SoCon foes will collide when the Mercer Bears (8-11, 2-4 SoCon) go head-to-head against the Western Carolina Catamounts (12-5, 4-2 SoCon) at Hawkins Arena. Tip-off is set for 7 p.m. ET on Wednesday, January 22, 2020.
Western Carolina Catamounts vs. Mercer Bears Odds Preview
The Catamounts lost big to the East Tennessee State Buccaneers in their last matchup, 85-66. Xavier Cork put together a good performance for Western Carolina, contributing 16 points and nine rebounds. East Tennessee State had a turnover percentage of 10.6 (better than their season average of 15.9). Western Carolina, meanwhile, had a free throw rate of 0.420 (above their season average of 0.245).
In the Bears’ last outing, they topped the Samford Bulldogs, 90-75. Mercer’s Djordje Dimitrijevic led the way, putting up 25 points, five rebounds and five assists. The Bears had a phenomenal effective field goal percentage of 0.656 (above their season average of 0.501) and had an offensive rebounding percentage of 37.9 (above their season average of 31.7).
The high-powered offense of Western Carolina will square off against the mid-tier defense of Mercer. The Catamounts currently rank 19th in offensive efficiency, while the Bears are 242nd in defensive efficiency. The Catamounts should have the advantage on that side of the ball.
These two squads have already met once this season. The Catamounts won 79-71. The Catamounts dominated nearly every facet of the game. They had an absurd free throw rate of 0.510 and an effective field goal percentage of 0.520. For those same stats, the Bears put up marks of 0.333 and 0.397, respectively. Dimitrijevic scored a game-high 34 points.
Western Carolina Catamounts at Mercer Bears Betting Prediction
Pick: SU Winner – Western Carolina, ATS Winner – Western Carolina, O/U – Over
The Bears rank 40th in rebounds allowed per game (32.0) while the Catamounts rank 82nd (33.5).
Mercer averages 7.3 steals per game, which ranks 81st in the nation. Western Carolina ranks 114th in steals allowed per game (6.5).
Western Carolina ranks 30th in three pointers attempted per game (27.2) while Mercer ranks 200th (20.5).
The Bears rank 41st in blocks allowed per game (2.7) while the Catamounts rank 112th (3.6).
Western Carolina averages 14.6 assists per game, which ranks 66th in the country. Mercer ranks 133rd in assists allowed per game (12.7).
The Bears have scored an equal number of points as their opponents. On the season, Mercer has defeated opponents by an average of 0.1 points.
During their last five games, the Catamounts have scored an average of 81.4 points per game (0.2 above their season average) and allowed an average of 81.2 points per game (7.0 above their season average).