Ball State Cardinals vs Valparaiso Crusaders Preview, Prediction, and Free Pick 12–17-2018




Ball State Cardinals (6-4) vs Valparaiso Crusaders (6-4)

Date : 12/17/2018
Time : 10:00 pm EST
Location : The Athletics-Recreation Center, Valparaiso, Indiana

Pick, Prediction, & Preview:

Ball State Cardinals vs Valparaiso Crusaders

The Ball State Cardinals will travel to The Athletics-Recreation Center in Valparaiso, Indiana, to battle the Valparaiso Crusaders on Monday night at 10 p.m. Eastern Standard Time. The Crusaders have won three of their last five games, overall, as they picked up the road win versus the George Washington Colonels in their last outing by an 82 – 79 score as they rebounded from a two-point halftime deficit in which to outscore  George Washington 45 – 40 in the second half en route to the much-needed victory.

Ball State, on the other hand, halted a five-game winning streak as they ended on the wrong end of the win-loss column versus the Evansville Purple Aces in their last outing as they suffered a 89-77 loss as they relinquished an eight-point lead at the half while allowing the Purple Aces to outscore them 52 – 32 in the second half as Shea Feehan led the offesnsive charged with 29 points along with five rebounds.

 

Ball State Cardinals's Latest Performance :

The Ball State Cardinals offense averaged 68 points during a prior, 3 game losing streak; However, they have since rebounded in which to win five of their next six games, with their only loss coming in their last outing versus the Evansville Purple Aces. In fact, the defense for Ball State certainly was solid on this night as they allowed the Purple Aces to shoot only 41% from the floor while permitting them to make only eight of 25 attempts from 3-point range for the night as Feehan led the team with 29 points, however, was only 6-15 from the floor. On the other hand, Ball State certainly struggle from three-point range as they connected on only four of 21 attempts for the night;However, shot 47% from the floor, as a team, with Tahjai Teague along with Tayler persons leading the charge with 17 and 16 points, respectively, in the loss as Ball State was outrebounded heavily by a 41 – 32 margin for the game.

Nonetheless, the key stat in this game was 90% shooting by Evansville from the free throw line as they graced the line 27 times for the game while the Cardinals shot 68% from the free throw line in going 17-23 for the contest. Nonetheless, Ball State remains to be one of the more dangerous teams in the nation on the offensive end at this point in the season, while their defense, despite giving up close to 90 points in their last outing, continues to be very solid as well as they are allowing opponents to shoot only 43% from the floor on a nightly basis in 2018. They will certainly be looking to neutralize a Valparaiso team that it is averaging a tad under 48% shooting for the season on Monday night.

 

Valparaiso Crusaders's Latest Performance :

Valparaiso has certainly weathered the storm from a very shaky start to get their 2018 campaign as they are winners of three of the last four games, overall, after beating up on the George Washington Colonels in their last outing. As stated, they scored 42 points in the first half yet their defense was dismal in allowing George Washington to put up 44 points;  Nonetheless, the Crusaders were able to battle back in the second half in which to outscore the road team by 5 points, thus pulling out the much-needed victory.

Bakari Evelyn along with Ryan Fazekas were both on fire from the floor as well as from three-point range as they not only combined for 25 along with 22 points, respectively, for Valparaiso, but, also combined to go 12 of 20 from three-point range on the night. Also, Fazekas  also had 8 rebounds in the contest while Evelyn finished with four assists on a night where Valparaiso shot 53% from the floor along with hitting a total of 15 three-pointers.

On the other hand, the defense for the Crusaders was awful as they also allowed the Colonels to shoot 50% from the floor as well yet George Washington only went 7 of 18 from long range as Maceo Jack led the team with 23 points while going 4-5 from three-point range. And while the offense for Valparaiso remains deadly accurate in shooting 47% from the floor in 2018, their defense can certainly use some work as they are allowing opponents to shoot an average of 45% from the floor per outing. Of course, with Ball State on the schedule, they will certainly want to ensure that those defensive vulnerabilities are well taken care of as the Cardinals come into this matchup shooting over 50% from the field while also putting up 81 points per game.

 

How Ball State Cardinals & Valparaiso Crusaders Matchup.

Vegas Odds, Offshore Odds, & Odds ATS:

 

Ball State is 5 – 4 ATS while the OU is  8 – 1

Valparaiso is 3 – 6 ATS while the OU is  5 – 4

 

 

In-Depth Analysis of each team:

The game will certainly be a very  important matchup for both teams as each will be looking to  obtain some confidence and momentum moving forward in the season with a win. On one hand, Ball State will look  to construct yet another extended winning streak of their own while the Crusaders will be looking to add to their current stellar play as they have won three of their last four games, as stated. In all, expect this to be a fast paced, back and forth matchup among the two teams that will certainly compete heavily in which to come up with an all-important victory in the end.

Against The Spread Selection: Pick:  Ball State Cardinals

My reason for the pick :

While I am sure that the Crusaders will come into this matchup with focus and intensity in which to pick up an all-important win, I will back Ball State in this matchup as they simply happen to be a much better offensive team than the Crusaders are a defensive team. As stated, Valparaiso is ranked 231st in the nation in field goal percentage allowed to opponents in 2018, while Ball State is ranked 31st in the country in field goal percentage with 50.8 per outing.   With that being the case, look for the road team, who are winners of two of their last three road games by the way, to go in to Valparaiso, Indiana, in which to sneak out a hard-fought victory over a Valparaiso team that will certainly continue to struggle on the defensive end throughout.

 

 

Totals Selection: Pick: Over

My reason for the prediction :

The over has been the play in the last six games for the Ball State Cardinals while also being the result in four of the last six games for the Valparaiso Crusaders. With that being the case, one can conclude that the over is indeed the big play in this matchup due to a Ball State team that is shooting off the charts at this point in the season being matched up versus a struggling Crusaders defensive unit. Nonetheless, I expect the total to go  over its set limit for this game due to the road team’s ability to remain efficient and accurate on the offensive end.

Betting trends for Ball State Cardinals:

  • The Cardinals are 3-1 ATS in last five road games

  • The over is 6-0 in Cardinals last six games

Betting trends for Valparaiso Crusaders:

  • The Crusaders are 2 – 5 ATS  and that’s seven games

  • The over is 4-2 in Crusaders last six games

Falepa

A sports analyst and enthusiast, Filipa enjoys writing articles for NHL, NBA, NCAAB, and, of course, for NCAAF. In addition, he enjoys the true art of breaking down games in such as way as to locate certain trends that can impact future contests. With a willingness to research, construct, and relay information that any reader can understand, Filipa aims to provide the reader with interesting & indepth knowledge for upcoming sporting events.