The Norfolk State Spartans (1-9) will be at home in Echols Hall when they take on the Niagara Purple Eagles (4-6). Tip-off is set for 4 p.m. ET on Saturday, December 16, 2017.
Niagara Purple Eagles vs. Norfolk State Spartans ATS Preview
The last time the Purple Eagles played, they fell to the Saint Francis U Red Flash, 93-87. With 25 points on 7-for-17 shooting, Kahlil Dukes was Niagara’s leading scorer. Saint Francis U had an offensive rebounding percentage of 32.4 (above their season average of 25.5). Niagara, on the other hand, had a much better turnover percentage (7.9 vs. 15.9).
The Spartans will look to maintain momentum after thoroughly outplaying the Mid-Atlantic Christian Mustangs in their last matchup, 112-34. Norfolk State received a boost from Steven Whitley, who had 14 points, 14 rebounds and six assists. Norfolk State played a flawless game. They had a ridiculous offensive rebounding percentage of 65.2 (above their season average of 28.5) and a turnover percentage of 8.7 (better than their season average of 20.6). Mid-Atlantic Christian put up marks of 14.3 and 29.9, respectively, for those same stats.
The aggressive Niagara offense seems poised to dominate from the free throw line. The Purple Eagles currently rank 39th in the nation with a free throw attempt (FTA) rate of 0.292, while Norfolk State ranks 257th in FTA rate allowed (0.309).
Whitley has been superb over the last five games for Norfolk State, averaging 10.6 points, 5.2 rebounds, 4.2 assists and 2.6 steals per game.
This will be the first matchup of the year between these two teams, after the Purple Eagles won the only contest last season, 65-61. The Purple Eagles dominated nearly every facet of the game. They had a solid free throw rate of 0.254 and a solid turnover percentage of 9.5. The Spartans were 0.162 and 11.0, respectively, for those same stats.
Niagara Purple Eagles at Norfolk State Spartans ATS Prediction
Predictions: SU Winner – Norfolk State, ATS Winner – Norfolk State, O/U – Under
- The Spartans rank 166th in assists allowed per game (16.0) while the Purple Eagles rank 236th (17.1).
- Niagara ranks third in steals allowed per game (3.8) while Norfolk State ranks 65th (5.0).
- Norfolk State averages 35.4 rebounds per game, which ranks 83rd in the nation. Niagara ranks 238th in rebounds allowed per game (38.7).
- The Purple Eagles average 24.8 three pointers per game, which ranks 59th in the NCAA. The Spartans rank 193rd in three pointers allowed per game (23.9).
- Norfolk State ranks 35th in blocks per game (3.6) while Niagara ranks 147th in blocks allowed per game (3.9).
- The Spartans have outscored opponents by an average of 2.2 points in their last five games. For the season, Norfolk State has been defeated by an average of 7.6 points.
- During their last five games, the Purple Eagles have scored an average of 83.8 points per game (0.1 above their season average) and allowed an average of 87.0 points per game (1.7 below their season average).