Northwestern Wildcats vs. Illinois-Chicago Flames - 12/22/14 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction
Illinois-Chicago Flames (3-9) at Northwestern Wildcats (7-4)
College Basketball: Monday, December 22, 2014 at 2:00 pm (Welsh-Ryan Arena)
The Line: Northwestern Wildcats -11.5 -- Over/Under: See the Latest Odds
Welsh-Ryan Arena and the Northwestern Wildcats play host to the Illinois-Chicago Flames.
The Illinois-Chicago Flames quest for more scoring and stopping power on defense has been an issue for a number of years and was an obvious problem in a 67-4g defeat at Southern Methodist on Wednesday that dropped the Flames to 3-9. The Mustangs were in the driver's seat throughout with a 29-15 lead at the half putting this one in the win column. UIC struggled to 26% shooting which never challenged the 53.7% accuracy of SMU despite totaling 23 more shots. Marc Brown was the Flames only double digit scorer with 15 points and five yanks on 5-16 from the floor. Four others added between five and six points so production was difficult to find throughout.
The Northwestern Wildcats are 7-4 on the season and if they can play this well throughout the year they would probably be happy. The question is will the winning continue with the conference schedule right around the corner? The Wildcats have outscored the opposition 65-62 so the answer would be yes if they can boost their scoring. The offense was adequate in a 67-61 victory over visiting Western Michigan on Saturday although the defensive end of the floor was outststanding with a 42.6%-38.8% shooting edge with the Broncos staying competitive with ten threes. Tre Demps tossed in a game high 17 points with Nathan Taphorn and Bryant McIntosh scoring ten points each with McIntosh posting eight assists. The Wildcats used a nine man rotation and each scored.
The Flames are 5-0 ATS in their last 5 games following a SU loss of more than 20 points and 5-2 ATS in their last 7 games after scoring less than 50 points in their previous game. Illinois-Chicago are 7-3 ATS in their last 10 Monday games and 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games following a ATS loss. The Wildcats are 6-14 ATS in their last 20 games following a S.U. win and 5-15 ATS in their last 20 games following a ATS win while going 2-8 ATS in their last 10 home games vs. a team with a road winning % of less than .400. Northwestern isn't the strongest program in the Big Ten but in the scope of things I'm still backing them at DD against a struggling squad...