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The Gold Sheet

The Gold Sheet

(661) Utah at (662) Indiana State

(661) Utah at (662) Indiana State
April 2, 2024 7PM EDT
Play Rating:
2% – Utah +3.5 (-110)

The Missouri Valley Conference was loaded with some really good teams this season, but we're concerned with Indiana State's ability to stop Utah point guard Deivon Smith in this matchup. One of the fastest players in college basketball, Smith is a one-man fast break with the ball in his hands. You always have to worry about how a senior-laden team handles a disappointing end to the regular season, but the Utes have embraced their role in the NIT. Coach Craig Smith's team was sub-.500 in Pac-12 play, but Utah has kept its season alive with home wins over UC-Irvine, Iowa and VCU. Deivon Smith has put the Utes on his back with back-to-back triple doubles against Iowa (19 points, ten rebounds and ten assists) and VCU (15 points, 11 rebounds and 12 assists). Nearly 50-percent of Indiana State's field goal attempts this season came from beyond the arc (sixth-most in the country). Missed three-pointers lead to long rebounds and potential fast-break opportunities, and few players in the country are better at capitalizing on those opportunities than Smith. The obvious concern here for the Utes is their struggles away from home. Utah went 1-9 straight-up on the road in conference play. The NIT semifinals are being played in Indianapolis, where the Sycamores will create a massive edge in the stands. Indiana State deserves a lot of credit for taking care of business against SMU, Minnesota and Cincinnati, but with all due respect to those squads, Smith is likely to present some challenges that those three teams were unable to do. The Hoosier State advantage is built into this line, but Utah has the pieces to pull the mild upset. 

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