Saturday’s biggest college basketball game is No. 10 Oregon travelling to face No. 5 Michigan at the Crisler Center on CBS. After fast starts by both teams, the Wolverines and the Ducks are looking to establish some momentum heading into 2020. For both squads, this is their biggest remaining matchup on the schedule before the new year.
Oregon could use a boost after its two-game swoon in the Bahamas that included tough, close losses to Gonzaga and North Carolina. The Ducks rebounded this past week with a decisive win over Hawaii at home, but a road win over Michigan would do wonders. It’s their first true away game of the season.
Michigan, on the other hand, needs the momentum just as much as Oregon. After starting the season 7-0, the Wolverines have dropped two of their last three — most recently to Illinois at home, and the other to No. 1 Louisville. They’ve not lost a home game yet under Juwan Howard, though, which should give them the slight edge here.
Oregon: Even with two losses on its dossier, Oregon’s put together a solid early season performance with wins over Memphis, Houston and Seton Hall. And those two losses — to Gonzaga and to North Carolina — are nothing to scoff at. This Ducks team can be lethal when they’re firing on all cylinders. And for Oregon, firing on all cylinders means senior guard Payton Pritchard getting in a groove and running the show. They’ve yet to lose when he scores 20 points this season.
Michigan: In losses to Louisville and to Illinois, Michigan shot a combined 6-of-37 from the 3-point line (16.2%). In its eight wins this season, Michigan shot 82-of-194 (42.3%) from beyond the arc. We’ve seen its good offense lead to some stellar defense outings, but good defense hasn’t always lead to stellar offensive outings. Michigan will need to avoid going arctic from 3-point range to get back on track at home. This should be a good bounceback spot for them to do that.
Game prediction, pick
Latest odds via SportsLine: Michigan -3.5
Great spot for Michigan, and I really like them to win and cover this spread at home. At the Crisler Center this season, the Wolverines are beating teams, on average, by 19 points per game — all five of such occurrences being wins. I think that trend continues and Michigan picks up a big one at home. Pick: Michigan -3.5
So who wins Oregon vs. Michigan? And which side of the spread can you bank on in well over 60 percent of simulations? Visit SportsLine now to see which side of the Michigan vs. Oregon spread to jump on Saturday, all from the advanced model that is up more than $2,700 on its college basketball picks the last three years, and find out.