College Basketball Odds, Pick & Preview for Utah State vs. San Diego State (Tuesday, February 15)
Photo by Mitchell Layton/Getty Images. Pictured:
- San Diego State hosts Utah State in a Mountain West revenge game.
- The Aggies blew out the Aztecs in the first meeting between the two teams earlier this season.
- Kyle Remillard breaks down which side he's backing this time around.
Utah State vs. San Diego State Odds
|Utah State Odds|
-110o / -110u
|San Diego State Odds|
-110o / -110u
San Diego State sits two games out of first place in the standings of a packed Mountain West Conference. The Aztecs will need to remain perfect if they want any chance of winning the regular season crown for the third straight year.
San Diego State is winners of three in a row thanks to its lockdown defense. The group ranks second in the nation in defensive efficiency and has held its last five opponents to an average of 61 points per game.
That defense will be tested by Utah State, which has had a roller coaster of a season. The Aggies opened conference play 1-5 before ripping off four wins in a row against the bottom teams in the Mountain West. Since then, the group has lost its groove, dropping games to Wyoming and Nevada.
Whoever can own the paint will have a massive advantage in this matchup.
The Aggies are 6-7 in Mountain West play this season and are currently playing to improve their seed in the conference tournament.
Utah State demolished Nevada by 29 points at the end of January. But it laid an egg on Saturday, losing by double-digits to the Wolf Pack, who had lost six straight.
The offense is a well-balanced group that has seven players averaging over eight points per game. Justin Bean has been a double-double machine, and leads that group. Bean is putting up 18 points per game while shooting 56% from the field and 50% from downtown.
Though the Aggies take 40% of their shots from beyond the arc, they hit 34% from deep. They do most of their damage from inside the perimeter, where they hit 55% of 2-point field goals.
The top three leading scorers for Utah State all play in the team’s frontcourt, and each of them is shooting above 50% from the field this season.
Utah State’s defense has struggled as of late. The group has allowed its last three opponents to exceed the 75-point mark.
The main reason behind the struggles has been the lack of perimeter defense. Over the last four games, the Aggies have allowed 44% from beyond the arc. Three of those four opponents have hit 10 or more 3-pointers in that span.
San Diego State is projected as a 10-seed in the NCAA Tournament, and a program that no one wants to match up with come March.
The Aztecs’ relentless defensive pressure has held opponents to 58 points per game this season, which ranks third nationally.
Brian Dutcher’s squad prides itself on the defensive end of the floor. It holds opponents to 43% from the field, which is top-10 in the country.
The Aztecs are elite at defending inside the perimeter, which will be huge against a Utah State offense that shoots 55% from 2-point territory.
Matt Bradley is the main source of offense for San Diego State. The senior is averaging 17 points per game while hitting 40% of his 94 attempts from beyond the arc this season. He’s been on fire recently, scoring 26 points in three of his last four games.
San Diego State is an experienced group that plays with a deep rotation. 10 players are averaging double-digit minutes per game, which is key for the program to keep the relentless defensive intensity for all 40 minutes.
Utah State vs. San Diego State Betting Pick
These two teams met three weeks ago in what was a back-and-forth first 20 minutes. Utah State ran away with the game in the second half, though, outscoring San Diego State, 43-26, down the stretch.
The difference in the game was Utah State hitting 10 shots from beyond the arc. Steven Ashworth cashed in half of his 10 3-pointers in the game.
In San Diego State’s other nine Mountain West matchups, it has allowed an average of 55 points per game. Dutcher will surely have the group ready to avenge that loss, especially on the defensive end of the floor.
Though the San Diego State offense has not been stellar this season, it will get plenty of open looks from deep. Utah State has allowed three of its last four opponents to cash in on double-digit attempts from 3-point territory.
I’m backing the Aztecs to continue their defensive reign and get the cover at home.