Illinois-Chicago at Oregon State -6.5
Recommendation: Oregon State
Backing Oregon State can be a tough proposition because the Beavers are, well, inconsistent to say the least. With home losses to Texas Southern and Utah Valley State, a lot of bettors find this team difficult to get behind. But tonight they find themselves in a position that they can take advantage of. Illinois-Chicago is off one of its biggest victories in years, a 57-54 upset over Illinois. That was last Saturday and now, in a one-game scenario, they must travel clear across the country before returning home for a nice holiday break and then resume conference play. I’ve played basketball enough to know that off a big win like that, the Flames are satisfied, and putting forth a similar effort in a tough road spot is not something I trust this team to do. UIC is not a good offensive squad, ranking in the bottom half of the country in a number of categories. Following a recent home loss to George Washington, Oregon State is looking to gain some momentum before starting PAC-10 play. I expect a much better defensive performance tonight against a team that struggles to score. Last season, UIC hit a last second shot to win in Chicago. I look for Oregon State to exact a little revenge with a solid performance tonight.