BANKER (Hofstra vs. Towson)
Towson has emerged as a very solid team out of the colonial athletic association as they have started this year with a 10-5 record including 5-1 on their home court. Towson runs very efficient offense and hits the offensive glass really hard for second chance opportunities. Towson is 55th in the country in overall adjusted offensive efficiency, 12th in offensive rebounding percentage and 92nd in 3-point percentage so they shoot a decent clip from the outside and also rebound a lot of their misses as well.
Towson is also just outside of the top 100 in defense as well as they are ranked 102nd in the nation in effective field goal percentage on defense. They face Hofstra tonight in what should be a high scoring game, but I think this game will come down to who can play better defense and get more stops when it counts, and I think that team will be Towson. Hofstra has really struggled defensively as they are ranked 334th in the country in effective field goal percentage defense, 342nd in 3-point percentage defense, and 220th in overall adjusted offensive efficiency.
Hofstra has played the tougher schedule to this point according to kenpoms rankings, but Hofstra has struggled on the road going 4-6 and will have a tall test here playing a Towson team who has defended their home court very well this season. Towson is led by Tennessee margin transfer Cam Holden, who is averaging 14/9/3 on 48% shooting and 40% from deep. For a guard, Holden rebounds the ball on both ends extremely well and j think this will be a huge advantage for Towson as Hofstra has undersized guards which should lead to more offensive rebounds and finishes at the rim. I see Towson being able to control the glass and being able to knock down enough outside shots to come away with a win here. Score Prediction: 81-75 Towson
West Virginia isn’t as good as they typically are but they have another solid team this year built on leadership and toughness. They are coming off a huge comeback against Kansas state where they came back from a 17 point 1H deficit and actually led by as many as 8 in the 2H. West Virginia is led by guards Taz Sherman and Sean McNeil who can both light it up on the offensive end. Sherman is more of a driver who can break anyone down off the dribble and create for others and McNeil is a light out shooter who can take over a game if he finds his rhythm.
Oklahoma state is also coming off of a huge home win against Texas and this is a very hard scheduling spot to turn around and go into Morgantown. West Virginia is always a very tough place to play as they defend their home court well. They are 9-0 at home this season and think they’ll defend home court again here and come away with a win in a close game. Score Prediction: 71-63 West Virginia.
Rutgers is a team who has had a lot of expectations over the past few seasons and hasn’t really lived up to them, but they’ve got another solid team this year and are looking to build to their resume after impressive wins over Purdue, Michigan, Clemson, and Nebraska. They face a Penn State team who is the definition of average. Penn State comes into this game with a 7-6 record with their most impressive win coming at home against Indiana. Other than that, they’ve pretty much lost to every team they were supposed to lose to and beaten up on all the cupcake teams they’ve played as well.
Rutgers is a very physical team led by combo guard Ron Harper Jr who can take over a game. I think overall Rutgers has more talent and they are starting to believe that they are a tournament team again. They will be the more motivated and desperate team here which should help them get a much-needed conference win on the road. Score Prediction: 66-62 Rutgers