th-seeded Houston will try to punish this weakness as they have the right players who can dominate in the paint. J’Wan Roberts and Fabian White Jr. might not be the tallest teammates in the NCAA, but they have the physique and the athleticism which they know how to utilize. Marcus Sasser averages 17.7 points for the Cougars as he regularly goes beyond the 20-point mark in such games. I think that we will see a similar outcome here as well and I will suggest picking Houston’s spread, although they have found it hard to cover throughout the last couple of games.
Denis’ College Basketball Pick: Houston -15 (-110)
Don’t think too hard about this one. Houston has looked like one of the best teams in the country for much of the year, as they’ve only slipped up twice, both against solid opponents in Alabama and Wisconsin, and both came by a combined three points. They’ve yet to even really struggle against a lower-level team, or anyone they were supposed to take care of, which in the end proves to be an important characteristic of a good team.
On the other side, South Florida has losses to Georgia Southern and South Carolina State already this year. That in and of itself should make this pretty relatively easy. I’m sorry, but I just can’t find a way to think a team that has a double-digit loss to GSU and another loss to SCSU has a real shot against a top-15 team that has looked as good as the Cougars have for much of the year. For that reason, give me Houston and the points here, as I think this one gets out of hand early.
Noah’s College Basketball Pick: Houston -15 (-110)
The Houston Cougars are coming into this game with a record of 12-2 on the season as they have played great up until this point so far. They currently find themselves nationally ranked inside of the top 25 in the country at number 12. They have won their last four games, following their controversial loss to the Alabama Crimson Tide back on December 11th. They are currently 1-0 in American Athletic Conference play after defeating Temple to open up in 2022. They will be going for their fifth straight victory in this road game against the South Florida Bulls on Wednesday night.
The previously mentioned South Florida Bulls are coming into this game with a record of 5-7 on the year. They have been underwhelming through their first 12 games and that is something they will be looking to change as the calendar changes over to a new year. South Florida has lost three of their last four games and it does not seem like it will get any easier for them on Wednesday night in this one as they will need to play a near-perfect game to score the top 25 upset at home. However, as for the result of this one, I just can’t see that happening as I have the Houston Cougars picking up the victory and covering the point spread as well.
Tony’s College Basketball Pick: Houston -15 (-110)
#15 Alabama @ Florida – 7pm ET
This SouthEastern Conference matchup is sure to be a good one. As the 15th Ranked Alabama Crimson Tide hit the road to play the Florida Gators. Alabama is currently 10-3 on the season, while the Gators are currently 9-3. Both teams will be looking for a resume-building victory and a conference win in this one on Wednesday night.
Alabama managed to start the season fantastically. They went off for 8 wins and 1 loss, but that’s not the special thing. The Crimson Tide found a way past Gonzaga and Houston in back-to-back games. Right after this achievement, they were outplayed by Memphis, 92-78, but this could have been easily expected. A week later, they suffered an upset and hence their third loss for the season in a narrow 79-78 loss to Davidson. They eventually managed to pick up their rhythm in their last meeting for 2021 as they defeated Tennessee, 73-68. The team relies much on Haden Shackelford and Keon Ellis who have been performing on a very high level against strong teams.
Florida has gone undefeated for their first six games of the season. They went on to lose two consecutive matches against Oklahoma and Texas Southern which was taken as a slight disappointment. The Gators suffered yet another loss to Maryland, but with wins over South Florida and Stony Brook, they are looking to pick up their momentum. Colin Castleton almost averages a double-double, having 14.8 points and 9.3 rebounds per game. He also adds 2.5 blocks to these statistics. However, his FT% has been terrible as he is shooting just 62.5% from the free-throw line. Phlandrous Fleming Jr., Tyree Appleby, and Myreon Jones follow him in terms of points, but they maintain a low percentage from the field. I think that Alabama is by far the better team and they will take the victory in the end.
Denis’ College Basketball Pick: Alabama (+110)
This is a game that is based on talent, I think Alabama should win relatively easily, but I think this has the chance to be a really good basketball game. The Crimson Tide have looked good at time this season, such as in back-to-back over Gonzaga and Houston, but have also looked shaky at times, such as in losses to Memphis, and especially in a loss to Davidson. The problem with this Alabama team is inside presence. Much like last season, if their threes are falling, they’re nearly impossible to beat, but if they struggle from the perimeter, they don’t seem to have the inside presence to make up for it.
— Florida Gators (@FloridaGators) January 4, 2022
Florida is in an extreme spot, as they started the year great, before back-to-back losses to Oklahoma (acceptable) and Texas Southern, which has arguably been the most shocking loss of the year in the country so far. Since that rough stretch, they’ve played better, only dropping one more game, to Maryland, and they’re slowly beginning to look more like the team from the beginning of the year. However, for this one, I think the safe play is to take the Crimson Tide, even with them being on the road.
