Pac 12 College Basketball: #7 Arizona Wildcats at Stanford Cardinal

#7 Arizona Wildcats at Stanford Cardinal
Maples Pavilion – Stanford, California

Thursday, January 22, 2015, 9:00 pm Eastern, TV: ESPN2
Opening Line: Arizona -4
Current Line: Arizona -3 1/2
Opening Total: 132
Current Total: 130 1/2
Opening Money Line: Arizona -185 / Stanford +160
Current Money Line: Arizona -175 / Stanford +150

Arizona is a 3.5 point favorite against Stanford in a battle for a share of first place in the Pac 12.
Arizona is a 3.5 point favorite against Stanford in a battle for a share of first place in the Pac 12.

Both the 16-2 Arizona Wildcats and 13-4 Stanford Cardinal are 4-1 in the Pac 12 as they meet Thursday in Stanford. The winner will be tied with 5-1 Utah for the conference lead. The loser will be tied for third with the winner of UCLA and Oregon State also Thursday.

Arizona leads the series against Stanford 57-29, including 21-18 in Stanford. The Wildcats have won 9 straight games against the Cardinal, including both meetings last year 60-57 in Stanford and 79-66 in Tucson. Stanford hasn’t beaten Arizona since 2009. Stanford makes the return trip to Tucson in the regular season finale March 7.

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Arizona is coached by Sean Miller. The Wildcats have road losses at UNLV and Oregon State. Arizona has home wins over CS-Northridge, UC-Irvine, Gonzaga, Michigan, Oakland, Arizona State, Colorado and Utah 69-51 Saturday. Arizona has won 2 straight games. The Wildcats also have neutral sight wins over Missouri, Kansas State and San Diego State in the Maui Invitational, and road wins over UTEP and Oregon. Arizona is 9-9 ATS and the total is 8-10 this season. The Wildcats were 5.5 point favorites against Utah and the total was 126.5.

Stanford is coached by Johnny Dawkins. The Cardinal have road losses at DePaul, BYU and UCLA, plus a neutral site loss to Duke in Brroklyn. Stanford has won 3 straight games. The Cardinal have home wins over Delaware, Denver, Loyola Marymount, Washington State, Washington, and Connecticut 72-59 Saturday. Stanford also has a neutral site win over UNLV in Brooklyn, plus road wins at Texas, USC and California. The Cardinal are 9-7-1 ATS and the total is 9-8 this season. Stanford was a 5.5 point favorite against UConn and the total was 123.5.

Arizona is outscoring teams 74-59 this season. The Wildcats are #44 in scoring and #24 in points allowed nationally. Arizona is shooting 48.9% from the field and 35.7% from 3 point range. The Wildcats are #15 in field goal percentage nationally. Arizona makes 67.4% of their free throws. Opponents are shooting 39.6% from the field and 33% from 3 point range. Arizona averages 36.6 rebounds per game and opponents average 25.3 per game. The Wildcats are #3 nationally in rebounds allowed. Arizona averages 14.3 assists, 11.6 turnovers, 7.4 steals and 3.4 blocks per game. Opponents average 10.2 assists, 14.3 turnovers, 5.1 steals and 2 blocks per game.

Forward Stanley Johnson averages 14.6 points, 6.8 rebounds, 1.7 assists and 1.6 steals per game. Brandon Ashley averages 11.2 points and 5.6 rebounds. Rondae Hollis-Jefferson averages 10.9 points, 6.6 rebounds 1.7 assists and 1.1 blocks per game. T.J. McConnell averages 9.1 points, 4.4 rebounds, 5.9 assists and 2.1 steals per game. Kaleb Tarczewski averages 8.8 points and 5.1 rebounds per game. Gabe York averages 8.6 points, 1.1 rebounds and 1.4 assists per game.

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Stanford is outscoring teams 73-64 this season. The Cardinal are shooting 43.8% from the field including 40.1% from 3 point range. The Cardinal are #16 nationally in 3 point shooting. Stanford makes 70.2% of their free throws. Opponents are shooting 40.7% from the field and 36.2% from 3 point range. Stanford averages 37.5 rebounds per game and opponents average 29.4. The Cardinal average 12.8 assists, 10.5 turnovers, 6.3 steals and 3.1 blocks per game. Opponents average 12 assists, 12.8 turnovers, 4.5 steals and 3.4 blocks per game.

Guard Chasson Randle averages 19.8 points, 3.1 rebounds, 2.7 assists and 1.5 steals per game. Anthony Brown averages 15.4 points, 7.3 rebounds and 2.9 assists. Stefan Nastic averages 13.9 points, 7.2 rebounds, 1.6 assists and 1.4 blocks per game. Rosco Allen averages 8.8 points, 5 rebounds and 1.4 assists per game. Reid Travis averages 7.5 points, 6.9 assists and 1.1 steals per game. He is out until early February with a thigh injury. Center Grant Verhoeven is questionable with a hip injury.

Arizona is 9-4 ATS in Thursday games, 1-5 in road games and against teams with winning home records. The road team is 5-2 ATS in this series recently. The under is 4-1 in the series in games played in Stanford.

Stanford is 3-0-1 ATS in home games, 5-1-1 after a straight up win, 3-1-1 after a cover, 6-2-1 overall, 5-2 against teams with winning records, 3-7-2 against Pac 12 teams, and 2-5 in Thursday games. The underdog is 22-8 ATS in this series recently.

Arizona and Stanford are two of the best teams in the Pac 12, but Arizona is one of the best teams in the country. Arizona has also owned Stanford recently. I think that trend continues and Arizona wins comfortably.

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