Prediction, Preview, and Odds
#783 Marshall 149 vs.
#784 Toledo -13
Sunday, December 8, 2019 at 2:00pm EST
Written by Blake V.

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W/L
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#783 Marshall University
#784 University of Toledo
2-5
6-2
14-23
18-14
17-20
14-18
80
76
80
68

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Toledo will look to extend its three-game winning streak when the Rockets host Marshall on Sunday afternoon. The Thundering Herd are off to a bad start this season, going 2-5 through their first seven games. The Rockets have been a different story, opening the year with six wins in their first eight games. Toledo picked up a 96-70 win when these teams met on Nov. 10.

Marshall struggling to open season

Marshall has not had the start that it was hoping for this season. The Thundering Herd got one of their two wins in the season-opener, beating Robert Morris, 67-60. Then came the first losing skid—a three-game stretch that included losses to Toledo, Notre Dame and Charleston. They bounced back with their second win of the year when they beat Howard by 28 on Nov. 21. Marshall has lost its last two games, falling on the road against then-No. 24 Florida and at home against Akron.

The Thundering Herd are led by sophomore guard Taevion Kinsey, who is scoring 14.9 points per game, dishing out 5.1 assists per game and adding 5.7 rebounds per game. He does not shoot much from the perimeter, going 2 of 9 from the 3-point line. Kinsey leads the team in points, rebounds and assists. Junior guard Jarrod West is second on the team in scoring with 14.1 points per game. Sophomore forward Iran Bennett is adding 10.1 points per game and 5.4 rebounds per game. The Thundering Herd have struggled shooting from the outside, with the best 3-point shooter on the team being junior forward Jannson Williams, who is only 11 of 39 from beyond the arc.

Toledo on three-game winning streak

Toledo has had a nice start to its 2019-20 campaign. The Rockets opened the season with one of their two losses, falling to Valparaiso on the road by two points. They bounced back with a three-game winning streak, picking up wins against Marshall, Robert Morris and Howard. Their second loss of the year was a road defeat at Notre Dame. Since then, Toledo has reeled off wins against Northwestern Ohio, Oakland and Cleveland State.

The Rockets are led by junior guard Marreon Jackson, who is scoring 17.3 points per game and dishing out a team-high 6.8 assists per game. He is 19 of 59 from beyond the arc. Senior center Luke Knapke is adding 14.8 points per game and is second on the team in rebounding with 8.9 boards per outing. He is also able to stretch the defense, hitting 11 of 34 from the 3-point line. Junior guard Spencer Littleson is scoring 14.0 points per game and leads the team with a 22 of 48 mark from downtown. Senior forward Willie Jackson is scoring 9.8 points per game and is leading the team with 12.0 rebounds per outing.

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Full-Game Side Bet

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Marshall is really struggling to replace all of the production that the Thundering Herd lost from last season’s conference-contending team. They already got blown out by Toledo once this season, and that game was in their home arena. I don’t see a reason to think the Rockets won’t come out and dominate the Thundering Herd for a second time. Toledo has experience, depth and 3-point shooting—three things that do not come easy to Marshall. I like the Rockets to win this game with ease against a struggling Thundering Herd side.

Prediction: Toledo

Full-Game Total Pick

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Despite all of their offensive struggles, the Thundering Herd still look to push the pace every possession. Marshall ranks No. 15 in the country in KenPom’s adjusted tempo rankings. Even though they aren’t efficient, the Thundering Herd puts up enough shots to hold up their end of the bargain in pushing this game over the total. On the other side of the court, Marshall’s bad defense is going to allow Toledo to have an offensively efficient field day, even though they don’t love to push the ball up the court. I like this game to go over the total due to Marshall’s pace and its bad defense.

Prediction: Over
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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.