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Valparaiso vs. Wisc-Milwaukee - 1/14/16 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction

Wisc-Milwaukee Panthers (12-5) at Valparaiso Crusaders (13-3)

College Basketball: Thursday, January 14, 2016 at 8:00 pm (Athletics-Recreation Center)

The Line: Valparaiso Crusaders -12.5 -- Over/Under: See the Latest Odds

TV: ESPN 3

The Milwaukee Panthers will travel to the Athletics-Recreation Center to take on the Valparaiso Crusaders this Thursday night in College Basketball action.

The Milwaukee Panthers won their 3rd straight game and improved to 12-5 (3-1 Horizon) on the season after defeating Cleveland State Vikings, 65-62, this past Saturday. Milwaukee was able to get out to a 12-point halftime lead but had to hang near the end as the Vikings almost made the comeback. Milwaukee shot 54.3% from the field and 48.0% (12-25) from beyond the arc. The Panthers allowed the Vikings to shoot 51.9% from the field and was outrebounded by Cleveland State by a 29-21 margin. Leading the way for Milwaukee was J.J. Panoske who had 12 points, 7 rebounds, and 2 blocks. On the season, the Panthers have been led by Matt Tiby (14.6 ppg, 8.8 rpg, 2.4 apg), Akeem Springs (14.4 ppg, 5.3 rpg, 1.7 apg), and Jordan Johnson (10.9 ppg, 3.2 rpg, 7.9 apg). Offensively, Milwaukee is averaging 78.9 ppg on 46.4% shooting from the field and 36.9% shooting from beyond the arc. The Panthers average 9.2 three-pointers per game and have an assist/turnover ratio of 1.56. Defensively, Milwaukee is allowing their opponents to average 70.7 ppg on 44.5% shooting from the field. The Panthers have a rebound margin of 2.6 and a turnover margin of -0.5.

Valparaiso vs. Wisc-Milwaukee - 1/14/16 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction

USA TODAY Sports

The Valparaiso Crusaders won their 3rd straight game and improved to 13-3 (3-0 Horizon) on the season after defeating the Detroit Titans, 92-74, this past Sunday. Valparaiso used a big first half to take a 50-29 lead at the break and had little trouble holding off the Titans in the 2nd half. Valparaiso shot 43.1% from the field and 87.9% (29-33) from the FT line. The Crusaders allowed the Titans to shoot 39.0% from the field and outrebounded Detroit by a 45-37 margin. Leading the way for Valparaiso was Alec Peters who had a double-double with 39 points, 14 rebounds, 2 assists, and a block. On the season, the Crusaders have been led by Alec Peters (17.9 ppg, 7.9 rpg, 1.1 apg), Tevonn Walker (13.3 ppg, 3.3 rpg, 1.8 apg), and Keith Carter (9.5 ppg, 3.3 rpg, 4.3 apg, 1.8 spg). Offensively, Valparaiso is averaging 74.3 ppg on 43.8% shooting from the field and 35.1% shooting from beyond the arc. The Crusaders average 7.6 three-pointers per game and have an assist/turnover ratio of 1.05. Defensively, Valparaiso is holding their opponents to an average of 59.3 ppg on 37.0% shooting from the field. The Crusaders have a rebound margin of 6.7 and a turnover margin of 1.9.

The Panthers are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 road games vs. a team with a winning home record and 4-1 ATS in their last 5 road games. The Crusaders are 6-0 ATS in their last 6 vs. Horizon League opponents and 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games overall.

Milwaukee had a long 2014-15 season being on probation however, the Panthers have been outstanding so far led by the great play of Akeem Springs and Matt Tiby. Valparaiso Crusaders lost a tough game at Belmont a couple of weeks ago but since the beginning of conference play, has shown way they are the favorites of the Horizon as they’ve beaten their first three conference opponents (UIC, Oakland, and Detroit) by an average of 21 ppg. Valparaiso has one of the best defenses in the country however, Milwaukee should be one of the few teams that could challenge Valparaiso in the Horizon and after showing that they could beat Wisconsin on the road, I think this is just too many points to pass up. Take Milwaukee and the points. 

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Milwaukee Panthers +12.5

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