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Tennessee Tech Golden Eagles vs. SIU Edwardsville Cougars - 3/5/14 OVC First Round

SIU Edwardsville Cougars (11-19) at Tennessee Tech Golden Eagles (16-15)

College Basketball: Wednesday, March 5, 2014 at 7:00 pm (Nashville Municipal Auditorium)

The Line: Tennessee Tech Golden Eagles -3.5 -- Over/Under: See the Latest Odds

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The Tennessee Tech Golden Eagles and SIU-Edwardsville Cougars will square off in Tennessee in a first round battle in the OVC Tournament. The only meeting earlier this season took place on January 11, and Tennessee Tech won 64-63.

The Golden Eagles finished the season strong, winning six of their last eight games. As a team, they averaged 70.2 points on 44.5 percent shooting and allowed 73.7 points on 46.2 percent shooting. They’re more of an offensive team than defensive, as they have three players averaging 10 points, but they’re very inconsistent, averaging 15 turnovers per game. On neutral sites, they average 72 points and allow 75 points. They are 13-10-1 ATS overall.

Tennessee Tech Golden Eagles vs. SIU Edwardsville Cougars - 3/5/14 OVC First Round

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The Cougars have been in a funk, losing four of their last five games. Still, they averaged 72.1 points on 46.2 percent shooting and allowed 77.3 points on 50 percent shooting. Their lack of defense is the reason they’ve lost nine games despite scoring at least 72 points. Offensively, they have nine players averaging at least 5.8 points per game. It’s not just one guy who shoots a high percentage from the field. On neutral sites, they averaged 73.5 points and allowed 76.5 points. They are 14-11 ATS overall.

When the tournament comes around you really have to go with the more consistent team, and there’s no question that’s Tennessee Tech in this matchup. The Cougars play absolutely no defense and really have to shoot the lights out of the gym to win. That’s not going to cut it.

Not to mention this is pretty much a home game for the Golden Eagles with the game being played in Nashville. Tennessee Tech is 4-0 ATS in its last four games overall, while the Cougars are 9-4 ATS in their last 13 games.

Still, you have to feel more commutable taking the balanced team to cover the small chalk.

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Tennessee Tech Golden Eagles -3.5

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