Temple has struggled out of the gates this season, losing three of their first four games. Can they get back on track now that the schedule eases up a bit?
The Delaware Blue Hens have had a non-eventful start to the season. So far, they are 2-1 and have looked very average – at best. They have a 62-56 win at Delaware State, then they got smoked at Iona by 15 (92-77) and then they came home last Tuesday and barely edged Fairleigh Dickinson (73-72). Clearly, this is going to be a big step up in competition for them. The Blue Hens do have some quality with Kory Holden, who had 21 points, six assists and five rebounds in 38 minutes of action against Fairleigh Dickinson on Tuesday but he’s one of their only decent players. A lot is asked of him. One of their biggest challenges so far is that they’re not shooting well from three, hitting just 31% through three games. The issue is an injury to Devonne Pinkard. Without him, only Holden is a real threat from three-point land. Holden is 8-of-18 from three while the rest of the team is 7-of-34.
As for Temple, the start to the season has not been pretty. They are currently 1-3, so you may want to think twice about laying 12.5 points on the NCAA Basketball Odds with them in this spot. However, you can forgive them a little bit given the competition. They’ve already played three Top 25 teams. They lost by 24 against No. 1 North Carolina, they lost by five against No. 22 Butler and lost by six to No. 16 Utah. Their lone win was a 75-70 victory over Minnesota. Temple has a balanced team led by Quentin DeCosey, who scores 15.3 per game. The team has two other double-digit scorers in Devin Coleman (12.3) and Obi Enechionyia (10.7). As a team, though, they haven’t shot the ball well. The top eight scorers on the team are all shooting below 40%, which is not very good. The good news is that this is a decent free-throw shooting team, averaging 70.5% from the charity stripe so far.
Temple has only played one home this season as their three losses were all on neutral courts. They won their lone home game, which was against Minnesota.
Delaware has played one home game and two road games. They are 1-1 on the road and 1-0 at home, although they haven’t played anyone nearly as good as Temple.
Pinkard left in the first half against Fairleigh Dickinson and is expected to be out for three-to-six weeks. He scored a total of 25 points in the Blue Hens first two games, so the loss is clearly an important one.
What’s The Pick?
It’s hard to like Delaware in this spot – especially with Pinkard out. Yes, Temple has labored this season but that’s been against Top 25 teams. Delaware is far from that. Look for Temple to relish the opportunity to get back on track and rebuild their confidence by pumping a weakling. Take them with your NCAA Basketball Picks.
NCAA Basketball Pick: Temple -12.5 (-110) at The Greek