College Hoops: Weekend Predictions

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Florida State at #18 Duke- This game is huge for both teams as they try and get back to the top of the ACC standings. Duke has won its last three games, but are still having problems with their inside post game, as they rely on way too many three point jumpers. Florida State has five losses, but they were all to quality opponents. The Seminoles are lead by their guards Ian Miller and Aaron Thomas. Both average a little over 13 points per game. The Seminoles post game is mostly contributed by Okaro White, who averages 12 points and 6 rebounds a game. Duke will rely on the three point shot all game from the likes of Andre Dawkins, Quinn Cook, Rasheed Sulaimon, Rodney Hood, along with freshmen sensation Jabari Parker to make plays as well. I think Florida State is the more balanced team, but they have not been able to get that signature win so far this season. I think Duke will be too much at home, as they have yet to lose a game at Cameron Indoor all year.  Prediction: Duke 73  Florida State 61

#22 Kansas State at #16 Iowa State- This is another monster game for both squads. Kansas State is coming off a heart breaking loss to Texas, while Iowa State has lost three straight games. With this game being in Ames, the clear cut favorite here is Iowa State. The Cyclones have had a few days off since their last game and should be well rested and prepared to get back on the winning column. Kansas State does not play well on the road and against quality opponents like Kansas, they got blown out in Allen Fieldhouse. I do not think Kansas State can guard the perimeter along with DeAndre Kane who is averaging over 17 points a game. Melvin Ejim and Georges Niang will be another challenge for the Wildcats to stop. I think this game stays close for the most part, but the Cyclones will pull away in the end. Prediction: Iowa State 83 Kansas State 73

Texas At #24 Baylor- The Longhorns are starting to click and the rest of the Big 12 is getting nervous. As they should. Rick Barnes has this team playing a much different way than his past teams. The biggest factor so far is that they all play well together and have shown solid chemistry between each other so far. Baylor is starting to fall apart. The Bears have not looked very good the past couple of weeks as they have lost four out of their past five and are currently in ninth place in the Big 12 standings. They really need this win tomorrow. Unfortunately, for Baylor I do not think they get it done. I think the Bears are running into a red hot Texas squad that will be ready to play with great confidence. The key for Baylor is stopping Jonathon Holmes inside and Javan Felix across the perimeter. Baylor will need to find some kind of offense outside of Cory Jefferson and Isaiah Austin. Cherry and Heslip will need to make their shots if Baylor wants to win. I think Texas’ defense will be too much for Baylor in a tight one. Prediction: Texas 74 Baylor 67

#21 Michigan at #3 Michigan State- This one is clearly the best game this weekend. Both teams are perfect in Big Ten play with UM at 6-0 and MSU at 7-0. The Spartans have reeled off eleven straight victories and are off to their best start in school history at 18-1. Michigan has continued to impress their doubters as they have won eight straight and have picked up quality wins against Wisconsin and Iowa. Michigan travels to the Breslin Center in Lansing where they will face an injured Spartan squad. Michigan State will be without their best overall player in senior forward Adreian Payne and junior forward Branden Dawson. The Spartans inside game will be lacking outside of Matt Costello. Look for Michigan’s Jon Horford and Jordan Morgan to try and establish an inside presence due to the lack of MSU’s depth inside and to the injuries of their best down low defenders in Payne and Dawson. Michigan will still have to worry about MSU’s backcourt which is among the nation’s elite. Keith Appling is playing his best basketball right now at point guard, and shooting guards Gary Harris and Denzel Valentine have been playing great too. Glen Robinson III and Nik Stauskas will have to have huge games if they want to even keep it close. The Wolverines have lost 13 of the past 14 meetings at MSU. I think Michigan State will come out inspired and play great at home and hold off Michigan in a close one. Prediction: Michigan State 69 Michigan 65

 

 

 

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