Prediction, Preview, and Odds
#609 LSU -6.5 vs.
#610 Texas A&M 127
Tuesday, January 14, 2020 at 7:00pm EST
Written by Blake V.

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#609 Louisiana State University
#610 Texas A&M University
11-4
8-6
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5-9
7-8
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79
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If the LSU football team wins the national title on Monday night, their fans might still be celebrating when the Tigers’ basketball team takes the court on Tuesday. LSU is 11-4 and is off to a 3-0 start in SEC play. Tuesday’s contest will be a road game at Texas A&M, who is just 8-6 on the season, but is 2-1 in conference play.

LSU coming off buzzer-beater win

LSU enters Tuesday night’s game with an 11-4 record. The Tigers are on a four-game winning streak that stretches back to a non-conference win against Liberty to close the December portion of their schedule. They are off to a perfect start within the SEC, picking up victories against Tennessee, Arkansas and Mississippi State. Their most recent outing was a 60-59 win over the Bulldogs on Saturday. A jump shot at the buzzer propelled LSU to the victory. Mississippi State led 53-44 with five minutes left in the game, but LSU scored seven straight points to get into position to win the contest.

The Tigers are led by senior guard Skylar Mays, who hit the buzzer-beater to win Saturday’s home game. Mays is scoring 15.8 points per game and is grabbing 4.6 rebounds per game. He is also dishing out 2.7 assists per game and is shooting 38.9 percent from the 3-point line. Sophomore forward Emmitt Williams is scoring 13.4 points per game and is pulling down 6.7 rebounds per contest. Freshman forward Trendon Watford has provided an immediate spark on offense, scoring 12.7 points per game to go along with 6.4 boards per game. Sophomore forward Darius Days is adding 12.3 points per game and a team-high 8.5 rebounds per outing. Sophomore guard Javonte Smart rounds out the starting lineup of players in double figures, scoring 10.7 points and dishing out a team-high 4.9 assists per game.

Aggies starting to find confidence

Texas A&M got off to a brutal start under head coach Buzz Williams, losing five of its first eight games in Williams’ first year. The Aggies have been playing much better of late, winning five of their last six contests. Texas A&M lost its conference opener to Arkansas, but has rebounded with wins in each of its last two SEC games. The first win came in a 57-47 decision at home against Ole Miss. In its most recent outing, the Aggies picked up a 69-50 win against Vanderbilt on the road on Saturday. The Commodores were without their leading scorer, Aaron Nesmith, who leads the SEC in scoring and is sidelined with an ankle injury.

The Aggies are led by senior forward Josh Nebo, who is scoring 11.5 points per game and is grabbing 7.8 rebounds per game. Junior wing Savion Flagg is the only other player in double figures, scoring 10.9 points per game and grabbing 4.8 rebounds per contest. He is also Texas A&M’s leading distributor with 2.1 assists per game. Flagg is shooting 35.7 percent from beyond the arc, making 20 of 56 attempts. He is the only player on the team shooting better than 30 percent from distance. Freshman guard Andre Gordon is adding 7.4 points per game and senior guard Wendell Mitchell is also scoring 7.4 points per outing.

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I like Texas A&M to cover as home underdogs in this game. Williams is starting to make an impact early on his tenure and the team is playing much better right now than it was earlier in the season. The Aggies have won five straight home games as well. LSU does not tend to blow teams out, covering the spread in just two of its last four games. Texas A&M, meanwhile, is 4-1 ATS in its last five contests. Nebo should match-up well with the Tigers’ interior and I expect the guard play to be good enough to keep the game close. LSU is coming off an emotional win, so that could play a role in this one.

Prediction: Texas A&M +6

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I will gladly take my chances with the under in this game. Texas A&M has completely changed its style of play under Williams and the market has not adjusted properly. The Aggies are almost 100 spots lower in KenPom’s adjusted tempo ratings this year compared to last year, coming in at No. 328 in the country. They have been one of the best under teams in the country, with 11 of their 14 games going under the total. Four of their last five home games against LSU have also gone under the number. LSU is on a 6-3 under run of its own, so there is no reason to take the over on Tuesday.

Prediction: Under 129.5
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Written By Blake V.

Blake is a lifelong sports fan and hoops junkie. Prior to joining our team at Winners & Whiners and StatSalt, Blake worked for several newspapers and websites. He enjoys combining his beat writing expertise with the knack for finding the winning edge in a matchup. Remember, it’s a marathon, not a sprint.