UTSA at UAB - 3/11/20 College Basketball Picks and Prediction
Photo by Mark Zerof-USA TODAY Sports
UTSA Roadrunners (13-18) at UAB Blazers (18-13)
College Basketball: Wednesday, March 11, 2020 at 9:30 pm (Ford Center at The Star)
The Line: UAB Blazers -1 -- Over/Under: 147
The UTSA Roadrunners and UAB Blazers will square off at the Ford Center At The Star in the 1st round of the C-USA Men’s Championship this Wednesday night.
The UTSA Roadrunners finished their regular season with an 13-18 overall record and earned the 10-seed in the C-USA Men’s Championship after finishing conference play with a 7-11 record. UTSA is led by their offense that can certainly put up points in a hurry with their solid three-point shooting, however, the Roadrunners really struggled defensively throughout the season. UTSA’s most impressive win was a 89-73 victory against the Louisiana Tech Bulldogs, however, UTSA struggled down the stretch, losing 7 of their last 10 regular season games.
On the season, UTSA is averaging 77.2 ppg on 41.3% shooting from the field. The Roadrunners are averaging 9.6 three-pointers per game on 34.9% shooting from beyond the arc. Offensively, UTSA has been led by Jhivvan Jackson (27.2 ppg, 5.8 rpg, 2.4 apg, 1.5 spg), Keaton Wallace (18.5 ppg, 4.6 rpg, 3.0 apg, 1.3 spg), Luka Barisic (6.6 ppg, 2.9 rpg), and Byron Frohnen (3.6 ppg, 6.8 rpg, 2.0 apg).
Defensively, UTSA is allowing their opponents to average 77.1 ppg on 43.8% shooting from the field. The Roadrunners have a rebound margin of 0.2 and a turnover margin of 1.0.
The UAB Blazers finished their regular season with an 18-13 overall record and earned the 7-seed in the C-USA Men’s Championship after finishing conference play with a 9-9 record. UAB was led by their defense this season in which they used their size to consistent create advantages on the boards, however, the offense could struggle at times and was little to no threat from beyond the arc. UAB picked up solid wins agianst Western Kentucky and Marshall (twice) on the season and come into the conference tournament winners of 4 of their last 6 games.
On the season, UAB is averaging 67.1 ppg on 45.3% shooting from the field. The Blazers are averaging 5.2 three-pointers per game on 32.1% shooting from beyond the arc. Offensively, UAB has been led by Tavin Lovan (13.0 ppg, 4.7 rpg, 2.0 apg, 1.2 spg), Jalen Benjamin (12.1 ppg, 2.8 rpg, 1.6 apg), and Tyreek Scott-Grayson (9.9 ppg, 4.7 rpg, 2.1 apg, 1.1 spg).
Defensively, UAB is holding their opponents to an average of 65.1 ppg on 41.6% shooting from the field. The Blazers have a rebound margin of 6.5 and a turnover margin of -2.5.
The Roadrunners are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games and are 11-17 ATS overall on the season. The Blazers are 4-2 ATS in their last 6 and 5-2 ATS in their last 7 games played in March.
UTSA comes into this game ranked 32nd in scoring offense, 18th in three-pointers made per game, and 327th in scoring defense.
UAB comes into this match-up ranked 286th in scoring offense, 54th in scoring defense, 96th in defensive FG%, and 20th in rebound margin.
UTSA and UAB split their regular season with each team winning on their home floor, however, I trust the UAB defense more than I do the UTSA offense and I’m not encouraged by UTSA’s 3-9 road record and 0-4 record at neutral sties. UAB shot have a huge advantage down low in this one and as the Blazers are playing the better basketball as of late, I’m taking UAB to cover this spread. Good Luck!