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Texas State vs. South Alabama - 3/15/19 Sun Belt Tournament Quarterfinal College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction

Game
South Alabama at Texas State
Date & Time Friday March 15, 2019, 6:00 PM (EDT)
Location
Lakefront Arena
New Orleans, LA
The Line
Texas State Bobcats -6 -- O/U: 130
TV Channel
ESPN+
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Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

The South Alabama Jaguars and the Texas State Bobcats meet in a Sun Belt conference quarterfinal matchup in college basketball action from the Lakefront Arena on Friday evening.

The South Alabama Jaguars will look to keep their momentum going after back-to-back wins to start the tournament following a 70-69 win over Louisiana in the second round on Thursday. Josh Ajayi led the Jaguars with 25 points on 9 of 14 shooting with a 7 of 9 mark from the foul line and a team-high 7 rebounds while Roderick Sikes added 15 points with 3 threes and a 6 of 7 mark from the foul line as the only other South Alabama player to score in double figures in the winning effort. Trhae Mitchell added 9 points with 7 rebounds and a team-high 6 assists as well in the victory. Ajayi leads South Alabama in scoring with 16.4 points per game while Mitchell leads the Jaguars in rebounding and assists with 7.7 rebounds and 3.6 assists per game this season. As a team, South Alabama is averaging 73.2 points per game on 46.2% shooting from the field, 37% from behind the arc and 67.8% from the foul line this season.

The Texas State Bobcats enter the conference tournament as the #4 seed, finishing the regular season with an overall mark of 23-8, including 12-6 in Sun Belt conference play, finishing in a 3-way tie for 2nd but losing out on the 2nd and 3rd seed thanks to tiebreakers with UT-Arlington and Georgia Southern. Texas State finished the non-conference portion of their schedule with a record of 11-2, with their lone losses coming to Drake and Arkansas. Texas State used a 5-game winning streak to propel to 6-1 in conference and eventually got up to 10-3 before dropping 3 of 5 down the stretch to fall to the 4th slot and miss out on the bye to the semifinals. Nijal Pearson led the Bobcats in scoring with 17.1 points per game while Tre’Larenz Nottingham added 13.6 points as Texas State’s only other double-digit scorer on the year. Alex Peacock led the Bobcats in rebounding with 6.2 rebounds per game and Jaylen Shead led Texas State in assists with 4.9 assists per game this season. As a team, Texas State is averaging 73 points per game on 45.2% shooting from the field, 33.4% from behind the arc and 67% from the foul line this season.

South Alabama is 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games overall and 16-4-2 ATS in their last 42 games against a team with a winning percentage above .600 while the under is 7-3-1 in their last 11 conference games. Texas State is 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games overall and 15-6 ATS in their last 21 neutral site games while the under is 3-1-1 in their last 5 Friday games. The favorite is 7-2 ATS in the last 9 meetings between these two teams.

I’m tempted to take the points considering that South Alabama has done a good job competing with teams with above average records, combined with the fact that the Jaguars won the lone meeting between the two sides this season handily by 14 points. However, Texas State has a significant rest advantage and are a much better team than their seeding would indicate. South Alabama could compete here for a 3rd straight day, but I’m just concerned that tired legs will end up getting the better of the Jaguars here, so with that said, I’ll lay the points with Texas State here.

Pick:
Texas State -6

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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