Central Michigan vs. Ball State - 1/19/19 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction
Ball State at Central Michigan
Saturday, January 19, 2019 at 4:30 PM (McGuirk Arena)
Ball State Cardinals -1 -- Over/Under: 157
The Ball State Cardinals and the Central Michigan Chippewas meet in college basketball MAC-tion from the McGuirk Arena on Saturday afternoon.
The Ball State Cardinals will be out to snap a 3-game losing streak after falling to Bowling Green in their last outing by a final score of 79-78. Tayler Persons led the Cardinals with 28 points on 10 of 19 shooting with a pair of threes and a team-high 9 rebounds with 3 steals while Tahjai Teague added 19 points on 8 of 16 shooting. K.J. Walton chipped in 12 points and Zach Gunn added 11 points to round out the quartet of double-digit scorers for Ball State in the losing effort. Trey Moses added 3 points with 8 rebounds and 3 steals as well in the defeat. Persons leads the Cardinals with an average of 16.9 points and 4.9 assists per game while Teague leads Ball State in rebounding with 7.5 rebounds per game this season. As a team, Ball State is averaging 81.7 points per game on 49.7% shooting from the field, 36.4% from 3-point range and 71% from the foul line this season.
The Central Michigan Chippewas will look to stay hot after winning 8 of their last 9 games after picking up a 78-69 road win over Northern Illinois in their last outing. Shawn Roundtree led the Chippewas with 21 points on 6 of 11 shooting with 5 threes while David DiLeo added 18 points on 6 of 10 shooting with 5 threes as well along with 5 rebounds and 3 assists. Robert Montgomery contributed 16 points with a pair of steals while Kevin McKay added 10 points to match his game-high 10 rebounds along with a pair of steals to round out the scoring in double-digits for Central Michigan in the win. Larry Austin Jr. was held to just a single point, but added team-highs of 9 assists and 3 steals as well in the victory. Despite the off night, Austin Jr. still leads the Chippewas with an average of 17.6 points and 5.6 assists per game while McKay leads Central Michigan in rebounding with 7.3 boards per game this season. As a team, Central Michigan is averaging the 7th-highest scoring offense in the nation, scoring 87.1 points per game on 47.5% shooting from the field, 35.9% from behind the 3-point line and 65.1% from the foul line this season.
Ball State is 5-2 ATS in their last 7 road games and 1-8 ATS in their last 9 conference games while the over is 10-3 in their last 13 games overall. Central Michigan is 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games against a team with a winning record and 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games following a game where they covered the spread while the over is 12-3-1 in their last 16 home games. Ball State is 11-5-1 ATS in the last 17 meetings between these two teams.
Ball State has had the bulk of the success between these two teams over the years and have been solid on the road this season. However, I’m still very surprised to see the Cardinals favored here. Central Michigan is the hotter team of the two here and it’s not close as the Chippewas have won 8 of their last 9 while Ball State’s dropped 3 in a row. That could mean that the Cardinals are due here, but I just can’t see it happening against one of the better teams in the conference. I think the Chippewas get the job done here, so I’ll take the free point and possibly put some on the money line as Central Michigan is one of the better plays on the board in my opinion on Saturday.