Expectations Are a Little Lower Than Normal For Both Auburn and Baylor in 23-24
One of the most intriguing non-conference matchups in the first week of the college basketball season will be held in South Dakota with Baylor and Auburn getting together. The Bears are the slight favorites according to the Baylor vs Auburn predictions.
When looking at the NCAAB best bet today, Baylor has gone from being listed as a 1.5-point favorite to now being favored by two points.
After playing just once in a span of 20 years, Auburn and Baylor are set to square off for the second time in the last three years.
Johni Broome (shoulder) and Aden Holloway are both expected to play for Auburn.
For Baylor, junior forward Yanis Ndjonga will miss the 2023-24 season.
Baylor is tied for 20th at +4000 in the odds of winning the national title with Auburn coming in 24th at +4500. Baylor (+700) trails Kansas, Houston, and Texas in the odds of winning the Big 12 championship with Auburn (+1200) seventh in the SEC title odds.
Baylor is 17th in the coaches polls and 19th in the Associated Press Top 25 poll with Auburn receiving votes in both polls.
After being picked to win the Big 12 in the 2022 preseason poll, Baylor was picked fourth in the 2023 poll.
Auburn was selected sixth in the preseason media SEC poll.
2022-23 Records: Auburn (28-6, 15-3 in the SEC); Baylor 23-11 (11-7 in the Big 12)
Location: Sanford Pentagon, Sioux Falls, SD
Line: Baylor -1.5
Broome, Tigers Look to Clean Up This Season
The 6-foot-10 Broome will team with Jaylin Williams to give Auburn two returning double-digit scorers from a team that went from winning the SEC regular-season title to finishing seventh in the SEC during the 2022-23 season.
Losing Allen Flanigan to Ole Miss hurts while three other players transferred. Keep that in mind when making Baylor vs Auburn predictions.
The Tigers added some key pieces through the transfer portal. Denver Jones averaged 20.1 points per game at Florida International and Chaney Johnson put up 16.8 and 15.9 points in his two seasons at Division II Alabama Huntsville while freshman Aden Holloway was a top-50 recruit.
The total has gone over in each of Auburn’s last five games and in the last six games versus Big 12 teams.
Bears Have Some Work to Do
Baylor has to replace its top three scorers with Adam Flagler and Keyonte George embarking on a professional career and LJ Cryer transferring to a Houston program that has joined the Big 12.
Jalen Bridges is the top returning scorer with Langston Love and Jonathan Tchamwa Tchatchoua other top returnees so things will look much different when the Bears hit the court. That could factor into the Baylor vs Auburn predictions.
Baylor did add a top-15 recruiting class. RayJ Dennis averaged 19.5 points and 5.8 assists at Toledo and he could contribute immediately.
The total has gone over in four of Baylor’s last six games.
Tchamwa Tchatchoua is one of the few holdovers on the Baylor team that handed Auburn an 84-72 defeat in the SEC/Big 12 Challenge in 2021. It remains to be seen if the NCAA scores will result in a similar outcome in the rematch.
Baylor connected on 11 3-pointers and turned the ball over just nine times but failed to cover as 14-point favorites. The game did sneak over the 153-point total in the first meeting between the teams since 2009.
Auburn vs Baylor Betting Preview
It is hard to know what to expect from either team coming into this season. Both the Tigers and Bears have made noise in their respective conferences in recent years but there are plenty of newcomers who will be asked to step into key roles.
The total is set at 143 for this matchup with some early money coming in on the game finishing over the total.
Baylor was 14-13-1 against the college basketball betting lines during the 2022-23 season when listed as the favorite with Auburn covering in just three of eight games as the underdog a season ago.
When looking at the Sagarin rankings, Baylor is ranked 14th and Auburn comes in 28th.
Auburn was tied with Kentucky for the SEC lead with 21 of its games finishing over the total during the 2022-23 season. Baylor had 18 of its 34 games going over the total a season ago.
This should be a fun game to check out with a pair of teams eager to make some noise in their respective conferences fitting in some new pieces.
Go with Baylor to not only win outright but to cover as the slight favorites in this matchup.
For NCAAB betting news, odds analysis, and more, visit Point Spreads Sports Magazine.