The Sam Houston State Bearkats (6-6) will be at home in Johnson Coliseum when they challenge the Utah Valley Wolverines (8-5). Action starts at 1 p.m. ET on Friday, December 22, 2017.
Utah Valley Wolverines vs. Sam Houston State Bearkats Betting Preview
The Wolverines won big over the Montana Tech Orediggers in their last outing, 84-56. With 12 points and five rebounds, Jake Toolson had a good outing for Utah Valley. Utah Valley played a nearly flawless game. They had a great free throw rate of 0.309 (above their season average of 0.241) and an offensive rebounding percentage of 54.8 (above their season average of 37.8). For those same stats, Montana Tech had marks of 0.086 and 21.1, respectively.
In the Bearkats last matchup, they were thoroughly outplayed by the LSU Tigers, 80-58. Abrian Edwards was the games high scorer with 22 points on 8-for-12 shooting. LSU’s 0.548 effective field goal percentage was their largest advantage over Sam Houston State, who had a rate of 0.377. The Tigers mark was below their season average of 0.594, while the Bearkats’ was below their season average of 0.482.
Sam Houston State might have a difficult time putting up points as they face off against one of the NCAA’s best defenses. Utah Valley ranks 83rd in defensive efficiency, while the Bearkats rank 316th in offensive efficiency. It will also be a matchup of contrasting styles as the fast-paced Wolverines rank 41st in possessions per game, while the slower-paced Bearkats rank 258th.
Both teams have had a player heat up over their last five games. For the Wolverines, it’s been Brandon Randolph, who has averaged 10.6 points, 6.4 rebounds and 5.8 assists, while the Bearkats have received great contributions from Christopher Galbreath Jr. (18.2 points and 9.8 rebounds).
Utah Valley Wolverines vs. Sam Houston State Bearkats ATS Prediction
Predictions: SU Winner – Utah Valley, ATS Winner – Utah Valley, O/U – Over
- The Bearkats rank 107th in steals per game (6.6) while the Wolverines rank 151st in steals allowed per game (8.2).
- Utah Valley ranks 85th in blocks per game (4.4) while Sam Houston State ranks 100th in blocks allowed per game (3.5).
- Utah Valley ranks 58th in three pointers attempted per game (19.5) while Sam Houston State ranks 250th in three pointers allowed per game (26.8).
- The Bearkats average 16.3 assists per game, which ranks 51st in the nation. The Wolverines rank 152nd in assists allowed per game (15.4).
- Utah Valley ranks 30th in rebounds per game (42.0) while Sam Houston State ranks 119th in rebounds allowed per game (34.4).
- The Bearkats have been outscored by an average of 7.6 points in their last five games. For the season, Sam Houston State has defeated opponents by an average of 2.3 points.
- During their last five games, the Wolverines have scored an average of 85.0 points per game (4.5 above their season average) and allowed an average of 63.4 points per game (7.6 below their season average).