College Basketball Betting: #24 UNLV Runnin’ Rebels at #25 New Mexico Lobos

#24 UNLV Runnin’ Rebels at #25 New Mexico Lobos
Wednesday, January 9, 2013, 10:00 pm Eastern, TV: CBS Sports Network
University Arena – Albuquerque, New Mexico
Opening Line: New Mexico -1
Current Line: New Mexico -3 1/2
Opening Total: 139
Current Total: 138 1/2
Opening Money Line: New Mexico -140 / UNLV +120
Current Money Line: New Mexico -160 / UNLV +140

UNLV is a slight underdog at Mountain West rival New Mexico in the conference opener for both teams.

The Mountain West might be the best of the non-power six conferences, although Atlantic 10 fans might disagree. Both ESPN and CBS Sports project the Mountain West to have 6 teams in the NCAA tournament. Only the Big East and Big Ten with 7 teams are projected to have more.

Two of those six teams open of the conference schedule as the #24 UNLV Runnin’ Rebels travel to the #25 New Mexico Lobos. Both teams are 13-2 this season. UNLV leads the series 28-17 against New Mexico. Each team won on their own home court last season, but New Mexico won the rubber match in the MWC Tournament in Las Vegas.

UNLV is coached by Dave Rice. The Rebels have losses at home to Oregon and at North Carolina. UNLV has key wins against Iowa St, UC-Irvine, Hawaii, Portland, Cal, UTEP and Northern Iowa. The Rebels ran past UC-Bakersfield Saturday night 84-63 in their last game. UNLV is 6-8 ATS and the total is 3-4 this season.

New Mexico is coached by Steve Alford. The Lobos won their first 12 games, but have lost 2 of their last 3 games. New Mexico lost at home to South Dakota St and at St. Louis 60-46 in their last game. The Lobos haven’t played since December 31. New Mexico has key wins over Davidson, George Mason & UConn in a tournament in the Virgin Islands, Portland, Indiana St, USC, Valparaiso, New Mexico St twice, and at Cincinnati. The Lobos are 6-7-1 ATS and the total is 3-5 this season.

UNLV is outscoring opponents 79-63 this season. The Rebels are #28 in scoring nationally. UNLV is shooting 45.5% from the field and 35% from 3 point range. The Rebels make 71.1% of their free throws. UNLV averages 42.5 rebounds a game and gives up 28.7 per game. The Rebels are #9 in rebounding nationally. UNLV opponents are shooting 37.6% from the field and 28.4% from 3 point range. The Rebels are #22 in opponents’ field goal percentage and #21 in 3 point defense. The Rebels average 18 assists, 9 steals, 5 blocks, and 15 turnovers a game.

Forward Anthony Bennett averages 19.9 points, 9.1 rebounds, 1.3 assists, and 1.5 blocks per game. Guard Katin Reinhardt averages 10.2 points, 2.1 rebounds, 2.9 assists, and 1.3 steals a game. Forward Mike Moser missed seven games with a dislocated elbow. He returned in the loss to North Carolina but sat out the last two games against inferior teams. He is listed as probable Wednesday night. Moser averages 9.9 points, 7.4 rebounds, 2.3 assists and a block. Guard Anthony Marshall averages 9.8 points, 3.5 rebounds, 5.4 assists, and 1.5 steals a game. Bryce Dejean-Jones averages 9.2 points, 4.3 rebounds, 2.5 assists, and 1 steal a game. Khem Birch averages 9.2 points, 7.2 rebounds, 1.2 assists, 1 steal, and 1.8 blocks a game. Justin Hawkins averages 7.2 points, 3.5 rebounds, 2 assists, and 1.9 steals a game.  Savon Goodman, Quintrell Thomas, Daquan Cook, and Carlos Lopez-Sosa make up the rest of the rotation.

New Mexico is outscoring teams 69-62 this season. The Lobos are shooting 41.3% from the field and 34.1% from 3 point range. New Mexico makes 75.1% from the free throw line. The Lobos are #25 in free throw shooting nationally. New Mexico averages 35.8 rebounds per game, and gives up 29.2 to opponents. Lobo opponents are shooting 39.9% from the field and 35.4% from 3 point range. New Mexico averages 14 assists, 6 steals, 4 blocks, and 13 turnovers.

Guard Kendall Williams averages 14.9 points, 3.6 rebounds, 4.7 assists, and 1.1 steals per game. Center Alex Kirk averages 11.3 points, 7.5 rebounds, and 1.3 blocks per game. Guard Tony Snell averages 11.1 points, 2.2 rebounds, and 3 assists per game. Forward Cameron Bairstow averages 7.8 points and 5.1 rebounds per game. Guard Hugh Greenwood averages 7.4 points, 5.1 rebounds, 2.3 assists, and 1.1 steals per game. Chad Adams, Demetrius Walker and Jamal Fenton make up the rest of the rotation.

UNLV is 4-1 ATS in Wednesday games, 8-17 overall, 6-13 against teams with winning records, 4-13 after a straight up win, 2-8 in Mountain West, 3-13 in road games, after a straight up win of 20 points or more, and in road games against teams with winning home records. The road team and underdog are both 7-2 ATS in this series recently.

New Mexico is 12-2 ATS in Mountain West games, 9-2 after scoring less than 50 points, 27-10-2 in Wednesday games, 5-2 against teams with winning records, 5-2-1 overall, and 2-6-1 at home. The under is 5-2 ATS in the last 7 in this series.

UNLV is deeper than New Mexico, and UNLV scores much more than the Lobos too.  However, the Pit is a very tough place to play. That is why New Mexico is favored. The Lobos can’t get into a track meet with the Rebels, and must force UNLV  into a half court game. I think UNLV pulls off the mild upset on the road.

Our college basketball handicappers are red hot this season. don’t miss out on any m0re winners this season.


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