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Saturday, January 12 2:00 P.M. Holmes Convocation Center in Boone, North Carolina
The Sun Belt Conference will send their second place Texas State Bobcats to face Appalachian State. The Mountaineers are in the basement of the conference. They lost their fourth in a row when they were beaten by UT Arlington 82-72. Texas State picked up their 13th win last time out. The Bobcats took down Coastal Carolina on the road 65-61. They are 9-5 ATS this season while Appalachian State is 5-8. Teams have split the last ten meetings with the Mountaineers winning the last two. Coming into this game, Texas State holds the edge and is the better team, even on the road.
Appalachian State Searching for Win
Appalachian State lost their 11th game of the season last time out in a game they had a four-point halftime lead. UT Arlington opened the second half on a 15-0 run to take a nine-point lead and they never looked back. The Mountaineers were outplayed all night. They shot 39.7% from the field, were out rebounded 43-27 and went 5-22 from three-point range. Appalachian State had four guys in double-figures but no one else exceeded four points. Isaac Johnson and Ronshad Shabazz scored 16 points a piece.
— App State Basketball (@AppStateMBB) January 11, 2019
Shabazz has had a great 16 games so far. He leads the team with 19.8 points per game and has only been held to single-digits once. He is hitting his stride mid season as he has scored 20 or more points in five of his last seven games. The Mountaineers are coming off a season where they finished 15-18. They are in the midst of another poor season thanks to their efforts on the defensive end. They rank 322nd in the country in points allowed at 79.3 per game. Offensively, they score 81.9 points per game which is good for 32nd nationally. They feature three players who average over 20 points per 40 minutes. For them to pick up an upset win in this one, they will have to show up and get a big performance from Shabazz.
Texas State Looks to Stay Hot
Texas State squeaked by Coastal Carolina 65-61 in their last game. The Bobcats had a nine-point lead at halftime. The lead got down to two with eight minutes left and as close as three with under a minute but Texas State was able to hold on for the win. They were outscored 20-6 at the free throw line but they made up for it behind the three-point line. Texas State hit nine three’s in the game while holding Coastal Carolina to just 3-19. The Bobcats had 10 different guys score. Alex Peacock went above his season average and led the way with 13 points on eight shot attempts. Texas State had an eight game win streak snapped five games ago but have since won three of five. They will look to rack up their second in a row against Appalachian State.
Check out @TXStateMBB's Nijal Pearson with the protective face guard.
He's channeling his inner Rip Hamilton after breaking his nose against Georgia State. pic.twitter.com/QemdYISyix
— Nick Castillo (@Nick_Castillo74) January 11, 2019
Nijal Pearson has been the undisputed leader for this 13-3 Bobcats squad. He is their leading scorer at 17.8 points per game. He is also second on the team in rebounding, fourth in assists and first in steals. Peacock has served as a solid player averaging 8.7 points and 7.3 rebounds per game. Offensively, they average 76 points per game and should have plenty of opportunities against a faulty Appalachian State defense. They shoot it well from deep. As a team, they are knocking down 36% of their three-point attempts. A conference road game is never certain but they will come into this game as the better team and they will want to show it.
- Mountaineers are 2-5 ATS in their last 7 games overall
- Mountaineers are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 home games
- Over is 10-3 in Mountaineers last 13 overall
- Bobcats are 6-1 ATS in their last 7 road games vs. a team with a winning home record
- Bobcats are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games overall
- Bobcats are 15-5-1 ATS in their last 21 road games
- Over is 8-2 in Bobcats last 10 Saturday games
The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.
Full-Game Side Bet
Sometimes, the better team takes care of business. Texas State will enter this game at 13-3 and in second place in the Sun Belt Conference. Appalachian State will be home but sits at the bottom of the conference. The Mountaineers are one of the worst defensive teams in the country and have given up big runs to opponents all season long. They are not playing their best ball as they have lost four straight. Texas State is coming off a win and wants to start another win streak in conference play. The Bobcats will be favored in this one and should be able to cover the spread on the road.
Prediction: Texas State
Full-Game Total Pick
Texas State has scored over 100 points twice, over 90 twice and over 80 once. They will come into this game off a 65-point performance and against one of the worst defensive teams in the country. It is unlike them to have two poor offensive games in a row. The Mountaineers have allowed over 80 points six times at home this season. Teams can get very comfortable against them and quick. Texas State will do their fair share of scoring and if Appalachian State wants to hang around, they will have to score as well. This could be a game in which the teams cruise to the over.