Utah Utes vs. Wichita State Shockers - 12/3/14 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction
Wichita State Shockers (4-0) at Utah Utes (5-1)
College Basketball: Wednesday, December 3, 2014 at 11:00 pm (Jon M. Huntsman Center)
The Line: Utah Utes -1 -- Over/Under: See the Latest Odds
TV: ESPN 2
The Wichita State Shockers travel to the Jon M. Huntsman Center to take on the Utah Utes this Wednesday Night.
Wichita State has been demolishing the competition early on this season and improved to 4-0 on the season with their recent 75-55 win against the Tulsa Golden Hurricanes this past Saturday night. Leading the way for the Shockers were their two stars Fred VanVleet who had 21 pts, 9 ast, 4 reb and Rob Baker added 19 pts, 4 reb, 2 ast, 2 stl. Wichita State outrebounded Tulsa 39-27 and protected the ball well as they only committed 6 turnovers against the Golden Hurricanes. Wichita State have won their last 35-game regular season games and Coach Gregg Marshall will be heavily relying on Rob Baker (18.5 ppg, 3.8 rpg, 2.8 apg) and Fred VanVleet (13.5 ppg, 3.8 reb, 5.0 apg) to make it back as a top-seed in the NCAA tournament in March. Outside of Baker and VanVleet, the Shockers have been getting solid contributions from Darius Carter (12.5 ppg, 4.0 rpg) and Tekele Cotton (11.0 ppg, 5.3 rpg, 2.0 apg). On the season, Wichita State is 10th the nation in scoring margin at 25.0 ppg and ranked 12th in the country in turnover margin at 6.5 per game. The Shockers have been getting it done on the offensive end early in the season as they are averaging 80.5 ppg (ranked 30th) on 47.2% shooting (ranked 70th).
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The Utah Utes lost a tough, defensive-minded game against the San Diego State Aztecs early in the season, however, have since reeled off 4 straight wins including a 93-62 victory over the Alabama State Hornets this past Saturday night. During the Utes 4 game winning streak, they have outscored their opponents 356-205 for an average margin of victory of 37.8 ppg. In their recent victory, the Utes were led by their star guard, Delon Wright who had 24 points (8-10 FG), 7 rebounds, 7 assists, and 2 blocks. Utah was without one of their better players, Jordan Loveridge due to a hamstring injury, however, should be ready to go for this contest. On the season, Utah has been led by Delon Wright (15.3 ppg, 4.5 rpg, 4.8 apg, 1.8 spg), Jakob Poeltl (12.0 ppg, 9.3 rpg), and Jordan Loveridge (11.5 ppg, 2.5 rpg, 1.5 apg). Utah has been getting it done on both ends of the court early in the season as they are ranked in the top-20 in both scoring offense at 82.5 ppg (ranked 18th) and scoring defense at 55.0 ppg (ranked 17th).
The Shockers are 20-6-1 ATS in their last 27 non-conference games and 37-12-2 ATS in their last 51 games overall. The Utes are are 20-6-2 ATS in their last 28 non-conference games and 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games vs. the MVC.
Wichita State is once again the clear cut favorite in the MVC and if they can make it to conference play undefeated, they will have a legitimate shot once again to finish the regular season with an unblemished record. The Shockers have two great players in Fred VanVleet and Ron Baker, however, they will face on of the toughest challenges they’ve faced together at the Jon M. Huntsman Center against the Utes. Between Delon Wright and the Utah home crowd, I think the Utes will end the Shockers 35-game winning streak and cover this small spread. Take the Utes at home.