On Tuesday, it looks like WVU vs. Baylor will finally happen. The games between these two Big 12 foes have been postponed several times. For men’s college basketball betting in West Virginia, this late-season meeting between two of the top six squads in the latest media poll could be well-timed.
While the Mountaineers are a 4.5-point home underdog at BetMGM Sportsbook WV and other West Virginia sports betting apps, this game could deliver a lot of valuable information heading into March Madness. It looks like it will be a good litmus test of where coach Bob Huggins’ crew is at.
How the spread for WVU vs. Baylor shapes up
As this is the first meeting of these teams this season, there’s no head-to-head data to draw upon in this game. Baylor has won three of the past five outright, but just gone 1-2 in Morgantown. Digging deeper, WVU has won the second half in each of its last five games against the Bears at the WVU Coliseum.
Baylor comes in having won five of its last six but that one loss was its most recent game. In Lawrence last Saturday, the Bears managed just 58 points as Kansas pulled off the upset. West Virginia has a similar 5-1 outright record over its past six, with the one loss being a double-overtime loss by a single point to then-12th-ranked Oklahoma.
In betting the spread on this one, bettors have to decide whether that disappointing performance of Baylor’s last time out was an anomaly or a sign. The Bears have covered a spread of this size nearly 95% of the time this season. Saturday was not only the Bears’ first road loss of the season, it was Baylor’s first loss of any kind.
In West Virginia home losses this season, the average margin of defeat is a mere 2.7 points. The Bears’ average margin of victory in six road wins is 16.2 points, so the spread isn’t really splitting the difference between those two. It’s giving a lot of credence to WVU’s ability to defend its home court and momentum.
Momentum comes into play when sizing up the total for this game, as well. Again, bettors will have to decide whether Baylor quickly returns to form or the Mountaineers have caught them at the right time.
Bearish or bullish on the total for Tuesday?
At William Hill Sportsbook WV, the line for the total on this game sits at 149 points. The combined scoring average for both teams comes out at 162 points exactly. Games at the WVU Coliseum this season average 147 points. West Virginia games have exceeded 149 total points in 11 of 23 contests, while tilts involving the Bears have done so just seven times out of 19.
Neither team’s game hit that total the last time out. However, WVU faced a vastly inferior TCU that didn’t necessitate “hitting the gas.” Additionally, as already discussed, bettors will have to decide what to make of Baylor’s last performance for themselves.
In the Bears’ three games against ranked opponents prior to Saturday, Baylor averaged 76 points. Two of those were road games for the Bears. In home games against ranked opponents so far this season, the Mountaineers have averaged 84.5 points.
While Baylor has been impressive all season long, WVU has played well at home and could be playing its best basketball right now. In terms of West Virginia sports betting for this game, the pertinent issue is whether the Bears will bounce right back or display more of the same struggles that muzzled them over the weekend.