CUSA tourney primer: Charlotte vs Rice

by Mar 9, 2022Basketball

Photo credit: USATSI

CLT basketball

Rice vs CLT primer

6:30pm ET on ESPN+

odds per vegas

-2.5

Charlotte (17-13) will take on Rice (15-15) will meet for the 2nd time this season, the first meeting yielded a 67-64 CLT victory at Tudor Fieldhouse. Looking back at that first contest, CLT posted a season-high TO% of 27.3%, that’ll be worth monitoring at The Curtain. Charlotte’s last Conference USA conference tournament win actually came against the Rice Owls in 2016 at Legacy Arena in Alabama.

Prior to the trip down to Frisco Charlotte’s Jahmir Young was named All-Conference First Team CUSA (2nd time), and Aly Khalifa was named Freshman of the Year, which gave him a spot on the All-Freshman team as well (official release).

Team Comparison

Charlotte

Rice

Quick hitters

Charlotte and Rice are evenly matched on the offensive end of things, but Charlotte has a moderately better defense than Rice. Just looking over the data, CLT could easily be top 100 offense with a more aggressive offensive rebounding approach.

I’ll be keeping an eye on Rice’s outside shooting, Charlotte has struggled this year guarding the 3, 316th in the nation at 36.6%. Conversly, Rice is an outstanding 3pt shooting team at 37.2% on the season, which places them at 31st in the nation.

My prediction:
Charlotte 66
Rice 62

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