This posted total seems somewhat low when you consider that Ohio is averaging 76.2 points on the road and East Tennessee State is averaging 74.9 points at home. Go ‘over’ in the CIT tonight.
With the NCAA Tournament talking a few days off, and a lot of people focusing on the NIT, it is not uncommon to find some value in the lesser tournaments such as the College Insider Tournament. One such NCAA Basketball matchup from that tournament Tuesday night has the Ohio Bobcats (19-15) paying a visit to the East Tennessee State Buccaneers (23-11) at the Memorial Center in Johnson City, TN at 7:00 ET.
A peak as the home and away splits for these teams suggest that both club are capable of scoring in the 70s tonight, and the fact that this should be a close game throughout should also lead to late game fouling, helping this ‘over’ along even further. Not that the late fouling is necessary, as this game should crack the 140s without much needed help.
The NCAA Basketball latest line from Pinnacle Sports has the total of this game at 139½ in Johnson City, with the betting odds set at -108.
The Bobcats has the most efficient offense in the MAC this season, averaging 100th in the country at 1.05 points per possessions, which is safely above the national average of 1.01 points per touch. As a result, Ohio averaged 74.4 points per game overall, and its offense did nit suffer much when hitting the road either, averaging in fact scoring more at 78.2 points per road game.
Ohio does not grade out nearly as well on the defensive end though, where the Bobcats rank 210th in defensive efficiency at 1.04 points per possession and 235th in effective field goal percentage against, at a whopping 50.4 percent. Ohio ranks equally badly in three point defense (217th) and in two points defense (236th).
Thus, it comes as no surprise that Ohio is allowing 72.5 points per game overall, and their defense is even worse on the road, where the Bobcats are allowing 77.2 points per contest. Combined with Ohio’s prolific offense, those road games are averaging a whopping 153.4 points with the ‘over’ going a lucrative 9-5-1 against the NCAA Basketball odds.
As for the Buccaneers they have gone ‘over’ in their last three home games in NCAA Basketball betting that have had a posted total, scoring exactly 80 points in each of their last two regular season home game and then 76 points in the first round of this tournament vs. Furman here last Tuesday.
East Tennessee is averaging a very respectable 69.2 points per game overall, an average that rises to a hearty 74.9 points here at home, where the Bucs are shooting a fantastic 48.5 percent from the floor.
On top of that, ETSU is a very good offensive rebounding team, boarding their own missed shots 34.6 percent of the time, which is above the national average of 32.3 points, Thus, they should be able to score quite a few second chance points tonight vs. an Ohio team that ranks only 206th in allowing offensive rebounds doing so 32.9 percent of the time.
The biggest risk to this ‘over’ seems to be that the Easy Tennessee defense ranks 85th in the country in defensive efficiency, but keep in mind that came primarily vs. Atlantic Sun Conference opponents. Ohio is more efficient offensively than every Atlantic Sun team except Belmont, which averaged 70 points in two games vs. the Buccaneers.
We see no reason why the Bobcats cannot at least match that average vs. ETSU here, while at the same tine, the Buccaneers should have their usual offensive success vs. a shaky Bobcats defense.
As a result, look for this game to get into the 140s at the very least, with a journey into the 150s not unlikely on the NCAA Basketball betting odds Tuesday night.
Free NCAA Basketball Pick: Ohio, East Tennessee State ‘over’ 139½ (-108)