Arizona Wildcats vs USC Trojans - January 19th Picks Of The Day

Joe Catalano

Thursday, January 19, 2017 8:09 PM UTC

Thursday, Jan. 19, 2017 8:09 PM UTC

While they remain in the AP Top 25, the USC Trojans are a team that has yet to defeat a quality opponent. Odds makers feel the same way as the Trojans are a 3 point underdog at home to the Arizona Wildcats. This will be the first real defining moment for the Trojans all season long.

 #14 Arizona Wildcats (16-2) vs #25 USC Trojans (16-3) 10 Game Winning Streak

As for the Wildcats, this will be a test, but they've run off 10 straight victories and have faced squads such as Butler, Michigan State, and Gonzaga this season. They're 1/2 game ahead of UCLA in the Pac-12 Standings, therefore this is a very important game for them and one in which they can put in their back pocket when NCAA Tournament seedings come around.

Arizona doesn't possess and overwhelming offense such as a UCLA, but they have one of the better defenses in the nation. For the season, the Wildcats have allowed 61.6 points per game. They're a +13.6 in point differential (points for as opposed to points against).

Lauri Markkanen

While this is a very deep Arizona squad which features 5 players scoring in double figures, 7 foot freshman ,Lauri Markkanen ,has started off his collegiate career in fine fashion and has a lot of room for growth. The NBA is in his future, but for now, Markkanen leads the Wildcats, averaging 16.7 points, 7.4 rebounds, and shoots 46.5% from beyond the arc. Are we witnessing the 2nd coming of Dirk Nowitzki?Lately, Markkanen has produced like Nowitzki as he's averaging 26 points and 7 rebounds on 8 of 12 shooting from beyond the arc in his last 2 games. 

Although a risky play, I picked USC in their last game and they came out on top and a major reason for their success was leading scorer Chimezie Metu. Metu is averaging 20.3 points per game in his last 3 games and is coming off of a 24 point, 6 rebound performance in a victory against Colorado in which he shot 11 of 14 from the field. If Metu can get space in the paint, this game will become very interesting quickly.

After all is said and done, Arizona is battle-tested and nobody will have an answer for Markkanen on the defensive end.

 Free NCAAB Pick: Arizona Wildcats -3 (-102)Best Line Offered: at 5Dimes

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