MVC foes will collide when the Valparaiso Crusaders (12-14, 3-10 MVC) square off with the Illinois State Redbirds (14-11, 8-5 MVC) at Athletics-Recreation Center. The games Over/Under (O/U) opened at 142 points with Valparaiso set as a 5.5-point favorite. Tip-off is set for 4 p.m. ET on Sunday, February 11, 2018, and it can be seen on ESPNU.
Illinois State Redbirds at Valparaiso Crusaders Odds Preview
The last time the Redbirds played, they beat the Southern Illinois Salukis, 76-68. With 13 points and eight rebounds, Illinois State’s Daouda N’Diaye had a solid outing. Illinois State played a nearly perfect game. They had an absurd offensive rebounding percentage of 42.4 (above their season average of 26.2) and a free throw rate of 0.389 (above their season average of 0.225). For those same stats, Southern Illinois recorded marks of 27.3 and 0.295, respectively.
The Crusaders are hoping for a better outcome after their 63-59 loss to the Evansville Aces in their last outing. With 15 points, Valparaiso’s Bakari Evelyn had a solid outing. Evansville had a free throw rate of 0.340 (above their season average of 0.299). Valparaiso, on the other hand, had a better effective field goal percentage (0.519 vs. 0.500).
From an effective field goal percentage perspective, Valparaiso should have a noteworthy advantage. The Crusaders defense ranks 42nd in effective field goal percentage allowed (0.473), while the Illinois State offense is ranked 191st in effective field goal percentage (0.509).
In terms of the O/U total, these teams are complete opposites. Illinois State games have gone over 63.6 percent of the time, while games featuring Valparaiso have gone under 69.6 percent of the time. The Redbirds hold a substantial advantage in terms of straight up (SU) and against the spread (ATS) records. They are 14-11 SU and 11-11 ATS, while the Crusaders are 12-14 SU and 10-12-1 ATS.
Evelyn has really been playing well over the last five games for Valparaiso, averaging 17.8 points and 2.0 steals per game.
These teams have already met once this season. The Redbirds won 76-65. The Redbirds played a nearly flawless game. They had a phenomenal offensive rebounding percentage of 36.4 and an effective field goal percentage of 0.517. For those same stats, the Crusaders put up marks of 20.0 and 0.402, respectively. Phil Fayne was the games top overall scorer with 24 points.
Illinois State Redbirds at Valparaiso Crusaders Prediction
Free College Basketball Pick: SU Winner – Valparaiso, ATS Winner – Illinois State, O/U – Under
- The Crusaders rank 33rd in blocks allowed per game (2.6) while the Redbirds rank 84th (3.2).
- Illinois State is 6-6 ATS on the road with 9 overs and 3 unders.
- Valparaiso is 4-4 ATS at home with 5 unders and 3 overs.
- Illinois State ranks 31st in three pointers attempted per game (26.4) while Valparaiso ranks 213th (20.2).
- The Crusaders rank 126th in rebounds allowed per game (34.2) while the Redbirds rank 267th (38.8).
- Valparaiso ranks 23rd in steals per game (7.8) while Illinois State ranks 116th in steals allowed per game (6.2).
- Valparaiso is 1-3-1 ATS with 4 unders and 1 over in their last five games.
- Over their last five games, Illinois State is 3-2 ATS with 3 overs and 2 unders.
- The Crusaders have been outscored by an average of 5.0 points in their last five games. On the season, Valparaiso has defeated opponents by an average of 2.1 points.
- During their last five games, the Redbirds have scored an average of 75.0 points per game (2.3 above their season average) and allowed an average of 69.4 points per game (4.5 below their season average).