Featured Video from Scott Steehn
A pair of foes from the Pac-12 take the floor in college hoops in the Beehive State. The Washington State Cougars are on the road as they make the trip to face the Utah Utes Saturday night. Washington State was pasted 92-60 on the road by Colorado in their last game Thursday night. Utah was beaten 69-53 at home by Washington in their previous contest Thursday night. The Utes own a commanding 22-3 edge in the all-time regular season series between the teams and have taken the last nine meetings, including a 77-70 road win in the last matchup on February 17, 2018.
Washington State Cougars Seeking First Road Win of Season
Washington State suffered a fifth straight defeat as they were pummeled on the road in Colorado in their last game. The Cougars now hope to regroup and pick up that elusive first road win of the season in this contest. Washington State scored the game’s first five points before giving up 16 in a row and things went downhill from there. The Cougars trailed 41-25 at the half and didn’t get closer than nine in the second half. Washington State shot just 36.8 percent from the field, including two of 18 from three point range, and was beaten 41-27 on the glass in the game. Marvin Cannon led the Cougars with 14 points and five boards in the loss.
— WSU Men's Basketball (@WSUMensHoops) January 11, 2019
The Cougars are putting up an average of 79.7 points a night so far this season. Washington State pulls down 34.7 rebounds a night while handing out 15.3 assists per game. The Cougars are struggling defensively, ranking 305th in scoring defense as they give up 77.7 points a game. Robert Franks leads Washington State with 22.1 points and 7.9 rebounds per contest this season. He’ll miss his fourth straight game with a hip injury here. CJ Elleby (15.7 points, 7.3 rebounds) is the only other player scoring in double figures for the Cougars this season. Ahmed Ali, Viont’e Daniels, Isaiah Wade, Carter Skaggs, Arinze Chidom, Marvin Cannon and Jervae Robinson are all solid contributors for the Cougars. Washington State shoots 46.6 percent from the floor as a team on the year. The Cougars splash 9.3 triples a night while shooting 35.4 percent from beyond the arc. Washington State is solid at the charity stripe as they cash in 74.3 percent of their attempts this season.
Utah Utes Seek 10th Straight Win vs. Cougars
Utah suffered their second straight loss as they were overmatched by Washington. The Utes get a chance to get back on track as they face a Washington State team they seek to beat for the 10th straight time. Utah was done in by a pair of big runs: trailing 34-30 late in the first half, they surrendered an 11-0 run spanning both halves to trail by 15. After cutting the deficit to 47-42 with 13:34 to play, they went scoreless for five minutes as Washington went on a 12-0 run to put the game away. Utah shot 33.3 percent from the field, including six of 30 from three point range, and turned the ball over 16 times to negate a 44-38 edge on the glass. Jayce Johnson led the Utes with 12 in the loss.
A three from Donnie Tillman and the Utes have erased an early 9-2 deficit, trailing by just one point at the 10:23 mark.
— Utah Basketball (@UtahMBB) January 11, 2019
The Utes are averaging 74.1 points per game on the season so far. Utah grabs 35.3 rebounds a night while handing out 14.4 assists a game. The Utes are 248th in scoring defense as they allow 74.3 points per game on the year. Sedrick Barefield puts up 15.7 points plus 3.6 assists a game to lead the team on the year. Donnie Tillman is the only other player in double figures with 11.5 points and 5.9 rebounds per contest. Novak Topalovic, Parker Van Dyke, Vante Hendrix, Timmy Allen, Brandon Morley, Riley Battin, Both Gach and Jayce Johnson are all key pieces in the Utes’ rotation. Utah shoots 46.2 percent from the field on the season. The Utes knock down 9.3 three point field goals a night while shooting a solid 36.9 percent from beyond the arc. Utah is decent at the free throw line as they convert 73.3 percent of their chances at the stripe on the year.
- Utes are 3-1-1 ATS in their last 5 vs. Pacific-12 teams
- Cougars are 4-11 ATS in their last 15 road games vs. a team with a winning home record
- Cougars are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games overall
The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.
Full-Game Side Bet
You can sum this one up pretty well in one word: location. Washington State is 7-0 at Friel Court in Pullman. That’s the good news. The bad news: this game isn’t there. The Cougars are 0-3 as the visitor this season and an even worse 0-5 on neutral floors. Utah is 5-2 at home and they should get the upper hand on a Washington State team that hasn’t won off their own floor and who is terrible on the defensive end. Give the points and take the Utes in this contest, especially with Franks missing for the Cougars.
Prediction: Utah Utes -11.5
Full-Game Total Pick
While the Utes have sputtered with back to back losses, they’re still in better shape than the Cougars. Washington State has dropped five in a row, the last two by a combined 50 points, and have fallen under .500 on the season. This is typical pattern play by the Cougars, who play decently in non-conference action and implode when the competition level goes up a notch. Utah was competitive, losing in overtime to Arizona before getting dumped by Washington. Can the Utes get back in the win column at the expense of a team they’ve owned?
The over is 6-1 in the Cougars’ last 7 games following a straight up loss, 6-2 in their last 8 Saturday games, 6-2 in their last eight against Pac-12 foes and 19-7 in their last 26 overall. Utah has seen the over go 4-0 in their last four after an ATS loss and 5-2 in their last seven overall. Given the way Washington State has struggled to stop anyone this season, this one has a good shot at going over the number.
Prediction: Over 154