Eastern Illinois vs. Austin Peay - 2/22/20 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction

Eastern Illinois vs. Austin Peay - 2/22/20 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction Photo by Michael C. Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

Austin Peay Governors (19-9) at Eastern Illinois Panthers (13-13)

College Basketball: Saturday, February 22, 2020 at 4:15 pm (Lantz Arena)

The Line: Eastern Illinois Panthers +3.5 -- Over/Under: 147.5 Click Here for the Latest Odds

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The Austin Peay Governors will travel to Lantz Arena in Charleston, IL to take on the Eastern Illinois Panthers this Saturday in an OVC showdown, tipping off at 4:15 EST.

The Austin Peay Governors have won three games in a row and improved to 19-9 (13-2 OVC) on the season after defeating the SIU-Edwardsville Cougars 78-60 this past Thursday.  Austin Peay cruised to the victory against SIU-Edwardsville as the Governors never trailed in the game. Austin Peay took a 44-31 lead into halftime and expanded that to 72-54 with 4:00 left in regulation en route to their route of the Cougars.  Austin Peay shot 50.0% from the field despite just 25.0% shooting from beyond the arc. Eli Abraev’s double-double led the way for the Governors. Eli had 19 points, 10 rebounds, and a steal in the game.

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On the season, Austin Peay is averaging 77.6 points per game on 46.2% shooting from the field.  The Governors are also averaging 6.8 three-pointers per game on 33.7% shooting from distance. Terry Taylor (21.8 ppg, 10.6 rpg, 1.4 bpg) and Jordyn Adams (17.1 ppg, 3.3 rpg, 2.2 apg) have been the offensive leaders for Austin Peay this season.

Defensively, Austin Peay is allowing their opponents to average 71.6 points per game on 47.1% shooting from the field.  The Governors are getting 6.8 steals per game aiding to a 2.9 turnover margin on the season.

The Eastern Illinois Panthers won their last game, improving to 13-14 (6-9 OVC) on the season after defeating the Murray State Racers, 63-60, this past Thursday.  This was an incredible game for Eastern Illinois. After finding themselves down 46-21 with only 12:51 left in regulation, the Panthers mounted a furious comeback.  Eastern Illinois tied the game at 60-60 with just 0:40 ticks left before Josiah Wallace drilled a deep three-pointer at the buzzer to complete the comeback. The Panthers shot 42.6% from the field and 30.8% from three-point range.

On the season, Eastern Illinois is averaging 74.8 points per game on 45.9% shooting from the field.  The Panthers are also netting 6.7 three-pointers per game on 34.3% shooting from beyond the arc. Josiah Wallace (14.8 ppg, 4.3 rpg, 2.3 apg), Mack Smith (13.4 ppg, 3.3 rpg, 1.7 apg) and George Dixon (11.7 ppg, 8.9 rpg, 1.5 spg) have been the leaders on offense for Eastern Illinois this season.

Defensively, Eastern Illinois is allowing their opponents to average 69.4 points per game on 42.2% shooting from the field.  The Panthers are grabbing 7.6 steals per game and have a turnover margin of 2.3 on the season.

Austin Peay is 10-4-1 ATS in their past 15 games and are 1-5-1 in their past 6 games played in February.  Eastern Illinois is 5-10 ATS in their past 15 games and 6-4 ATS at home this season.

The Governors come into the game ranked 33rd in the country in scoring offense and 32nd in college basketball in turnover margin.  The Panthers protect the rim well, ranking 35th in blocks with 4.6 per game. Eastern Illinois ranks 50th in turnover margin this season.

On paper this looks like a game Austin Peay should win but I think Eastern Illinois will come out strong off the back of their epic comeback over Murray State.  The Panthers play well at home (9-1 on the season) so look for Eastern Illinois to make the Governors earn the victory if they can. I am taking the Panthers and the points in what I expect to be a close game to the end.

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David’s Pick Eastern Illinois +3.5

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

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