The Cincinnati Bearcats (3-1) clash with the #14 Arizona Wildcats (3-0) in the 2022 Maui Jim Classic. Arizona is 3-0 against the Bearcats all-time, the last matchup happening in 1996 when the Wildcats knocked off the Bearcats, 79-76.
Monday’s tipoff is at 11:30 p.m. EST inside the Lahaina Civic Center in Maui, Hawaii. Arizona opens as a nine-point favorite, and the over/under total is 185.5 points.
What to Know – Cincinnati Bearcats
Cincinnati heads to Hawaii after opening the season with three victories before dropping its last contest, 64-51, on the road to Northern Kentucky.
The Bearcats were projected in the preseason polls to finish third in the American Athletic Conference. Cincinnati is led by second-year head coach Wes Miller who went 18-15 in his first season.
Michigan transfer David DeJulius paces the Bearcats’ offense averaging 18.3 points per game through the first two weeks of the season. A threat from deep, the guard was 8-of-15 from three during the week and only committed three turnovers. DeJulius was the first AAC Player of the Week.
Landers Nolley II, another transfer from Memphis, is second on the team scoring 14.0 ppg, and senior guard Jeremiah Davenport adds 12.0 ppg for the Bearcats offense.
The Bearcats are averaging 76.3 points per game while shooting 43.9% from the floor. Cincinnati’s defense is holding opponents to 61.5 points per game and 42% shooting from the field.
What to Know – #14 Arizona Wildcats
The Wildcats are undefeated heading into the Maui Jim Classic, beating up on low-ranked opponents in the early portions of their schedule.
Arizona was selected to finish second in a tough Pac-12 Conference, according to a preseason poll conducted by members of the media. Tommy Lloyd is in his second season as the head coach after taking Arizona to the Sweet 16 last season and finishing with a 33-4 mark.
Junior forward Azuolas Tubelis leads the Wildcats scoring 20.0 points per game over three contests. Tubelis found his name on the Naismith & Wooden Award Preseason Watch List after averaging 13.9 points per game last season as a sophomore.
Kerr Kriisa is coming off a career-high 24-point effort in the victory over Utah Tech. Kriisa also posted his second-career triple-double earlier this year with a 14 points, 11 rebounds, and 12 assists effort in a victory over Southern.
Arizona is pouring in 105.3 points per game, thanks to 63.2% shooting from the field. On the defensive end, the Wildcats allow 76.7 points per game and 37.6% shooting from the floor.
The Pick is In
Arizona and Cincinnati have always been known for rich hoops tradition, yet these two bluebloods have rarely matched up. The Wildcats are primed for another solid season, while the Bearcats should hold their own in a tough AAC.
KenPom has the Bearcats ranked 65th and the Wildcats at 12; we like Arizona by double-digits.
The Pick: #14 Arizona Wildcats -9