Saint Joseph's Hawks vs. Toledo Rockets - 11/12/16 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction
Toledo Rockets (17-15) at Saint Joseph's Hawks (28-8)
College Basketball: Saturday, November 12, 2016 at 7:00 pm (Hagan Arena)
The Line: Saint Joseph's Hawks -6 -- Over/Under: 151 See the Latest Odds
The Toledo Rockets look for an early statement win when they travel to Pennsylvania to take on the St. Joseph’s Hawks.
The Toledo Rockets put forth their 5th straight winning season in 2015-16, finishing with a 17-15 record including 8-10 which was good enough for 5th in the MAC West before being bounced in the opening round of the MAC tournament by Eastern Michigan by a final score of 69-60. Tod Kowalczyk embarks on his 7th season as Rockets head coach with his task at hand being replacing 2 of his top 3 scorers in graduate Nathan Boothe who averaged almost a double double per game with 19.3 points and 9 rebounds and Stuckey Mosley who takes his 10.2 points and 4.8 rebounds last year with him in transferring to James Madison University. Toledo will be out to prove that they are ahead of the 4th place MAC West projection from the preseason poll this year, and it will start behind preseason all-MAC West senior guard Jonathan Williams who averaged 17.6 points per game for the rockets last season.
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The St. Joseph’s Hawks shattered all expectations last season, as the team finished 28-8 including 13-5 in A-10 conference play which was good enough for the 4th seed in the A-10 tournament where the Hawks went on to defeat George Washington, top-seeded Dayton and 2nd seed VCU to claim the school’s 4th A-10 tournament title. St. Joseph’s claimed their first tournament win since 2004 with an opening round victory over the Cincinnati Bearcats before being vanquished by the Oregon Ducks in the 2nd round. Phil Martelli returns for his 22nd year as coach of the Hawks, and it will no doubt be one of his toughest tests, as there is not one double-digit scorer from last year’s team left. As DeAndre Bembry, the 2015-16 A-10 player of the year, was taken 21st overall by the Atlanta Hawks in the NBA draft this past June, while guard Aaron Brown and forward Isaiah Miles both graduated. Bembry, Brown and Miles made up 42.9 points, 19.1 rebounds and 6.7 assists combined per game last season. The loss of those 3 players no doubt has an effect on the public perception of this Hawks team, as Saint Joseph’s was projected to finish 9th out of the 10 A-10 teams in the preseason poll.
Toledo is 0-4 ATS in their last 4 road games and 0-4 ATS in their last 4 games overall while the over is 5-1 in their last 6 vs. the A-10. St. Joseph’s is 10-1-1 ATS in their last 12 non-conference games and 23-7-1 ATS in their last 31 games overall while the over is 4-1 in their last 5 Saturday games.
St. Joe’s has been dominant against the number in their last few games, but that was with guys like Bembry and Miles leading the way. The Hawks don’t have a single double-digit scorer from last season, so this game will be a true test. The Rockets are without their leading scorer from last year also, but at this point in the season anything can happen, so I’ll keep this game on upset alert and take the points with Toledo.