UIC at Youngstown State: 2/25/21 College Basketball Picks and Prediction

UIC at Youngstown State: 2/25/21 College Basketball Picks and Prediction Photo by Ben Queen-USA TODAY Sports

Youngstown State Penguins (13-11) vs UIC Flames (9-12)

Game Info: Thursday, February 25, 2021 at 8:00 pm (Beeghly Physical Education Center)

Betting Odds: Youngstown State Penguins -4.5 -- Over/Under: 139.5 Click Here for the Latest Odds

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The UIC Flames will travel to the Beeghly Center to take on the Youngstown State Penguins this Thursday night in the first round of the Horizon League Championship.  

The UIC Flames finished their regular season with a 9-12 record after being defeated by the Green Bay Phoenix, 69-59, this past Saturday. UIC struggled offensively against Green Bay and could not fight back after the Phoenix took a 59-51 lead with 3:42 left in regulation. UIC shot 37.9% from the field and 34.8% from beyond the arc while Green Bay shot 45.9% from the field and 15.4% from beyond the arc. UIC was outrebounded by Green Bay by a 39-35 margin and forced just 3 turnovers in the loss. Leading the way for the Flames was Teyvion Kirk who had 11 points, 6 rebounds, & 5 assists.

On the season, UIC is averaging 68.1 ppg on 42.8% shooting from the field. The Flames are averaging 8.1 three-pointers per game on 32.6% shooting from beyond the arc. Offensively, UIC has been led by Teyvion Kirk (14.3 ppg, 6.8 rpg, 5.7 apg), Michael Diggins (10.9 ppg, 6.0 rpg, 2.1 apg), Maurice Commander (10.5 ppg, 2.2 rpg, 2.4 apg), & Braelen Bridges (10.4 ppg, 4.9 rpg, 1.0 apg).

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Defensively, UIC is allowing their opponents to average 72.2 ppg on 43.8% shooting from the field. The Flames have a rebound margin of -2.4 and a turnover margin of -3.0.

The Youngstown State Penguins finished their regular season with a 14-11 record after defeating the IUPUI Jaguars, 77-70, this past Saturday. Youngstown State was solid defensively against IUPUI and held the late throughout the entire 2nd half after going into halftime with a 41-34 lead. Youngstown State shot 50.0% from the field and 25.0% from beyond the arc while IUPUI shot 33.9% from the field & 21.7% from beyond the arc. Youngstown State outrebounded IUPUI by a 37-35 margin and committed 15 turnovers in the loss. Leading the way for the Penguins was Naz Bohannon who had 23 points, 8 rebounds, 1 assist, & 3 steals.

On the season, Youngstown State is averaging 74.1 ppg on 42.4% shooting from the field. The Penguins are averaging 6.6 three-pointers per game on 30.1% shooting from the field. Offensively, Youngstown State has been led by Naz Bohannon (16.7 ppg, 8.2 rpg, 2.7 apg), Darius Quisenberry (14.8 ppg, 3.0 rpg, 3.0 apg, 1.6 spg), Garrett Covington (11.8 ppg, 4.5 rpg, 1.4 apg, 1.3 spg), & Shemar Rathan-Mayes (10.5 ppg, 2.0 rpg, 3.6 apg, 1.3 spg).

Defensively, Youngstown State is allowing their opponents to average 72.2 ppg on 45.7% shooting from the field. The Penguins have a rebound margin of 1.9 and a turnover margin of 3.0.

The Flames are 20-8 ATS in their last 28 Thursday games, however, are just 1-7 ATS in their last 8 road games. The Penguins are 5-2-1 ATS in their last 8 home games vs. a team with a road winning % of less than .400, however, are just 1-4-1 ATS in their last 6 home games.

UIC comes into the Horizon League tournament with little to no momentum as the Flames have lost 8 of their last 9 games and currently rank just 254th in scoring offense & t-229th in scoring defense. Youngstown State came into this season with high expectations, and although they struggled a bit as Darius Quisenberry missed a large part of the season due to an injury, the Penguins ended the season strong, winning 6 of their last 7 games. UIC was able to split their series at Youngstown State earlier this season, however, I think Penguins are the far better team and between the fact that the Flames are just 2-8 on the road and that I think the duo of Naz Bohannon & Darius Quisenberry will be too much for the UIC defense, I am taking Youngstown State to cover this spread. Good Luck!

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Brett’s Pick Youngstown State Penguins -4.5

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

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