Utah State vs. Saint Louis Odds, Prediction | NCAAB Betting Guide (Tuesday, Nov. 28)
Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images. Pictured: Danny Sprinkle (Utah State)
Utah State vs. Saint Louis Odds
The Utah State Aggies are Midwest bound to face the Saint Louis Billikens in Chaifetz Arena.
The Billikens enter this game after narrowly defeating Dartmouth on Saturday. Meanwhile, Utah State has won four consecutive games, three of which came by nine or more points.
Here's Utah State vs. Saint Louis odds and a prediction, including an NCAAB betting guide for Tuesday, Nov. 28.
New Aggies head coach Danny Sprinkle brought flavor from Bozeman to Logan, with Great Osobor and Darius Brown II playing vital roles at Utah State.
Osobor is one of the nation's most productive bigs, averaging 20 points and nine boards per contest.
The other Montana State import — Brown — is rapidly morphing into an elite Mountain West lead guard. Brown provides stability and dazzling playmaking prowess, averaging 7.8 assists, which ranks second nationally.
The duo of Brown and Osobor is dangerous, especially against Saint Louis, as its weak points are point guard play and post defense.
The Aggies' defense ranks 39th, according to KenPom, thanks in large part to Brown's contributions.
During Sprinkle's successful stint at Montana State, defense was his calling card for two NCAA tournament appearances.
Elsewhere, freshman Mason Falslev is the team's third-leading scorer outside of Brown and Osobor. The home-state product is an effective stat stuffer, averaging 11.2 points, 4.8 rebounds and 3.8 assists a night. He's almost a shoo-in to win Mountain West Freshman of the Year and is a massive piece of Utah State's winning path against SLU.
Sprinkle brought the same style to the Mountain West, and it's working early on.
This appears as a make-or-break season for Travis Ford, who logs the highest salary among Atlantic 10 coaches. The fanbase has soured on Ford, and the team needs to look better than past iterations.
Plain and simple, Saint Louis is one of the smallest teams in America. At 6-foot-7, Tim Dalger is the Billikens' tallest starter, and Terrence Hargrove Jr. — a burly-built small-ball four — is the "starting five-man." Hargrove is an extreme mismatch, using his quickness and strength to navigate past slower bigs.
There's no reincarnate of Hasahn French walking through the doors in Saint Louis, though.
That's why Hargrove leads the team in scoring and rebounding. He's an invaluable piece for Ford's team.
However, his hands will be full against the imposing Osobor. If Hargrove gets in foul trouble, it'll throw freshman Bruce Zhang right into the fire.
Speaking of fire, Saint Louis lacks fire power. It all got zapped when Sincere Parker broke his foot during the Charleston Classic two weeks ago. Sure, Gibson Jimerson is solid as a perimeter striker and Mike Meadows Jr. provides solid playmaking prowess, but who's the shot-creator on the outside?
It was Parker, but I doubt anyone on the roster can play his role.
The Billikens lack a standout quality — neither end of the floor is good enough to lead Saint Louis to wins if one of the sides is lacking. The Billikens rank 177th in Offensive Efficiency and 188th in Defensive Efficiency, per KenPom. While both marks aren't awful, neither leave much room for optimism.
Phew, I know laying nearly two possessions worth of points in road territory isn't ideal, but I love this Utah State team, and I'm almost entirely out on Saint Louis without Parker.
Utah State looks terrific in the early going, and I don't think it's a fluke.
Pick: Utah State -5.5 (Play to 6.5)
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