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Michigan vs. Air Force - 12/22/18 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction

Game
Air Force Falcons (4-6) at Michigan Wolverines (11-0)
Date & Time Saturday December 22, 2018, 4:00 PM (EST)
The Line
The Line: Michigan Wolverines -25.5 -- Over/Under: 130.5
TV Channel
BTN
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NCAA BB | Air Force Falcons (4-6) at Michigan Wolverines (11-0)
Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

The Air Force Falcons and the Michigan Wolverines meet in college basketball action from the Crisler Center on Saturday afternoon.

The Air Force Falcons come into this game looking for a massive road win after a 66-61 loss to Army in their last outing. Lavelle Scottie led the Falcons with 17 points along with a whopping 15 rebounds for the double-double while Ryan Swan added 10 points with a team-high 3 assists as the only other Air Force player to finish in double figures scoring in the losing effort. Sid Tomes added 7 points and 3 assists and Caleb Morris had 9 points while Pervis Louder added 5 rebounds of his own in the loss. Swan leads the Falcons in scoring with an average of 12 points per game while Scottie leads Air Force in rebounding with 5.7 rebounds per game and Tomes leads the Falcons in assists with 2.8 assists per game this season. As a team, Air Force is averaging 69.3 points per game on 47.8% shooting from the field, 33.8% from behind the 3-point line and 66.5% from the foul line this season.

The Michigan Wolverines will look to remain unbeaten after improving to 11-0 on the year with a 70-62 win over Western Michigan in their last outing. Charles Matthews led the Wolverines with 25 points along with a team-high 10 rebounds and 3 steals for the double-double while Zavier Simpson added 15 points with 3 assists and 3 triples and Jordan Poole added 14 points with 4 steals to round out the trio of double-digit scorers for Michigan in the winning effort. Ignas Brazdeikis had just 4 points but still leads the Wolverines in scoring with 15.8 points per game while Simpson leads Michigan in assists with 5.8 assists per game and Jon Teske leads the Wolverines in rebounding with 6.7 boards per game this season. As a team, Michigan is averaging 73.3 points per game on 46.6% shooting from the field, 36.8% from behind the arc and 65.4% from the foul line this season. The Wolverines are also extremely tough defensively, giving up the 3rd-fewest points per game this season, allowing their opponents to put up just 55.8 points per game this season.

Air Force is 3-7 ATS in their last 10 non-conference games and 2-5 ATS in their last 7 road games while the under is 7-3 in their last 10 road games. Michigan is 7-3 ATS in their last 10 games against a team with a losing record and 2-5 ATS in their last 7 home games while the under is 9-4 in their last 13 games overall.

I think it’s safe to say that Michigan is the better team here, but I truly question how seriously the Wolverines take opponents like Air Force. Michigan has won their last 4 home games as a double-digit favorite, but the Wolverines also haven’t covered in any of them, which is pretty much what we care about in this line of work. I wouldn’t be surprised if Michigan blows the roof off of Air Force in this one, but given what we’ve seen this season, I actually think the safer option is taking the points with Air Force here as I think the Falcons sneak in the backdoor for a cover.

Pick:
Air Force +25.5

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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