Week 6 of Conference USA play continues with six games tonight. Last night, Charlotte went on the road and defeated out-of-conference in-state foe North Carolina A&T, 92-72.
FIU @ UAB
Florida International is coming off of back-to-back loses at home in conference for the first time this season – they were previously 3-0 at home. The Blazers are back home after going 1-1 on the road at WKU and Marshall. FIU ranks 12th out of 14 Conference USA teams in three-point field goals made, which could bode well for the Blazers. UAB has allowed nine three’s per game over their last two. The best center in the league, Adrian Diaz, will be looking to repeat his triple-double performance against the Blazers in Miami last season. UAB should be able to contain Diaz this year with multiple experienced interior defenders in Lee, Mehinti, and Cokley.
FAU @ Middle Tennessee State
Each team is coming off of 1-1 performances in week 5. MTSU lost at Marshall on Thursday but defeated WKU on Saturday in a nail biter in Bowling Green, Ky. Florida Atlantic lost to ODU at home Thursday and defeated Charlotte on Saturday in Boca Raton, Fla. MTSU has struggled this year against smaller guard oriented teams like UTSA and ODU. However, the Blue Raiders haven’t lost at home in conference and they won’t tonight. Don’t be surprised to see FAU keep it within single digits.
Louisiana Tech @ Rice
Rice is 2-1 on the season in Conference USA play at home only losing to Marshall by four. The Owls freshman guard, Marcus Evans, has cooled off of late and is no longer leading Conference USA in points. This game is a true toss-up, but I’m going to go with Rice because I think they’re due. Look for the Owl’s Koulechov and Evans to have big games.
WKU @ UTSA
Western Kentucky is coming off one of the biggest upsets of Conference USA play when they defeated UAB at home last Thursday. The dismissal of junior guard Chris Harrison-Docks has seemed to give this team new life. UTSA has lost four in a row and I think that trend continues tonight. WKU could take a lot of heat off their Coach Ray Harper with a sweep at UTSA and UTEP this week.
Southern Miss @ North Texas
There is no doubt Southern Miss has been the surprise of Conference USA this year. Coming into conference play with a record of 3-8 and a roster depleted by NCAA penalties, not much was expected of the Golden Eagles. We’ll know a lot of Southern Miss after their road swing at North Texas tonight and Rice Saturday. A record of 1-1 this week would be another job well done by Coach Doc Sadler.
Marshall @ UTEP
It seems that every week Marshall is in a season defining game (or two). When the Herd travels to El Paso tonight, a lot will be on the line for both teams. Marshall is in a two way tie for second and can ill afford to lose ground to Middle Tennessee and UAB. With two wins this week, UTEP could position themselves back in the top seven of CUSA. The Miners will have to lean on their multiple zone defenses to keep up with Marshall. UTEP has only broken 80 twice in conference play and Marshall has done so seven times. I’m going to lean on The miners 9-4 home record and Coach Tim Floyd’s ability to slow down opposing offenses at home.
- Home Teams — 4 Wins
- Road Teams — 2 Wins