USCHO Edge: As we near midseason break, still some heavy favorites, underdogs available creating possible value bets

Will Minnesota Duluth players be doing this over the weekend against Western Michigan? (photo: Terry Cartie Norton).

How would a $2,460 win sound to you? Not bad, especially if you perfectly picked all five games in last week’s USCHO Edge column and parlayed them on a $100 bet.

Certainly, we make it sound easy. It’s not.

None of our eight writers got all five correct. In fact, no one got all five right and, for that matter, not a single writer even picked four of five correct. These games might look easy to handicap, but it’s amazing how often a crazy upset might occur.

Last weekend it was Boston University over UMass, when all eight USCHO writers picked the Minutemen only to have the Terriers post a 7-2 win.

Keep an eye on those underdogs this week. While there are some pretty even matchups, we also are previewing three games with underdogs priced at +165 or higher. Picks these games correct and you could earn a nice payday.

All odds provided via DraftKings Sportsbook

No. 17 Michigan State (+165) at No. 6 Penn State (-205); o/u 5.5

Michigan State is red hot heading to Hockey Valley, but for the Spartans playing away from the newly-renovated Munn Ice Arena might be the biggest challenge.

But the Nittany Lions have been playing extremely well of late, splitting series in consecutive weekends against the nation’s number one teams (Michigan and Minnesota).

What is interesting here is the over/under of 5.5. Penn State has one of the best offenses in the nation and Michigan State is in the top third of the country in goals scored. Thus it seems more likely than not that this game will get to six or more goals.

Jim
Ed
John
Dan
Chris
Jack
Matt
Paula
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Nat'l
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ECAC
AHA
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B1G

No. 2 Minnesota (-120) at No. 3 Michigan (-110); o/u 6

The two most recent top teams in the USCHO poll meet in Ann Arbor for a series that began on Thursday night with a 5-2 Minnesota victory. What does that do for Friday’s rematch?

Well for one, DraftKings took the game off their book (the odds above are from Thursday’s game). Not sure that really tells us much other than the fact that the books don’t want high liability on Minnesota should they pull off the road sweep.

But road sweeps are hard to come by, so if you find Michigan somewhere out there, there may be good value (anything +110 or higher should be considered significant value for a home team).

Jim
Ed
John
Dan
Chris
Jack
Matt
Paula
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HEA
ECAC
AHA
CCHA
NCHC
B1G

No. 18 Northeastern (+130) at No. 11 Boston University (-160); o/u 5.5

Last weekend, Boston University played a higher ranked UMass team and was a +150 underdog. How quickly one weekend can change the minds of bookmakers.

BU suddenly is a significant -160 favorite at home over Northeastern, as the Huskies are coming off a loss and tie against Boston College. In both games, Northeastern rallied, including from three goals down last Friday to earn the tie and a shootout win.

But the Terriers should be the betting darling (just look at how our staff picked this game) and the -160 price doesn’t carry much value with it.

The 5.5 over/under also feels low but given the fact that two Olympic goaltender in NU’s Devon Levi and BU’s Drew Commesso are facing off. Does that translate to a 2-1 or 3-1 result? That’s for you to decide.

Jim
Ed
John
Dan
Chris
Jack
Matt
Paula
Nat'l
Nat'l
HEA
ECAC
AHA
CCHA
NCHC
B1G

Minnesota Duluth (+165) at No. 14 Western Michigan (-205); o/u 5.5

It’s been quite some time since Minnesota Duluth has entered a weekend series unranked. That is what creates easily the best betting value we’ve seen on the Bulldogs in a long time.

At +165, Minnesota Duluth carries the second-best value in this week’s column and does so  having beat Western Michigan in three of the last four meetings.

This is a rematch of last year’s NCHC semifinal, won 3-0 by Duluth.

Have we given you enough reasons to take the Bulldogs? Well here’s some good things about the Broncos. Western has won three of its last four games, including a victory on the road last Friday night against St. Cloud State.

Is that enough reason to bet a -205 favorite? Again, that your call.

Jim
Ed
John
Dan
Chris
Jack
Matt
Paula
Nat'l
Nat'l
HEA
ECAC
AHA
CCHA
NCHC
B1G

No. 4 St. Cloud State (-230) at Colorado College (+180); o/u 5.5

Colorado College still may not be among college hockey’s elite, but going 2-1-1 in the last four games shows some signs of momentum for the Tigers.

That’s still not a great reason to take the +180 underdog against heavy favorite St. Cloud State, which has struggled to sweep series of late but is still playing pretty consistent hockey.

Of all the over/unders this week, 5.5 seems to be a fair number for two good defenses and two teams that don’t always score a ton of goals.

Jim
Ed
John
Dan
Chris
Jack
Matt
Paula
Nat'l
Nat'l
HEA
ECAC
AHA
CCHA
NCHC
B1G

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