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As we get ready to gear up for the two greatest days of college basketball each year, World Champion handicapper
Jeff Allen steps outside the box a bit on Wednesday with a look at one of the more obscure matchups out of this year’s CIT as the Army Cadets (19-13, 9-9) out of the Patriot League visit the New Jersey Tech Highlanders (17-14, 8-6) out of the Atlantic Sun Conference. Both teams have had their moments, Army with a non-conference win over giant killer Monmouth. NJIT in it’s brief time in Division I has taken the scalps of the likes of Michigan and St Johns. As of this writing, this game is yet to see significant betting action and has not moved from the send out of the Highlanders -2.5 with the total at 149 1/2.

The Black Knights were rolling having won six of their last seven before getting mugged by an improbable Holy Cross
team that went on to win four games in four nights to take down the Patriot League title. Army was second in conference in scoring at 77.3 per so the Cadets can put the ball in the hole. Tanner Plomb (19.8, 5.9) is a 6’7″ senior forward that  leads the team in scoring. Swingman Kyle Wilson (16.0)  is also a senior and a four year starter.

NJIT had an off and on year and was not playing well down the stretch. The Highlanders were on a nice four game run  before losing two of three to end the regular season and were then mauled at home by Stetson in the Atlantic Sun Tourney.  NJIT likes to get up and down and features four players in double figures led by 5’11” PG Damon Lynn (18.3, 3.3, 3.0).  Tim Coleman is a three-year starting junior (13.7, 7.7) who has already played 88 games since coming to Newark. This  was the Highlanders first year in a league and this team beat Florida Gulf Coast handily during the regular season. Very little separates these two other than possibly a home court. Both teams like to get up and down the floor and there should be plenty of possessions. Both teams are experienced and have depth for the level where they play. Both teams  are thrilled to be in any type of post-season. NJIT won the only previous meeting over the last three years. In the end, we’ll side with the homestanding Highlanders. NJIT played two teams out of the Patriot (Lafayette and Boston U) and beat both  easily by double-digits. The quality of play and the athlete is slightly better in the Atlantic Sun and will show as NJIT cruises to an 8-12 point win.

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