Auburn vs. West Virginia prediction and odds for Saturday, January 28 (Mountaineers cover with ease)


The Big 12/SEC Challenge gets started with a noon tip between West Virginia and Auburn.

The Mountaineers may not have the sterling record that No. 15 Auburn has, but West Virginia is the one that opened as considerable home favorites.

The 16-4 Tigers are off a home loss to Texas A&M on Wednesday and now travel to Morgantown, West Virginia to face a Mountaineers team that is 12-8 and started Big 12 play 0-5 but have won two of three, is their poor record a product of the grueling Big 12 schedule?

Let’s break it all down and dish out a best bet on the Saturday afternoon meeting:

Auburn vs. West Virginia odds, spread and total

Auburn vs. West Virginia prediction and pick

I hold the Big 12 in high regard and I see the middle of the conference far superior to the middle of the SEC. This figures into this game as West Virginia is seen as a better team than Auburn by advanced analytics sites such as KenPom (No. 21 vs. No. 24) and this matchup sets up well for Bobby Huggins’ group. So, look past the record, these teams are far closer than it appears.

West Virginia’s heavy ball pressure defense can give the Auburn backcourt fits that is outside the top 200 in turnover rate. Not to mention, the Tigers struggle to shoot from the perimeter as well, shooting 29% from deep which is bottom 30 in the country.

West Virginia’s offense is a top 30 bunch, 83rd in effective field goal percentage and elite on both the offensive glass and getting to the free throw line. Auburn’s defense fouls at an alarmingly high rate and I don’t envision they travel well to a non conference foe on Saturday.

West Virginia has some work to do to get back into the bubble conversation, but this team’s analytical profile is far better than the 12-8 record and I think they keep it rolling at home with a win and cover against Auburn.

PICK: West Virginia -3.5

Track all of Reed’s bets at Betstamp HERE!

Game odds refresh periodically and are subject to change.


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