AAC College Basketball Handicapping: Connecticut Huskies at #17 Memphis Tigers

Connecticut Huskies at #17 Memphis Tigers
FedEx Forum – Memphis, Tennessee

Thursday, January 16, 2014, 7:00 pm Eastern, TV: ESPN
Opening Line: Memphis -7 
Current Line: Memphis -6 1/2
Opening Total: 140 1/2
Current Total; 140 1/2
Opening Money Line: Memphis -290 / UConn +240
Current Money Line: Memphis -290 / UConn +240

Memphis is a 6.5 point favorite at home against UConn Thursday night in a key AAC battle.

Memphis is a 6.5 point favorite at home against UConn Thursday night in a key AAC battle.

The Connecticut Huskies and Memphis Tigers have only met one time in history. The Tigers, then coached by John Calipari and led by a freshman point guard named Derrick Rose beat the Huskies 81-70 in 2007 in Madison Square Garden. The two teams are now conference rivals in the newly formed American Athletic Conference. Memphis is 12-3 this season and tied with Louisville at 3-1 for second in the conference behind 5-0 Cincinnati. Connecticut is 13-3 overall, but got off to a slow start in conference play with a 1-2 record. The two schools will play again in Connecticut February 15.

Connecticut is coached by Kevin Ollie. The Huskies have a home loss to Stanford and road losses at Houston and SMU. UConn has wins over Maryland in Brooklyn, home wins over Yale, Detroit and Bradley, Boston College and Indiana both at Madison Square Garden, at home against Florida, Harvard, and Central Florida Saturday 84-61, along with a road win at Washington. The Huskies have won 2 straight games. Connecticut is 6-8 ATS and the total is 5-8 this season.

Connecticut is outscoring teams 75-65 this season. The Huskies are #49 nationally in points allowed. UConn is shooting 46.2% from the field, but are #8 nationally in three point shooting at 41.4% from beyond the arc. -The Huskies are also #8 in the country in free throw shooting at 76.4% from the line. Connecticut opponents are shooting 38.5% from the field and 32.3% from 3 point range. The Huskies are #23 nationally in field goal defense. UConn averages 35.9 rebounds per game and opponents average 30.4 per game. The Huskies average 13.4 assists, 11.2 turnovers, 7.2 steals and 7.2 blocks per game. Opponents average 11.4 assists, 12.9 turnovers, 5.6 steals and 2.5 blocks per game.

UConn guard Shabazz Napier averages 16 points, 6.4 rebounds, 6 assists, and 2.1 steals per game. Forward DeAndre Daniels averages 12.8 points, 4.9 rebounds, and 1.6 blocks per game. Guard Ryan Boatright averages 12.8 points, 3.8 rebounds, 3.6 assists, and 1.8 steals per game. Guard/forward Niels Giffey averages 8.1 points and 3.3 rebounds per game. Omar Calhoun, Lasan Kromah, Phillip Nolan, and Amidah Brimah will also get significant minutes in the rotation. Brimah averages 2.9 blocks per game.

Memphis is coached by Josh Pastner. The Tigers have losses at Oklahoma State, to Florida in Madison Square Garden, and at home to Cincinnati. Memphis has wins over Siena, LSU and Oklahoma State all in a tournament in Orlando, along with road wins at South Florida, Louisville, and Temple Saturday 79-69. Memphis has won 5 of their last six games and two in a row. The Tigers are 8-5 ATS and the total is 3-9 this season.

Memphis is outscoring teams 80-70 this season. The Tigers are #35 nationally in scoring. Memphis is shooting 47.4% from the field and 29.4% from 3 point range. The Tigers are #323 out of 351 teams in 3 point shooting. Memphis makes 65.6% of their free throws. Tiger opponents are shooting 43% from the field and 31.8% from 3 point range. Memphis averages 39.5 rebounds per game and opponents average 31.7 per game. The Tigers are #32 nationally in rebounding. Memphis averages 16.6 assists, 13.1 turnovers, 9.9 steals and 4.9 blocks per game.  Opponents average 12.1 assists, 16.6 turnovers, 8.1 steals and 4.3 blocks per game.

Tigers’ guard Joe Jackson averages 14.7 points, 3.3 rebounds, 3.9 assists, and 1.9 steals per game. Forward Shaq Goodwin averages 13.2 points, 7.1 rebounds, 1.7 assists, 1.4 steals, and 1.5 blocks per game. Guard Michael Dixon, Jr. averages 11.3 points, 2.3 rebounds, 2.3 assists, and 1.4 steals per game. Guard Chris Crawford averages 9 points, 4.3 rebounds, 3.2 assists, and 2 steals per game. Forward Austin Nichols averages 8.6 points, 4.2 rebounds and 1.3 blocks per game. Guard Geron Johnson averages 8.5 points, 5.5 rebounds, 3.2 assists, and 1.6 steals per game. Forward David Pellom averages 5.8 points, and 4 rebounds per game.

Connecticut is 3-7 ATS overall, 2-5 after a straight up win of  more than 20 points, 1-4 in road games, and 1-6 after a straight up win.

Memphis is 6-0 ATS in Thursday games, 5-2 against teams with winning records, and 1-4 at home.

Connecticut is one of the best three point shooting teams in the country and Memphis is one of the worst. The Tigers are a better rebounding team though. UConn seems to gotten back on track after losing two road games in a row to SMU and Houston. Still, i think Memphis wins at home.

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Posted by on Jan 16 2014. Filed under College Basketball, Headlines. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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