BANKER (USC Upstate vs. Hampton)
USC Upstate has been one of the bigger surprises of the college basketball season for me. They’re usually bottom dwellers out of the big south conference but that is not the case this year. So far on the season, they are 6-2 in the conference, tied for 2nd place, and have gone 7-1 ATS in those games with that one loss coming by the hook. They have been playing with confidence and been playing extremely well against the better teams in the Big South and now they get a favorable matchup against a very weak Hampton team.
Hampton is a team who has really struggled on both ends of the floor, but offense is really where they have struggled the most. Hampton is ranked 353rd in adjusted offensive efficiency, 356th in offensive effective Field Goal percentage, 354th in 2-point percentage offense, and 345thin 3-point shooting as a team so they are a horrible offensive team. USC Upstate isn’t exactly an offensive powerhouse but they have greatly improved this year and have some very respectable numbers on the offensive end.
They are ranked 57th nationally in effective field goal percentage offense, 10th in 3-point shooting as a team, and 192nd overall in offensive efficiency so their strong suit is shooting the 3 and knocking down outside shots. Hampton has also struggled against some of the better teams in the conference as they lost by 15 to Campbell, lost by 24 to longwood, and even lost by 8/9 to NCAT and Gardner Webb. Their only conference wins have come against Charleston southern, who is dead last in the big south at 1-7, and against high point in OT who is in the bottom half of the conference at 3-4. Bottom line for me here is that USC Upstate is the hotter team and way more talented overall so rolling with them to take care of business here on the road. Score Prediction: 76-68 USC Upstate
New Hampshire is a team out the American east conference who has let me down a few times lately but going back to them here as I think this is a good spot for them to bounce back in a revenge spot against a Hartford team who took them down a few weeks ago. One thing that New Hampshire has done this season is bounce back well from a loss. They haven’t lost back-to-back games this season since December 11th, and they lost their last outing against stony Brook and now get a rematch with a very weak Hartford team.
New Hampshire has also been a completely different team at home this year where they have gone 7-1 and all of their offensive numbers are increased as opposed to their road numbers. Hartford has also failed to win back-to-back road games the entire season as they won their last game at Maine and now have to turn around and go right back on the road vs this UNH team. I think UNH can get it done at home where they have played much better all season. Score Prediction: 81-68 UNH
VMI is a team out of the southern con fence who has been one of my favorite teams to bet over the last few seasons as they have been ATS cash cows and especially as underdogs. In this matchup, they’ll face a UNC Greensboro (UNCG) team who beat them by 16 earlier in the season. In that game, VMI only scored 56 points which is one of their lowest point totals of the season and I’m expecting a much better offensive output in this game.
UNCG is a team who struggles to score and can go on long droughts leading to big runs from their opponents. VMI is a team who can fill it up from the outside and has a big man named Jake Stephens who is just under 7 feet who can stretch the door from 3, drive to the hoop, and is a nightmare on the offensive glass and think he will be the difference for them tonight. I see VMI being able to knock down 3s this time around and think they come away from this game with a much-needed road win. Score Prediction: 74-66 VMI.