Here is a weekend preview of some of the best games of the week in College Basketball. This includes matchups of St. Bonaventure at UConn, Houston at Alabama and Villanova at Baylor.
St. Bonaventure at (15) UConn
The challenge for St. Bonaventure to continue to win games without Kyle Lofton will be tested against UConn. Furthermore, the guard play of Jalen Adaway will be critical with his scoring and rebounding ability. Also, Dominick Welch has stepped up in a major way being more of a distributor with the ability to score. Continued, Osun Osunniyi will need to take advantage of UConn not having Adama Sanogo available. Along with, having Jaren Holmes being another guard who can score the basketball step up for the Bonnies.
As UConn, without Adam Sanogo it is a challenge to produce the same offensive firepower they are capable of. Therefore, on both ends of the floor Akok Akok and Isaiah Wahley will need to continue to emerge. Also, the guard play of R.J. Cole needs to be at a higher level in organizing the offense. Additionally, Andre Jackson has an opportunity to further excel in the open floor in transition. The shooting ability of Tyler Polley will be important for UConn to get rolling offensively.
Matchup to Watch: Osun Osunniyi vs Isaiah Walhey
Prediction: St. Bonaventure 70 UConn 66
(9) Houston at (14) Alabama
Houston will need its offense and physicality to take over in this matchup against Alabama. Furthermore, their ability to own the battle of the boards will be crucial in winning this game. Also, the ability for Marcus Sasser to have a strong game offensively will be key. As well as, Tramon Mark on the wing with his ability to play on both ends. Next, the veteran shot making ability of Kyler Edwards will be an important factor within this game. The biggest advantage for Houston will be the front court play of Fabian White and Reggie Chaney.
Alabama’s ability to win this game will be their capabilities of playing in the open court and in scoring from the perimeter. First off, Jaden Shackleford will need to showcase his strong shooting ability from the perimeter. Along with, Jhavon Quinerly’s playmaking and scoring ability around the basket plus in transition. Next, Keon Ellis will need to show consistency on offense and display his defense on Tramon Mark. The front court of Alabama will need to step up majorly to keep Houston off the glass throughout.
Matchup to Watch: Keon Ellis vs Tramon Mark
Prediction: Houston 72 Alabama 69
(6) Villanova at (2) Baylor
Villanova will need the point guard play of Collin Gillespie to lead the way against the Baylor defense. Along with, the scoring ability of Justin Moore to continue to emerge. As well as, the continued improvement of Brandon Slater showing his ability on both ends. Next, Jermaine Samuels will need to provide scoring against younger wings and lock them down defensively. The mobility of Eric Dixon will be a concern for Villanova in this game against Jonathan Tchatchoua. The consistency of the Villanova offense and transition defense will be a major factor in this game.
As for Baylor, they have a tremendous opportunity to continue to develop into their potential as a team. Now, the play of James Akinjo will be very key being a distributor within the Baylor offense. As well as, having Adam Flagler and Matthew Mayer be the bucket getters they can be on display. Furthermore, the athleticism and activity of Kendall Brown is very good and will be needed against Villanova. The activity of Flo Thamba and Jonathan Tchatchoua will be an area Baylor can attack Villanova. The scoring ability of LJ Cryer of the bench can be a vital factor for Baylor’s offensive of potential.
Matchup to Watch: Justin Moore vs Adam Flagler
Prediction: Baylor 77 Villanova 73
Images Courtesy of, University of Baylor, University of Houston Athletics
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