CUSA foes will clash when the Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders (6-18, 2-9 CUSA) challenge the Rice Owls (11-13, 3-8 CUSA) at the Murphy Athletic Center. Action gets underway at 6 p.m. ET on Saturday, February 8, 2020.
Rice Owls vs. Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders ATS Preview
The last time the Owls played, they defeated the UAB Blazers, 86-72. Drew Peterson led Rice in scoring with 17 points on 6-for-10 shooting. Rice dominated nearly every facet of the game. They had a great free throw rate of 0.273 (above their season average of 0.227) and a turnover percentage of 11.1 (better than their season average of 17.3). For those same stats, UAB was 0.113 and 18.6, respectively.
The Blue Raiders are hoping for a better outcome after their 75-70 loss to the North Texas Mean Green in their last matchup. With 14 points and eight rebounds, Middle Tennessee’s Reggie Scurry had a good performance. North Texas had a turnover percentage of 12.8 (better than their season average of 18.2). Middle Tennessee, meanwhile, had an offensive rebounding percentage of 42.1 (above their season average of 28.0).
This is the first time these teams will battle this year, after the Owls won both contests last season. In the most recent contest, Rice won 67-61. The Owls played a perfect game. They had a phenomenal free throw rate of 0.389 and an offensive rebounding percentage of 26.2. The Blue Raiders recorded marks of 0.125 and 22.0, respectively, for those same stats.
Points at the line might be scarce for Middle Tennessee in this matchup. The Blue Raiders currently rank 207th in the NCAA with a free throw attempt (FTA) rate of 0.217, while Rice ranks 52nd in FTA rate allowed (0.180).
Rice vs. Middle Tennessee Free Prediction
College Basketball Pick: SU Winner – Rice, ATS Winner – Rice, O/U – Over
Rice ranks 67th in assists per game (14.4) while Middle Tennessee ranks 184th in assists allowed per game (13.9).
The Blue Raiders average 24.0 three pointers per game, which ranks 83rd in the country. The Owls rank 187th in three pointers allowed per game (23.1).
Middle Tennessee ranks 132nd in rebounds per game (36.1) while Rice ranks 213th in rebounds allowed per game (36.7).
The Blue Raiders’ average margin of defeat in their last five games has been 1.6, down from 4.3 for the season.
During their last five games, the Owls have scored an average of 76.2 points per game (2.3 above their season average) and allowed an average of 77.6 points per game (2.1 above their season average).