The Akron Zips and the Ball State Cardinals meet in college basketball MAC-tion from the Worthen Arena on Friday night.
The Akron Zips will look to add to their hot streak after winning 9 of their last 10 games with an 81-76 win over Northern Illinois last time out. Loren Cristian Jackson leads the Zips in scoring and assists with 21.4 PPG and 6.4 APG while Bryan Trimble Jr. has 13.1 PPG as the only other double-digit scorer for Akron at this point in the season. Enrique Freeman also has 7.8 PPG and a team-high 9.4 RPG to lead Akron on the glass this year. As a team, Akron is averaging 78.8 PPG on 45.8% shooting from the field, 34.7% from the 3-point line and 75.9% from the foul line while allowing 65.4 PPG on 42.5% shooting from the field and 30.1% from 3-point range this season.
The Ball State Cardinals will try to bounce back after a 75-62 loss to Bowling Green in their last matchup. K.J. Walton leads Ball State in scoring and rebounding with 15.7 PPG and 5.8 RPG while Ishmael El-Amin has 15 PPG and a team-high 3.1 APG to lead the Cardinals in assists and to cap off the scoring in double figures for Ball State so far this year. Brachen Hazen also has 9.3 PPG with 5.5 RPG while Jarron Coleman has 8.9 PPG with 5.1 RPG and 3 APG this season. As a team, Ball State is averaging 70.2 PPG on 42.7% shooting from the field, 32.8% from 3-point range and 72% from the foul line while allowing 73 PPG on 42.3% shooting from the field and 29.6% from 3-point range this season.
Akron is 4-1 ATS in their last 5 road games and 8-2 ATS in their last 10 games overall while the over is 5-1 in their last 6 games following a win. Ball State is 12-5 ATS in their last 17 home games and 1-5 ATS in their last 6 games overall while the under is 5-1 in their last 6 games against a team with a winning record. The road team is 6-2 ATS in the last 8 meetings between these two teams.
I’m a bit gunshy to jump right on board with Akron after they burned me a couple of times already this season. The problem is that Ball State hasn’t been good enough defensively to warrant a potential home dog play in their last few games, being outscored by 11.8 PPG in losing 4 of their last 5 games. Akron’s been much more consistent, putting up just under 78 PPG in that same stretch and outscoring opposing teams by 8 PPG, so I’ll lay the points with Akron on the road here.