BANKER (Davidson vs. Saint Josephs)
Very surprised that this line is so short. Davidson is always a very solid team out of the Atlantic 10 and this year is no different. Davidson is off to a 10-2 start and has won 9 in a row including wins over Alabama, East Carolina, Charlotte, and Delaware. Davidson is always a very well coached/experienced team who plays efficiently on both ends. This season Davidson is 23rd in the nation adjusted offensive efficiency, 22nd in lowest turnover percentage on offense, 6thin effective field goal percentage, and number 1 in the nation in 3-point shooting as a team at 42.4%.
In this matchup Davidson faces a St Joes team that has some talent but is very undisciplined and can give up some huge runs. St Joes is 218th in the nation in defending the 3 and 142nd overall in adjusted defensive efficiency so they are a mediocre team at best. St Joes has played better than expected this year, but they’ve struggled against the best teams they’ve played. They lost to Villanova by 29 in a cross-town rivalry game, they lost to Monmouth by 12 in a game that was a Pk, and they lost to USC by 15 who plays a similar style as Davidson. St Joes is also coming off a gigantic blowout win as 12-point underdogs against Richmond and j expect St Joes to regress back to their mean a bit as that type of performance is simply unsustainable against the league’s top competition.
Overall, I think St Joes will struggle defensively in this matchup as Davidson is probably one of the nation’s top 20 offensive teams and St Joes struggles to defend the 3. St Joes also struggles to force turnovers on defense and turns the ball over a lot when on offense so I believe at the end of the day Davidson will be able to force more turnovers leading to easy baskets and transition 3s for their offense and I think St Joes will struggle to disrupt their offense on defense. Score Prediction: 81-68 Davidson.
Missouri state has emerged as a very solid program out of the Missouri valley conference over the past 3-5 years and they are off to another solid start this year as well. They are off to a 10-5 start and have won 6 of their last 6 games including their home conference opener vs Drake. Missouri state has been winning with their offense as they are 23rdnationally in offensive effective field goal percentage, 26th in 3-point percentage, 53rd in 2-point percentage, and 63rdin the nation in overall adjusted offensive efficiency. They face a Bradley team who has been hot and cold this season.
They are off to a 7-7 record with bad losses to Howard, brown, Duquesne, and Indiana state. Bottom line here for me is that Missouri state has more overall talent, they’ll have the best 2 players on the court with Prim and Mosley, and Bradley has struggled as an underdog against better competition. Score Prediction: 79-68 Missouri State.
VCU is a team who is hard to watch at times. Sometimes they struggle so mightily on offense that they go minutes without scoring but they make up for it with their defense. VCU is 3rd in the nation in adjusted defensive efficiency, 2ndin defensive effective field goal percentage, 4th in defensive TO%, and number 1 in the country in defensive 3-point percentage. They also thrive in the underdog role which they are in here.
They face a Dayton team who is hot and cold but really struggles as a favorite like they are here. Dayton is off to an 8-5 start but had odd losses to UMass Lowell, Lipscomb, and Austin Peay. Bottom line is that I think VCU’s defense will suffocate Dayton as they really struggle on offense at times. VCU has also played a much tougher schedule than Dayton to this point and I believe they are more prepared. Score Prediction: 66-61 VCU