Arizona State vs. Arizona, 01/12/17 - Prediction & Preview

Game Snapshot

#558 University of Arizona Wildcats
vs.
#557 Arizona State University Sun Devils

Thursday, January 1 2017, at 9:00pm EST

Written by

Image licensed from USA Today Sports

Arizona State Sun Devils (9-8 SU, 6-9-1 ATS, 12-4 O/U) vs. Arizona Wildcats (15-2 SU, 9-7-1 ATS, 8-8-1 O/U)

NCAAB: Thursday, January 12, 2017 at 9:00 p.m. EST

The Line: Arizona Wildcats -16.5. Total: 153

The Arizona Wildcats have won nine games in a row heading into a home date with the Arizona State Sun Devils at the McKale Memorial Center on Thursday night. Arizona most recently extended its winning streak by defeating Colorado last Saturday. The Sun Devils have dropped two of their last three contests after falling to Utah this past weekend.

Prolific offense

The 82.0 points per game being posted by Arizona State is its best since the 1997-98 squad averaged 84.5. ASU ranks third in the Pac-12 in both scoring and free-throw shooting (75.6 percent). The Sun Devils are averaging just 11.0 turnovers per game (first in the league) and 9.8 three-pointers made, the latter mark good for second in the Pac-12. They have three scorers in the Pac-12’s top 10, led by Torian Graham (second at 18.1 ppg). Tra Holder is sixth in the conference at 16.7 ppg, just ahead of Shannon Evans II at 15.9 ppg.

Graham posted a career-high in each installment of a three-game stretch with 24 against Creighton, 26 against Central Arkansas, and then 30 off the bench at Stanford’s expense. In his past six outings, Graham is 51-of-96 (53.1 percent) from the field, 21-of-47 (44.7 percent) from three-point range, and is averaging 20.8 points and 4.8 rebounds. He is shooting 64-of-122 (52.4 percent) from the field in the eight games in which he has come off the bench.

Streak predicated on defense

Arizona allowed an opponent to reach the 70-point mark for the first time all season, but it still had more than enough to defeat Colorado 82-73 last weekend. During their current nine-game surge, the Wildcats have limited six opponents to 60 points or fewer. New Mexico mustered a mere 46 points, Stanford went for 52 in a 39-point loss, and Grand Canyon scored only 54.

In the recent win over the Buffaloes, freshman forward Lauri Markkanen scored 22 points while draining four of five attempts from the land of plenty. Kadeem Allen made all three of his long-range tries en route to a career-high 18 points. Dusan Ristic added 17 for Arizona, which led by 20 points early in the second half before Colorado eventually pulled to within five points. Markkanen, a 7-footer from Finland, is averaging 15.9 points and 7.4 rebounds per contest.

NCAAB Trends:

The Arizona State Sun Devils are:

  • 2-6 ATS in their last eight road games
  • 2-5 ATS in their last seven road games against teams with winning home records
  • 4-9 ATS in their last 13 games against teams with winning records

The Arizona Wildcats are:

  • 4-1-1 ATS in their last six overall
  • 9-3 ATS in their last 12 home games against teams with winning road records
  • 4-1-1 ATS in their last six games against teams with winning records

This may not be a good matchup for Arizona State. The Sun Devils are all about scoring, but they are facing the most capable defense in the Pac-12. Arizona State is 2-6 ATS in its last eight on the road, 2-5 ATS in its last seven on the road against opponents with winning home records, and 4-9 ATS in its last 13 against winning opponents. The Wildcats are 4-1-1 ATS in their last six overall, 9-3 ATS in their last 12 at home against opponents with winning road records, 4-1-1 ATS in their last six against winning opponents, 6-2 ATS in the last eight meetings between the two teams, and 5-0 ATS in their last five at home against the Sun Devils. Look for those trends to continue.

Pick: Arizona Wildcats -16.5

Arizona State can score in bunches, but it does not do much in the way of defense. The team gave up, for example, 88 points to Utah, 81 to California, 96 to Creighton, 81 to New Mexico State, 97 to Purdue, and 115 to Kentucky. Arizona has scored at least 82 points in two of its last three contests. The over is 4-0 in the Sun Devils’ last four overall, 9-4 in their last 13 road games, 5-0 in their last five agains the Pac-12, and 4-1-1 in their last six against winning opponents. It is also 6-1 in the Wildcats’ last seven against the Pac-12 and 3-1-1 in their last five against winning opponents. Additionally, the over is 4-1-1 in the last six meetings between the two teams. Expect this one to go over the total.

Pick: Over

4

MLB on Monday, 7-24-2017

Cubs vs. White Sox, 07/24/17 - Prediction

The Chicago Cubs will play host to the Chicago White Sox in this interleague showdown in the Windy City. The Cubs have had a pretty nice season. They're currently second-place in t... Read More

Blue Jays vs. Athletics, 07/24/17 - Preview & Prediction

The Toronto Blue Jays and Oakland Athletics will begin a four-game series when they square off at the Rogers Centre in Toronto on Monday night. ... Read More

Rays vs. Orioles, 07/24/17 - Prediction

A pair of AL East rivals get an early week set underway down in the Sunshine State. The Baltimore Orioles play the first of three on the road against the Tampa Bay Rays Monday nigh... Read More

Indians vs. Reds, 07/24/17 - Preview & Prediction

The Reds travel to take on the Indians for a quick one game series to make up for a game lost earlier this season.  The Reds got off to a good start this season but they have mail... Read More

Tigers vs. Royals, 07/24/17 - Expert Prediction

It’s the start of a set between a pair of AL Central rivals in the Motor City. The Kansas City Royals open up a three game series on the road against the Detroit Tigers Monday ni... Read More

Rangers vs. Marlins, 07/24/17 - Prediction & Preview

The Marlins head to Texas on Monday to take on the Rangers in the first game of a three game series.  The Marlins have been a pretty tough team the last two months of the season a... Read More

Ricky Dimon

A 2006 graduate of Davidson College, Ricky is a freelance sports writer based in Atlanta, Georgia. He has previously worked with various websites in the sports handicapping industry and is generally a fan of going with the hot hand while in most cases showing a willingness to take favorites and give the points. Beyond the four major sports, Ricky is an avid tennis fan—and writer—and covers the ATP Tour on a daily basis.