NCAA basketball on Thursday night and we will see the Connecticut Huskies travel to Philadelphia, PA to take on the Temple Owls. The game has a start time of 7:00 pm (Eastern) and will be televised on ESPN 2. Vegas odds have the Huskies listed as 9.5 point favorites, while the total sits at 146.
Analysis: The UConn Huskies have had a nice yea so far, as they are 20-5 overall and 8-4 within the newly formed AAC. The Huskies have won 3 in a row and are off a hard fought 86-81 OT win over Memphis. Their job here is to avoid the letdown. The Huskies are a solid bunch on offense, averaging 76 ppg on 46.2% shooting overall, including 40.2% from long range, with is 11th in the nation. Oh and they also hit their free throws at a 77% clip, which is 6th in the nation. Shabazz Napier leads the offense with 18 ppg and is also the team’s leading rebounder at 5.8 rpg. DeAndre Daniels (13.2 ppg) and Ryan Boatright (12.4 ppg) round out the double digit scorers for the Huskies. This team is not all about offense, as they have allowed just 64.1 ppg (40th) on 39.1% shooting (16th).
The Owls have had a miserable year so far as they come in at 7-17 overall and 2-10 within the AAC. They do enter on a high note though after taking down SMU 71-64 in their last game. The Owls have been a solid offensive team this year, averaging 73.8 ppg overall and 75.6 ppg at home. They are not a great shooting team, hitting just 43.1% of their shots overall and 34.7% from long range. The Owls are the only team in the nation with 4 players averaging 14+ ppg or more. Dalton Pepper leads the way with 17.3 ppg, while Will Cummings (16.2 ppg), Quenton DeCosey (14.8 ppg) and Anthony Lee (14 ppg) round out the quartet. The defense is where this team has had their problems this year as they have allowed 77.4 ppg on 46.7 % shooting this year. A season to forget in Temple for sure.
Pick: I like the Huskies to take this one. Their defense is very tough and Temple's defense is very poor. The Huskie allow 13 ppg less than the Owls do and their offense is a bit better as well. This is a complete Huskies team and will take apart Temple rather easily tonight.
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