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Saturday College Basketball Free Pick 1/13/2018

#22 Auburn Takes Their Winning Streak to Starkville

It’s been a heckuva week for the Auburn basketball team after breaking into the college hoops rankings for the first time in 15 years. The Tigers have rattled off 13 straight wins, including coming back from double digits down to beat Ole Miss on Tuesday. For good measure they also picked up a four star commit in Babatunde Akingbola and found out 6’11” C Austin Wiley will be eligible for next season. Of course Mississippi State would love to play spoiler at home in the 1/13 college basketball free pick – a place where they haven’t lost all year.

Oddsmakers Set Auburn as Road Favorites

1/13 college basketball free pick
Mustapha Heron leads a balanced Auburn Tigers offense.

The Tigers haven’t lost since a November 17th 74-88 loss to Temple in the Charleton Classic. As good as Auburn has been all season, they seem to be finding their stride especially lately, posting five straight double digit victories. The Tigers boast the #11 scoring team in the country at 87.2 points per game but also have a strong defense, limiting opponents to less than 40% shooting from the floor.

While this year’s Auburn team has the accolades, it hasn’t always been roses when they visit Starksville – where they haven’t won since 2009. Mississippi State has dropped two straight games, at Florida and at Ole Miss but they were underdogs in both. Auburn has the balance to give the Bulldogs their third loss in a row as all five starters scored in double figures last game while Horace Spencer also chipped in 12 off the bench. To beat Auburn – there’s not just one player you have to stop.

Is Mississippi State’s Home Record Smoke and Mirrors?

1/13 college basketball free pick
G Quinndary Weatherspoon provides a nice outside option for Mississippi State.

The Bulldogs’ 12 home wins are the most of any team in the country but Mississippi State also has the 215th ranked strength of schedule in the country – compared to 69th for Auburn. Basically, the Bulldogs are impressive at home but at the same time they haven’t really beaten anybody of significance. The most impressive win for Mississippi State at home was a January 2nd defeat over Arkansas (78-75) as +2.5 underdogs. Even that victory lost a little luster though as the Razorbacks are in a free fall culminating in a 21 point home loss to LSU as -9.5 favorites.

Of course, the Bulldogs definitely have the talent – or at least the size – to get the win in the 1/13 college basketball free pick. Abdul Ado (6’11”) and Aric Holman (6’10”) are going to be a force inside – especially considering Auburn doesn’t have a player taller than 6’9″. The Bulldogs are a top 40 team in offensive rebounds and expect a lot of second chances today.

1/13 College Basketball Free Pick Betting

The line has bumped just a half a point from it’s open, sitting at AUB -3. Almost 70% of the public is backing the Tigers in this contest, chalking up Mississippi State’s solid home record more to the quality of their opponent than their own talent. The Tigers have won all three of their road games these season, but they’ve only traveled once in the past month. Mississippi State is 4-1 ATS their last five home games vs a team with a winning road record and Auburn is 4-10-3 ATS their last 17 in Starkville. The Bulldogs have a great shot at the upset today.

Pick: Mississippi State +3

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Carl Taylor

Every loss is a chance to learn a lesson. That being said, wins are so much more enjoyable. Follow along to tap into the wisdom I've learned from 20 years as a sports bettor.

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