MAC foes will battle when the Akron Zips (7-7, 0-2 MAC) challenge the Buffalo Bulls (10-5, 2-0 MAC) at James A. Rhodes Arena. Buffalo opened as a 5-point favorite, while the Over/Under (O/U) for the game has been set at 156.5 points. Action starts at 7 p.m. ET on Tuesday, January 9, 2018.
Buffalo Bulls at Akron Zips Betting Preview
In the Bulls last matchup, they dismantled the Ball State Cardinals, 83-63. With 15 points and 11 rebounds, Buffalo’s Nick Perkins played well. Buffalo played a perfect game. They had a turnover percentage of 12.3 (better than their season average of 15.5) and an offensive rebounding percentage of 34.3 (above their season average of 33.1). For those same stats, Ball State was 17.0 and 25.6, respectively.
The Zips are trying to rebound after their 67-65 loss to the Toledo Rockets in their last game. With 17 points and seven rebounds, Eric Parrish had a good game for Akron. Toledo had a free throw rate of 0.304 (above their season average of 0.257). Akron, meanwhile, held the Rockets to an offensive rebounding percentage of 13.3 (below their season average of 27.1).
This has potential to be a sloppy game for the offense of Akron. Akron ranks 264th in the NCAA in ball protection (turnover percentage of 20.4 percent), while the ball-hawking defense of Buffalo forces the 93rd-most turnovers in the NCAA (21.1 percent).
In terms of the O/U total, these teams are complete opposites. Buffalo games have finished over 58.3 percent of the time, while 58.3 percent of games featuring Akron have finished under. The Bulls have the superior straight up (SU) record (10-5 vs. 7-7) and a narrow edge against the spread (ATS) (7-5 vs. 6-6).
The Bulls Wes Clark (21.0 points, 6.3 assists and 2.0 steals) and Perkins (15.0 points and 6.2 rebounds) have been playing at a high level over their last five games. Meanwhile, the Zips have their own duo of hot players. Jimond Ivey has averaged 16.0 points, 5.4 rebounds and 4.6 assists, while Malcolm Duvivier has averaged 18.0 points.
This will be the first matchup of the year between these two teams. The Zips won both contests played against each other last season. In the most recent game, Akron won 89-83. Akron had a much better effective field goal percentage (0.690 vs. 0.473). Buffalo, on the other hand, had a much better offensive rebounding percentage (52.8 vs. 17.9).
Buffalo Bulls at Akron Zips Free Prediction
Predictions: SU Winner – Buffalo, ATS Winner – Akron, O/U – Over
- The Zips average 3.0 blocks per game, which ranks 120th in the nation. The Bulls rank 145th in blocks allowed per game (4.7).
- Buffalo is 5-3 ATS on the road, while Akron is 4-1 ATS at home.
- The Bulls have 5 overs and 3 unders in 8 road games.
- Of the Zips 5 home games, they have 3 overs and 2 unders.
- Buffalo ranks 15th in three pointers allowed per game (17.5) while Akron ranks 132nd (22.2).
- The Bulls rank 48th in assists per game (16.2) while the Zips rank 137th in assists allowed per game (13.7).
- Akron ranks 162nd in rebounds per game (35.0) while Buffalo ranks 216th in rebounds allowed per game (38.3).
- Akron is 2-2 ATS with 2 overs and 2 unders in their last five games.
- Over their last five games, Buffalo is 3-1 ATS with 3 overs and 1 under.
- The Zips average margin of victory in their last five games has been 1.6, up from 0.1 for the season.
- During their last five games, the Bulls have scored an average of 84.0 points per game (1.3 above their season average) and allowed an average of 81.6 points per game (3.4 above their season average).