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Eastern Michigan Eagles vs. Miami (Ohio) RedHawks - MAC 1st-Round - 3/9/15 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction

Miami (Ohio) RedHawks (13-18) at Eastern Michigan Eagles (19-12)

College Basketball: Monday, March 9, 2015 at 7:30 pm (EMU Convocation Center)

The Line: Eastern Michigan Eagles -7.5 -- Over/Under: See the Latest Odds

TV: Time Warner Cable Sports Channel - New York; Time Warner Cable Sports Channel - Ohio

The Miami (OH) Redhawks and the Eastern Michigan Eagles will face off at the Convocation Center (MI) this Monday night in the first round of the MAC Tournament.

The Miami (OH) Redhawks earned the 9th seed in the MAC with an 8-10 conference record, while finishing the season 13-18 overall. Miami (OH) really struggled in the beginning of the season however, have won 5 of their last 7 games entering the conference tournament. The Redhawks are ranked 228th in the RPI Standings and has played the 135th ranked SOS. Miami (OH) played some tough competition earlier in the season (Dayton, Ohio State) and their biggest wins of the season came fellow MAC teams, Bowling Green, Akron, and Kent State.

Eastern Michigan Eagles vs. Miami (Ohio) RedHawks - MAC 1st-Round - 3/9/15 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction

USA TODAY Sports

Miami (OH) is averaging 66.5 ppg (ranked 195th) on 44.1% shooting (ranked 133rd). The Redhawks averaged 5.8 three-pointers per game (ranked 228th) and commits 12.8 turnovers per game (ranked 200th). Miami (OH) pulls down only 8.32 offensive rpg (ranked 318th). Defensively, Miami (OH) is allowing their opponents to average 69.8 ppg (ranked 265th) on 45.9% shooting (ranked 311th). The Redhawks average 7.7 spg (ranked 34th) and have a turnover margin of 1.0 (ranked 108th). Miami (OH) averages just 2.0 bpg (ranked 323rd) and pull down a total of 30.52 total rpg (ranked 320th). On the season, leading the way for Miami (OH) has been Eric Washington (14.5 ppg, 3.2 rpg, 5.5 apg, 1.5 spg) and Will Sullivan (10.9 ppg, 4.7 rpg, 1.4 apg).

The Eastern Michigan Eagles earned the 8th seed for the MAC tournament as they finished the season with an 8-10 conference record and 19-12 overall record. Eastern Michigan plays a great zone defense that is one of the toughest in the country. The Eagles are ranked 148th in the RPI Standings and has played the 132nd ranked SOS. Eastern Michigan biggest win of the season came against the Michigan Wolverines in which they upset Michigan 45-42 on their home floor. Eastern Michigan has some momentum entering this tournament as they finished off the regular season with a big 85-59 victory over Toledo at home.

Eastern Michigan averages 69.7 ppg (ranked 115th) on 41.4% shooting (ranked 275th). The Eagles average 6.5 three-pointers per game (ranked 153rd) and shoot 71.6% from the free-throw line (ranked 89th). Eastern Michigan averages just 10.7 apg (ranked 295th) and shoot just 31.1% from beyond the arc (ranked 297th). Defensively, Eastern Michigan is holding their opponents to just 63.0 ppg (ranked 84th) on 37.5% shooting (ranked 5th). The Eagles average 8.8 spg (ranked 9th) and have a turnover margin of 3.0 (ranked 22nd). Eastern Michigan averages 19.1 personal fouls per game (ranked 243rd). On the season, Eastern Michigan has been led by Raven Lee (16.4 ppg, 1.9 rpg, 1.6 apg, 1.5 spg) and Karrington Ward (12.7 ppg, 6.4 rpg, 1.3 spg, 1.4 bpg).

The Red Hawks are 6-0 ATS in their last 6 games following a ATS loss and 5-2 ATS in their last 7 games overall. The Eagles are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games vs. a team with a losing S.U. record and 5-2 ATS in their last 7 home games.

Miami (OH) has been playing well but really had trouble on the defensive end as they allowed a below average Ohio team to shoot 57.1% from the field and 54.8% (17-31) from beyond the arc. Eastern Michigan got it down on both ends of the floor and held a very high-scoring Toledo offensive to just 59 points on 32.2% shooting from field and forced the Rockets into committing 20 turnovers. Eastern Michigan is 15-3 at home on the season, as Miami is just 3-9 on the road. Although the line is little higher than I want, I see the Eastern Michigan defensive causing Miami (OH) trouble and that they pull away at the end of this one to cover this spread.

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Eastern Michigan Eagles -7.5

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