Cleveland State at Houston: 3/19/21 College Basketball Picks and Prediction

Cleveland State at Houston: 3/19/21 College Basketball Picks and Prediction Photo by Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

Houston Cougars (24-3) vs Cleveland State Vikings (19-7)

Game Info: Friday, March 19, 2021 at 12:00 am (Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall)

Betting Odds: Houston Cougars -19 -- Over/Under: 134.5 Click Here for the Latest Odds

The Cleveland State Vikings and Houston Cougars will square off at Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall in the 1st round of the NCAA Tournament in the Midwest Region.

The 15-seed Cleveland State Vikings finished their regular season with an overall record of 19-7 while finishing conference play with a 16-4 margin. Cleveland State earned the top-seed in the Horizon League Championship and was able to get the automatic bid after defeating the Oakland Golden Grizzlies, 80-69, in the Horizon League Championship game. Cleveland State was lights out defensively against the high-scoring Oakland offense and had no trouble pulling away in the 2nd half after going into halftime with a 40-28 lead. Cleveland State shot 51.4% from the field and 20.0% from beyond the arc while Oakland shot 34.4% from the field and 28.9% from beyond the arc. Leading the way for the Vikings was Torrey Patton who had 23 points, 10 rebounds, 4 assists, 1 block, & 1 steal.

On the season, Cleveland State is averaging 71.5 ppg on 45.2% shooting from the field. The Vikings are averaging 6.4 three-pointers per game on 31.9% shooting from beyond the arc. Offensively, Cleveland State has been led by Torrey Patton (14.9 ppg, 8.0 rpg, 2.7 apg, 1.0 spg), Tre Gomillion (10.5 ppg, 5.2 rpg, 2.4 apg), D’Moi Hodge (10.5 ppg, 3.7 rpg, 1.6 apg, 1.7 spg), & Craig Beaudion (9.6 ppg, 2.1 rpg, 3.4 apg, 1.2 spg).

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Defensively, Cleveland State is allowing their opponents to average 70.6 ppg on 42.3% shooting from the field. The Vikings have a rebound margin of -0.3 and a turnover margin of 1.1.

The 2-seed Houston Cougars finished their regular season with an overall record of 24-3 while finishing conference play with a 14-3 record. Houston earned the 2-seed in the AAC Championship and had no trouble securing winning the championship after destroying the Cincinnati Bearcats, 91-54, this past Sunday. Houston dominated Cincinnati on both ends of the court throughout the game and had no trouble securing the victory after going into halftime with a 41-27 lead. Houston shot 56.1% from the field and 47.8% from beyond the arc while Cincinnati shot just 27.7% from the field and 24.2% from beyond the arc. Leading the way for the Cougars was Quentin Grimes who had 21 points, 3 rebounds, 1 assist, 1 block, & 2 steals.

On the season, Houston is averaging 77.6 ppg on 44.4% shooting from the field. The Cougars are averaging 9.3 three-pointers per game on 36.1% shooting from beyond the arc. Offensively, Houston has been led by Quentin Grimes (17.9 ppg, 6.1 rpg, 1.9 apg, 1.3 spg), Marcus Sasser (13.6 ppg, 2.3 rpg, 2.3 apg, 1.3 spg), DeJon Jarreau (11.1 ppg, 5.5 rpg, 4.3 apg, 1.4 spg), & Justin Gorham (8.6 ppg, 9.2 rpg, 1.1 apg).

Defensively, Houston is holding their opponents to an average of 57.9 ppg on 37.0% shooting from the field. The Cougars have a rebound margin of 9.1 and a turnover margin of 3.8.

The Vikings are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 neutral site games and 17-6-1 ATS in their last 24 games overall. The Cougars are 6-1 ATS in their last 7 neutral site games and 12-4 ATS in their last 16 games overall.

Cleveland State has a terrific season, especially after getting off to a slow start that included a 55-point loss to Ohio, however, this is just a team really is not anything more than average on both sides of the ball as the Vikings come into this game ranked 168th in scoring offense & 184th in scoring defense. Houston has been dominant this season on both ends of the court, however, the Cougars are led by their defense which ranks 2nd in scoring defense & 1st in defensive FG%. This is a monster number, however, Houston has shown us that they can easily blow out weaker teams and as I just don’t see the Vikings putting up more than 50 points in this one, I think Houston does enough to win this one by 20+ and covers this spread. Good Luck!

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Brett’s Pick Houston Cougars -19

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

Mitch's Take...

Houston vs Cleveland State 3/19/21 Free College Basketball Pick and Prediction NCAA Tournament

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