It’s Wednesday, which can only mean one thing…football? Sure, it’s 2020, why not? The Baltimore Ravens and Pittsburgh Steelers will finally play their game that was originally slated to take place nearly a week ago after three different postponements. Both teams will be shorthanded after a few key players came down with positive virus tests, but at least the game will go on.
We also have the continuation of the Champions League schedule as well as some more college hoops action on tap for Wednesday. BetOnline has another four odds booster options up and available for you today. Which bet is the best value on the board?
NCAAM: Clemson (-36.5) and Xavier (-22.5) BOTH to Cover (+325)
Clemson is favored by 36.5 points tonight, and this isn’t a football game. The Tigers’ basketball squad is off to a solid 2-0 start to the new season following a pair of 11-point wins. Clemson has toppled Mississippi State and Purdue thus far. Tonight, the Tigers will host South Carolina State. In case you weren’t aware, the Bulldogs aren’t a good team. South Carolina State has lost its first two games by margins of 20 and 23 points to Appalachian State and Bowling Green, respectively.
Clemson isn’t necessarily expected to challenge Virginia or Duke atop the ACC this season, but the Tigers’ program still comes with far more pedigree than either of South Carolina State’s opponents to this point. 36.5 points is a massive spread, even by college basketball standards, but there’s no reason to expect this game to be remotely close.
On Wednesday, Oakland lost by 52 points at Xavier.
Tonight, it took Michigan to overtime in Ann Arbor.
Nope. Just College Basketball.
— Jon Rothstein (@JonRothstein) November 30, 2020
Xavier is off to a solid 4-0 start, but the Musketeers haven’t been truly tested yet. Xavier has beaten Oakland, Bradley, Toledo, and Eastern Kentucky, and three of those games have been incredibly close. The Musketeers beat Bradley, Toledo, and EKU by a combined seven points after crushing Oakland by 52 in the opener.
Tonight Xavier will take on Tennessee Tech, who has started 0-2. The Golden Eagles fell by 30 to Indiana in their opener before an eight-point defeat at the hands of Chattanooga in their last game. Xavier hasn’t looked dominant despite an undefeated start to the campaign, but they’re favored by 22.5 points tonight against this lowly Tennessee Tech side.
NCAAM: Gonzaga (-8.5) and Iowa State (-3.5) BOTH to Cover (+315)
Gonzaga, the top-ranked team in the land, is off to a perfect 2-0 start. The Bulldogs impressively beat Kansas by 12 points in their season opener before trouncing Auburn by 23 last time out. We’ll see whether the Zags are able to parlay their early-season success into some tournament success later this season, but so far, they look like the real deal.
Gonzaga is a sizable favorite tonight against West Virginia.
The Mountaineers have started the season 3-0, and they have risen up to No. 11 in this week’s top-25 rankings. Bob Huggins’ crew has beaten South Dakota State, VCU, and Western Kentucky thus far. That’s obviously not the most daunting competition, so it’s difficult to draw too many conclusions about the Mountaineers to this point. We know they’ll be relevant in the Big 12 title picture, but covering the 8.5-point spread tonight against Gonzaga is a tall order.
Iowa State, meanwhile, is favored by two over South Dakota State. The Cyclones beat Arkansas-Pine Bluff by 17 in their season opener. This has been one of the better teams in the Big 12 over the past decade, but the Jackrabbits have been consistent NCAA Tournament qualifiers in recent years, too. SDSU is 1-2 with losses to West Virginia and Saint Mary’s sandwiched around a victory over Utah State.
Champions League: Manchester United and Barcelona BOTH to Win (+415)
Manchester United will take on Paris St. Germain in the most highly-anticipated match of the day. United went into the French capital and came away with a 2-0 win earlier this season, but the Parisians will look to steal three points back today at Old Trafford. This game is basically a pick’em, with PSG listed at +148 on the moneyline with United at +160 to win the game outright.
United will be without Anthony Martial and Luke Shaw, while David de Gea and Alex Telles are questionable after getting hurt during the Red Devils’ win over Southampton over the weekend. Paris have picked up just two wins in their last five games in all competitions after a 2-2 draw at home to Bordeaux on Saturday. Mauro Icardi and Julian Draxler are unlikely to suit up for the visitors.
Barcelona will be back in action against Ferencvaros, a Hungarian outfit. Barca aren’t particularly good anymore, but they should have enough to beat up on a Ferencvaros side currently sitting in the cellar of Group G. Barca are -240 road favorites here.
NFL: Benny Snell to Score Multiple Touchdowns (+600)
The Steelers haven’t been quite as ravaged as the Baltimore Ravens, but Pittsburgh will still be without starting running back James Conner today. That means the home team will try to run their record to 11-0 with a stable of backup running backs. Benny Snell figures to draw the start, while Anthony McFarland Jr. may also factor into their offensive plans.
With James Conner out tomorrow against Baltimore the #Steelers will turn to Benny Snell Jr, and Mike Tomlin has all the confidence in the world in him.
Read more 👇https://t.co/iGQkjH3yI3 pic.twitter.com/7UVq2hQeiP
— SteelerNation (@SteeIerNation) December 2, 2020
Conner has scored five touchdowns on the season with the Steelers doing the vast majority of their damage through the air. Ben Roethlisberger has already thrown 24 touchdown passes on the year, with multiple TDs in each of his last six outings. Roethlisberger has thrown at least 32 passes in each of his last five games, with over 40 throws in four of those games.
The Pittsburgh Steelers rank 19th in the league in run play percentage, and one would imagine they’ll take to the air even more often with Conner out of the mix. Snell has only averaged 3.4 yards per carry so far this season without doing much damage in the passing game, either. McFarland hasn’t been much more effective, so we’ll see whether Pittsburgh is able to get much going in the ground game today.
What’s the Best Bet?
Snell should still get plenty of opportunities, but it’s hard to be too optimistic about his chances of finding the end zone on multiple occasions today. The upside is interesting at +600, but that’s far from the best bet out there.
I don’t doubt Gonzaga’s ability to cover against West Virginia, but the Iowa State-South Dakota State game is a tougher nut to crack. The Jackrabbits have quietly been one of the most consistent programs in the country in recent years, and we’re looking at a tight spread here. The Cyclones are justifiable favorites, but South Dakota State gives me enough pause to pass on this one at the +315 odds.
I’m admittedly a bit nervous about both Clemson and Xavier successfully covering their respective spreads, but both teams are in good spots today.
Clemson should have no issue overwhelming lowly South Carolina State, while Tennessee Tech certainly doesn’t stack up well against the Musketeers. Betting on both to cover tonight at +325 is solid value, even if they’re not the safest bets in the world.
The best bet is United and Barcelona both to win. Even a lesser version of the Blaugrana should be able to pick up all three points against a random Hungarian side. United beating PSG is less certain, but the fact that Paris come into the game in such dreadful form gives me confidence in Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side to take care of business at home. Bet on the two-way Champions League bet at +415.
Boosted Odds Prop Bet:
Manchester United and Barcelona BOTH to Win (+415)