The VMI Keydets (7-12, 1-6 SoCon) and the Mercer Bears (7-12, 2-5 SoCon) square off at Hawkins Arena. The Keydets look to put an end to a six-game road losing streak. The game begins at 7:30 p.m. ET on Thursday, January 24, 2019.
VMI Keydets at Mercer Bears Betting Odds
Both teams defeated their last opponent. The Bears defeated the Samford Bulldogs 93-87, while the Keydets beat the Western Carolina Catamounts 91-83.
The Keydets had a phenomenally low turnover percentage of 8.1 (better than their season average of 16.1) and had a free throw rate of 0.281 (above their season average of 0.204). The Bears, meanwhile, made 27 of their 35 free throws (77.1 percent) and had an effective field goal percentage of 0.647 (above their season average of 0.523). Mercer was led by Ross Cummings, who had 32 points. Bubba Parham played a key role for VMI with 33 points.
The Bears dominated this series last year, winning both contests. In the most recent game, Mercer won 82-58. Making free throws was one of Mercer’s biggest strengths. They were 18-21 (85.7 percent), while the Keydets were just 3-6 (50.0 percent). This will be the first matchup of the year between these two teams.
The aggressive Mercer offense seems poised to dominate from the free throw line. The Bears rank 72nd in the nation with a free throw attempt (FTA) rate of 0.272, while VMI ranks 215th in FTA rate allowed (0.241).
VMI Keydets vs. Mercer Bears ATS Pick
Basketball Prediction: SU Winner – Mercer, ATS Winner – VMI, O/U – Under
- VMI averages 28.2 three pointers per game, which ranks 20th in the country. Mercer ranks 271st in three pointers allowed per game (27.7).
- The Keydets average 13.9 assists per game, which ranks 118th in the nation. The Bears rank 155th in assists allowed per game (13.6).
- The Bears rank 166th in rebounds allowed per game (35.6) while the Keydets rank 255th (39.1).
- Mercer averages 7.1 steals per game, which ranks 71st in the NCAA. VMI ranks 123rd in steals allowed per game (6.6).
- During their last five games, the Bears have scored an average of 77.8 points per game (3.4 above their season average) and allowed an average of 78.0 points per game (7.2 above their season average).
- The Keydets’ average margin of defeat in their last five games has been 8.8, up from 3.4 for the season.