Upcoming Match-ups

Northeastern vs West Virginia Picks and Odds

David Golokhov

by David Golokhov in College Basketball

Dec 28, 2020 · 4:49 PM PST

West Virginia coach Bob Huggins speaks with players
West Virginia coach Bob Huggins speaks with players during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game against Richmond Sunday, Dec. 13, 2020, in Morgantown, W.Va. (AP Photo/Kathleen Batten)
  • The Northeastern Huskies will face the West Virginia Mountaineers on Tuesday afternoon at 2:00 PM ET.
  • Northeastern has lost four of five on the year but is 3-2 against the spread.
  • The Mountaineers are 7-2 on the season with their two losses coming to No. 1 Gonzaga and No. 3 Kansas.

The Northeastern Huskies are just 1-4 on the season and appear to be heading towards 1-5. On Tuesday afternoon, they’ll visit the No. 9 West Virginia Mountaineers and the oddsmakers are not expecting a close game. With the Huskies as an 18.5-point dog and likely to lose this contest, can they at least cover the spread and make this a contest?

Northeastern vs West Virginia Opening Odds

Team Moneyline Spread Total
Northeastern +1600 +18.5 (-115) Ov 136.5 (-110)
West Virginia -4500 -18.5 (-105) Un 136.5 (-110)

All odds as of December 28 at FanDuel.

Huskies Haven’t Been Competitive

The Huskies entered the year with low expectations and so far, they’ve done a great job of meeting them. They have lost four of their first five games but bettors should be satisfied as they’ve gone 3-2 against the spread. They actually won outright as a 4.5-point dog to Massachusetts and nearly beat Syracuse as a 17.5-point road dog.

The concern here is that other than the Syracuse game, they haven’t been competitive against anyone decent. They are coming off an 18-point loss to Georgia and they’re unranked. Visiting West Virginia is going to be a very tall order for a team that ranks 171st in the KenPom Adjusted Efficiency Margin.

West Virginia Looks Like A Big 12 Contender

West Virginia has looked very impressive to start the year. The team is ranked No. 9 in the country and has won seven of their first nine contests. Their only losses have been to No. 1 Gonzaga and No. 3 Kansas with both contests coming away from home. The loss to Gonzaga gave them some credibility as the Bulldogs had mostly been untouchable but West Virginia actually led with 6:43 remaining.

Other than that, West Virginia has mostly mowed down everyone in their path. Five of their seven wins are by eight or more – including a win over No. 19 Richmond. They’re fresh off a loss to Kansas, so they’ll be looking to rebound in this spot. This figures to be a tough situation for Northeastern as the Mountaineers won’t be in good spirits.

West Virginia has a multi-faceted offense with four players averaging in double-figures. Northeastern is mostly quite reliant on Tyson Walker, who is the key to the team. He’s averaging 17.0 points, 5.6 assists and 2.2 steals per game. As long as the Mountaineers hold him in check, they should win this going away.

What’s The Best Bet?

The Mountaineers excel on defense and on the glass, and that’s going to be a big problem for Northeastern. West Virginia is 14th in offensive rebound percentage while Northeastern is 235th in defensive rebounding. That’s likely to lead to some excellent second-chance opportunities for West Virginia.

Northeastern is also bad with turnovers, ranking 304th in the country at 16.4 per game. West Virginia is a perfect 6-0 this season when the team pulls five or more steals. Look for them to dominate in these two realms and cover the big spread on Tuesday afternoon.

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