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Kent State vs. Northern Illinois - 1/19/19 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction

Game
Northern Illinois at Kent State
Date & Time Saturday January 19, 2019, 2:30 PM (EST)
Location
Memorial A&C Center
Kent, OH
The Line
Kent State Golden Flashes -2.5 -- Over/Under: 147.5
TV Channel
ESPN3
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Mike Carter-USA TODAY Sports

The Northern Illinois Huskies and the Kent State Golden Flashes meet in college basketball MAC-tion from the Memorial A&C Center on Saturday afternoon.

The Northern Illinois Huskies come into this game looking to rebound from a 78-69 loss to Central Michigan in their last outing. Levi Bradley led the Huskies with 27 points on 11 of 21 shooting with a pair of threes while Dante Thorpe added 18 points and Eugene German chipped in 13 points on 5 of 13 shooting with a pair of threes and a team-high 4 assists to round out the trio of double-digit scorers for NIU in the losing effort. Gairges Daow added 4 assists of his own while Lacey James chipped in 6 points along with a team-high 9 rebounds and a pair of blocks in the defeat. German leads Northern Illinois with an average of 20.6 points and 3 assists per game while James leads the Huskies in rebounding with 7.2 rebounds per game this season. As a team, Northern Illinois is averaging 78.6 points per game on 50.3% shooting from the field, the 8th-best field goal percentage in the country, along with a 38.1% mark from behind the 3-point line and 69.3% from the foul line this season.

The Kent State Golden Flashes will look to find some consistency after alternating wins and losses in each of their last 5 games following a 66-52 win over Ohio last time out. Jaylin Walker led the Golden Flashes with 21 points on 6 of 15 shooting with 3 threes and a team-high 4 assists while Jalen Avery added 15 points on 4 of 8 shooting from 3-point range with 4 assists of his own as well. Philip Whittington and Antonio Williams each added 10 points to round out the group of double-digit scorers for Kent State in the winning effort. Whittington added 10 rebounds for a double-double while Williams added 4 steals as well in the victory. Walker leads Kent State in scoring with 21.8 points per game while Avery leads the Golden Flashes in assists with 3.9 assists per game and Whittington leads Kent State in rebounding with 8.2 rebounds per game this season. As a team, Kent State is averaging 76.2 points per game on 44.1% shooting from the field, 36.3% from behind the 3-point line and 70.2% from the foul line this season.

Northern Illinois is 6-0 ATS in their last 6 games following a loss and 6-2 ATS in their last 8 games overall while the over is 4-0 in their last 4 games against a team with a winning record. Kent State is 3-1-1 ATS in their last 5 games against a team with a winning record and 0-3-1 ATS in their last 4 games following a win while the over is 5-1 in their last 6 home games. Northern Illinois is 5-1-1 ATS in the last 7 meetings between these two teams and 4-0 ATS in the last 4 meetings between these two teams at Kent State.

I understand why Kent State would be favored at home, with Northern Illinois fresh off of a loss to Central Michigan in their last outing. However, just because I understand it, doesn’t mean I necessarily agree with it. Northern Illinois has done a really good job following up losses while we can’t say the same for the Golden Flashes after a victory. Kent State’s pattern suggests that the Golden Flashes would be due for a loss here, and given how well the Huskies shoot the basketball, I’m inclined to agree so I’ll take the points with Northern Illinois in a game I see the Huskies winning outright.

Pick:
Northern Illinois +2.5

Chris has been a sports fan from when he was old enough to pick up a basketball and was a standout offensive lineman throughout high school and college. Chris uses that same instinct, determination and drive to analyze trends and statistics to find and produce winners on a consistent basis. Chris has been writing for Sports Chat Place since 2016 and covers a wide array of sports from college and pro football, college basketball, hockey and baseball.

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