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Peay won't put out Flames

By Greg Peterson  ( 

March 20, 2018 08:35 PM
North Texas' Roosevelt Smart will be the best player on the court for its CBI game vs. Jacksonville State.
© USA Today Sports Images

UIC (plus 4) at Austin Peay

The Flames have gone a bit cold following a hot streak in the Horizon League regular season, but they face an Austin Peay team that is 335th in free-throw percentage.

The Governors have been sensational on the offensive glass, ranking 14th in the country in offensive rebounding rate, but face a UIC group with a lot of size that is second in the country in total blocked shots.

Both teams are 300th or worse in the country in total turnovers with the Flames having the higher total of the two and forcing fewer turnovers.

Peterson’s pick: Austin Peay is in the bottom 30 percent of the nation in 3-point defense. That gives UIC, with five of its top six scorers being proficient distance shooters, a chance to get in rhythm and take control of the game.

Jacksonville State vs North Texas (-1.5)

Both teams are coming off of 20-plus-point wins in its previous matchups and they have contrasting styles.

Jacksonville State ranks 26th in the nation in defensive efficiency while North Texas is 119th in the category. The Mean Green is 66th in rebounding rate to Jacksonville State’s ranking of 19.

North Texas' free-throw shooting has been an issue this year, as the team is 334th in the nation at the line, but it will have the best scorer on the floor in Roosevelt Smart.

Peterson’s pick: Both teams turn over the ball a lot, so North Texas will need take advantage and turn live-ball turnovers into points to get the win and cover in front of its home fans.

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