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Marquette Golden Eagles vs. Ball State Cardinals Pick-Odds-Prediction 12/17/13

Ball State Cardinals (2-5) at Marquette Golden Eagles (6-4)

College Basketball: Tuesday, December 17, 2013 at 9:00 pm (Bradley Center)

The Line: Marquette Golden Eagles -19 -- Over/Under: See the Latest Odds

TV: FOX Sports 1

The Marquette Golden Eagles look for back to back victories when they welcome the Ball State Cardinals Tuesday night.

Marquette is 6-4 and in a bit of a slump after dropping two of its last three, not to mention beginning the season ranked in the top 25. In their last outing Saturday, the Golden Eagles dismantled IUPUI 86-50 with marksman-like shooting percentages of 64 from the field and 66 percent from beyond the arc. Senior F Devante Gardner finished with 20 points on 10 of 14 shooting and junior F Juan Anderson added 11 points, 5 assists and connected on 3 of 4 from downtown. Marquette jumped out early, using a 16-2 run in the game’s first six minutes to open up an 18-2 lead and never eased off the gas, stretching the advantage to 43-18 by the break. The onslaught continued in the second, where the Golden Eagles led by as many as 45 points. Through ten games, Marquette is averaging 71.8 ppg on 44 percent shooting and Gardner leads the team with 14.8 ppg on 53 percent from the floor.

Marquette Golden Eagles vs. Ball State Cardinals Pick-Odds-Prediction 12/17/13

Mary Langenfeld-USA TODAY Sports

Ball State, meanwhile, comes in with a record of 2-5 and on a 4-game skid, including a 69-50 loss to Valparaiso in their last one Dec. 4. The Cardinals shot a dismal 14 of 52 from the field and connected on 4 of 16 from beyond the arc. Freshman G Matt Alstork had a team-high 11 points on 2 of 5 shooting and hit 6 of 8 from the free throw line, while senior G Jesse Berry added 10 points and made 2 of 6 from distance. Ball State was down 31-20 at the half and had no answers as the Crusaders’ lead grew to as many as 18 points in the second half. On the season, the Cardinals are averaging 66.4 ppg on 40 percent shooting and freshman G Zavier Turner leads the team with 13.4 ppg on 38 percent from the field and 48 percent from downtown.

The line in this matchup is currently set at -19 for Marquette, a big number but this team has shown flashes of their former top 25 selves, blowing out Grambling by 43 and a quality 16-point win over GW. They’ve also been god-awful at times, though, like the 18 percent shooting they put up at home against Ohio State. Kinda hard to look past. A 7-point win against Southern and a 5-point win against New Hampshire don’t inspire much confidence either. The points look like the safer play at this price.

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Ball State +19

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