The Sam Houston State Bearkats are on the court for the first time since a beatdown of Central Arkansas last week. The Bearkats return fresh off a 97-57 win on February 13. Central Arkansas just had to lay down and take a beating in the second-half. We were on Sam Houston State in that one, and it was one of the most stress free halves of basketball.
There have been several of them this season, but that win on a -12 spread is certainly up there. There wasn’t much of a question that Sam Houston State was covering that game shortly after the second half got started. Sam Houston State is trying to prepare for a deep run in the Southland Tournament, and they looked the part in that contest.
Sam Houston State is going to have some company in the Southland. This conference is a four-team race between Abilene Christian, Sam Houston State, Stephen F. Austin, and Nicholls State. Nicholls State is fourth with a record of 10-2 in the conference, while SFA is at 9-1, and Abilene Christian and Sam Houston State tied at 10-1. Overall, Sam Houston State is 16-6 on the season.
This conference could go either way. As hot as Sam Houston State can get from the field, it’s hard to discount the Bearkats with their shooting ability. Along with their 97-57 win over Central Arkansas, the Bearkats also beat Nicholls State, 78-71, and Southeastern Louisiana, 79-61, to complete a three-game winning streak. Sam Houston State are winners in four of their last five outings.
Lamar ranks near the bottom of the Southland Conference. They check in at 11th with a record of 2-9 in the conference and 4-16 overall. Lamar is looking to end a five-game losing streak on Monday at home against Sam Houston State. At least the Cardinals have been competitive to an extent. In their last three outings, Lamar has lost by a score of 76-71, 80-75, and 77-68. Not the best, but maybe something to build on at home against Sam Houston State.
The Cardinals are going to have to hope that Sam Houston State cooled off after their red-hot performance versus Central Arkansas. They couldn’t miss a shot, and would run away in this one as well if that’s the same case tonight. Lamar’s best opportunity for a win here might be picking on a beatable Sam Houston State defense. Head below for our free Sam Houston State vs. Lamar pick on February 22, 2021.
Sam Houston State Bearkats vs. Lamar Cardinals NCAA Betting Odds:
Sam Houston State vs. Lamar Prediction:
Sam Houston State shot the lights out in the second-half against Central Arkansas in their most recent outing. After going into the break with a 36-34 lead, Sam Houston State went wild for 61 points to beat Central Arkansas by a score of 61-23 in the second-half for a 97-57 win. The Bearkats have showcased this quick twitch offense in the past this season.
It isn’t the first time that they’ve caught fire from the field. When they are feeling it, Sam Houston State can be tough to bump off their rhythm. They’ve netted an average of 81.1 points per game for 20th in the NCAA. Their ability to connect from deep has been impressive, with a success rate of 37% from three. Lamar has been awful in this regard offensively.
If Sam Houston State starts getting hot from deep and Lamar tries to keep fire away and keep up, this is where this game could easily get away from the Cardinals. Note that Lamar is hitting just 27.8% of their three-point attempts for 341st in the NCAA. Hurting Lamar’s chances even more is the fact that the Bearkats are the best in the Southland at defending against the three ball.
Opposing teams are shooting just 28.5% from downtown against Sam Houston State. They are tenth in the NCAA in that respect. If a team is going to beat Sam Houston State, it’s going to come down low, though Lamar doesn’t have the personnel to get that done. The Bearkats have allowed an average of 70.3 points per game for 191st in the NCAA.
Not the best, but they should be able to contain a Lamar team scoring just 64.4 points per game for 316th. The Cards don’t get much of a boost playing at home either, as they’ve netted 66.1 points a game. I don’t see Sam Houston State getting as hot as they did against Central Arkansas. That said, it’s hard to see Lamar keeping pace even if Sam Houston State isn’t perfect tonight. I think the Bearkats can clear Lamar by double digits to cover 8.5 points.