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Saturday Slate: Best Bets for February 12

Eventually, this cold streak is going to end. I’m hoping that Brighton getting a win is a sign of better things to come, but last night didn’t do me any favors with Boise State’s defense letting down and Utah State collapsing at home against Nevada. 2-3 is not the way this is supposed to work.

Unfortunately, that’s how things go sometimes. We’re already seeing that play out today, as Illinois State is up 13-5 at the time of this writing at Indiana State. The Redbirds are supposed to be awful on the road, but that’s proving a game I’m glad I didn’t touch.

At the end of the day, all you can do is trust your insights and do the best you can. Here are my plays for February 12.


Watching Florida State lose at home to Pittsburgh suggests that the Seminoles’ injuries are catching up with them. The Seminoles don’t have the depth needed to compete with the ACC’s better teams at this point, and North Carolina needs to make a statement here in a winnable home game. Carolina is likely to run in this game, and with the Seminoles running out of bodies, this is going to be tough for Florida State to cover.


With Ithiel Horton back on the floor and playing 30+ minutes, Pittsburgh is not a basement-level ACC squad. The Panthers aren’t NCAA or even NIT-worthy with Horton on the floor, but they’re not a horror show. N.C. State comes in having lost five in a row, and the Wolfpack haven’t even been competitive in their past three road games. This is a game Jeff Capel needs for his program, so look for the Panthers to get the victory.


The Spartans should be fine against Indiana at home. The Hoosiers just do not travel well, and Michigan State needs to build some positive momentum here. The Spartans haven’t played well as of late, but they should be able to get the job done against a squad that has only beaten Maryland and Nebraska away from home.

MICHIGAN -3, -110

The same logic holds for the Wolverines taking on Ohio State: the Buckeyes haven’t shown they can beat a good team away from Columbus. Actually, Ohio State hasn’t shown it can beat a good team anywhere in 2022, because all of their wins since January are against weak opponents: Maryland, Minnesota, Northwestern, Penn State, Nebraska and IUPUI. Michigan is a big step up, and as long as the Wolverines aren’t still thinking about Purdue, they should be fine.

KENTUCKY -10, -110

Florida hasn’t been good on the road either, and Kentucky has tended to slam its opponents at Rupp Arena. With the Wildcats dominating on the boards, Kentucky should come up with a lot of second-chance points, and that spells big trouble for the Gators.


The Cougars should be in bounce-back mode against Arizona State, which has been a true horror show throughout the season. The last time out, Washington State won by 22 against the Sun Devils, and although I don’t think ASU gets held to 29 points again, I do like the Cougars to cover.


Eastern Washington is 17-2 in its past 19 games against Idaho State at Reese Court, and we’ve seen that the Bengals do not tend to put back-to-back games together. Idaho State has three wins over Division I teams this season, and each time so far, the Bengals followed by losing by double digits the next time out.

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