Northern Colorado Bears (1-0) vs. Hawaii Rainbow Warriors (0-0)
November 12, 2021 12:00 am EDT
The Line: Hawaii Rainbow Warriors +1.5; Over/Under: 135.5
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The Northern Colorado Bears and the Hawaii Rainbow Warriors meet Thursday in college basketball action from Stan Sheriff Center. Northern Colorado opened up the year versus Pacific. In that one, the Bears managed to eke out a two-point win. As for the Warriors, they played Hawaii-Hilo in their opener this week. Hawaii would go on to win that game by 30 points. Check back all season long for free college basketball picks at Sports Chat Place.
Northern Colorado managed a .500 campaign last year, finishing 11-11 overall and 6-8 in Big Sky Conference play. That result left the Bears in seventh place in the conference standings. Northern Colorado beat Sac State in the Big Sky tourney but then fell to Southern Utah in the Quarterfinals 91-83.
In the season opener versus Pacific on Wednesday, the Bears jumped out to a 38-29 halftime lead but had to hang on for a 67-65 victory. Daylen Kountz led the team on 22 points and six boards, while Kur Jongkuch doubled up on 10 points and 12 rebounds.
Over on the Hawaii side, they went 11-10 overall last year with a 9-9 record in the Big West Conference. The Warriors posted a sixth-place finish in the standings. Hawaii went 4-2 to close out the regular season but lost to UC Riverside in the first game of the Big West Tournament.
On Wednesday versus Hawaii-Hilo, the Warriors took a 40-28 halftime edge and turned it into a 97-67 victory. Hawaii’s top scorer was Junior Madut with 17 points and six rebounds.
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The Bears are 21-5 ATS in their last 26 as a road favorite and 18-6 ATS in their last 24 Thursday games. Hawaii is 14-6 ATS in their last 20 Thursday games and 1-4 ATS in their last five as an underdog.
PICK: I’m going to try Northern Colorado in this one. The Bears had a great first half versus Pacific in their opener, but struggled to keep the opposition at bay down the stretch. Northern Colorado posted a tepid 22.7 percent (5-of-22) from 3-point range and were out-rebounded 37-31.
All of that said, the Bears shot 47.5 percent from the field in their opener and held it together long enough to get the win. I like another good performance from Northern Colorado in a win/cover here.