Prediction, Preview, and Odds
#603 Louisville -6 vs.
#604 Pittsburgh 125
Tuesday, January 14, 2020 at 7:00pm EST
Written by Arthur L.

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#603 University of Louisville
#604 University of Pittsburgh
13-3
11-5
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7-8-1
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74
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The 13-3, 11th-ranked Louisville Cardinals will go on the road to face off with the 11-5 Pittsburgh Panthers on Tuesday night at 7:00 PM ET in the Petersen Center. The Cardinals are 5.5-point favorites on the road and we’re looking at a 129.5 over/under. It’s no surprise to see a low total in this game as we’re working with two teams that rank near the bottom (318th and 332nd) of 353 teams in pace. Defense will be the name of this game and the team that locks down better will likely end up getting the victory. While the Cardinals are certainly the better team on paper and favored on the road, Pittsburgh is a very capable team and they’re not going to lie down and give up on their home floor. These teams played in Louisville earlier this season and the Cardinals dominated Pitt 64-46. It’ll be interesting to see if Pittsburgh learned anything and if they’ll be able to keep it close at home.

Cardinals can’t overlook Pitt

After losing to Kentucky and Florida State in back-to-back games and dropping from 3rd to 13th in the country, the Louisville Cardinals are now working on climb back up the ranks. They’re now up to 11th in the country after a tight 67-64 win over the Notre Dame Fighting Irish. Louisville got off to a quick start and led by 12 at halftime, but nearly gave it all up in the second. Ultimately, Jordan Nwora was too much to handle with 20 points and he was complemented by Ryan McMahon and his 17 off the bench. With Nwora busy covering John Mooney, Dwayne Sutton stepped up in a big way with 14 rebounds on top of 10 points. At just 6’5, he averages 9.1 rebounds per game and plays a blue-guy type role for the Cardinals.

The Louisville Cardinals are a team that stand out on paper, both offensively and defensively. From the field, they rank 48th in the country with a 46.6% field-goal percentage and 37.5% (28th) three-point percentage. They also turn the ball over just 12.1 times a games and rank 33rd in the country with a 1.2 AST/TO ratio. Junior forward Jordan Nwora is one of the best players in the country and he averages 20.8 points and 7.5 rebounds a night. Steven Enoch complements Nwora as the C and he’s the only other player to average double-figures at 10.9. Ryan McMahon and Dwayne Sutton both average nine points per game and play pivotal roles in Louisville giving Nwora enough room to operate. The Cardinals will need everyone to show up if they want to blow out the Panthers in Pittsburgh.

Win, Win, Win, Let's Go!

After beating the North Carolina Tar Heels, the Pittsburgh Panthers went on the road and lost 66-58 to the Miami Hurricanes. The ‘Canes got off to a quick start and held a nine-point lead by halftime. Hurricane guard Kameron KcGusty led the way with 19 points and he was complemented by Chris Lyles and his 12 points, four assists, and two rebounds. Pittsburgh shot just a measly 35% from the field and an unlucky 18% on 16 three-point attempts. Miami on the other hand, shot 52% from the field and looked effective throughout.

The Panthers are a team that doesn’t stand out on paper. In fact, they rank 289th in the country with a 41.5% field-goal percentage and 322nd with a 29.5% three-point percentage. If you’re looking for a bright spot, the Panthers turn it over just 12.4 times per game at the 77th best clip in the country. They’ll rely on Trey McGowens, who averages 13.2 points, 3.7 rebounds, and 3.3 assists a game. If the Panthers want any shot at winning this game, they’ll need a big game out of the guard. Point guard Xavier Johnson is up to 11 points per game on top of his 4.9 assists and three boards. Justin Champagnie mans the paint with 6.8 rebounds per game on top of 11.4 points and 1.3 steals. The Panthers are going to need a big game out of their guards if they want to keep this close.

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Louisville is the far better team here and they beat the same team by 20+ points just a few weeks ago. While that game was at Louisville, the size of these two teams won’t change. The Cardinals are far bigger and far more effective in the paint. Jordan Nwora is going to give the Panthers nightmares and I fully expect a double-double. The Cardinals have been on a mission after losing two straight and they’re going to blow Pitt out.

Prediction: LOU -5

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Of all 353 teams in the nation, these two teams both rank in the bottom-50 in pace. Neither of these squads will look to speed it up and it’s fair to assume that both teams stay in the high 50’s or low 60’s. With Lousville playing on the road, they’ll look to minimize possessions and keep Pitt from making a fluky run. I like the under to hit here and would bet it starts dropping the closer to tip we get.

Prediction: Under 128
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Written By Arthur L.

After playing sports throughout most of middle school, high school and college, Arthur has been writing about sports for nearly a decade. With years of experience he has built an interest in the betting world with a passion for writing on his back and has now landed with us here at StatSalt & Winners & Whiners.