Rice Owls (15-12) at UAB Blazers (21-6)
College Basketball: Thursday, March 11, 2021 at 7:00 pm (Ford Center at The Star)
The Line: UAB Blazers -9.5 -- Over/Under: 141.5 Click to Get Latest Betting Odds
The Rice Owls and the UAB Blazers meet in a C-USA conference tournament quarter-final matchup in college basketball action from the Ford Center at the Star on Thursday evening.
The Rice Owls reached the quarterfinals thanks to a 72-68 win over Marshall in the second round. Quincy Olivari led the Owls with 23 points on 8 of 19 shooting with 5 threes and a team-high 9 rebounds while Max Fiedler added 15 points on 7 of 10 shooting with 9 rebounds and Cameron Sheffield has a pair of threes with 6 rebounds for his 10 points to cap off the trio of double-digit scorers for Rice in the winning effort. Travis Evee also had 9 points with 3 assists while Cavit Ege Havsa had a team-high 5 assists in 21 minutes off of the bench.
The UAB Blazers come into this one as the #2 seed out of the West division after finishing with a 13-5 conference mark as part of their 21-8 overall record this season. Michael Ertel leads the Blazers in scoring with 12.8 PPG while Tevin Lovan has 12.1 PPG and a team-high 2.3 APG with 3.9 RPG as well this season. Quan Jackson also has 10.7 PPG with 5.3 RPG to cap off the trio of doube-digit scorers for UAB up to this point in the season. Jalen Benjamin has 9.9 PPG for UAB while Tyreek Scott-Grayson has 9.4 PPG. Trey Jemison has a team-high 7.1 RPG and Kassim Nicholson has 6.6 RPG as well for the Blazers this season. As a team, UAB is averaging 73 PPG on 45.4% shooting from the field and 30.6% from three while allowing 60.1 PPg on 40.1% shooting from the field and 30.5% from three this season.
Rice is 13-6 ATS in their last 19 neutral site games and 1-7 ATS in their last 8 Thursday games while the over is 4-0 in their last 4 games against a team with a winning record. UAB is 7-1 ATS in their last 8 neutral site games while the over is 4-1 in their last 5 games against a team with a winning record.
The points with Rice are tempting out of the gate as the Owls have had a game to shake the rust off and get back to business. However, Rice taking down Marshall was impressive, but UAB is still one of the elite defensive teams in the country and that defense brings a lot of teams down, teams that are a lot better than what Rice brings to the table. I just think the Owls are in for a long day here, so I'll lay the points with UAB here.