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James Madison vs. Elon - 1/7/16 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction

Elon Phoenix (10-5) at James Madison Dukes (11-4)

College Basketball: Thursday, January 7, 2016 at 7:00 pm (JMU Center)

The Line: James Madison Dukes -9.5 -- Over/Under: See the Latest Odds

TV: http://portal.stretchinternet.com/caa/

The Elon Phoenix will travel to the JMU Convocation Center to take on the James Madison Dukes this Thursday night in College Basketball action.

The Elon Phoenix snapped a two game losing streak and improved to 10-5 (1-1 CAA) on the season after defeating the Drexel Dragons, 83-78, this past Saturday. Elon had a 36-28 lead at halftime and although they were up by as many as 18 in the 2nd half, had to hold off the Dragons late to secure the win. Elon shot 49.1% from the field and 47.8% (11-23) from beyond the arc in the victory. The Phoenix held the Dragons to 37.3% shooting from the field and was outrebounded by Drexel by a 44-37 margin. Leading the way for Elon was Tanner Samson who had 19 points, 7 rebounds, 4 assists, and a steal. On the season, the Phoenix have been led by Tanner Samson (15.7 ppg, 4.9 rpg, 1.9 apg), Dainan Swoope (10.7 ppg, 2.9 rpg, 2.3 apg), and Luke Eddy (10.7 ppg, 3.4 rpg, 5.6 apg, 1.1 spg). Offensively, Elon is averaging 81.5 ppg on 44.6% shooting from the field and 35.7% shooting from beyond the arc. The Phoenix average 10.5 three-pointers per game and have an assist/turnover ratio of 1.17. Defensively, Elon is allowing their opponents to average 78.5 ppg on 44.6% shooting. The Phoenix have a rebound margin of -0.4 and a turnover margin of -0.9.

James Madison vs. Elon - 1/7/16 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction

USA TODAY Sports

The James Madison Dukes improved to 11-4 (1-1 CAA) on the season after defeating the Delaware Blue Hens, 73-63, this past Saturday. James Madison used a great defensive effort in the first half to take a 35-20 halftime lead and never let Delaware get within double-digits in the 2nd half in the win. James Madison shot 40.6% (13-32) from beyond the arc and outrebounded Delaware by a 44-37 margin. The Dukes held the Blue Hens to 31.7% shooting from the field and 16.7 (4-24) shooting from beyond the arc. Leading the way for James Madison was Jackson Kent who had a double-double with 19 points, 10 rebounds, 3 assists, and a block. On the season, the Dukes have been led by Ron Curry (15.3 ppg, 3.5 rpg, 3.3 apg, 1.0 spg), Shakir Brown (12.9 ppg, 6.1 rpg, 1.5 apg), and Dimitrije Cabarkapa (11.7 ppg, 4.2 rpg). Offensively, James Madison is averaging 76.1 ppg on 46.0% shooting from the field and 39.3% shooting from beyond the arc. The Dukes average 9.9 three-pointers per game and have an assist/turnover ratio of 1.01. Defensively, James Madison is holding their opponents to an average of 68.0 ppg on 40.7% shooting. The Dukes have a rebound margin of 5.2 and a turnover margin of -1.9.

The Phoenix are 10-23 ATS in their last 33 vs. CAA opponents and just 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games following a ATS loss. The Dukes are 8-23-1 ATS in their last 32 home games and just 1-5 ATS in their last 6 games following an ATS win.

Elon has gotten off to a nice start to their season as their high-tempo offensive and three-point shooting have the Phoenix already at double-digit wins on the season. James Madison is one of the CAA favorites this season and has one of the best players in the CAA in Ron Curry. Elon can certainly shoot the ball, but needs to have their long-range shoots falling as their defense has struggled mightily as they are ranked 304th in the country in scoring defense and 257th in the country in defensive FG %. Elon has struggled a bit on the road and as James Madison should have an advantage in the post, I think the Dukes have no problem with Elon on their home court and covers this spread. Take James Madison to cover. 

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James Madison Dukes -9.5

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