Pepperdine vs. BYU - 2/29/20 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction

Pepperdine vs. BYU - 2/29/20 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction Photo by Jeffrey Swinger-USA TODAY Sports

BYU Cougars (23-7) at Pepperdine Waves (15-14)

College Basketball: Saturday, February 29, 2020 at 6:00 pm (Firestone Fieldhouse)

The Line: Pepperdine Waves +8.5 -- Over/Under: 256.5 Click Here for the Latest Odds

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The BYU Cougars (23-7, 12-3 WCC) make the trip to Malibu to play the Pepperdine Waves (15-14, 8-7 WCC) in a West Coast Conference match-up. The last time these two teams met, BYU throttled Pepperdine 107-80 as 13-point home favorites

Since beating Pepperdine, BYU has not lost, winning 8 consecutive games including a 91-78 victory as a 4-point home underdog to #2 Gonzaga a week ago. BYU has not played since that game, enjoying a well-earned victory lap after upsetting the Bulldogs. BYU is 6-4 against the spread in their last 10 games and is outscoring opponents by 13.4 points per game in that stretch.

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BYU is 3-2 against the spread in their last 5 road games and 7-5 against the spread on the road this season. BYU has been close to unbeatable at home this year, but they have proven themselves capable of losing away from the comforts of Provo. BYU is ranked 15th by KenPom, with the 3rd ranked offense and 78th ranked defense in the country. BYU is led by Senior forward Yoeli Childs, who is averaging 21.2 points per game and 8.6 rebounds per game with a 61.8 eFG%. Graduate transfer guard Jake Toolson adds 15.5 points per game and Senior forward TJ Haws contributes 14.5 points per game for one of the best offenses in the country.

Pepperdine is 5-5 against the spread and 6-4 straight up in their last 10 games. Pepperdine has played their last 10 opponents almost to a standstill, being outscored by a total of 2 points in those 10 games. Pepperdine played Gonzaga well, covering the 15-point spread at home to the #2 team in the country, but moral victories won’t help Pepperdine get into the NCAA Tournament and they probably won’t get an invite to the NIT either.

Pepperdine is 2-2 against the spread in their last 4 home games and is just 5-10 against the spread at home this season. Pepperdine is ranked 135th by KenPom, with the 73rd ranked offense and 235th ranked defense in the nation. Pepperdine has 4 players who average double-digit scoring, led by Junior guard Colbey Ross, who is averaging 20.2 points per game, 4.4 rebounds per game and 7.2 assists per game with a 48.2 eFG%. Brothers Kameron and Kessler Edwards chip in 16.9 and 13.0 points per game respectively for Pepperdine, and Freshman guard Skylar Chavez adds 10.1 points per game.

In their last meeting, BYU put the hammer down and beat Pepperdine by 27 points as 13-point home favorites. In their last 10 games, the home team is 7-3 against the spread and Pepperdine is 6-4 against the spread against BYU in that span. The over is 6-4 in BYU’s last 10 games, and the over is 5-4-1 in the last 10 games for Pepperdine.

I think Pepperdine will put up a fight on Senior Night in their final home game of the season, but BYU is the better team and should be motivated to get the win, as they are fighting for seeding in the NCAA Tournament at this point. With two of the highest-scoring teams in the country matching up, I will just take the over and hope to see an exciting, fast-paced game.

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