Tennessee-Martin vs. Eastern Illinois - 2/15/20 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction

Tennessee-Martin vs. Eastern Illinois - 2/15/20 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction Photo by Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Eastern Illinois Panthers (12-12) at Tennessee-Martin Skyhawks (7-17)

College Basketball: Saturday, February 15, 2020 at 5:00 pm (Skyhawk Arena)

The Line: Tennessee-Martin Skyhawks +2.5 -- Over/Under: 156

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The Eastern Illinois Panthers will travel to Skyhawk Arena to take on the UT Martin Skyhawks this Saturday night in College Basketball action.

The Eastern Illinois Panthers dropped to 12-13 (5-8 OVC) on the season after being defeated by the SIU-Edwardsville Cougars, 76-74, this past Thursday. Eastern Illinois didn’t have any answers for the Cougars Mike Adewunmi who had a double-double for the SIU-Edwardsville and couldn’t fight back after the Cougars took a 66-56 lead with 5:31 left in regulation. Eastern Illinois shot 46.7% from the field and 31.3% from beyond the arc in the loss. Leading the way for the Panthers was Mack Smith who had 25 points, 3 rebounds, 1 assist, and a block.

On the season, Eastern Illinois is averaging 75.1 ppg on 45.9% shooting from the field. The Panthers are averaging 6.7 three-pointers per game on 34.9% shooting from beyond the arc. Offensively, Eastern Illinois has been led by Josiah Wallace (14.4 ppg, 4.4 rpg, 2.2 apg), Mack Smith (13.3 ppg, 3.2 rpg, 1.5 apg, 1.0 spg), and George Dixon (11.5 ppg, 9.0 rpg, 1.6 apg, 1.4 spg).

Defensively, Eastern Illinois is allowing their opponents to an average of 69.4 ppg on 34.9% shooting from the field. The Panthers have a rebound margin of 1.4 and a turnover margin of 2.4.

The UT Martin Skyhawks lost their 2nd straight game and dropped to 7-17 (3-10 OVC) on the season after being defeated by the SE Missouri State Redhawks, 74-72, this past Thursday. UT-Martin led by a 70-64 margin with just :42 seconds left in regulation, however, the Redhawks got 7 quick points from Alex Caldwell in a span of just :08 seconds and took the lead for good on a Skyler Hogan lay-up with:24 seconds left in the game. UT Martin shot 44.4% from the field and 44.4% from beyond the arc in loss. Leading the way for the Skyhawks was Quintin Dove who had 24 points and 6 rebounds.

On the season, UT Martin is averaging 76.2 ppg on 45.1% shooting from the field. The Skyhawks are averaging 7.8 three-pointers per game on 34.3% shooting from beyond the arc. Offensively, UT Martin has been led by Parker Stewart (19.8 ppg, 4.6 rpg, 3.8 apg), Quintin Dove (19.1 ppg, 7.4 rpg), and Derek Hawthorne Jr. (12.9 ppg, 5.8 rpg, 2.1 apg, 1.2 spg).

Defensively, UT Martin is allowing their opponents to average 82.7 ppg on 49.9% shooting from the field. The Skyhawks have a rebound margin of -2.5 and a turnover margin of -0.1.

The Panthers are 4-9 ATS in their last 13 games, however, are 6-1 ATS in their last 7 games agianst UT Martin. The Skyhawks are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games and just 7-15 ATS on the season.

Eastern Illinois has been led by their offense this season which comes into this game ranked 81st in scoring offense and 70th in FG%.

UT Martin comes into this match-up ranked 55th in scoring offense, however, the Skyhawks and their fast-paced style of play hasn’t found success defensively this season as the Skyhawks currently rank just 346th in scoring defense and 348th in defensive FG%.

Eastern Illinois has a troubling tenancy to play to the level of their competition, however, there is no doubt in my mind that the Panthers is not the better team and should have no issue putting up a bunch of points agianst the UT Martin defense. I don’t see UT Martin bouncing back after their shocking loss to SE Missouri State and as Eastern Illinois has had success ATS lately in this series, I’m taking Eastern Illinois to cover this small road spread. Good Luck!

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Brett’s Pick Eastern Illinois Panthers -2.5

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The pick in this article is the opinion of the writer, not a Pick Dawgz site consensus.