#3 Houston Cougars at Wichita State Shockers Betting Preview
The #3 Houston Cougars (20-2, 8-1 AAC) are on the road to face the Wichita State Shockers (11-10, 4-5 AAC) looking to keep its perfect away record in tack. This is the first meeting of the season between the two conference foes, with Wichita State claiming a slight 18-17 edge in the all-time series.
Thursday’s AAC tilt tips off is at 9 p.m. EST inside Charles Koch Arena in Wichita, Kansas. Houston is a 12.5-point favorite, and the over/under total is 131 points.
What to Know – #3 Houston Cougars
Houston continues to play at a high level, winning eleven of its last 12 contests. The Cougars own a one-game lead over Temple in the conference standings and lead the nation in both the NCAA NET rankings and ESPN’s BPI.
Offensively, the Cougars averages 75.4 points per game behind 47.1% shooting from the floor and 35.7% shooting from beyond the arc. Houston’s defense leads the conference in scoring defense (54.9 ppg), field goal percentage defense (35.2%) and 3-point field goal percentage defense (26.8%).
Marcus Sasser leads a group of Cougars that spreads the ball around on the offensive end of the floor. Sasser (16.2 ppg) and Jarace Walker (11.1 ppg) are the only two Houston players averaging in double-figure but the Cougars have three scoring in between nine and ten points per game.
The Cougars are 14-8 against the spread this season and a healthy 6-0 ATS on the road. However, Houston is just 1-4 ATS over its last five matchups against the Shockers.
What to Know – Wichita State Shockers
Wichita State looks to pick up its signature win of the season with a victory Thursday night over the Cougars. The Shockers have won two of their last three contests coming into the contest and can pull their conference record to even with a win.
WSU is last in the AAC in scoring averaging 68.3 points per game while hitting 42.5% of their shots from the floor and 29.9% from three. The Shockers defense surrenders 65.9 ppg, holding opponents to 39.1% shooting from the field and 31.2% from deep.
Jaykwon Walton (13.3 ppg) and Craig Porter Jr. (12.5 ppg) are the primary scoring threats for the Shockers offense. Walton leads the team making 52.4% of his attempts from the field while also adding an effective 37.2% shooting from three.
The Shockers own a 9-10-2 mark ATS through January with a 3-8 record ATS on their home floor. Wichita State has struggled in recent games at home, sporting an 0-6 record ATS.
The Pick is In
The two top defenses in the AAC collide Thursday night in Wichita. While it will be difficult for the Shockers to get anything going offensively, look for the Wichita defense to make the contest respectable. Houston stays perfect on the road but it is closer than the books expect.
The Pick: Wichita State Shockers +12.5