Air Force vs. Texas State - 11/12/17 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction
Texas State Bobcats (22-14) at Air Force Falcons (12-21)
College Basketball: Sunday, November 12, 2017 at 4:00 pm (Clune Arena)
The Line: Air Force Falcons -3.5 -- Over/Under: See the Latest Odds
TV: ESPN 3
The Texas State Bobcats will travel to Clune Arena to take on the Air Force Falcons this Sunday afternoon in the Men Against Breast Cancer Showcase.
The Texas State Bobcats won an impressive 22 games last and hope the to carry the momentum that brought them to the Sun Belt Finals, into their 2017-18 season. Texas Sate finished last year with an overall record of 22-14 and earned the 4-seed in the Sun Belt Tournament after finishing conference play with a 11-7 record. Texas State had no trouble defeating Louisiana-Monroe in the quarterfinals, and upset top-seeded UT-Arlington in the semis before falling to the Troy Trojans in the Finals. Texas State was invited to participate in the CIT and did pick up a couple of victories before being defeated by Saint Peter’s in the quarterfinals. Texas State might have trouble to living up to what the Bobcats did last season after losing three key players in Kavin Gilder-Tilbury (16.0 ppg, 5.6 rpg, 1.8 apg, 1.2 spg), Bobby Conley (8.5 ppg, 3.8 rpg, 2.0 apg, 1.0 spg), and Ojai Black (8.0 ppg, 2.3 rpg, 4.0 apg). Texas State will hope that they can build their offense around returning starters Nijal Pearson (13.3 ppg, 5.7 rpg, 2.4 apg) and Immanuel King (5.6 ppg, 4.6 rpg). Texas State will hope that newcomers Shelby Adams, Reggie Miller, and Alex Peacock can help provide immediate production. Texas State should be led once again by their defense that ranked T-16th in scoring defense (62.7 ppg) and 42nd in defensive FG% (41.2%), however, will need to improve an offense that ranked just 304th in scoring offense (66.9 ppg).
USA TODAY Sports
Air Force once again struggled to find wins during their 2016-17 season and finished below .500 with just a 12-21 overall record. Air Force earned the 10-seed in the Mountain West Tournament after finishing conference play with just a 4-14 overall record, however, did pick up a win in the 1st Round against Wyoming before losing to the Colorado State Rams in the quarterfinals. Air Force could be in for another long season after their best player in Hayden Graham (12.5 ppg, 5.8 rpg, 2.0 apg). For Air Force to have any success this season they’ll need to get major production from returning starters Jacob Van (10.7 ppg, 2.5 rpg, 2.8 apg) and Frank Toohey (10.6 ppg, 4.6 rpg, 1.6 apg). Also returning for the Falcons are Trevor Lyons (7.4 ppg, 3.3 rpg, 2.3 apg, 1.4 spg), Ryan Manning (6.3 ppg, 1.9 rpg), and Dane Norman (3.8 ppg, 3.0 rpg). Air Force will hope that Sid Tomes and Lavelle Scottie can provide more contribution in their sophomore seasons. Air Force was average on the offensive end last season finishing the year ranked 179th in scoring offense (73.1) and 56th in assist/turnover ratio (1.25), however, will need to improve on the defensive end after ranking 247th in scoring defense and 345th in blocks per game (1.7).
The Bobcats finished last season with a 17-13 ATS record and have a 5-4 record ATS in their last 9 non-conference games. The Falcons finished last season 13-13 ATS and is 3-4 ATS in their last 7 games as a favorite.
Texas State will need to get some of their newcomers to contribute immediately if they want to once against contend for a Sun Belt Championship, however, the Bobcats still should be a tough team to play against as they do a great job of keeping opponents off the scoreboard with their defense. Air Force could be in for another long season as although they do have some experience and leadership, it just doesn’t seem that the Falcons have enough talent to become competitive in a difficult Mountain West Conference. Air Force is a slight favored in this game, however, I’m banking on that the Bobcats defense to give the Falcons enough trouble to keep this one within the number. Take Texas State and the points.