8:02 pm
December 20

Utah State @ #21 Houston

Who will WIN this matchup?

Utah State Aggies (9-2)

@ #21 Houston Cougars  (10-0)


Current odds:

Utah State Aggies: (+175)

Houston Cougars: (-210)


 The line for this game is Houston by 5 points.

• Houston coach Kelvin Sampson knows his undefeated Cougars will have to continue to work hard to keep its perfect streak going. The No. 20 Cougars will follow two close home wins with another tough test when Utah State visits Thursday. The Cougars rallied from a 15-point deficit to beat LSU and needed a late tiebreaking 3-pointer against Saint Louis to extend their home win streak to 23 games – the nation’s second-longest active streak.

• The Cougars will have to work hard against a Utah State team that excels at ending possessions and is ranked seventh nationally – through Tuesday’s games – with 31.9 defensive rebounds. The Aggies have won four of their past five games, losing at BYU – a team Houston beat 76-62 on the road almost four weeks ago.

• Junior guard Sam Merrill has scored in double figures in all 11 games and leads the Aggies with 20.2 points per game while senior wing Dwayne Brown Jr. averages 11 off the bench. Freshman Neemias Queta, a 6-11 center, leads the team with 8.5 rebounds and 2.5 blocks and has scored in double figures in four straight games to raise his average to 10.3 points. Senior forward Quinn Taylor chips in 8.5 points and 6.4 rebounds per contest for the Aggies, who are ranked fourth nationally with a plus-13.2 rebounding margin.

• Junior guard Armoni Brooks leads the Cougars with 15.8 points and 7.2 rebounds per game while senior guard Corey Davis Jr. averages 15.7 points and is ranked 10th nationally in free-throw shooting (93.5 percent). Senior point guard Galen Robinson Jr. was named co-American Athletic Conference player of the week on Monday and contributes 10.1 points along with 5.9 assists. The Cougars, who have battled foul trouble the past two games, are getting solid minutes off the bench from guards Nate Hinton (7.3 points) and DeJon Jarreau (6.0 points) along with forwards Fabian White Jr. (5.8 points) and Brison Gresham (3.9 points, 5.5 rebounds).

• The Cougars are off to their second-best start in program history behind the 1969-70 squad that went 28-0 during the regular season on the way to a Final Four appearance.

• Davis, who hit 103 3-pointers last season, went 8-of-38 from behind the arc in his previous five games before draining 3-of-5 against Saint Louis.

• The Aggies are shooting 49.3 percent from the floor with four starters and Brown connecting on better than 50 percent.

StreakSmarter Pick
#21 Houston Cougars