Tulsa Golden Hurricane vs. Jacksonville State Gamecocks - 11/11/16 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction
Jacksonville State Gamecocks (8-23) at Tulsa Golden Hurricane (20-12)
College Basketball: Friday, November 11, 2016 at 8:00 pm (Reynolds Center)
The Line: Tulsa Golden Hurricane -14 -- Over/Under: 141.5 See the Latest Odds
The Jacksonville State Gamecocks will have upset on their minds as they take on the Tulsa Golden Hurricane on opening night.
The Jacksonville State Gamecocks look to rebound from a horrid 2015-16 campaign that saw the Gamecocks finish under .500 for the 9th time in the last 10 seasons with a record of 8-23 overall including 4-12 in OVC conference play. JSU finished dead last in the OVC East division, resulting in the Gamecocks missing the OVC tournament entirely. It was hard for the Gamecocks to really maintain any consistency as 11 different starting lineup combinations were put forth by head coach James Green over the course of the season. Following the season, the Gamecocks and Green mutually agreed to part ways after 8 seasons and a 89-153 record over that span. The bright side for new head coach Ray Harper is that he will bring back the team’s top 3 scorers from last year in guards Malcolm Drumwright, Erik Durham and Greg Tucker. The bright side for JSU faithful is that coach Harper finished with a winning record in each of his 4 seasons at the helm of the Western Kentucky Hilltoppers, which is welcome news as the Gamecocks were projected to finish dead last once again in the OVC East preseason poll.
The Tulsa Golden Hurricane look to start a new era on a positive note following a successful 2015-16 campaign that saw them finish 20-12, including 12-6 in the American conference to finish in a 3-way tie for 3rd place heading into the AAC tournament, where the Golden Hurricane were trounced in the first round by the #6 seed Memphis Tigers by a score of 89-67. The main challenge for 3rd year head coach Frank Haith, is the complete turnover in his roster from last season. 8 different Tulsa players graduated including the team’s top pair of scorers in Shaquille Harrison and James Woodard who were responsible for a combined 30.5 points per game last season. Pat Birt finds himself as the only returning Tulsa player who recorded double-digit scoring last year. The complete roster overhaul could be a big part of why Tulsa was projected to finish 9th out of 11 teams in the AAC preseason poll.
Jacksonville State is 5-1 ATS in their last 6 road games and 2-5 ATS in their last 7 games overall while the under is 5-2-1 in their last 8 non-conference games. Tulsa is 5-11-1 ATS in their last 17 non-conference games and 0-4 ATS in their last 4 games overall while the over is 7-2 in their last 9 games overall.
Call me crazy, but as bad as JSU has been in the last few years, I actually think they have a chance in this game. They’ve had a rough go at it, but at least they have a bunch of players returning while Tulsa is basically starting over with a near completely new team. It may take a couple games for Tulsa to gel together, which is why I’ll take a shot on Jacksonville State and the points.