Eastern Michigan at Rutgers
When and Where: Monday, Nov. 19, Louis Brown Athletic Center, Piscataway, N.J., 7 p.m. EST.
After being brought down to earth and absorbing its first loss, Rutgers looks to rebound Monday night as it hosts Eastern Michigan.
Eagles seek back-to-back wins
Eastern Michigan’s lone loss came at No. 1 Duke, but the Eagles (4-1) have padded their record with a pair of victories over non-Division I teams. They got back in the swing of things Saturday, rolling to an 80-62 victory over Boston University.
Elijah Minnie hit 5 of 9 from 3-point range and finished with 28 points while James Thompson IV added 14 and 14 rebounds for his 60th career double-double. Eastern Michigan. For Minnie, it was a needed breakout game after entering the contest just 1 for 14 from beyond the arc.
— EMUHoops (@EMUHoops) November 17, 2018
Thompson, who is averaging 8.8 points and 9.6 rebounds, is the active Division I leader with 1,150 boards. Paul Jackson is averaging team highs of 15.4 points and 4.8 assists for the Eagles, who are shooting just 31.0 percent from 3-point range.
Eastern Michigan has lost nine straight games to schools from major conferences since a 45-42 road upset of Michigan in 2014. The Eagles are 5-43 in such games since the start of the 1996-97 season, including a 3-23 mark versus Big Ten teams.
Rutgers out to rebound after deflating loss to St. John’s
After lopsided victories over Fairleigh Dickinson and Drexel in which they averaged 92.5 points to open the season, the Scarlet Knights (2-1) struggled in their first game against a fellow power conference team and lost 84-65 at home to St. John’s as part of the Gavitt Games.
Issa Thiam scored 13 points and Eugene Omoruyi added 12, but they were the only players in double figures for Rutgers, which shot 34.9 percent and allowed the Red Storm to hit 16 of 32 from 3-point range. Geo Baker, who had averaged 15.0 points in the first two games, was held to seven on 1-for-7 shooting.
— Rutgers On BTN (@RutgersOnBTN) November 17, 2018
“I’m more upset about how we reacted to us missing shots,” Baker told the Asbury Park Press. “Obviously you’re going to have games where we’re not making shots, but we have to react better, not put our heads down, and that starts with me and Eugene.”
Omoruyi is averaging team highs of 16.7 points and 9.0 rebounds for the Scarlet Knights, who are still shooting 45.8 percent from 3-point range (33 for 72) despite Saturday’s defeat. Thiam has made 10 of 18 from deep while Baker is averaging 12.3 points and 6.0 assists.
- 8-19 ATS in its last 27 home games as a favorite between 0.5 and 6.5 points.
- 9-19-1 ATS in its last 29 games as a favorite between 0.5 and 6.5 points.
- 3-7 ATS in its last 10 games vs. teams with an above-.600 winning percentage.
- The over is 4-1 in its last five games.
- The over is 4-1 in its last five home games.
- The over is 5-2-1 in its last eight home games vs. teams with a sub-.500 road winning percentage.
Eastern Michigan is:
- 7-1 ATS in its last eight games following an ATS win.
- 7-2 ATS in its last nine games against above-.500 teams.
- 9-3 ATS in its last 12 games.
- No trends of note.
The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.
Full-Game Side Bet
While Rutgers will be eager to rebound from its loss to St. John’s, Eastern Michigan has senior players in Minnie, Thompson and Jackson who can serve as counterweights to where the Scarlet Knights source their offense. The fact this line has moved two points in Rutgers’ favor makes Eastern Michigan all the more attractive. The Eagles’ numbers are somewhat skewed by their two wins over non-Division I teams, but after experiencing Cameron Indoor Stadium and the flash of No. 1 Duke, they may find New Jersey slightly more welcoming.
Prediction: Pick: Eastern Michigan +6.5
Full-Game Total Pick
The expectation is Rutgers will not be slowed offensively by Eastern Michigan as much as it was against St. John’s, but the Eagles also have a balanced offense that should bring this game into the 70s to clear this number.
Prediction: Pick: OVER 135 points
Full-Game Prop Bet
Though the Scarlet Knights did come up short against St. John’s, they did hold leads of 10 and seven points, respectively, in their prior home games versus FDU and Drexel. While Eastern Michigan will obviously be better than its 13-point first half at Duke, the pick is for Rutgers to be ahead by two possessions after 20 minutes.
Prediction: Pick: Rutgers -3
Half-Time Side Pick
The Eagles have ranged between 58 and 61 points in the first halves of their three games against Division I opponents, while Rutgers has cleared 65 in all three of its games. It may come late, but the over should click on this one.
Prediction: Pick: OVER 63 points