Akron vs. Ohio - 3/12/20 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction

Akron vs. Ohio - 3/12/20 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction Photo by Jamie Rhodes-USA TODAY Sports

Ohio Bobcats (17-15) at Akron Zips (24-7)

College Basketball: Thursday, March 12, 2020 at 12:00 pm (Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse)

The Line: Akron Zips -4.5 -- Over/Under: 143

TV: ESPN+

The Ohio Bobcats and the Akron Zips meet in a tournament quarter-final matchup in college basketball MAC-tion from the Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse on Thursday afternoon.

The Ohio Bobcats come into this one off of their 85-65 win over Central Michigan last time out.

Jason Preston leads Ohio in scoring and assists with 16.8 PPG and 7.4 APG with 6.4 RPG while Ben Vander Plas has 15.7 PPG and a team-high 6.9 RPG and Jordan Dartis has 12.9 PPG as Ohio’s 3rd double-digit scorer this year. As a team, Ohio is averaging 71 points on 44.4% shooting from the field, 34.5% from 3-point range and 68.9% from the foul line while allowing opposing teams to average 68.6 points on 42.2% shooting from the field and 33.6% from 3-point range this season.

The Akron Zips enter the tournament as the top seed after finishing the year with a 14-4 conference record as part of their 24-7 overall mark on the year. Loren Cristian Jackson leads the Zips in scoring and assists with 19.8 PPG and 4.5 APG while Tyler Cheese is 2nd in scoring with 15.7 PPG and Xeyrius Williams has 13.9 PPG and a team-high 9.5 RPG this season. Channel Banks also is averaging 10.8 PPG this season for the Zips. As a team, Akron is averaging 75.7 points on 44% shooting from the field, 36.1% from the field, 36.1% from 3-point range and 77.1% from the foul line while allowing opposing teams to average 66.5 points on 40% shooting from the field, 30.3% from 3-point range and 66.9% from the foul line this season.

Head-to-head, the underdog is 4-0 ATS in the last 4 meetings between these two teams.

I get Akron being favored as the higher seed, but we’ve seen in other tournaments where the rested lower seed gives the higher seed a run for their proverbial money, and I think we could see some of that here. The Bobcats were playing almost as well as Akron over the last ten games down the stretch and covered 9 of their last 10 games while Akron has been sub-.500 ATS over that same span. I wouldn’t be surprised to see a 2-3 point finish here, so I’ll take my chances with Ohio and the points in this one.

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Chris’s Pick Ohio +4.5

The pick in this article is the opinion of the writer, not a Sports Chat Place site consensus.