UALR Gameday: Trojans "really need" victory as South Alabama visits JSC

South Alabama

7 p.m. tonight
Jack Stephens Center
Vegas says: UALR by 2.5

We don’t like the term “must-win” game. As UALR enters tonight’s game with South Alabama it’s not a must-win game After all, UALR could lose tonight and run the table the rest of the way and still be perfectly fine.

However, tonight is a “really need to win badly” game. Or a “really would be helpful to win” game. UALR has lost two-straight Sun Belt Conference games and is in a three-way tie atop the West Division standings. Any home losses the rest of the season would be killers.

Tonight’s BTH Keys to Victory
SHOOT IT: UALR has been much better this season when it shoots at least 40 percent from the field. South Alabama shoots 45 percent in victories and 36 percent in losses. If UALR gets to 40 percent and keeps South Alabama to less than 40 percent, the Trojans chances for success go way up.

WILL OR WONT: It’s obvious UALR sophomore Will Neighbour is still hurting from a separated shoulder suffered late last month. But the Trojans don’t have a lot of other options down low. UALR needs some points and rebounds from Neighbour.

WHERE’S CHUCK?: UALR’s Chuck Guy has been inconsistent throughout his sophomore season. UALR doesn’t need Guy to score 20 points (though we’d take it) but they do need opponents to see him as a threat. And we want to see the positive energy that Guy can bring infect his teammates on the court.

REBOUND RUBIT: South Alabama’s Augustine Rubit is a beast. UALR’s got to fight him to a stalemate, especially when it comes to rebounding. If the Trojans allow Rubit to have a big double-double, it’s going to be tough to win.

Vegas, baby
Bad news. UALR is a 2.5-point favorite? Why? Because the Trojans are just 1-2 as the favorite this season

Gotta wonder who at CBS has gone anti-Trojan. They pick against UALR every game. Then again, CBS leads the BTH Predictions standings. The Sports Network also goes with USA, saying "Without an inside presence for UALR, South Alabama's Rubit should be able to bounce back and put in enough points to bring the Trojans down.":
  • CBS Sports line (14-6): South Alabama 69, UALR 66
  • Omni Rankings (10-5): UALR 63, South Alabama 58
  • Jeff Sagarin (13-7): UALR 72, South Alabama 63
  • The Sports Network (13-7): South Alabama 69, UALR 64
  • Real Time RPI (11-9): UALR 69, South Alabama 67
  • Combination: UALR 67, South Alabama 65