San Diego State was unable to win the 2023 National Championship, but they go for the Continental Tire Main Event title vs. Washington on Sunday night. Our college basketball betting picks believe this will be a high-octane battle.
The Continental Tire Main Event goes down Sunday night at T-Mobile Arena as the San Diego State Aztecs take on the Washington Huskies.
Expectations are higher than ever before for Brian Dutcher’s 2023 National Championship runners-up. Capturing an early-season tournament title would instill confidence in this year’s plans for San Diego State to make some noise in the national picture once again.
Looking at the college basketball odds, the Aztecs are -7.5 over Washington, while the total is set at 145.5.
I take a closer look at the total for my best bet on Sunday night and provide my free college basketball picks and predictions for Washington vs. San Diego State on Sunday, November 19.
Washington vs San Diego State best odds
Washington vs San Diego State picks and predictions
The San Diego State Aztecs dominated a good Saint Mary’s team in the first round of this event on Friday night. Jaedon LeDee exploded for 25 points and eight rebounds, USC transfer Reese Waters went 7-for-9 from the field, and the Aztecs’ potent smothering defense was on full display.
That’s the kind of performance you’re looking for out of a team that made it to the National Championship game a year ago — dominating good teams while playing the same style of ball as a year ago, just with a few different faces in the lineup.
Dutcher’s squad has picked up wins over Cal State Fullerton and Long Beach State as well as Saint Mary’s while dropping a nine-point loss to BYU.
Washington begins Year 7 of the Mike Hopkins era. He’s accumulated a 104-92 (53.1%) record with one NCAA Tournament appearance and one regular season Pac-12 Championship, both of which occurred in the 2018-19 season. The Huskies finished with a .500 record at 16-16 a year ago but have higher hopes this season with a backcourt that was revamped through the transfer portal.
New additions Sahvir Wheeler (Kentucky, Georgia) and Paul Mulcahy (Rutgers) are both in their fifth seasons of college ball and are adept at operating the offense. Brooks is the go-to scorer, and after dropping 17.7 PPG a year ago, he’s off to a hot start with 23.3 PPG and eight RPG on the young season.
The Huskies picked up wins over Bellarmine and Northern Kentucky before dropping 83-76 to a tough Nevada team. In the first round of this event, they topped Xavier by a score of 74-71.
The metrics like San Diego State, as the Aztecs check in at No. 16 overall in KenPom (33rd in offensive efficiency, ninth in defensive efficiency) while the Huskies lag behind at No. 65 overall (102nd in offensive efficiency, 46th in defensive efficiency).
Hopkins’ team has been bringing the pace this season with its newfound ballhandlers, ranking 31st in adjusted tempo. They look to attack the rim offensively and have done so efficiently (71.8% FG% at the rim per Hoop-Math, good for 27th nationally). They should look to pick up the pace and get downhill against an Aztecs team that was adept at defending the rim a year ago but now has questions in that area with big man Nathan Mensah no longer in the lineup.
The Huskies struggled defensively a year ago, surrendering 70.3 PPG. I’m not convinced that they’ve solved all of these problems overnight, especially not since they surrendered 83 points against Nevada. The Wolf Pack may be the best team they’ve faced this season, and it’s concerning to see them drop 83 points despite shooting just 2-for-14 from three-point range.
Both teams are 3-1 O/U this season and I’m going to bet that that trend continues as Washington’s uptempo ways lead to a bit of a track meet. San Diego State’s athletes are more than capable of keeping pace.
My best bet: Over 145.5 (-105 at FanDuel)
Washington vs San Diego State same-game parlay
It’s slim pickings out there if you’re looking to throw together an SGP for this contest. DraftKings is offering a few player props, however, so there’s enough to work with that I’m throwing together this two-legger.
The player prop that I’ll add to my best bet on the game is San Diego State’s Jaedon LeDee to not hit a three-pointer at +105 odds. He didn’t hit a single shot from deep all of last season, so I’m questioning whether or not his uptick in volume (3-for-9 from deep to start the year) will continue.
This is also a difficult matchup for them shooting from deep against a Washington defense that has done all that it can to wall off the arc. The Huskies have limited opponents to just 24.3% from 3-point range and rank third in 3-point field goal defense vs. the average opponent, per Haslemetrics.
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Washington vs San Diego State spread and Over/Under analysis
There’s a bit of variance in this line as of Sunday afternoon, as San Diego State ranges from -6 to -7.5 depending on the book. The total was down to 144.5 for a quick minute before rising to 145.5.
I lean toward Washington plus the points if playing the side. The Huskies return their leading scorer in Brooks and brought in not one but two capable ball handlers to operate this offense. They’re cranking up the tempo to take advantage of Wheeler and Mulcahy’s passing, and it’s resulted in an offense that attacks the rim with gusto and plays to its strengths.
San Diego State is a great team and this is a great program, but there’s still likely to be a bit of variance early in the season after losing key contributors from last year’s squad like Nathan Mensah, Matt Bradley, Keshad Johnson, Adam Seiko, and Aguek Arop.
This team still has questions to answer regarding it’s long-range shooting and rim defense. Its shot pretty well so far (31st in 3-point field goal percentage vs. the average opponent, per Haslametrics) but that’s over a small sample size and Washington will test that with what’s been an effective perimeter defense early in the year. The Huskies will also test the Aztecs’ rim defense.
There are enough questions that I’m inclined to take the points with the underdog. The Huskies seem like a team that is clearly improved from last year. The Aztecs may be a popular side following a beatdown of a good Saint Mary’s team, but this is a much different matchup and early season variance could rear its head.
Washington vs San Diego State betting trend to know
These teams have combined to go 6-2 O/U this season. Find more college basketball betting trends for Washington vs. San Diego State.
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Washington vs San Diego State game info
|Location:||T-Mobile Arena, Las Vegas, NV|
|Date:||Sunday, November 19, 2023|
|Tip-off:||10:00 p.m. ET|
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