North Texas vs. Saint Mary’s Odds
Saint Mary’s is on a mission to establish itself as the best mid-major early in the season. Now at 2-0 with wins over Oral Roberts and Vermont, the Gaels turn their attention to North Texas.
Those wins over Oral Roberts and Vermont seemed like no doubters almost the whole way; I was on the wrong side of both.
I can’t understate just how impressive the St. Mary’s defense has been through the first two games. Against two teams known for their firepower offensive, the Gaels seemed to have an answer at every turn.
The story will be similar when it comes to North Texas, another strong mid-major. However, there is one major difference between what Saint Mary’s saw in their first two games and what they’ll see from the Mean Green.
North Texas can match their defensive pressure, but will that be enough to get past these rolling Gaels?
North Texas played their first game against a Division II program in Southern Nazarene, so there wasn’t much to take away, other than the fact that they only won by six.
But I wouldn’t read much into that; Southern Nazarene is a strong D2 school, while I think it being North Texas’ first game of the season definitely played a factor.
What’s most important here is that Rubin Jones didn’t play for the Mean Green; he’s still recovering from off-season knee surgery. North Texas was also without Tylor Perry, their leading scorer from a season ago.
Grant McCasland said he got banged up in practice and and would be back soon, but make sure you keep an eye on this heading into the Gaels game.
While Perry and Jones are the Mean Green’s best scorers, others did step up in their absence and they avoided losing to a Division-II team, but I don’t think they’ll be able to handle the Gaels without the two.
I don’t expect Jones to be back for the St. Mary’s game, as he will likely miss most of the beginning of the season. But with all due respect, if Perry doesn’t start for the Mean Green, I don’t see them having a chance against the Gaels. Keep an eye out for updates on his status.
Max Abmas, one of the most dynamic scorers in college basketball; didn’t matter. The Catamounts with the addition of Dylan Penn; didn’t matter.
This Gaels defense is for real. And while it is among the best year in and year out, and it is still early, this could be one of the top 10 defensive teams in the country.
The St. Mary’s defense is their best quality, but their ability to slow the pace of a game down to a grinding halt complements that defense so well.
On the offensive end, they’re far from lacking, boasting a starting five with four players who averaged double digits in the first two games. The Gaels rarely make mistakes on offense, either, turning the ball over on just 9.8% of possessions.
Against the Mean Green they’ll have a serious advantage at the rim, as well, boasting the 75th best roster when it comes to average height.
North Texas vs. Saint Mary’s Betting Pick
If Tylor Perry doesn’t play, this could easily be another 20+ point win for the Gaels like they posted against Vermont. If he’s in the lineup, he gives North Texas a much better chance against Saint Mary’s, but I think the result remains the same.
No line is out yet, but assuming that Tylor Perry plays, I think St. Mary’s opens around a 7-point favorite, and I would back them as high as a 10-point favorite. Again, watch for news on Perry; if anything concrete is announced on him being out I’ll be on Saint Mary’s heavily.
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