Prediction, Preview, and Odds
#853 IUPUI vs.
#854 Northern Kentucky
Friday, February 14, 2020 at 7:00pm EST
Written by Blake V.

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A pair of teams trending in opposite directions will face off on Friday night when IUPUI travels to Northern Kentucky. The Jaguars dropped to 6-20 on the season and extending their losing streak to four games with last Saturday’s overtime loss to Milwaukee. Northern Kentucky improved to 18-7 and are now on a four-game winning streak after last weekend’s win against Detroit. The Norse beat IUPUI by 25 points in the first meeting of the season.

IUPUI hoping for competitive showing

IUPUI is on a four-game losing streak and has lost eight of its last nine games. The four-game skid has included losses to Cleveland State, Youngstown State, Green Bay and Milwaukee. Saturday’s loss to Milwaukee came in heartbreaking fashion. The Jaguars trailed by 10 points at halftime, but rallied to tie the game and send it to overtime. Milwaukee’s Te’Jon Lucas scored 31 points and banked a shot in to take a 2-point lead with seven seconds remaining in overtime. IUPUI drew a foul with several seconds left, but the Jaguars only made one of their two free throw attempts.

Junior guard Marcus Burk leads the Jaguars with 20.7 points per game and 3.6 rebounds per game. He is the best outside shooter on the team, making 78 of 201 attempts for a 38.8 percent clip. Junior guard Jaylen Minnett is scoring 16.7 points per game and is dishing out a team-high 3.4 assists per game. He leads IUPUI in made 3-pointers, knocking down 90 of 251 attempts from the perimeter. Junior forward Elyjah Goss is the team’s leading rebounder and is nearly averaging a double-double. Goss is scoring 8.8 points per game and is pulling down 11.7 boards per contest. Junior guard Grant Weatherford is adding 9.0 points and 4.8 rebounds per outing.

Northern Kentucky eyeing Horizon League title

Northern Kentucky has won nine of its last 10 games and is on a four-game winning streak. The Norse have notched wins against Green Bay, Milwaukee, Oakland and Detroit. They pulled away in the second half of last weekend’s win against Detroit. Northern Kentucky led by six points at halftime, but it used a 13-0 run early in the second half to pull away and secure the win. The Norse recorded 16 offensive rebounds in the victory. They also dished out 15 assists and notched 10 steals.

Senior forward Dantez Walton is Northern Kentucky’s best player. He is leading the team in scoring and rebounding, pouring in 16.7 points per game while pulling down 7.1 boards per game. Walton is the most efficient outside shooter on the squad, making 38.6 percent of his 101 attempts from long range. Senior guard Tyler Sharpe is scoring 16.0 points per game and leads the team in made 3-pointers with 65. Sophomore guard Trevon Faulkner is adding 13.2 points per game and 4.2 rebounds per game. Junior guard Jalen Tate is the Norse’s top distributor, dishing out 3.9 assists per game to go along with 11.4 points per contest.

Best Bets for this Game

Full-Game Side Bet

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Northern Kentucky is absolutely rolling right now. The Norse have won nine of their last 10 games. More importantly for this pick, they have covered the spread in eight of those nine wins. IUPUI is trending in the opposite direction, going 2-7 ATS in its last nine contests. Northern Kentucky smoked the Jaguars at their place in the first meeting of the season. It’s tough to envision an out-matched IUPUI team having much confidence on the road on Friday night. The Norse should be able to break their will early in the game and cover this large number.

Prediction: Northern Kentucky -16.5

Full-Game Total Pick

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I think this game will go over the total. It all comes down to the way IUPUI plays. The Jaguars love to get up and down the court, ranking No. 58 in KenPom’s adjusted tempo ratings. Northern Kentucky generally slows the ball down, but the Norse put up 96 points in the first meeting of the season. IUPUI’s awful defense and up-tempo offense simply allows a skilled Northern Kentucky team to have more opportunities to score. Four of the Jaguars’ last five games have gone over the number. The Norse should pick up a blowout win that goes over the total.

Prediction: Over 147
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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.