Noah’s College Basketball Pick: Alabama (+110)
Not only is the University Of Alabama a dominant force on the football field, but they are also starting to become a contender on the basketball court as well. Over the past three seasons, they have been regularly featured in the top 25 of the nation and have made a few NCAA Tournament appearances, and won some games in March as well. They are coming into this game with a record of 10-3 on the year and nationally ranked inside the top 25 in the nation, at number 15. They are currently on a one-game winning streak, after beating Tennessee to close out 2021. They already have a huge resume-building block win after defeating the Gonzaga Bulldogs earlier on in the season. Their one fault this season is being vulnerable to upsets, as they have lost to Iona, Memphis, and Dayton so far this year.
The Florida Gators have a tough task ahead of them in this one as they will be looking to pick up a top 25 victory at home in Gainesville. After the first two games of the season, Florida entered the top 25, but have been up and down since which has led to them being on the outside looking in and unranked heading into the back half of the season. After starting the season 6-0 they would go on to lose three of the next four games they would play against Oklahoma, Texas Southern, and Maryland. Since then they have managed to go 2-0 however and now enter this game at 9-3 on the year. They are hoping they can get conference play off to a great start with a win in this one. However, I just can’t see that happening as I have the Alabama Crimson Tide picking up the road win in this one.
Tony’s College Basketball Pick: Florida (-132)
Creighton @ #19 Villanova – 8:30pm ET
The Big East Conference in its entirety put the college basketball world on notice in November and December. Every single team in the conference seemed to put together a great couple of months. However, now conference play has begun and they will all be facing off against each other. In this matchup, the Creighton Blue Jays will look to pick up their second victory over the Villanova Wildcats. While Villanova will be looking to split the season series, as these two teams may very well face off again in the Big East Conference Tournament.
Creighton and Villanova will go head-to-head on Wednesday in a rematch from December 18th, when the Bluejays smashed their rivals by 20-points, 79-59. After this win, Creighton fought off to another close victory over Marquette in double overtime. The team is 10-3 so far, losing to Colorado State, Iowa State, and Arizona State. Ryan Hawkins and Ryan Nembhard seem like their top players on the roster. They are the only ones who get more than 30 minutes of playing time and the leaders in terms of points, rebounds, assists, and steals. Ryan Kalkbrenner has been using his enormous 7’1’’ height to its potential as he averages 12.9 points and 2.9 blocks per game. He maintains a high FG% of 71.9.
Villanova, on the other hand, has been one of the disappointments of the season so far. They are coming into this fixture on a 9-4 record as they lost against every single one of the top 10 teams they have faced. It all started with a defeat against UCLA. Then, Purdue took over and outplayed the Wildcats, and to top it all, Baylor registered one of the worst defeats for Villanova in their franchise history. They barely scored 36 points for the match, putting up just 15 points in the first half. The team, however, improved their overall performance which resulted in two wins over seeded teams – Xavier and Seton Hall. I believe they can further build on these victories and they can surely take the much-needed revenge over Creighton. Hence, I will go with Villanova’s spread on Wednesday night.
Denis’ College Basketball Pick: Villanova -11 (-110)
This is a matchup of two teams that haven’t looked quite like what we’re used to from them based on years past. Creighton certainly isn’t bad by any means, as they come in at 10-3, but it’s against a bit of an average schedule, and it includes mediocre losses to Arizona State and Colorado State. Even though they’ve looked decent, there just seems to be a bit of something missing, which has the potential to be concerning come later in the year. One thing to keep in mind, however, is that they do already have a win over this Villanova team, which should boost their confidence.
For Villanova, after being a top-5 team early in the year they’ve fallen on hard times, and I’m not sure that many people know why. The talent is there, but currently, they haven’t been able to get over the hurdle of some of the top teams in the country. If there is one optimistic point for this Nova squad, it’s that all of their losses to this point (except for the L to this Creighton team) have been against virtual top-5 teams, in Baylor, UCLA, and Purdue. They’ve looked a bit letter as of late, and I expect them to come into this one looking to get back at the Blue Jays for the earlier loss. Give me the Wildcats, though I do think it’ll end up being a pretty close one, which is why I’m taking Creighton +11 here.
Noah’s College Basketball Pick: Creighton +11 (-110)
Much like the entirety of the Big East Conference, minus the few powerhouse schools that occupy the conference, the Creighton Blue Jays have been a pleasant surprise so far this season. They are coming into this game with a record of 10-3 on the season. They hold a couple of resume-building victories as well as they have defeated teams like BYU and Villanova, who they will be looking to make it a clean sweep against in this matchup. The Blue Jays are also already off to a great start in conference play as they are 2-0 after the previously mentioned win over the Wildcats, and a double-overtime victory over the Golden Eagles of Marquette. They will be looking to not only jump into the top 25 with a win in this one but, start 3-0 in the Big East as well.
