The UAB Blazers and the UTEP Miners meet Thursday in college basketball action from Don Haskins Center. UAB comes into this one at 18-8 overall. The Blazers beat Middle Tennessee in their last game. As for UTEP, they’re sitting at 12-13 so far after a win over UTSA on Saturday. Check back all season long for free college basketball picks at Sports Chat Place.
The Blazers started out the year on a 13-5 clip through their first 18 outings. Since then it’s been a 5-3 run for UAB with wins over Louisiana Tech, Rice, Florida Atlantic, FIU and Middle Tennessee with losses to North Texas, Middle Tennessee and North Texas again.
In the Middle Tennessee rematch on Saturday, the Blazers jumped out to a 47-22 lead by the break. UAB cruised on another 45 points from there and won it 92-69. Leading scorer Jordan Walker put up 25 points with three rebounds in the victory.
Over on the Miners’ side, they were sitting at 10-8 at the 18-game mark this year. UTEP is just 2-5 in their last seven however, falling to Florida Atlantic, North Texas, Middle Tennessee, Western Kentucky and Charlotte in that time.
The Miners got back into the win column on Saturday versus UTSA. UTEP powered out a 36-30 halftime lead in that one and then scored 41 more on the way to a 77-66 win. Both Tae Hardy and Jonathan Dos Anjos posted 12 points apiece.
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I’ll probably stay with UAB here. The Blazers had their four-game win streak snapped by a good North Texas team recently, but they were able to bounce back with a win over Middle Tennessee. During this 5-1 stretch the Blazers have scored 70 points or more in five of six outings. The last time UAB saw UTEP back on December 29 at Bartow Arena, the Blazers secured a 79-73 double-overtime victory. The Miners have lost five of their last six but they’re scoring well lately and will probably be competitive at home. That said I still like UAB better cover-wise.