Florida Atlantic Owls (10-13) at Western Kentucky Hilltoppers (16-7)
|Date & Time||Thursday February 8, 2018, 8:30 PM (EST)|
The Line: Western Kentucky Hilltoppers -18.5 -- Over/Under: 137.5
HSSN; Fox College Sports - Atlantic
The Florida Atlantic Owls will travel to E. A. Diddle Arena to take on the Western Kentucky Hilltoppers this Thursday night in College Basketball action.
The Florida Atlantic Owls lost their 2nd straight game and dropped to 10-13 (4-7 C-USA) on the season after being defeated by the Southern Mississippi Golden Eagles, 77-66, this past Saturday. Florida Atlantic struggled offensively in the 1st half and couldn’t fight back after falling behind by a 38-21 margin at halftime. Florida Atlantic allowed Southern Mississippi to shoot 52.3% from the field and 66.7% (8-12) from beyond the arc in the loss. Leading the way for the Owls was Payton Hulsey who had 16 points, 6 rebounds, and 2 assists. On the season, Florida Atlantic is averaging 68.8 ppg on 41.3% shooting from the field. The Owls are averaging 5.7 three-pointers per game on 32.3% shooting from beyond the arc. Offensively, Florida Atlantic has been led by Ronald Delph (13.5 ppg, 8.8 rpg, 1.7 bpg), Justin Massey (12.7 ppg, 2.2 rpg, 1.7 apg), Gerdarius Troutman (12.4 ppg, 2.7 rpg, 1.1 apg), and Jailyn Ingram (9.1 ppg, 4.2 rpg, 1.5 apg). Defensively, Florida Atlantic is holding their opponents to an average of 68.5 ppg on 43.3% shooting from the field. The Owls have a rebound margin of 1.7 and a turnover margin of 0.0.
The Western Kentucky Hilltoppers had their 2-game winning streak snapped and dropped to 16-7 (8-2 C-USA) on the season after being defeated by the UT-San Antonio Roadrunners, 74-63, this past Saturday. Western Kentucky couldn’t get anything going on the offensive end against the Roadrunners defense and was double by double digits for most of the game after UT-San Antonio took a 32-18 lead with 4:21 left in regulation. Western Kentucky shot just 36.1% from the field and 10.0% (2-20) from beyond the arc in the loss. Leading the way for the Hilltoppers was Taveion Hollingsworth who had 21 points, 2 rebounds, 1 assist, and 2 steals. On the season, Western Kentucky is averaging 77.4 ppg on 48.8% shooting from the field. The Hilltoppers are averaging 5.7 three-pointers per game on 36.5% shooting from beyond the arc. Offensively, Western Kentucky has been led by Darius Thompson (14.4 ppg, 4.8 rpg, 4.7 apg, 1.4 spg), Justin Johnson (14.0 ppg, 9.6 rpg, 1.3 apg), Taveion Hollingsworth (13.1 ppg, 3.0 rpg, 1.9 apg, 1.0 spg), and Dwight Coleby (12.3 ppg, 8.7 rpg, 2.1 bpg). Defensively, Western Kentucky is allowing their opponents to average of 69.3 ppg on 41.9% shooting from the field. The Hilltoppers have a rebound margin of 1.8 and a turnover margin of 1.6.
The Owls are 3-1-1 ATS in their last 5 road games however, are just 2-9 ATS in their last 11 road games vs. a team with a winning home record. The Hilltoppers are 6-0 ATS in their last 6 games following a ATS loss and 7-3 ATS in their last 10 home games.
Florida Atlantic has lost 4 of their last 5 games and although they have a solid defense that ranks 84th in scoring defense, the Owls have struggled offensively as they come into this matchup ranked just 288th in scoring offense and 319th in FG%. Western Kentucky has lost 2 of their last 4 games, however, the Hilltoppers have are one of the better teams in the C-USA this season and come into this game ranked 88th in scoring offense, 26th in FG%, and 106th in defensive FG%. Western Kentucky is an impressive 9-3 at home however, Florida Atlantic is a solid defense team lead by big-man Ronald Delph and as I think this is just too many points, I’m taking Florida Atlantic in this one. Take Florida Atlantic and the points.