UALR Gameday: Trojans host ASU, need win to clinch outright title

Arkansas State
7 p.m. tonight
Jack Stephens Center
Vegas says: UALR by 4.5
Arkansas State really has nothing to play for today. Nothing except denying UALR an outright Sun Belt Conference West Division championship and possibly keeping the Trojans from a No. 2 seed in the Sun Belt Tournament.

That should be plenty to liven things up today as Arkansas State travels to UALR for a 7 p.m. game at the Jack Stephens Center in Little Rock.

Burn Notice
Arkansas State comes in with a losing record but the Red Wolves are 9-9 this season coming off a loss. And ASU lost at western Kentucky on Thursday night…. UALR doesn’t have a scholarship player from the state of Arkansas while Arkansas State has four Arkansans – Trey Finn, Rakeem Dickerson, Darion Griswold and Adam Sterrenberg – expected to play tonight. ... Both the UALR men and women need a victory tonight to clinch an outright West Division championship. the UALR-ASU women's game starts at 4 p.m.

BTH Keys to Victory
SHOT SELECTION: UALR shot a decent percentage from three-point range on Thursday against North Texas despite some horrible shot selection. Long, NBA-range three-point attempts with plenty of time on the shot clock won’t cut it tonight.
CLAMP DOWN: UALR clearly isn’t an offensive juggernaut and ASU hasn’t been successful when they don’t go on a scoring spree. The Red Wolves are 1-11 when scoring 59 or less points and 3-16 when scoring 69 or less.

OFF THE BENCH: UALR has gotten very little production from its bench of late. When Coach Steve Shields goes to the bench tonight, they’ve got to sustain the effort the starters have been giving.

FREE TIME: Arkansas State has been to the free throw line nearly 100 more times than their opponents in Sun Belt Conference play. That type of disparity will severely hurt UALR’s chances.

Vegas, baby
UALR is a 4.5-point favorite tonight in Las Vegas. The Trojans are 5-2 this season in games where they are Vegas-favored. That includes Thursday’s loss to North Texas.

· Jeff Sagarin (18-10): UALR 75, ASU 69
· CBS Sportsline (18-10):
· Omni Rankings (14-9): UALR 65, ASU 60
· The Sports Network (17-11):
· Real Time RPI (15-13): UALR 71, ASU 60
· Combination: UALR 70, ASU 63