The Villanova Wildcats may not be as powerful as they were in past seasons, however, they are still just as dangerous as those two previous national championship-winning teams under head coach Jay Wright. Villanova is currently ranked at number 19 in the country and is likely to find itself back in the NCAA Tournament later on this year. They are coming into this game with a record of 9-4 and a chip on their shoulder as they will be looking to get revenge for the earlier loss to Creighton this season. As for the result of this game, I have the Villanova Wildcats doing exactly that as they defend home court and pick up the victory in this one.
Tony’s College Basketball Pick: Villanova (-710)
#25 Texas Tech @ #11 Iowa State – 9pm ET
The lone ranked team vs ranked team game of the evening pits these two fantastic Big 12 Conference teams together. As the 25th ranked Texas Tech Red Raiders will travel to Ames, Iowa to play the 11th ranked Iowa State Cyclones. Both teams have had great seasons up until this point as Texas Tech is 10-2 while Iowa State is 12-1 and will be looking to bounce back from their loss to the Baylor Bears in their last game.
One of the most intriguing games on Wednesday in the NCAA will be between the Texas Tech Red Raiders and the Iowa State Cyclones. The 25th-seeded, Texas Tech, will be looking to continue their 2-game winning streak against a strong opponent. The Red Raiders are 10-2 this season which gives them 8th place in the Big 12 Conference. They came up short against Providence and Gonzaga but managed to defeat Tennessee after overtime. The team will face Iowa State twice in a matter of two weeks.
Iowa State has been a pleasant surprise this season. The Cyclones have gone 12-0 up with victories over teams like Xavier, Memphis, Creighton, and Iowa. Their defense has been incredible this season as it just failed once. This happened in their last meeting in the NCAA when they faced the undefeated Baylor. The Bears took a narrow 77-72 win over the strong Iowa State which cemented their 1st place in the current standings. This put the Cyclones second with a 12-1 record, but they still have the upper hand against teams like Kansas, TCU, and Texas. I think that they might lose one of the two meetings with Texas Tech, but It seems that it won’t be the first one. I will suggest going for the Cyclones’ spread as it feels like a good bargain.
Denis’ College Basketball Pick: Iowa State -2.5 (-110)
Texas Tech is one of the more intriguing teams that we’ve seen in the country so far this season, as they’ve continued to hang around the top-25, and rightfully so. They have a few losses, to Providence and Gonzaga (both ranked, both good teams), but they do also have a good win over Tennessee earlier in the season. The only problem is that the Tennessee win is the only even remotely decent win they have so far, and I’m still not sold on the Vols being a real contender come March, which makes me question the Red Raiders just a little.
𝓒𝓸𝓵𝓵𝓮𝓰𝓮 𝓑𝓪𝓼𝓴𝓮𝓽𝓫𝓪𝓵𝓵 𝓐𝓽 𝓘𝓽𝓼 𝓕𝓲𝓷𝓮𝓼𝓽
— Iowa State Men’s Basketball (@CycloneMBB) January 4, 2022
Iowa State, on the other hand, comes in at 12-1, and their only loss is a tight loss to the best team in basketball, the Baylor Bears. They have some pretty good wins as well, as they’ve knocked off the likes of Xavier, Memphis, and Creighton to name a few, which goes to show that the schedule isn’t a fluke that has just easily allowed them the hot start. Despite the loss in their last outing, I like the Cyclones to bounce back in this one at home, in a game that I think remains close and a bit lower scoring than many people may expect.
Noah’s College Basketball Pick: Iowa State -2.5 (-110)
The Texas Tech Red Raiders are coming into this one nationally ranked in the last spot in the top at number 25 in the country. Unfortunately for them, however, the team they are playing is coming off of their first loss of the season. So they will be angry and have a lot to prove so they will be in a dog fight in this one when they go up against Iowa State on the road in Ames. Texas Tech is currently 10-2 on the season, as both of their losses have come to top teams like Providence and Gonzaga. Since the second loss to the Bulldogs, the Red Raiders have won their last two games by a combined total of 54 points. They will be playing their first conference game of the season in this one.
The Iowa State Cyclones have put together a great season thus far. They started the year undefeated and made it to 12-0 before losing their first game of the year in their last game against the number one team in the nation, the Baylor Bears. Now they will be looking to bounce back in a big way in this and I believe that will reflect itself on the scoreboard at the end of the game. As I have the Iowa State Cyclones picking up the victory in this one over the Texas Tech Red Raiders.
Tony’s College Basketball Pick: Iowa State -2.5 (-110)
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*Odds and spreads correct at time of publication, courtesy of FanDuel.