Marshall @ Georgia State Game Preview and Pick: Total Set Too High

The regular season comes to a close tonight for Marshall and Georgia State, so this is their last chance to gain any momentum before the Sun Belt Conference Tournament. While neither team enters tonight with a record above .500, the dream of making a magical run through the conference tournament and becoming a bid stealer in the NCAA Tournament is still alive for both teams.

If anything, for Georgia State, even if they can’t make a Cinderella run, at the very least, they have the chance to beat Marshall for the first time. While the Panthers are favored tonight for the first time in this matchup's history, I think the true value for bettors lies in the point total.

Game Preview

It would be difficult for teams to enter the postseason much worse than the Marshall Thundering Herd. Over their last six games, Marshall is 0-6 and now ranks in the bottom half of the conference in both adjusted offensive (100.7) and defensive efficiency ratings (106.8), per Bart Torvik.

Offensively, the Thundering Herd loves to live behind the three-point line, the only problem is they rank 11th in the conference in three-point percentage and 13th in effective field goal percentage (Bart Torvik). Marshall’s two leading scorers, Obinna Anochili-Killen and Kevon Voyles, are averaging around 14 points a game, but only one has been consistent as of late.

Over the last ten games, Anochili-Killen has only scored more than 11 points in just three of them, while Kevon Voyles is averaging 17.1 points per game in that span on 45.9% shooting from the field. Interestingly enough, Anochili-Killen had the most success against Georgia State when the teams last met, as he had 22 points, while Voyles only had nine.

Georgia State’s defensive strengths match up better with stopping Voyles than Anochili-Killen since they struggle to defend the interior. According to Haslametrics, the Panthers rank 235th in the country in near-proximity field goal percentage allowed, which is a big reason why they are 12th in the Sun Belt in adjusted defensive efficiency rating.

The Panthers are not a team that will dominate the paint or force many turnovers on defense and on offense; their most significant strength is shooting mid-range jumpers. Following their most recent loss to JMU, the Panthers rank 85th in the country in mid-range shooting percentage (42.2%) but still 260th in field goal percentage (42.5%), per Haslametrics.

Pick for the Game

Defense may not be the strong suit of either team, but most West Virginia sports betting apps have the total set too high at 151.5. The under is 3-9 this season for Marshall when they are listed as an underdog, and while they aren’t a premier defensive team, they still can limit an already bad shooting team in Georgia State.

When playing on the road in Sun Belt games, the Thundering Herd ranks 4th in the conference in opponent two-point shooting percentage, which is important since Georgia State ranks 41st in the country in mid-range field goal attempts per 100 trips upcourt vs. the average opponent, per Haslametrics.

At the same time, the Panthers are well equipped to slow the hot hand of Kevon Voyles and Marshall’s overall preference to shoot threes. Voyles has been the leader of Marshall’s offense and has averaged 5.8 three-point attempts per game over the last ten games. No matter how well he’s playing, though, the Panthers still rank 17th in the country in opponent three-point percentage (Haslametrics). I project this game more in the mid-140’s range, so with that big of a discrepancy from the total, the value is there.


  • Under 151.5 (-110) on FanDuel

*odds subject to change

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