Georgia State Panthers (17-6) at Little Rock Trojans (5-18)
|Date & Time||Saturday February 3, 2018, 6:00 PM (EST)|
The Line: Little Rock Trojans +6.5 -- Over/Under: 127
The Georgia State Panthers will travel to the Jack Stephens Center to take on the Little Rock Trojans this Saturday night in College Basketball action.
The Georgia State Panthers won their 8th straight game and improved to 17-6 (8-2 Sun Belt) on the season after defeating the Arkansas State Red Wolves, 77-66, this past Thursday. Georgia State was outstanding on the defensive end against the Red Wolves and pulled away after a 18-5 Panthers run gave Georgia State a 66-55 lead with 6:28 left in regulation. Georgia State shot 55.8% from the field while holding Arkansas State to just 36.1% shooting from the field and 16.0% (4-25) from beyond the arc. Leading the way for the Panthers was D’Marcus Simonds who had 21 points, 9 rebounds, and 6 assists. On the season, Georgia State is averaging 72.8 ppg on 45.6% shooting from the field. The Panthers are averaging 8.9 three-pointers per game on 38.0% shooting from beyond the arc. Offensively, Georgia State has been led by D’Marcus Simonds (21.3 ppg, 5.7 rpg, 4.6 apg, 2.0 spg), Jeff Thomas (10.8 ppg, 4.3 rpg, 1.2 apg), Devin Mitchell (10.7 ppg, 2.2 rpg, 1.7 apg), and Malik Benlevi (10.1 ppg, 6.3 rpg, 2.0 apg, 1.6 spg, 1.0 bpg). Defensively, Georgia State is holding their opponents to an average of 65.0 ppg on 38.9% shooting from the field. The Panthers have a rebound margin of -4.5 and a turnover margin of 4.2.
The Little Rock Trojans lost their 5th straight game and dropped to 5-18 (2-8 Sun Belt) on the season after being defeated by the Georgia Southern Eagles, 67-61, this past Thursday. Little Rock led by a 30-24 margin at halftime, however, struggled on the defensive end in the 2nd half and couldn’t fight back after the Panthers took a 56-48 lead with 3:29 left in regulation. Little Rock allowed Georgia Southern to shoot 43.5% from the field and committed 17 turnovers in the loss. Leading the way for the Trojans was Andre Jones who had 18 points, 4 rebounds, 4 assists, 1 block, and a steal. On the season, Little Rock is averaging 64.3 ppg on 43.0% shooting from the field. The Trojans are averaging 6.5 three-pointers per game on 31.7 shooting from beyond the arc. Offensively, Georgia State has been led by Andre Jones (12.5 ppg, 4.7 rpg, 2.4 apg), Anthony Black (8.0 ppg, 2.3 rpg, 2.0 apg, 1.1 spg), Ryan Pippins (7.8 ppg, 2.0 rpg, 1.5 apg), and Oliver Black (6.5 ppg, 6.9 rpg, 1.1 apg). Defensively, Little Rock is allowing their opponents to average 69.2 ppg on 42.5% shooting from the field. The Trojans have a rebound margin of -1.4 and a turnover margin of -0.6.
The Panthers are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games overall and 8-2 ATS in their last 10 road games. The Trojans are 6-13-1 ATS in their last 20 games vs. a team with a winning straight up record and just 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games overall.
Georgia State continues to pile up wins and comes into this matchup led by their defense that ranks 27th in scoring defense and 7th in defensive FG%. Little Rock has lost 9 of their last 11 games and although their defense ranks a respectable 103rd in scoring defense, the Trojans have had a bunch of trouble on the offensive end as they currently rank 338th in scoring offense and 263rd in FG%. Little Rock is just 5-7 at home on the season and as I just don’t see how the Trojans offense will find success against the Panthers defense, I’m taking Georgia State to cover this road spread.