Friday night college basketball and we will see the VCU Rams travel to Chaifetz Arena to take on the St Louis Billikens. The game has a start time of 7:00 pm (Eastern) and will be televised on ESPN 2. Current Vegas betting odds have VCU listed as 13 point favorites, while the total is set at 133.5.
Analysis: The VCU Rams have had a solid start to their year, as they come in at 15-3, which is good enough to have them ranked 16th in the nation. The Rams are 5-1 in true road games this year and 5-0 in the Atlantic 10. The Rams are 5-2-1 ATS in their last 8 road games vs. a team with a winning home record, but just 3-7 ATS in their last 10 Friday games. VCU has been a good offensive team, as they come in ranked 31st in scoring (75.7 ppg), 167th in shooting (43.7%), 80th in 3 point shooting (36.9%) and 337th in FT shooting (62.0%). Defensively the Rams have been average, ranking 176th in points allowed (66.2 ppg), 223rd in defensive FG% (43.5%) and 266th in 3 point defense (35.7%).
The St Louis Billikens have struggled of late as they are just 1-5 in their last 6 games. This slump now has them at a mediocre 9-9 on the year, which includes marks of 7-4 at home and 1-4 in the A-10. The Billikens are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games after scoring less than 50 points in their previous game, but just 5-15-1 ATS in their last 21 home games and 1-6 ATS in their last 7 games vs. a team with a winning % above .600. St Louis has been a very poor offensive team this year, ranking 316th in scoring (61.0 ppg), 254th in shooting (42.1%), 190th in 3 point shooting (33.8%) and 323rd in FT shooting (63.4%). Defensively the Billikens have been rather average, as they come in ranked 154th in points allowed (64.9 ppg), 312th in defensive FG% (45.9%) and 324th in 3 point defense (38.0%).
Pick: These two teams have played low scoring games vs each other of late as the last 3 in the series has combined for 122.3 ppg, with none of those games putting up more than 126 points. Well this one should be more of the same. For the Billikens it hasn't been their defense that has been the problem, but more so their offense as they come in averaging 59.9 ppg overall and 61.6 ppg at home. I know that VCA has struggled on defense of late, but they won't in this game vs this offense that will uses the entire shot clock. VCU has averaged 75.7 ppg on the year, but just 68.5 ppg on the road and will take on a St Louis team that allows jusrt 62.6 ppg at home. This should be a game with limited possession. St Louis can't play fast at all here because they just don't have enough offense to compete with the likes of VCU. 68-56 souns about right for this one.
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