Two teams that have won at least 80% of their games will square off this weekend, as the UConn Huskies and St. Bonaventure Bonnies play on Saturday in Newark, NJ. St. Bonaventure started the season ranked, but lost a game and dropped out of the rankings shortly after. UConn, meanwhile, finds itself in the top-15 in the rankings, but is poised to drop after losing their last game in the middle of the week.
As tip off approaches in this St. Bonaventure Bonnies vs. UConn Huskies matchup, the question will be whether the Bonnies’ short rotation can beat the lineup of UConn. The Bonnies play a unique style of basketball, not relying on many players to try and get their results. But UConn is used to playing against tougher competition in the Big East, and it will be interesting to see which side can impose their will in this Saturday afternoon neutral site contest.
St. Bonaventure Bonnies – Facing An Important Injury
The St. Bonaventure Bonnies have won three straight games after suffering their first loss of the season to Northern Iowa around Thanksgiving. The Bonnies find themselves in an interesting place heading into this contest, as they are set to be without their leading scorer in this massive test in Newark. Without Kyle Lofton, it will be interesting to see how the Bonnies will generate enough offense to survive this encounter.
Lofton is the leading scorer for the Bonnies this season with an average of 17.4 points per game, leading the team in assists as well. Without him, the Bonnies’ short rotation will have to lean even more heavily on its starters, even with someone like Osun Osunniyi lacking any real offensive capability against top-level competition. That may be too tall an order for a Bonnies team that will be hungry to get a win here to earn their way back into or near the top-25.
Expected Line-Up: Dominick Welch, Quadry Adams, Jaren Holmes, Jalen Adaway, Osun Osunniyi
with best odds
UConn Huskies – Looking To Take Advantage
UConn comes into this game with St. Bonaventure at 8-2 on the season, having dropped their most recent game against the West Virginia Mountaineers. The offense of the Huskies really let them down in that game, as UConn managed just 53 points and lost 56-53 in a game that they will feel like they had some real chances to win. Here, the Huskies will again feel like they’ve got a great chance to win against a short-handed Bonnies squad.
On the positive side for UConn, their defense was on point against West Virginia, even if they failed to score enough points to win that game. UConn is allowing under 62 points per game this season, making them a threat to win on nights even when their offense is not operating at its best. The question here will be whether the Huskies can get points in the paint against a Bonnies team with a great paint protector in Osunniyi to aid their defense.
Expected Line-Up: RJ Cole, Andre Jackson, Jordan Hawkins, Isaiah Whaley, Akok Akok
Expert Pick #1 – UConn -4.5 @ -110
The first bet to put down on this game is on UConn -4.5 at -110 odds. The Huskies are a better team in a situation where the Bonnies are more short-handed than usual, whereas they would normally be in for a more competitive game here. Expect the Huskies to take advantage of everything going on with St. Bonaventure and to move to 9-2 and avenge their loss in their last game.
Expert Pick #2 – Under 135.5 @ -115
Our next bet for this matchup is the under 135.5 at -115 odds. St. Bonaventure isn’t normally a team that is going to light up the scoreboard against elite competition anyway, but when you combine that with the fact that their leading scorer is out, you are in for a low-scoring game. Expect the Bonnies in particular to help keep this game under by struggling to score.
Expert Pick #3 – St. Bonaventure Under 65.5 @ -115
Finally, it is worth putting a bet on the St. Bonaventure under 65.5 points at -115 odds. UConn showed that it can defend at a high level against West Virginia in their last game, and a banged up Bonnies team will only allow them to continue to showcase their defensive ability in one of the more attractive non-conference matchups of the day.
These two schools from the northeast are going to have an opportunity to showcase their talents in front of a larger audience in this game. And that is something UConn is more accustomed to doing than St. Bonaventure. UConn should cover the spread here, as the Bonnies will have their attention focused on simply keeping everything together until they are healthy again.