The Eastern Illinois Panthers (2-7) will be at home in Lantz Arena when they clash with the Western Illinois Leathernecks (7-2). The Over/Under (O/U) for the game opened at 131.5 points with Eastern Illinois set as a 4-point favorite. Action begins at 8:30 p.m. ET on Tuesday, December 19, 2017.
Western Illinois Leathernecks at Eastern Illinois Panthers ATS Preview
The last time the Leathernecks played, they dismantled the Milwaukee Panthers, 90-69. With 17 points and 13 rebounds, Brandon Gilbeck had a good game for Western Illinois. The Leathernecks knocked down 12 of their 17 free throws (70.6 percent) and had an effective field goal percentage of 0.736 (above their season average of 0.577).
The Panthers are hoping for a better outcome after their 63-52 loss to the South Alabama Jaguars in their last matchup. With nine points and 17 rebounds, Eastern Illinois Muusa Dama had a solid outing. South Alabama had a much better free throw rate (0.220 vs. 0.092). Eastern Illinois, meanwhile, held the Jaguars to an offensive rebounding percentage of 12.1 (below their season average of 26.1).
The ineffective offense of Eastern Illinois will battle against the elite defense of Western Illinois. Since the 2016-17 season, the Panthers rank 289th in offensive efficiency, while the Leathernecks are ninth in defensive efficiency. The Leathernecks should have the edge on that side of the ball. Also, the Leathernecks rank 295th in turnover percentage (19.1 percent), while the Panthers rank 42nd in opponents turnover percentage (22.3 percent).
Of Western Illinois 6 games that accepted bets, three have finished over the O/U total, while 5 of Eastern Illinois 8 games have finished under the O/U total. Looking at straight up (SU) and against the spread (ATS) records, the Leathernecks have a clear advantage. They are 7-2 SU and 4-2 ATS, while the Panthers are 2-7 SU and 2-6 ATS.
These teams have already met once this season. In that game, the two teams combined for 110 points, well under the projected point total of 145. The Leathernecks won 56-54, covering as 4.5-point underdogs. The Leathernecks dominated nearly every facet of the game. They had a turnover percentage of 19.1 and a free throw rate of 0.167. For those same stats, the Panthers put up marks of 23.7 and 0.145, respectively. Dalan Ancrum recorded a double-double with 21 points and 11 rebounds.
Western Illinois Leathernecks at Eastern Illinois Panthers Prediction
Predictions: SU Winner – Western Illinois, ATS Winner – Western Illinois, O/U – Over
Betting Notes (2016-Present):
- The Panthers rank 68th in steals per game (6.9) while the Leathernecks rank 159th in steals allowed per game (6.7).
- Western Illinois ranks 60th in assists per game (14.0) while Eastern Illinois ranks 148th in assists allowed per game (13.2).
- Eastern Illinois ranks 92nd in three pointers allowed per game (19.6) while Western Illinois ranks 250th (20.8).
- The Leathernecks rank second in blocks allowed per game (2.2) while the Panthers rank 148th (3.5).
- Western Illinois ranks 24th in rebounds allowed per game (36.0) while Eastern Illinois ranks 142nd (38.0).