Southern Mississippi Golden Eagles (1-0) vs. Michigan Wolverines (2-0; 0-1 ATS; 0-1 O/U)
NCAAB: Thursday, November 16, 2017 at 7:00pm EST
Line: Michigan -22
The Michigan Wolverines will look to improve to 3-0 when they host the Southern Mississippi Golden Eagles Thursday night from the Chrisler Center. The Golden Eagles defeated Southern-New Orleans 79-69 in their season opener, and the Wolverines tallied a 72-65 home win against Central Michigan on Monday night.
Southern Miss Transfers Come Through in Season Opener
The Southern Mississippi Golden Eagles were led by their newcomers in a 79-69 season-opening win over Southern-New Orleans on Friday night. The Golden Eagles only shot 41.5% on the night, however, they held Southern-New Orleans to just 35% shooting. Tyree Griffin had a tremendous Golden Eagles debut, sinking 21 points on a 6 for 10 performance from the filed and picked up 13 rebounds. The junior guard transferred over from Oklahoma State and did not play last season after averaging 5.2 points in the 2015-2016 season, and is expected to play a big role this year. Transfer Dominic Magee also had a big night, netting 15 points along with seven rebounds. The junior guard came over in a transfer from Grand Canyon and he also sat out last season after posting 7.2 points in the 2015-2016 season. The Golden Eagles did lose their top scorer from last season, however, they return their second-leading scorer in Cortez Edwards. The junior guard scored ten points in the season opener and averaged 11 points and 5.2 rebounds last season.
The Golden Eagles were ranked to finish seventh in the 14 team C-USA in the preseason media poll. They went a poor 9-22 last season and only averaged 63 points per game, ranking them down at 341st overall. Southern Miss allowed an average of 72.2 points, placing them 182nd overall.
Wolverines Overcome Slow Start in Win vs. Central Michigan
The Michigan Wolverines recovered from a slow start in their 72-65 home win against Central Michigan on Monday night to improve to 2-0. The Wolverines only shot 44% from the field and held Central Michigan to a 43.1% performance. Charles Matthews was solid, sinking 13 points on 6 for 12 shooting. The junior guard is off to a great start, averaging a team-leading 16.5 points in two games. He transferred over from Kentucky due to very limited playing time and was a top 60 recruit, so he could be in for a solid season with increased playing time. Wolverines leading returning scorer from last season Moritz Wagner recorded 10 points along with 11 rebounds in the win over Central Michigan and has notched a double-double in both games this season. The 6-foot-11 junior forward averaged 12.1 points last season and should be in for a huge season. He is a three-point threat, and is solid underneath the bucket.
The Wolverines lost their top two scorers from last season but still return three players that played a big role in last year’s 20 win season, which includes Muhammad-Ali Abdur Rahkman who averaged 9.1 points last year. Michigan is averaging 79 points in two games played. They have looked good defensively, allowing 66 and 65 points respectively in their first two games.
The Southern Mississippi Golden Eagles are:
- 2-7-1 ATS in their last 10 non-conference games.
- 4-10-1 ATS in their last 15 games following a straight up win.
The Michigan Wolverines are:
- 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games following an ATS loss.
- 10-4-1 ATS in their last 15 games against a team with a winning percentage above .600.
I am taking Michigan in this contest. Southern Mississippi was one of the lowest scoring teams in the entire Country last year with only 63 points per game, and they lost their leading scorer from last season. Michigan features solid depth and they play tight defense that should have no problem limiting the Golden Eagles offense. The 6-foot-11 Moritz Wagner will provide a huge mismatch down low, and he should have his way, and overall this matchup has the makings of a blowout.