Cleveland State vs. Akron - 11/14/15 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction
Akron Zips (0-0) vs. Cleveland State Vikings (0-0)
NCAA Basketball: Saturday, November 14, 2015 at 9:00 pm (MAC Center)
The Line: Cleveland State +7.5 -- Over/Under: See the Latest Odds
The Cleveland State Vikings and Akron Zips will travel to the MAC Center to square off in the Coaches vs. Cancer Classic this Saturday night.
The Cleveland State Vikings had a solid 2014-15 season finishing the year with a 19-15 (11-5 Horizon) record while advancing to the second round of the CIT before losing to NJIT. Cleveland State has one of the rougher offseason as not only they lose their top two players who transferred in Trey Lewis (16.3 ppg, 4.4 rpg, 2.9 apg, 1.2 spg) and Anton Grady (14.3 ppg, 7.9 rpg, 1.7 apg, 1.5 spg). Head coach Gary Waters will have to rely on Andre Yates (6.1 ppg, 1.7 rpg), Kaza Keane (4.4 ppg, 1.9 rpg, 2.1 apg) and Vinny Zollo (3.6 ppg, 2.7 rpg) to pick up some of the production that was lost from the departure of Lewis and Grady. Cleveland State looks as if they might have trouble scoring some points this season and will likely not improve from an offense that averaged 66.7 ppg (ranked 195th) last season. Cleveland State will hope the incoming freshman guard, Damontrae Jefferson, will be able to make an immediate impact for the Vikings. It will be important that the experienced Cleveland State players step up this season because if they don’t, the Vikings could be in for a long season.
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The Akron Zips has a solid start to their 2014-15 season but faded a bit down the stretch in conference play finishing the season with a 21-14 (9-9 MAC) record. The good news for Akron is that they are retuning the bulk of their team including one of the best players in the MAC in big-man Pat Forsythe who averaged 10.0 ppg, 4.9 rpg, and 1.3 bpg. Also returning for the Zips are Noah Robotham (9.9 ppg, 2.7 rpg, 3.3 apg), Kwan Cheatham Jr. (7.9 ppg, 5.0 rpg, 1.5 apg), Reggie McAdams (7.0 ppg, 2.0 rpg), and Antino Jackson (6.2 ppg, 1.5 rpg, 1.6 apg). Akron averaged 68.1 ppg last season and was weren’t afraid to put up shots from beyond the arc as the Zips made an average of 9.4 three-pointers per game (ranked 9th). Akron should once again should be one of the top teams in the MAC and certainly has a solid chance to win the MAC and get an NCAA bid this season.
The Vikings are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 Saturday games however, just 1-7 ATS in their last 8 neutral site games. The Zips are 6-1 ATS in their last 7 vs. the Horizon League and 3-1-1 ATS in their last 5 games overall.
Cleveland State has been a solid team in the Horizon for the past couple years however, this could be a long season for the Vikings as I just don’t see them bringing in enough talent to help replace the losses of Trey Lewis and Anton Grady. Akron is solid club that is returning the bulk of their team that won over 20 games last year and I think they’ll have no issue pulling away from Cleveland State in the second half in this one and cover this spread. Take Akron to cover.