It’s a big night in college basketball and one of the underrated games will be taking place in California. 17th-ranked San Diego State will be heading to Stanford to take on the Cardinals. The Aztecs have yet to cover the spread this season despite being 2-0 so can you trust them tonight as road favorites? We’ll preview the game and then get into what side I’ll be backing as well.
The SDSU Aztecs have opened the season 2-0 and are coming off a win against BYU. The Aztecs are favored to win the Mountain West conference and so far this season has been led in scoring by Darrion Trammell averaging 19.5 ppg. Matt Bradley is expected to be the primary scorer for this SDSU squad but he has struggled mightily shooting the ball to begin this season. The senior went 3 for 16 from the floor in the win against BYU.
Luckily for Bradley, his teammates have picked up the slack when it comes to scoring as the Aztecs are averaging 20 more points per game than they did last season and although it’s early it’s clear the transfer players for the Aztecs are providing a big spark to the offense. We already mentioned Trammell but TCU transfer Jaedon Ledee scored a game-high 23 points against BYU. The strength for the Aztecs is defense which bodes well tonight against a Stanford team who struggled to score in their last game.
Stanford enters tonight off a 10-point loss to Wisconsin on the road, a game in which they only managed to score 50 points. In their first game of the season, the Cardinals shot the ball well but they had to sweat out a late-game victory against an inferior opponent in Pacific.
Michael Jones is leading the Cardinals in scoring averaging 20 ppg through the first two games. Stanford has some very solid shooters on their roster but they have yet to get going as the Cardinals enter tonight only shooting 23.7% from three-point range. If Stanford struggles to score again tonight they could be in for a long game against this newfound lethal Aztecs offense.
The Aztecs opened as -4.5 point favorites but that number is now up to -5 in most sportsbooks. I trust the Aztecs to cover here as the road favorite and think this number is a bit too low based on Stanford’s limited offense to start the season.
If Matt Bradley breaks out of his shooting slump tonight this Aztecs offense will become incredibly difficult to stop. Bradley has made the trip to Stanford a few times in his career and averages 14 points a game when playing in Palo Alto. It’s clear he is comfortable against the Cardinals which makes me like SDSU even more.
Neither team is yet to cover the spread this season but I think SDSU changes that tonight. Stanford’s offense not only has struggled to score but is only averaging 5 offensive rebounds a game and I just don’t think they can compete with SDSU without getting second chance opportunities.