Tennessee vs. Texas A&M - 1/9/16 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction
Texas A&M Aggies (12-2) at Tennessee Volunteers (8-6)
College Basketball: Saturday, January 9, 2016 at 1:00 pm (Thompson-Boling Arena)
The Line: Tennessee Volunteers +2.5 -- Over/Under: See the Latest Odds
TV: ESPN SEC Network
The 21st ranked Texas A&M Aggies will travel to Thompson-Boling Arena to take on the Tennessee Volunteers this Saturday afternoon in College Basketball action.
The Texas A&M Aggies won their 5th straight game and improved to 12-2 (2-0 SEC) on the season after defeating the Mississippi State Bulldogs, 61-60, this past Wednesday. Texas A&M struggled offensively in the contest but was able to get some big plays by Alex Caruso down the stretch to escape with a SEC road victory. Texas A&M shot just 30.6% from the field and 33.3% (9-27) from beyond the arc. The Aggies held the Bulldogs to 26.1% (6-23) shooting from beyond the arc and outrebounded Mississippi State by a 41-34 margin. Leading the way for Texas A&M was Alex Caruso who had 11 points, 7 rebounds, and 8 assists. On the season, the Aggies have been led by Jalen Jones (15.8 ppg, 6.6 rpg), Danuel House (15.2 ppg, 5.1 rpg), and Alex Caruso (7.4 ppg, 3.2 rpg, 4.9 apg, 2.2 spg). Offensively, Texas A&M is averaging 79.2 ppg on 47.1% shooting from the field and 38.0% shooting from beyond the arc. The Aggies average 8.4 three-pointers per game and have an assist/turnover ratio of 1.50. Defensively, Texas A&M is holding their opponents to an average of 64.3 ppg on 39.5% shooting. The Aggies have a rebound margin of 5.4 and a turnover margin of 3.2.
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The Tennessee Volunteers improved to 8-6 (1-1 SEC) on the season after defeating the Florida Gators, 83-69, this past Wednesday. Tennessee was outstanding in the first half as they raced out to a 53-31 halftime lead and never let the Gators get within double-digits in the 2nd half. Tennessee shot 47.0% from the field and outrebounded Florida by a 49-40 margin in the victory. The Volunteers held the Gators to 34.3% shooting from the field and 34.6% (9-26) from three-point range. Leading the way for Tennessee was Kevin Punter who had 26 points, 8 rebounds, 4 assists, 2 steals, and a block. On the season, the Volunteers have been led by Kevin Punter (23.1 ppg, 4.2 rpg, 3.8 apg, 1.5 spg), Armani Moore (13.0 ppg, 8.1 rpg, 3.7 apg, 1.9 bpg), and Robert Hubbs III (12.8 ppg, 4.2 rpg, 1.6 apg). Offensively, Tennessee is averaging 79.6 ppg on 44.0% shooting from the field and 33.6% shooting from beyond the arc. The Volunteers average 7.0 three-pointers per game and have an assist/turnover ratio of 1.31. Defensively, Tennessee is allowing their opponents to average 75.0 ppg on 41.3% shooting. The Volunteers average 5.9 blocks per game and have a turnover margin of 1.6.
The Aggies are 7-2-1 ATS in their last 10 games following an ATS loss and 3-1-1 ATS in their last 5 games overall. The Volunteers are 5-2 ATS in their last 7 games following a straight up win however, just 5-11 ATS in their last 16 Saturday games.
Texas A&M had a lot of reasons for optimism going into the season and the Aggies haven’t disappointed as they are currently ranked in the top-25 and has solid wins over Gonzaga and Baylor. Tennessee hired Rick Barnes (formerly of Texas) in the offseason and the veteran coach has done a solid job with the Volunteers has been competitive in what many thought would be a rebuilding year with the solid play of Kevin Punter who can put up points in a hurry. Texas A&M is a solid club that has been getting it down on both sides of the court this season however, have shown that they can struggled offensively on the road. Tennessee will need big games from Kevin Punter and Armani Moore, but I think they’ll come out with similar energy as they did against Florida and will be able to keep this close enough to cover with the points. Take Tennessee and the points in this one.