Photo: flickr Writer: Eric Daniel
We felt this UCF squad was being undervalued coming into the year and the Knights have been impressive thus far standing 5-1 overall with their only loss coming in a somewhat competitive result on a neutral site against Villanova. UCF has been dominant on the defensive side of the ball ranking 2nd in the nation in points allowed giving up 53.3 points per game on average. In their last outing UCF outclassed Stetson at home picking up the win by a final of 81-45. UCF is now getting back to full strength as they work veteran forward A.J. Davis back into the mix. Point guard B.J. Taylor has led the team averaging 17.2 points per game after being out all last season with an injury.
UMass is trying to build their basketball program back up in the A-10 after taking a step back in recent campaigns and this group has been steady thus far standing 5-1 overall against a manageable slate. In their one defeat UMass came up just short on the road against a decent Ole Miss squad losing to the SEC foe by a final of 88-90. The Minutemen have won 4 straight including some nice wins against teams like Temple and Harvard. In their last outing UMass got past Wagner by a final of 62-55. The Minutemen have 4 players averaging in double figures with Donte Clark leading the way averaging 16.5 points per game.
UCF has been downright lethal on the defensive side of the ball so far this season and the Knights are finally able to operate more effectively this season with their starting point guard back in the fold. The addition of A.J. Davis is also very important for the Knights as they build towards conference play. We like UCF to come through in this one leaning on their defense as they cover the spread.
Central Florida -3.5 -110