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The Kent State Golden Flashes (12-3 / 1-1 MAC) will make the trip to Ypsilanti, MI, and nothing else matters now because I got to say Ypsilanti, so thank you for joining us today and we’ll see ya next time!
Seriously, Kent State will be taking on the Eastern Michigan Eagles (7-8 / 1-1 MAC) as both teams look to break the .500 mark in conference play from the high-noon tip-off at Convocation Center on Saturday.
The Golden Flashes have taken 4 wins from their last 5 games, and carried an 11 – 2 non-conference finish to MAC play riding a consistent offense that puts up nearly 78 PPG. Their 89th ranking in scoring might not seem all that impressive, but this team is as dangerous as any team in the country when they’re rolling.
The Eagles are hoping to finally get back to the .500 mark after a nice 3 – 0 start to the season. After losses to Kansas and Buffalo, the Eagles rebounded last time on the floor with their first MAC win of the year over Ball State, 84 – 82.
The Flashes Look To Improve On Their 4 – 1 Road Record
Flashes Head Coach Rob Senderhoff has led Kent State to four 20-win campaigns in his 7 years with the program, but year 8 seems to be off to one helluva start so far after a disappointing 17-17 season.
Flashes First #MACtion Road Test at Eastern Michigan
— Kent State Men's Basketball (@KentStMBB) January 11, 2019
Senior guard Jaylin Walker would be ranked about 17th in the nation among the scoring leaders in the country with his 22.6 PPG, but he missed the first 5 games of the season and will have to wait to officially make the board a few more outings. No one here is complaining about that, as Walker has been a double-digit scorer in all 10 of his appearances, and I don’t think the man has ever met a shot he doesn’t like.
Another senior guard, Covington, KY native Jalen Avery is 2nd on the Flashes roster putting up 12.9 PPG. Avery was 1 of 5 double-digit scorers in the recent win over Western Michigan, as he had 12 points, 7 boards and 8 dimes on the night.
Junior guard Antonio Williams came off the bench and provided 14 points to bring his average up to 11.9 PPG, although his playing time has slowly diminished lately as he saw 24 minutes on the floor.
The Eagles Hope To Get Back To .500 With A Home Win
Eastern Michigan has not been above the .500 mark since opening the season 4 – 1, but a win over Ball State last time out will hopefully build some type of momentum for a team that could really use some.
The Eagles non-conference schedule was filled with some difficult matchups, as losses to Duke, Kansas, and Buffalo, among others, doesn’t look bad on anyone’s profile,
In the 84 – 82 win over Ball State last time out, 4 starters found their way to double-digit nights, as senior forward Elijah Minnie led the way with his 25 points and 7 boards despite fouling out.
Minnie and junior center Boubacar Toure both eventually found 5 fouls which earned them early trips to the bench, and head coach Rob Murphy doesn’t exactly have much of a bench presence to rely on to begin with.
Sophomore forward Ty Groce came off the pine against WMU and scored 9 points in a whopping 42 minutes of court time in the overtime affair. He alone accounts for the only 9 points of production from 4 subs in the game, as Malik Ellison saw 14 minutes and missed his only shot of the night.
• Eagles are 1-7 ATS in their last 8 games overall.
• Over is 5-2 in Eagles last 7 overall.
• Over is 4-0 in Eagles last 4 Saturday games.
• Golden Flashes are 6-1 ATS in their last 7 road games following three or more consecutive home games.
• Over is 5-0 in Golden Flashes last 5 Saturday games.
• Over is 5-2 in Golden Flashes last 7 overall.
The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.
Full-Game Side Bet
Hold on what now?
What the hell are the Flashes doing getting a bucket in Eastern Michigan today?
I laugh at the line setters for making the wrong team favored here, so Kent State and that bucket get no argument from me.
Kent State +2 is the 4* Play on the Side.
Prediction: Kent State +2
Full-Game Total Pick
And this too befuddles me, because I see Kent State having a grand ole time at the opry, or uh Ypsilanti I mean!
Kent State escapes with a 84 – 80 road win, with the road dog finding a win and the total going over the number.
The Over 136 is your 4* Play on the Total.
Prediction: Over 136