Prediction, Preview, and Odds
#821 Nevada vs.
#822 Air Force
Saturday, January 15, 2022 at 5:00pm EST
Written by Blake V.

Nevada will play its first conference road game of the season when it travels to Air Force on Saturday night. The Wolf Pack played their first game since New Year’s Day on Wednesday, losing to Boise State by 15 points. Air Force has lost four of its last five games since getting off to a 7-1 start this season.

Nevada coming off loss to Boise State

Nevada got off to a slow start this season, losing four of its first five games. The Wolf Pack went on a five-game winning streak after that, beating George Mason and Washington during that streak. They lost their fifth game of the season in a difficult road game at then-No. 6 Kansas on Dec. 29. Nevada picked up a win over New Mexico on New Year’s Day and then had a game against Wyoming postponed three days later. The Wolf Pack were unable to build on that momentum, losing to Boise State by 15 points on Wednesday.

They come into this game ranked No. 83 in adjusted offensive efficiency. Nevada is not shooting the ball well, sitting at No. 182 in effective field goal percentage. The Wolf Pack are knocking down just 33.1% of their attempts from beyond the arc. They are facing an Air Force defense that is No. 160 in adjusted efficiency. Guard Grant Sherfield leads Nevada with 19.4 points, 6.6 assists and 4.7 rebounds per game. Guard Desmond Cambridge Jr. is scoring 17.2 points, while center Will Baker is adding 11.5 points. Forward Warren Washington is scoring 11.3 points and is pulling down 5.0 rebounds.

Air Force needing more help offensively

Air Force opened the season with a 59-53 loss to South Dakota, but it bounced back with a seven-game winning streak. The Falcons notched wins over Tulsa and Army during that stretch. They have lost four of their five games since then, though. Their lone win came in a 49-47 decision against Utah State on Dec. 29. They were scheduled to face Fresno State on New Year's Day, but that game was postponed due to COVID-19 issues. Their campaign resumed on Jan. 4 with a 67-59 loss at then-No. 20 Colorado State. They dealt with another postponement last Saturday, as their game against UNLV was postponed.

This will be Air Force’s first game in more than 10 days. The Falcons are not a good offensive team, ranked No. 322 in adjusted efficiency. They are shooting the ball well though, listed inside the top 70 in 3-point and 2-point percentage. Air Force has shot itself in the foot with a terrible turnover rate and one of the worst offensive rebounding percentages in the country. The Falcons will be facing a Nevada defense that is No. 128 in adjusted efficiency. Guard A.J. Walker leads Air Force with 16.7 points and 3.4 rebounds per game—he is the team’s lone double-digit scorer. Guard Jake Heidbreder is scoring 9.4 points, while guard Ethan Taylor is chipping in 9.2 points and 5.2 rebounds.

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Full-Game Side Bet

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Nevada has several key advantages in this game, which include the scheduling spot. The Wolf Pack were able to get back on the court on Wednesday, playing against Boise State. Air Force has not played a game in more than 10 days, so it will likely be rusty in this game. The Falcons also rely too heavily on one player, while Nevada has a balanced lineup. Nevada is an experienced team, so I am not too worried about this being a road game. The Wolf Pack are also one of the tallest teams in the country, while Air Force has struggled with rebounding.

Prediction: Nevada -9.5

Full-Game Total Pick

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Air Force is going to be interested in controlling the pace of Saturday evening’s game. The Falcons love to slow the ball down, ranked No. 355 out of 363 Division I teams. They are not giving themselves many second chances on the offensive glass and they are turning the ball over at a high rate. This has led to Air Force going under the total in each of its last five games. Nevada is not shooting the ball particularly well, especially from beyond the arc. The Wolf Pack have gone under the total in five of their last six games.

Prediction: Under

Written By Blake Von Hagen , "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. Blake is also an avid sports being expert and you would not be disappointed in following him on a daily basis. Remember, it’s a marathon, not a sprint. 
Follow on Twitter @Blake_Vonhagen