The Stanford Cardinal visit Galen Center in Los Angeles on Wednesday night to take on the USC Trojans for the second time this college basketball season, so I bring you the best betting pick for this Pac-12 Conference matchup along with all the key tips and betting trends.
According to DraftKings Sportsbook, the USC Trojans opened as firm 7.5-point home favorites. They beat the Cardinal 72-66 as 3-point road favorites on February 2, and the Trojans are 3-1 SU and ATS in their previous four encounters with Stanford.
The Cardinal look to halt a three-game slide and keep their March Madness hopes alive
The Stanford Cardinal (14-11; 10-9 ATS) are on a three-game losing streak following a 73-62 defeat to Oregon State this past Saturday. Also, it was their second consecutive loss on the home court, while Stanford’s previous road contest went to a triple overtime and the Cardinal suffered an 85-76 defeat at Washington State.
Stanford is No. 63 in the latest NCAA NET Rankings, going 4-5 in the Quadrant 1 games. The Cardinal are No. 70 in the KenPom rankings, posting the 39th-best defensive rating in the country (93.4), but they score only 106.2 points per 100 possessions (121st in the country).
Also, Stanford makes 47.7% of its field goals (35th), but the Cardinal shoot just 32.6% from deep (237th) and make 15.0 turnovers per game, enough for the 54th-most in the nation. Senior forward Oscar Da Silva leads the way with 18.8 points and 6.8 rebounds per game, while freshman wing Ziaire Williams adds 11.2 points and 4.7 boards a night.
The Trojans desperately need to snap a two-game skid
While the Cardinal sit at the sixth spot of the Pac-12 Conference standings, half a game behind the No. 5 seed Arizona, the USC Trojans (19-6; 13-5 Conf.) are tied with Oregon for the No. 2 seed, only half a game behind UCLA.
If they want to stay in the Pac-12 regular-season title chase, the Trojans have to beat Stanford. USC is No. 25 in the NCAA NET Rankings and will certainly enter the Big Dance. The Trojans score 113.0 points per 100 possessions (27th) and surrender 91.4 in a return (22nd), while freshman 7-footer Evan Mobley leads the way with 16.4 points and 8.5 rebounds per contest.
USC has dropped two of its last three games including the previous two. After a heavy 80-62 loss at Colorado, the Trojans suffered a 71-61 defeat at Utah as 4.5-point road favorites.
- 1-4 ATS in the last five road games against USC
- 1-5 ATS in the last six road games as underdogs
- 7-3 ATS in the last ten games overall
- 4-1 ATS in the last five home games as favorites
With both Stanford and USC trying to bounce back in a high-stake showdown, I’m backing the Trojans to get the job done. They are a well-rounded team and should have more offensive firepower than the Cardinal.
Stanford is a good defensive team, but USC is even better, at least on paper. The Trojans are fourth in the nation in opponent two-point percentage (42.3%). They play aggressive defense and will cause a lot of troubles on the other side when pressing the ball.
Pick: Take USC -7.5 at -110
As I’ve mentioned, this should be a hard-fought, defensive battle, so I’m going with the under on the totals. USC average 67.8 possessions per 40 minutes (219th), while Stanford plays at a slightly faster pace of 69.7 possessions per 40 minutes (124th), so we shouldn’t see an up-tempo game.
Furthermore, both schools lean on a stout defense. On the other hand, we could see a dramatic finish and a lot of free throws, and that’s a problem for the under backers. Still, I hope the Trojans and Cardinal will bring their best defense to this high-stake clash.
Pick: Go under 137.5 points at -110