Akron Zips (13-3 SU, 5-7 ATS, 6-6 O/U) vs. Miami (OH) RedHawks (8-8 SU, 7-6 ATS, 8-5 O/U)
NCAAB: Saturday, January 14, 2017, Millett Hall, Oxford, Ohio, 3:30 pm ET
Spread: Akron -9, Over/Under: 147
It’s a battle of schools from the Buckeye State as a pair of Mid-American Conference programs meet up. The Akron Zips travel to face the Miami (OH) RedHawks Saturday afternoon. Akron reeled off their sixth straight win with an 89-85 road win over Central Michigan Tuesday night. Miami (OH) dropped their second straight with an 85-74 road loss at Ball State Tuesday night. The RedHawks have won four of the last five meetings, including a 77-64 triumph in the last matchup here on February 23, 2016.
Akron Zips Shoot to Keep Rolling
Akron has picked up six straight wins and it hasn’t mattered the venue in that stretch. The Zips got a tough win over Central Michigan on the road. Akron ran to an eight point edge at the half and held off a second half charge by the Chippewas to get the win. The Zips hit 45.6 percent from the floor, including a 15 of 35 performance from beyond the arc, in the victory. Akron’s three point barrage helped overcome the fact that Central Michigan shot 50 percent from the floor and knocked down 12 of 27 threes themselves. The Zips had a 41-34 edge on the glass and were led by Isaiah Johnson’s 33 points, pushing him over the 1000 point mark in his career.
Akron is an above average offensive unit as they are tied for 64th in the nation with an average of 79.3 points per game. The Zips are 193rd on the boards this season with 36.3 rebounds per contest and 103rd in assists by dishing out 15.1 per contest. Akron is very good on the defensive end of the floor as they are 103rd in the nation, allowing 68.8 points per game. The Zips are shooting 48.3 percent from the floor. Akron is knocking down 11 three point field goals per contest while shooting 38.9 percent from beyond the arc. Isaiah Johnson leads the Zips with 16 points plus 7.4 rebounds and 3.6 assists per game. Noah Robotham puts up 9.9 points a night while Antino Jackson is good for 11.1 points a night. Jimond Ivey, Kwan Cheatham Jr., Josh Williams and Tavian Dunn-Martin all contribute at least 5.8 points a game for the Zips.
Miami (OH) RedHawks Try to Avoid Falling Under .500
Miami (OH) had won three straight to get over the .500 mark but dropped back to back conference tilts to fall back to the break-even point. The RedHawks got themselves in trouble in the first half, falling behind by 17 to the hot shooting Cardinals, and couldn’t bail themselves out. Miami (OH) allowed Ball State to shoot 55.3 percent from the field in the game while they connected on 44.9 percent from the floor. The RedHawks hit 7 of 21 from three point range, lost the rebounding battle 30-25 and committed 25 personal fouls, leading to 32 free throw attempts for Ball State. Michael Weathers finished with a team-high 22 points in the loss for Miami (OH) in the game.
The RedHawks are an average offensive team as they are tied for 174th in the nation in scoring offense with 74.1 points per game. Miami (OH) comes into this one 217th in rebounding with 35.7 boards a game and tied for 273rd with 12.3 assists per contest. The RedHawks are 250th in scoring defense as they allow an average of 74.8 points a night. Miami (OH) shoots 43.6 percent from the floor as a team this season. The RedHawks sink 7.5 threes a night despite hitting only 33.1 percent from downtown. Michael Weathers averages a team leading 18.2 points plus 4.4 rebounds, 5.2 assists, 1.9 steals and 1.4 blocks a game. Logan McLane is the only other player scoring in double figures with 11.5 points and 6.4 boards a night. Jake Wright, Marcus Weathers, Rod Mills Jr. and Abdoulaye Harouna each add better than six points a game.
- Zips are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 road games
- No Key Trends
Miami (OH) is a streaky team and it’s tough to rely on a group that lacks consistency. The RedHawks don’t have much in the way of go-to scoring outside of Weathers. Akron is rolling along right now and they have a group of talented scoring options that can step up if one or two guys are having off nights. That’s a luxury the RedHawks don’t have: if Weathers struggles, it’s a long night for the team. The Zips are winning, home, road or neutral site of late: that trend continues as they make it seven straight wins.