The undefeated USC Trojans battle the Saint Joseph’s Hawks in what should be a very entertaining Wooden Legacy contest on Thanksgiving Day. USC crushed Dixie State 98-71 at home last Monday while Saint Joseph’s lost 87-75 at home against Monmouth last Saturday. Should we add USC to our NCAA Basketball picks?
USC opened at -18 at BetOnline and USA Today’s Jeff Sagarin has them at -17.04 using his Rating numbers. This leaves an 0.96-point gap between Sagarin’s projections for Saint Joseph’s and the actual NCAA Basketball odds. BetOnline set the total at 149.
USC’s ability to take care of the ball can be the difference in this game. The Trojans has recorded a turnover on only 13 percent of their possessions (eighth-best rate in the nation) while the Saint Joseph’s defense has forced opponents to turn the ball over on just 15 percent of all possessions (340th in the nation).
The USC assist ratios also explain this chalky line. The Trojans have created buckets via assists more often than the Hawks as of late. Saint Joseph’s has an assist on 40 of their 80 field goals (50 percent) over their last three games while USC (4-0 SU, 3-1 ATS) has assists on 63 of 97 field goals (64.9 percent) during their last three games.
If Saint Joseph’s (2-2 SU, 1-3 ATS) wants to keep this game close, they will need Jordan Hall to shine. The sophomore guard has been an anchor, averaging 15.5 points per game and he plays a key role facilitating the offense, particularly lately, as he’s either made or assisted on 40 percent of all Saint Joseph’s field goals over their last three games. Hall has accounted for 19 field goals and 13 assists in those contests.
— SJU Hawks MBB (@SJUHawks_MBB) November 24, 2021
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| Title: USC vs. Saint Joseph’s NCAA Basketball Preview and Best Bets
| Author: Eduardo Solano
| Date: Nov 24, 2021