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UC Irvine vs. New Mexico State - 12/28/17 College Basketball Pick, Odds, and Prediction

Game
New Mexico State Aggies (11-3) at UC Irvine Anteaters (5-10)
Date & Time Thursday December 28, 2017, 10:00 PM (EST)
The Line
The Line: UC Irvine Anteaters +5 -- Over/Under:
TV Channel
BIGWEST.TV
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NCAA BB | New Mexico State Aggies (11-3) at UC Irvine Anteaters (5-10)
USA TODAY Sports

Coming up on Thursday from Bren Events Center, the New Mexico State Aggies and the UC Irvine Anteaters will be locking horns in college basketball activity. 

New Mexico State enters this game with an 11-3 record so far. The Aggies had a nice five-game win streak going but lost their last outing versus USC. In that Trojans game, Aggies guard Zach Lofton put up 28 points. 

Lofton leads the New Mexico State attack on 19.1 PPG and 5.1 RPG, and AJ Harris 10.8 PPG. Also averaging in double-digits for the Aggies is Jemerrio Jones with 10.4 PPG and a team-high 10.9 RPG. 

Over on the UC Irvine side, they’re sitting at 5-10 on the year. The Anteaters were sitting on a five-game losing streak but beat Idaho their last time out. In that game, UC Irvine guard Evan Leonard led the team on 20 points. 

Leonard is the only Anteaters player averaging in double-figures this season with 11.1 PPG. That said, John Edgar (9.7 PPG), Eyassu Worku (9.5 PPG), Tommy Rutherford (9.5 PPG) and Max Hazzard (9.1 PPG). 

The Aggies are 5-1 ATS in their last five versus the Big West and 13-3 ATS in their last 16 games following an ATS loss. New Mexico State is also 4-1-1 ATS in their last six non-conference games and 4-1-1 ATS in their last six overall. 

Meanwhile, the Anteaters are 3-7 ATS in their last 10 non-conference games and 4-12 ATS in the last 16 overall. UC Irvinie is also 1-4 ATS in their last five Thursday games and 1-5 ATS in their last six home games. 

New Mexico State has been cruising along at a solid clip this year, and their only loss that came by more than five points was to Saint Mary’s back on November 13. The Aggies are way better when they’re on point defensively, and right around 70-75 points seems to be the tipping point. I don’t think UC Irvine will get there so I like New Mexico State to bag a cover in this one.

Pick:
New Mexico State Aggies -5

Andrew has been with Sports Chat Place since 2012, contributing to football, baseball and basketball across the fantasy, college and professional ranks. His goal is to break down the complicated trends and numbers into a language that's accessible even if you're not a seasoned sports bettor, providing comprehensive insight that can apply to just about everyone. Follow Andrew on Twitter for links to his latest Sports Chat Place picks. 

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