Free NCAA Basketball Picks: Our Best Bets for January 12

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A basketball hoop, net and backboard are shown before the championship game. Ethan Miller/Getty Images/AFP.

How will Longwood fare in its first Big South Conference game of the year against Radford? Let’s take a look at the college basketball odds and decide which way to lean top-rated sportsbooks.

Longwood Lancers vs. Radford Highlanders

Wednesday, January 12, 2022 – 6:30 pm EST at Dedmon Center

The Longwood Lancers will take on the Radford Highlanders in its first conference game of the season in Big South play. Radford is already 1-1 in conference play but Longwood has had multiple games postponed or canceled due to COVID, leaving them with no conference games played up to this point.

Longwood put together a non D1 game against Pfeiffer and routed them 109-69 once they got back in action. The offense for Longwood is probably the best in the Big South.

Longwood averages 80.2 points per game while allowing just 63.2 points per game this season. The Lancers have shot a 51.3 percent effective field goal percentage and continue to dominate the offensive glass, earning 35.6 percent offensive rebounds. The Lancers dominate the glass on both ends of the floor and while Radford has done well limiting second-chance opportunities, Longwood will still crash the glass and earn more second chances in this game.

Longwood won't get to the line all that much this season, but when a team plays against Radford, there's also that possibility of getting to the line at a high rate. Radford sends teams to the line at one of the highest rates in college basketball, so don't be surprised if Longwood gets to the line at a high rate, despite never doing so this season.

The Lancers have shot 36.7 percent from three and never shy away from a nince quality three-point ball. This is key, knowing that Radford, on the other hand, is allowing teams to shoot 35.5 percent from downtown this season. The Highlanders are also allowing teams to shoot 50.1 percent from inside the arc on the year.

Meanwhile, on offense, Radford is even worse. Radford ranked 294th in offensive efficiency via KenPom while ranking 222 on the defensive end. The Highlanders are shooting an effective field goal percentage of 47.1 percent while turning the ball over nearly 25 percent of the time.

Radford also shoots 32.2 percent from deep and 46.2 percent from inside the arc, which are both, of course, below average in college basketball. Longwood, however, allows opponents to shoot an effective field goal percentage of 49.4 percent, but have been able to force turnovers 20.8 percent of the time.

There's reason to believe Longwood will earn plenty of turnovers in this game. The Lancers also allow opponents to offensive rebound 26.2 percent of the time, and that's crucial knowing that Radford isn't nearly as effective on the offensive glass in comparison to Longwood. Radford is bringing down just 27.8 percent of offensive rebounds while, again, Longwood averages 35.6 percent offensive rebounds.

Knowing Radford will miss many shots, especially from outside, makes me confident that Longwood can clean up the glass and hold Radford in the scoring column tonight.


Radford is very deep. The Highlanders use their bench more than every team but one in college basketball. They've got no reliable scorer. Instead, they just have a bunch of guys contribute. Most guys will play about 20 minutes a game with only three players being exceptions and getting to play 22-26 minutes.

On the other hand, Longwood has four players in double figures and while they still use their bench, they've been able to rely on their starters more frequently.

So I'll take Longwood as my NCAAB pick for this matchup, at -130.

NCAAB Pick: Longwood -130 via BetOnline (visit our BetOnline Review)

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*The line and/or odds on picks in this article might have moved since the content was commissioned. For updated line movements, visit BMR’s free betting odds product.