MVC foes will battle when the Drake Bulldogs (12-11, 6-4 MVC) clash against the Southern Illinois Salukis (14-9, 6-4 MVC) at Knapp Center. Drake is a 2-point favorite on the opening line, while the games Over/Under (O/U) opened at 144 points. Tip-off is scheduled for 8 p.m. ET on Tuesday, January 30, 2018.
Southern Illinois Salukis vs. Drake Bulldogs Free Preview
In the Salukis last outing, they barely escaped the Missouri State Bears, 79-77. With 17 points and seven rebounds, Kavion Pippen put together a good outing for Southern Illinois. Southern Illinois 0.723 effective field goal percentage was their biggest strength over Missouri State, who had a mark of 0.575. The Salukis mark was above their season average of 0.521.
The Bulldogs are hoping for a better outcome after their 77-73 loss to the Evansville Aces in their last game. De’Antae McMurray was Drake’s high scorer with 13 points on 4-for-12 shooting. Evansville did an excellent job of making free throws (22-25; 88.0 percent). Drake, on the other hand, forced the Aces into a turnover percentage of 25.3 (above their season average of 18.9).
Second-chance opportunities could be rare for Southern Illinois in this matchup. The Salukis are among the NCAA’s elite on the offensive glass, ranking 272nd in offensive rebounding percentage at 26.1 percent. Meanwhile, Drake ranks 81st in the NCAA at corralling defensive rebounds with a defensive rebounding percentage of 73.7 percent.
Of Southern Illinois 18 games that accepted bets, nine have finished over the projected point total, while 11 of Drake’s 20 games have finished over the projected point total. The Salukis have the better straight up (SU) record (14-9 vs. 12-11), but the Bulldogs hold the significant advantage against the spread (ATS) (12-7-1 vs. 7-10-1).
Armon Fletcher has really been playing well over the last five games for Southern Illinois, averaging 15.4 points, 6.2 rebounds and 2.6 steals per game.
These teams have already met once this season. In that game, the two teams combined to score 137 points, just under the projected point total of 142. The Bulldogs won 70-67, covering as 7-point underdogs. The Bulldogs dominated nearly every stat category in the game. They had a free throw rate of 0.213 and a turnover percentage of 10.5. The Salukis recorded marks of 0.070 and 13.1, respectively, for those same stats. Fletcher played a big role with 15 points and 12 rebounds.
Southern Illinois Salukis at Drake Bulldogs ATS Prediction
Free College Basketball Pick: SU Winner – Southern Illinois, ATS Winner – Southern Illinois, O/U – Over
- The Salukis average 7.1 steals per game, which ranks 62nd in the nation. The Bulldogs rank 80th in steals allowed per game (5.9).
- Drake ranks 228th in rebounds per game (33.2) while Southern Illinois ranks 230th (33.2).
- Southern Illinois is 3-6-1 ATS on the road, while Drake is 5-1 ATS at home.
- In 10 road games, the Salukis have 6 overs and 4 unders.
- The Bulldogs have 3 overs and 3 unders in 6 home games.
- Drake ranks 98th in three pointers attempted per game (23.4) while Southern Illinois ranks 250th (18.2).
- The Salukis rank 110th in assists per game (14.4) while the Bulldogs rank 212th in assists allowed per game (15.3).
- Southern Illinois ranks 26th in blocks allowed per game (2.5) while Drake ranks 78th (3.2).
- Drake is 3-2 ATS with 3 unders and 2 overs in their last five games.
- Over their last five games, Southern Illinois is 3-2 ATS with 4 overs and 1 under.
- The Bulldogs have been outscored by an average of 4.4 points in their last five games. On the season, Drake has defeated opponents by an average of 0.8 points.
- During their last five games, the Salukis have scored an average of 72.8 points per game (1.9 above their season average) and allowed an average of 71.2 points per game (2.5 above their season average).