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Northern Kentucky vs. Youngstown State - 2/19/18 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction

Youngstown State Penguins (8-21) at Northern Kentucky Norse (19-8)

College Basketball: Monday, February 19, 2018 at 7:30 pm (BB)

The Line: Northern Kentucky Norse -16.5 -- Over/Under: 154 See the Latest Odds

TV: ESPN 3

The Youngstown State Penguins will travel to BB&T Arena to take on the Northern Kentucky Norse this Monday night in College Basketball action.

The Youngstown State Penguins had their 2-game winning streak snapped and dropped to 8-21 (6-10 Horizon) on the season after being defeated by the Detroit Mercy Titans, 94-84, this past Friday. Youngstown State struggled on the defensive end against Detroit Mercy and couldn’t fight back after a 15-4 Titans run to start the 2nd half gave Detroit Mercy a 52-40 lead with 15:33 left in regulation. Youngstown State allowed Detroit Mercy to shoot 49.2% from the field and lost the turnover margin by a 15-8 margin in the loss. Leading the way for the Penguins was Cameron Morse who had 17 points, 2 rebounds, 2 assists, and a block. On the season, Youngstown State is averaging 75.7 ppg on 43.1% shooting from the field. The Penguins are averaging 7.3 three-pointers per game on 33.4% shooting from beyond the arc. Offensively, Youngstown State has been led by Cameron Morse (15.4 ppg, 2.4 rpg, 3.6 apg, 1.0 spg), Braun Hartfield (13.9 ppg, 4.3 rpg, 2.6 apg, 1.8 spg), Garrett Covington (8.4 ppg, 3.7 rpg, 1.1 spg), and Naz Bohannon (7.1 ppg, 7.9 rpg, 1.3 apg). Defensively, Youngstown State is allowing their opponents to average 83.0 ppg on 51.2% shooting from the field. The Penguins have a rebound margin of 1.5 and a turnover margin of 1.0.

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Northern Kentucky vs. Youngstown State - 2/19/18 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction

USA TODAY Sports

The Northern Kentucky Norse had their 5-game winning streak snapped and dropped to 19-8 (12-3 Horizon) on the season after being defeated by the Wright State Raiders, 69-67, this past Friday. Northern Kentucky struggled from beyond the arc against Raiders and couldn’t fight all the way back after trailing by an 11-point deficit with 6:38 left in regulation. Northern Kentucky shot just 41.4% from the field and 31.0% (9-29) from beyond the arc in the loss. Leading the way for the Norse was Drew McDonald who had a double-double with 12 points, 12 rebounds, and 2 assists. On the season, Northern Kentucky is averaging 78.7 ppg on 48.3% shooting from the field. The Norse are averaging 8.3 three-pointers per game on 35.3% shooting from beyond the arc. Offensively, Northern Kentucky has been led by Drew McDonald (16.7 ppg, 9.3 rpg, 2.3 apg), Lavone Holland II (13.4 ppg, 4.2 rpg, 4.6 apg, 1.0 spg), Carson Williams (12.6 ppg, 5.5 rpg, 1.2 apg, 1.0 spg), and Jordan Garnett (6.5 ppg, 2.9 rpg, 2.1 apg). Defensively, Northern Kentucky is holding their opponents to average 65.9 ppg on 41.3% shooting from the field. The Norse have a rebound margin of 3.5 and a turnover margin of 2.4.

The Penguins are 5-2 ATS in their last 7 games following a ATS loss and 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games after allowing more than 90 points in their previous game. The Norse are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games following a straight up loss and 10-4-2 ATS in their last 16 games vs. a team with a losing straight up record.

Youngstown State has lost 6 of their last 8 games and has really struggled defensively this season as the Penguins currently rank just 341st in scoring defense and 351st in defensive FG%. Northern Kentucky couldn’t pick a key win over Wright State, however, the Norse are still one of the best teams in the Horizon and currently rank 67th in scoring offense and 34th in scoring defense. Northern Kentucky is 11-2 at home this season and as the Norse showed they can score against the Penguins defense in their 95-point effort in their road victory earlier this season, I think Northern Kentucky will do enough at home to cover this large spread. Take Northern Kentucky to cover. 

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