UTEP vs. UCF
Tip off: 8 PM EST
Spread: UCF -6.5
Betting Odds from Bookmaker
UCF is now 19-8 and they sit at 8-5 for 4th place in Conference USA. They’re a strong rebounding team, averaging 37.3 boards per contest (46th best in the nation), and they have won 4 of their last 6 games. Their main triumph this season so far has been beating then #4 UCONN on November 25th. It was the only time they played a ranked opponent other than the 23 point loss to FSU on November 14th. UCF still is making noise, and if they can win an NCAA berth by winning the Conference USA tournament, this season would be a huge success by all accounts.
The Golden Knights are led by Keith Clanton and son of MJ Marcus Jordan. Clanton posts 15.1 points per game and grabs 8.7 rebounds per night, while Jordan contributes 14.7 points per game while playing a team high 36 minutes a night.
Clanton is a 6’9″ local product of Orlando and is quite a physical specimen. His leaping ability enables him to block 2 shots a game and his rebounds are often of the high flighting rip it off the rim variety. He’s improved slightly since last year, and should end up being a four year starter for the Knights when it’s all said and done. Prior to February 4th, he had posted a streak of 8 straight games with double digit scoring, including two games of 21 and 23 points (vs Southern Miss & Memphis).
UCF Betting Trends:
Central Florida is 18-7 SU in their last 25 games and 20-1 SU in their last 21 at home. They are 4-10 SU in their last 14 on the road and the total has gone OVER in 5 of their last 7 on the road.
The Miners are 14-13 and 6th in Conference USA. They are 7-6 in conference, and they rank 41st in the nation in team field goal percentage (47%) and 51st in assists per game (14.6)
They’ve won their last four games over Tulsa, Tulane, Memphis and Southern Miss. After facing UCF tonight, they will return home to place Rice and then close out the season on the road against Southern Methodist. They already defeated Southern Methodist on January 14th.
It’s been a decent year after starting out 1-4 and losing to a few opponents they realistically should beat in UC Riverside and Stephen F. Austin.
The Miners have four players in double figure scoring: Michael Perez, 12.0; Gabriel McCulley, 11.7; Julian Washburn, 11.2; John Bohannon, 11.2. McCulley also leads the team in rebounding with 5.3 rebounds per game. The Miners must get bigger contributions from their bench to have a chance tonight against a team like UCF.
Perez, a 6’3″ sophomore guard, is much improved over last season when he saw only 10.1 minutes per game, but must improve his shooting from within the arc. He’s 39.2% from three but only 41.6% from the floor. He also must become a more versatile player and set up teammates more. Perez only averages 2.0 assists per game.
UTEP Betting Trends:
UTEP is 4-0-1 SU in their last 5 games and 7-1 SU in their last 8 at home. They are 2-4 ATS in their last 6 on the road and 1-5 SU in their last 6 on the road.