UT-Arlington Mavericks (20-12) at Louisiana Ragin Cajuns (27-5)
College Basketball: Saturday, March 10, 2018 at 12:30 pm (Lakefront Arena)
The Line: Louisiana Ragin Cajuns -6 -- Over/Under: 161.5 Click to Get Latest Betting Odds
The UT-Arlington Mavericks and Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns will face off at Lakefront Arena this Saturday afternoon in the semifinals of the Sub Belt Conference Men’s Championship.
The 4-seed UT-Arlington Mavericks improved to 20-12 (10-8 Sun Belt) on the season after defeating the 5-seed Appalachian State Mountaineers, 84-68, yesterday afternoon. UT-Arlington was outstanding on the defensive end against the Mountaineers and had no trouble securing the victory after taking a 74-57 lead with 4:16 left in regulation. UT-Arlington shot 52.6% from the field while holding Appalachian State to 33.8% shooting from the field and 13.6% (3-22) from beyond the arc in the win. Leading the way for the Mavericks was Erick Neal who had 37 points, 3 rebounds, 3 assists, and 2 steals. On the season, UT-Arlington is averaging 78.2 ppg on 45.4% shooting from the field. The Mavericks are averaging 8.8 three-pointers per game on 36.3% shooting from beyond the arc. Offensively, UT-Arlington has been led by Kevin Hervey (21.1 ppg, 8.7 rpg, 2.3 apg, 1.4 spg), Erick Neal (16.2 ppg, 4.2 rpg, 7.0 apg, 2.0 spg), Kaelon Wilson (11.4 ppg, 4.1 rpg, 2.0 apg), and Johnny Hamilton (10.9 ppg, 7.8 rpg, 2.4 bpg). Defensively, UT-Arlington is allowing their opponents to average 73.9 ppg on 41.4% shooting from the field. The Mavericks have a rebound margin of 3.2 and a turnover margin of -0.2.
The top-seeded Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns improved to 7-5 (16-2 Sun Belt) on the season after defeating the 9-seed Texas State Bobcats, 80-54, yesterday afternoon. Louisiana jumped all over Texas State early in this one and had no trouble securing the victory after the Ragin’ Cajuns went into halftime with a 37-15 halftime lead. Louisiana shot 52.5% from the field and 51.9% (14-27) from beyond the arc while holding Texas State to just 38.5% shooting in the victory. Leading the way for the Ragin’ Cajuns was Frank Bartley IV who had 23 points, 6 rebounds, 2 assists, and a steal. On the season, Louisiana is averaging 84.0 ppg on 46.8% shooting from the field. The Ragin’ Cajuns are averaging 8.7 three-pointers per game on 36.6% shooting from beyond the arc. Offensively, Louisiana has been led by Frank Bartley IV (17.4 ppg, 3.4 rpg, 2.0 apg, 1.3 spg), JaKeenan Gant (14.7 ppg, 6.2 rpg, 1.0 apg, 2.5 bpg), Bryce Washington (10.6 ppg, 10.7 rpg, 2.1 apg, 1.3 spg), and Johnathan Stove (10.6 ppg, 3.1 rpg, 1.8apg). Defensively, Louisiana is allowing their opponents to average 70.9 ppg on 43.2% shooting from the field. The Ragin’ Cajuns have a rebound margin of 7.2 and a turnover margin of 1.4.
The Mavericks are 2-5 ATS in their last 7 games vs. a team with a winning straight up record and just 1-4-1 ATS in their last 6 games following a ATS win. The Ragin’ Cajuns are 9-1-1 ATS in their last 11 Saturday games and 14-5 ATS in their last 19 games overall.
Louisiana won both of their regular season matchups against UT-Arlington as the Ragin’ Cajuns won by a 77-65 margin on the road in mid-January and by a 100-79 margin at home in mid-February.
UT-Arlington has won 7 of their last 9 games and has been led by their offense which currently ranks 67th in scoring offense, 76th in three-pointers made per game, and 29th in assists per game. Louisiana has been outstanding on both ends of the court this season as the Ragin’ Cajuns rank 13th in scoring offense, 13th in rebound margin, and T-39th in steals per game. UT-Arlington has one of the best duos in the country in Kevin Hervey and Erick Neal, however, the Mavericks just don’t have the depth or defense to compete with Louisiana and as the Ragin’ Cajuns looked back on track after a surprising home loss to Little Rock in their regular season finale, I’m taking the Ragin’ Cajuns to cover this spread.