New Mexico vs. Utah State Odds
New Mexico and Utah State will meet in a Mountain West matchup between two teams deadlocked in the conference standings. Both the Lobos and Aggies sit at 6-3 in conference, two games back of first place San Diego State.
New Mexico was able to bounce back from a double overtime road loss to Nevada by taking down Air Force on Friday, 81-73. The Lobos had three players in double figures, including a 24-point performance from leading scorer Jamal Mashburn Jr.
Utah State returns home after back-to-back away games in which it was able to take down Fresno State, 70-53, before being outclassed by San Diego State, 85-75.
The Aggies have one of the most balanced offensive attacks in the country, with five players averaging double figures.
To pick which of these offenses will have the upper hand, let’s take a look at the odds and make a prediction for New Mexico vs. Utah State.
New Mexico has amassed a 19-3 record through an offense averaging 82.4 points per game.
The Lobos have been incredibly effective at creating penetration and getting to the free-throw line. As a result, New Mexico is shooting just 27.5% of its field goal attempts from beyond the arc (354th nationally).
Even given this tendency to not settle for the outside shot, the Lobos should find success against a Utah State defense allowing teams to shoot 37.4% from the 3-point line (330th nationally).
This additional production from outside will stretch out the Utah State defense allowing for point guard Jaelen House and Mashburn to win their one-on-one matchups. This offensive duo is averaging 36.9 points per game.
Jamal Mashburn Jr. went for 33 last night, been cooking lately for New Mexico averaging 23.5 points in 2023. Ranks 2nd in nation in jumpers made off the dribble. Lacks size and playmaking but advanced self-creator and high-level shot-maker from mid-range and three. pic.twitter.com/a3yP9JCgwv
— Jonathan Wasserman (@NBADraftWass) January 24, 2023
The Lobos rank 70th in adjusted efficiency offensively, resulting in 71.3 points per game (210th nationally).
This defense has been struggling as of late, giving up 83 points per game in its last three.
This defense will need to improve against a Utah State team relying on its offensive production to drive its success.
The Aggies have one of the most electrifying offenses in the country, ranking 13th in adjusted efficiency (117.2).
This offensive production is derived from Utah State connecting on 40.7% of its 3-point attempts, the highest rate in the country.
These high percentage shots from the perimeter are created by an offense scoring 62.7% of its baskets as the result of an assist (10th nationally).
Steven Ashworth & Taylor Funk are a versatile tandem that has left teams shaking their heads.
Combined per game:
7.7-15.1 (50.9%) 3PT.
Funk at 6’9 is super skilled & creates a lot of mismatches. Could be a guy for a Utah State team that has started 7-0 pic.twitter.com/t1NC3JRATE
— On The Clock (@OnThe_ClockBB) December 7, 2022
This outside shooting will be heavily utilized against a New Mexico team allowing its opponents to shoot 40.2% of their field goal attempts from 3-point range (276th nationally).
In addition to this outside shooting, Utah State will be able to find success on the interior against a New Mexico offense allowing its opponents to score 52.9% of their points from 2-point range on 51.2% shooting.
However successful Utah State has been on offense, the same cannot be said for its defensive play. The Aggies rank 127th in adjusted efficiency, allowing 71.1 points per game.
This poor defensive production results from a lack of pressure. The Aggies create turnovers on just 15.6% of their opponents’ possessions (335th nationally).
Overall, Utah State will need to outpace New Mexico on the offensive end, a strategy it has frequently implemented this season.
New Mexico vs. Utah State Betting Pick
This high-profile Mountain West matchup has all the ingredients to be an electrifying track meet.
Both New Mexico and Utah State rank inside the top 80 in average possession length, using less than 17 seconds per offensive possession.
This tempo will be combined with two offenses equipped to exploit the weaknesses of the opposing defense.
On the New Mexico side, Mashburn and House will be able to win their one-on-one matchups against a Utah State team that ranks 352nd in steal percentage.
For Utah State, this is a perfect matchup against a New Mexico defense giving up open looks from beyond the arc early and often.
I will gladly place a wager on the over in a matchup that will likely come down to which offense has the last ball.
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