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Utah State vs. North Dakota State - 12/23/15 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction

North Dakota State Bison (9-3) at Utah State Aggies (7-3)

College Basketball: Wednesday, December 23, 2015 at 10:00 pm (Dee Glen Smith Spectrum)

The Line: Utah State Aggies -- Over/Under: See the Latest Odds

TV: Mountain West Network

The North Dakota State Bison and Utah State Aggies will square off in the Global Sports Hoop Showcase at Dee Glen Smith Spectrum this Wednesday night in College Basketball action.

The North Dakota State Bison won their 5th straight game and improved to 9-3 (0-0 Summit) on the season after defeating UT-Rio Grande Valley Vaqueros, 68-50, last night. North Dakota State has a sluggish first half but used a 13-3 run last in the half to take a 32-28 lead at the break and outscored the Vaqueros by a 36-22 margin in the 2nd half to secure the win. North Dakota State shot 41.9% from the field and won the turnover battle by a 13-7 margin. The Bison held the Vaqueros to just 35.3% shooting from the field and 25.0% (3-12) shooting from beyond the arc. Leading the way for North Dakota State was Paul Miller who had 19 points, 9 rebounds, 2 assists, and 2 steals. On the season, the Bison have been led by Paul Miller (17.3 ppg, 5.6 rpg, 1.5 apg), A.J. Jacobson (13.6 ppg, 4.2 rpg, 1.8 apg), and Dexter Werner (9.1 ppg, 6.1 rpg, 1.4 bpg). Offensively, North Dakota State is averaging 71.0 ppg on 42.7% shooting from the field and 31.7% shooting from beyond the arc. The Bison average 7.0 three-pointers per game and have an assist/turnover ratio of 1.14. Defensively, North Dakota State is holding their opponents to an average of 66.6 ppg on 44.1% shooting. The Bison have a rebound margin of -1.4 and a turnover margin of 4.1.

Utah State vs. North Dakota State - 12/23/15 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction

USA TODAY Sports

The Utah State Aggies won their 2nd straight game and improved to 7-3 (0-0 MW) on the season after defeating the Idaho State Bengals, 69-58, last night. Idaho State played Utah State tough as the Aggies had just a 1-point halftime lead in this one, however, Utah State used a 17-8 run to start the 2nd half to gain control of the game and get the victory. Utah State shot just 39.6% from the field and 28.6% (8-28) from beyond the arc but did outrebound Idaho State by a 42-30 margin. The Aggies held the Bengals to 40.4% shooting from the field and 22.2% (4-18) shooting from three-point range. Leading the way for Utah State was Chris Smith who had a double-double with 22 points, 10 rebounds, 6 assists, and a block. On the season, the Aggies have been led by Chris Smith (14.2 ppg, 6.1 rpg, 2.4 apg), Jalen Moore (13.8 ppg, 5.7 rpg, 2.3 apg) and Lew Evans (9.5 ppg, 6.4 rpg, 1.0 apg). Offensively, Utah State is averaging 72.9 ppg on 44.4% shooting from the field and 35.7% shooting from beyond the arc. The Aggies average 7.8 three-pointers per game and have an assist/turnover ratio of 1.31. Defensively, Utah State is allowing their opponents to average 68.6 ppg on 43.4% shooting from the field. The Aggies have a rebound margin of 2.7 and a turnover margin of 0.9.

The Bison are 5-2 ATS in their last 7 games vs. a team with a winning % above .600 however, just 1-6 ATS in their last 7 road games. The Aggies are 1-5 ATS in their last 6 games overall and 0-4 ATS in their last 4 games following a straight up win.

Both of these teams struggled out of the gates last night but settled down in the 2nd half to secure wins. North Dakota State is one of the better teams in the Summit and although they can struggle away from home, they do a great job on the defensive end forcing turnovers. Utah State is an experienced team led by Chris Smith, however, has struggled against the better competition in their schedule (Duke, BYU, UC-Irvine). This line has yet to be posted but my initial thoughts are backing North Dakota State in this one. 

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