The Charlotte 49ers should beat the Rice Owls tonight (8 ET) in Houston, right?
Rice is looking for its first Conference USA win and is in the midst of a eight-game losing streak. All signs point to a Niner victory–but we all know that games aren’t won on paper. Here’s three things you need to know about this evening’s contest in the Lone Star State:
–The Owls are 5-13 (0-5 C-USA) with their last win coming over a month ago–a 69-56 victory over Northwood (TX) of the NAIA. Keep this in mind, too: Northwood led 28-18 with three minutes left in the first half.
–Rice ranks at the bottom of several key stat departments. Their 64.2 points a game is last in the league; they’ve averaged just 58.8 points in their five C-USA games played thus far. They’re last in field goal percentage (40.2%), 12th in three-point percentage (32%), 13th in three-point defense (36.1%) and average just eight offensive rebounds a contest, last in the league.
–Leading the way for the Owls is Austin Ramljak and Sean Obi, averaging 12.4 and 11.8 points a game, respectively. In conference games only, Ramljak has averaged 12.6 an outing. Obi is just shy of averaging a double-double, the leading rebounder in the league with 9.6 per game (10.4 in C-USA play).
Bonus points: The Niners women’s team (9-9, 3-2) is hosting Rice at Halton Arena tonight at 7pm. The Owls are 10-8 (3-2) and are led by all-conference pick Jessica Kuster (averaging 19.9 and 14.0 a game, and probably the best player in the league not named Jerica Coley or Ebony Rowe).