#577 University of California, Davis Aggiesvs.#578 University of California Riverside Highlanders
Written by Big B
UC Davis vs. Cal Riverside
NCAA Basketball: Thursday, January 12th, 11:00 pm EST
Line: UC Davis -2
The Aggies of UC Davis head to Riverside to take on the Highlanders in a Big West tussle on Thursday. These may well be a battle of the best in the conference versus the worst, although UC Santa Barbara may have a claim to being the worst. As of now, I’ll hand that title to Riverside, who is 2-11 overall and haven’t won in conference. The Aggies are 10-7 overall and 2-0 in conference.
The Aggies are a sparkling 11-4 overall against the spread, and a very solid 5-3 on the road. The Highlanders haven’t been near as good. They are 4-9 overall, but at least they are a respectable 2-2 at home. With so many away games out of conference, maybe they’ll play better at home.
While every other team struggled through a terrible out of conference schedule, the Aggies actually played pretty well. They were 8-7 out of conference and have now won their first two to go 10-7. They remain the only Big West team with a winning overall record. That’s how bad this league is.
The Aggies posted wins over UCSB and Cal Poly. They were led in both wins by Chima Moneke who has been great for the Aggies this year. The junior forward is averaging 15.1 points and 8.2 rebounds a game and powers the Aggie offense. He shoots 57% from the field and is tough to stop down low.
UC Riverside is battling UC Santa Barbara for the basement of the Big West this year. Currently they both share the worst record. You could say they are cohabiting. The Highlanders lost their first two conference games, by six to Northridge and then by six to Long Beach State. Hardly something to hang your hat on, but at least these games have been competitive, since you couldn’t say that for most of their out of conference schedule.
On the bright side, they have a balanced offense. Although, to be honest, that’s just because they don’t have a go to player. They have five players who average between eight points and 11.4, with Secean Johnson leading them with the 11.4. It’s the lowest leading scorer I’ve seen in college basketball this year.
The UC Davis Aggies are:
The UC Riverside Highlanders are:
UC Riverside looks to be better at home, but I don’t think it will be enough against the Aggies. This looks to be the best Davis team in a long time, not that that is saying much. However, in the Big West it might be enough for a title. And it should be enough to win easily on Thursday.
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Known as Big B since his time at UCSB, Brian O’Sullivan is a novelist, screenwriter, & poker player who follows sports religiously. His betting style would be considered that of a contrarian, and he likes to bet against the general public. It seems to be working. You can find him at the coffee shops of Vegas, hanging with his family in SF, or at the bars of LA.