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College Basketball Betting Pick & Prediction: California Golden Bears vs. Utah Utes - Thursday, Dec. 29, 2022

December 29, 2022

Utah looks to snap a two-game losing streak when they take on a lousy California squad Thursday night in a game that looks like a mismatch on paper. Tip-off is scheduled for 10 pm.Utah Utes Betting PreviewUtah (9-4) has had a solid season so far as they have won five of seven overall but have dropped its last two games, including a 75-71 loss to TCU. Guard Gabe Madsen ripped off a game-high 26 points in the loss and really asserted himself nicely. The Utes will need another effort like that if they would like to avoid a major letdown to a team that should easily defeat. They are 10 1/2 point favorites in this one and against a bad Cal team, we are surprised the line is not higher.Senior Marco Anthony is a player to watch as well. He is scoring 11 points a game and has had some huge games this season, including 15 in a loss against TCU and 16 in a win against UTSA. Anthony has the ability to take over games and he is also a solid player who can play both ends of the floor. They can not overlook the Golden Bears and think if they just show up they will win the game. California Golden Bears Betting PreviewThe Golden Bears (1-12) lost 12 games to open up the season and they finally were able to taste a win when they upset UT Arlington. The win took a total team effort as Lars Thiemann and Joel Brown each scored 17 points and Kuany Kuany added 16 points to go along with six rebounds and four assists for the Bears.Another positive note was how sharp they were on the field shooting as Thiemann made eight of 10 shots and added five boards. This was a nice game overall and they need this type of effort if they are going to pull off a major upset. If they can get out to a quick lead maybe that puts some pressure on Utah and they perhaps tighten up. They also need to play better on the boards and look for them to push the pace and see if they can get some quick baskets. Look for them to also spread the floor and try to work the ball inside where Utah has had an issue guarding bigs. Game Odds, Series Trends and Free PickCalifornia is 1-4 in their last five games and 3-2 in their last five games against the spread and they are 2-1 in their road games against the spread. The totals have gone over in four of their last five games and the totals have gone over in four of their last five games. Utah is 3-2 in their last five games and 2-3 in their last five games against the spread. Plus, Utah is 2-1 in their road games against the number and the totals have gone over in three of Utah's last five games. The line is a bit high and it seems the books have no confidence or respect for a bad Cal team and we understand why. We will take Utah and the points in this one.Persian Pick: Utah - 10 1/2