Montana State Draws Another Big 12 Foe
Kansas State was coming off a 2021-22 season when the Wildcats finished only ahead of West Virginia in the Big 12 standings and it was expected to be more of the same this season. Instead, the Wildcats finished tied for third in the toughest conference in the country and now face Big Sky champion Montana State.
These are two of the better teams against the college basketball spreads in the tournament. Kansas State went 21-11 ATS, the second-best mark among teams from the Power 5 conferences. Montana State led the Big Sky with a 19-11-2 mark against the Las Vegas odds.
When it comes to the college basketball news, David N’Guessan, Ismael Massoud, Abayomi Iyiola and Tykei Greene combined to miss 19 games this season for Kansas State. However, they are all back as the Wildcats will have all nine players who average at least 10 minutes per game.
Montana State hasn’t had sophomore forward Patrick McMahon since late December.
Kansas State is ranked 13th in the coaches’ poll and 15th in the Associated Press Top 25 poll.
According to the college basketball odds, Kansas State (+2000) is tied for 20th in the odds to win the national championship. Montana State (+100000) is tied for 53rd in the championship odds.
Back in March Madness
A year ago Montana State was a 15-point underdog when facing a Big 12 team in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. This year, the line is set at 8½ so that is progress.
A five-game winning streak to end the regular season wasn’t enough to catch Eastern Washington for the top seed in the conference tournament. Northern Arizona took out the No. 1 seed during the Big Sky tournament.
It wasn’t easy as Montana State trailed with less than four minutes to go in the Big Sky semifinals against Weber State before winning in double overtime. The Bobcats only led by five points with 4:30 left against Northern Arizona in the championship game.
Darius Brown struggled in the first two games in the Big Sky tournament before scoring 15 points with the NCAA Tournament spot on the line.
Raequan Battle averaged 21 points per game in the Big Sky tournament. The Bobcats are 8-3 when Battle scores at least 20 points this season.
tournament mvp 🤝 @RaeQuanBattle
— Big Sky Conference (@BigSkyConf) March 10, 2023
Montana State tested itself with non-conference games against Arizona and Oregon.
Something to consider when it comes to making college basketball picks: The Bobcats lost by an average of 25.5 points in the two games against teams from the Power-5 conferences this season.
Four of Montana State’s last five games finished over the college basketball lines total.
Newcomers Deliver for Wildcats
Five of the top six scorers on the Kansas State weren’t with the program this season as first-year head coach Jerome Tang wasted little time in rebuilding the roster.
Top scorer Keyontae Johnson’s career was thought to be over after health scares while he was at Florida. He has scored in double figures in all but one game this season.
Junior college transfer Nae’Qwan Tomlin, former Arkansas and Arkansas State guard Desi Sills and former Mississippi State guard Cam Carter also made immediate impacts, as did forward David N’Guessan after he arrived from Virginia Tech.
Kansas State went 7-1 in games decided by six points or less and that included a win over defending national champion Kansas, so having a new roster didn’t impact the team’s on-court chemistry.
Kansas State has covered against the NCAA odds in four of its last six games.
Kansas State vs Montana State Game Injuries
Kansas State vs Montana State Head-to-Head
This is the first meeting between the programs since 1974 when Kansas State rolled to a 93-73 victory, so that matchup won’t help when it comes to the current college basketball odds for this matchup.
Kansas State vs Montana State Game Information
- Game: Montana State (25-9, 15-3 Big Sky) vs Kansas State (23-9, 11-7 Big 12)
- Location: Greensboro Coliseum, Greensboro, N.C.
- Day/Time: Friday, March 17th, 9:40 p.m. ET
- Montana State vs Kansas State Live Stream: TBS.com
Kansas State vs Montana State Betting Lines
Kansas State vs Montana State Picks and Prediction
Montana State draws a Big 12 team for the second year in a row in the tournament.
Other than ranking in the top 15 in assists per game, none of the team stats being put up by Kansas State are overwhelming. The chemistry of this group makes the Wildcats a dangerous team.
Seven of Montana State’s last nine games have been decided by single digits. The Bobcats would love for Friday’s game at Greensboro Coliseum to play out this way.
The Wildcats are 18-0 when listed by the sportsbook as the favorite. Montana State is 3-4 as the underdog.
Kansas State is 4-1 straight up and against the spread in neutral-site games this season.
Kansas State is listed at -390 in our Las Vegas college basketball lines. This means that if you wager $100 on the Wildcats, you have a chance to win $26. Montana State is +310, offering a chance to win $310 on a $100 wager.
The implied probability attached to the betting lines gives Kansas State a 79.59% chance to win, with Montana State at 24.39%.