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College Basketball Picks, Odds and Analysis: 2020-21 Big East Preview on DraftKings Sportsbook

Julian Edlow breaks down the favorites, overvalued and undervalued teams in the Big East on DraftKings Sportsbook.

NCAA Basketball: Villanova at Georgetown Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

What’s getting lost in the mix during the heart of football season and Thanksgiving week? The start of college hoops! I’ll have you covered with best bets articles throughout the season, but it’s also good to have something from the preseason as reference for early in the season to get a grasp on different teams and conferences. So I’m breaking down each of the Power 6 Conferences with some useful betting info from DraftKings Sportsbook.


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Big East

Big East

School Conference Winner Final Four National Champion
School Conference Winner Final Four National Champion
Villanova -109 +100 +700
Creighton +375 +500 +2500
UConn +500 +900 +4000
Providence +900 +2400 +10000
Marquette +1500 +2400 +10000
Xavier +3000 +3400 +10000
St. John's +5000 +7400 +30000
Butler +10000 +2400 +10000
Georgetown +10000 +7400 +30000
DePaul +15000 +7400 +30000

*Note that Seton Hall is not eligible to wager on

The Favorite

Villanova

Outside of Gonzaga — which is an insane -1000 to win the WCC — Villanova is the only school that’s less than even money to win its conference. Obviously, the Wildcats are the real deal, but it also speaks to a down year in the Big East. Creighton is the clear-cut second team in the conference and is actually a team I think could hold some early season value. But the Blue Jays are probably the only team with a real chance to compete with ‘Nova.

Villanova just has too much experience and is too well coached not to be a top-five team all season. Teams like Baylor, Kansas and Duke at the top will all play a lot of tough competition and lose games. But Villanova should be in a groove by the time conference play arrives, and I expect that experience to prove valuable. The down year in the Big East gives Jay Wright’s team an excellent chance to land a 1-seed and make a deep run in March. Gonzaga is the only team I’d give a clear edge to. Both ‘Nova and the ‘Zags (since I’m not writing up the WCC) deserve looks in the futures market — Final Four and National Championship odds.


Overvalued

Connecticut

UConn is priced in the futures market as the clear third team in the Big East, but I have them outside of the top five. It’s a little bit of brand name pricing on the Huskies, when the reality is that this is a middle of the pack team in the conference — remember, UConn was in the AAC for a few years, and this will be their first year back in the Big East.

The Huskies have star power in the backcourt with James Bouknight, who should be in the mix for Big East POY. They have a senior frontcourt, and got a couple of key transfers to add to their depth, including Tyrese Martin, who was recruited to play for Dan Hurley at Rhode Island. I’m not saying this isn’t going to be a good team, but if they’re going to be laying points against teams like Providence and Marquette, I want to be on the other side.

Xavier

It’s not like we’re asking too much of the Musketeers at +3000 to win the conference, but I do think they’re going to be closer to the bottom of the conference than the middle of the pack. Xavier ranks just 65th in KenPom, which is a bit concerning, and has a lot of overhaul on the roster. Senior PG Paul Scruggs is the only known commodity, with a lot of small school transfers holding key roles behind him. This team went just 8-10 in conference last season, and figures to take a step back.


Undervalued

Providence

The Friars are somewhat down in KemPom at just 56th, but I think this is the third-best team in the conference. Villanova and Creighton are each in their own tier, but Providence will battle it out with the rest, and has the pieces to come out on top.

After an awful start last season, PC finished on a 12-6 run, winning six-straight in the Big East. The roster is losing some key guards from last season, which I think factors into the Friars being a bit undervalued. My belief is that they’ll be able to make up for their losses with what’s already on the roster — David Duke is a legitimate stud, and A.J. Reeves will step into a much larger role. St. Joe’s transfer Jared Bynum should also be able to help out. Nate Watson will be a key piece as the senior center, anchoring Ed Cooley’s defense. I think we see some momentum carry into this season for the Friars.

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