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Virginia Cavaliers vs. Virginia Commonwealth Rams Pick-Odds-Prediction 11/12/13

Virginia Commonwealth Rams (1-0) at Virginia Cavaliers (1-0)

College Basketball: Tuesday, November 12, 2013 at 7:00 pm (John Paul Jones Arena)

The Line: Virginia Cavaliers -6 -- Over/Under: See the Latest Odds

TV: ESPN 2

The 14th ranked Virginia Commonwealth Rams take the short trip to Charlottesville Tuesday night to face the 24th ranked Virginia Cavaliers in ESPN tip off action.

VCU moved to 1-0 Friday night with a dominant win over Illinois State 96-58.  The Rams blew the doors off of the stadium with hot shooting early, building a 52-22 halftime lead and never looked back from there.  The Rams shot it 55% from the field and 45% from beyond the arc (9-20).  They racked up 26 total assists to Illinois State’s 9 and owned a +11 advantage on the boards as well.  Four of the Rams starting 5 scored in double figures and guard Melvin Johnson added 11 off the bench.  The lone negative on the night was VCU’s 57% shooting from the line -- an issue that has popped up over the past few years and will need to be improved upon with tough road environments like the one they will see Tuesday night looming.

Virginia Cavaliers vs. Virginia Commonwealth Rams Pick-Odds-Prediction 11/12/13

Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Virginia coasted in their opener Friday as well, with a 61-41 win over visiting James Madison.  Much like they did all of last year, the Cavaliers stifled JMU with their team defense, holding the Dukes to 31% shooting from the floor and 24% shooting from deep.  UVA yielded just 14 first half points and built an 18 point lead by the break.  Darion Atkins contributed 8 points and 11 boards off the bench and the UVA starters led a balanced attack that saw Anthony Gill lead all scorers with 13.  Virginia will need a similar defensive performance with the pesky Rams rolling to John Paul Jones arena.

This game features two teams with drastically different offensive styles and two very solid defenses.  UVA will need to feature Joe Harris more than they did in their opening season win and will also need to find a way to slow down the VCU guards attack.  I look for this contest to be very close throughout but expect VCU’s athleticism to be the difference as the Rams get the road cover and state bragging rights for this year.

VCU +6

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