Basketball season is finally here. We got a little bit of knowledge from the exhibition games. We got a little bit more from the first day of the season. Naturally, we will blow what we learned from these games way out of proportion. Let’s start, shall we?
Muskingum @ Miami
While you suckers were at work, I was watching the first game of the season. The Fighting Muskies traveled to Oxford to battle the Miami Redhawks.
Miami started terrible, doing everything possible wrong. Big man bringing the ball down to the little guys so they can strip? Check. Guards driving into no man’s land and throwing the ball out of bounds? Check. Blowing defensive assignments? Check.
Eventually they settle down. They played fantastic interior defense, making it really hard on the Muskies to get the ball inside.
At the half, the Redhawks led 38-32, but that’s only because the Muskies got a late foul and were able to hit a three. At that point, I got the feeling MU was going to pull away.
Michael Weathers, the freshman guard, had 16 points and 4 rebounds at the half. Miami did pull away, and he ended with 21 points, 7 rebounds, and 3 assists. Not a bad debut.
Final score 84-57 Miami.
IU-Kokomo Cougars vs. Central Michigan Chippewas
CMU won 117-53. The stat line was crazy. Read the full recap here.
BGSU @ Oakland University
Bowling Green traveled to Rochester, Michigan, to take on the Oakland Golden Grizzles.
It didn’t go well.
It was close most of the first half, but BGSU could not get a shot to drop and they couldn’t rebound. They were down at the half 35-29.
11-36 shooting for the Falcons, and Oakland out rebounded them 28-20.
In the second half, Oakland took a big lead, going up 43-29 with 18 minutes to go. BGSU fought back, but ended up losing 78-70.
I am calling it right now: it isn’t BGSU’s year. They are guard heavy, and rely too much on the outside shot. They will lose to teams they shouldn’t, but will get hot in a game or two and pull out a huge win. Overall, it will be a long season.
Marygrove @ WMU
WMU won the game 90-74. There were struggles, at times, for the Broncos, but overall, they passed the eye test.
It’s a team that has a solid core of veterans and a boatload of new faces. As they work out the kinks, I think this team will be fighting for a MAC West title, and a possible NCAA bid.
EMU @ Pitt
This was an important game for the entire MAC, with regards to their national footprint. Pitt is a solid basketball program in the premier basketball conference. A win here would have been huge.
Pitt led most of the game, but EMU hung close, and showed a lot of heart closing the gap in the second half, eventually tying it up.
EMU’s leading scorer, Tim Bond, fouled out right before overtime. James Thompson IV fouled out less than a minute into overtime. Regardless, EMU battled and sent it to a second overtime. The depth of Pitt, and home court advantage, finally overcame, and Pitt won 93-90.
Ball State @ Saint Louis
Ball State jumped out to an early lead, and never looked back. Franko House led all scorers with 23, and Taylor Persons added another 21 for the Cardinals.
I think Ball State is a 20-win team, and nothing in this game showed me otherwise, though I would like to see them take the ball to the rack more, and rely less on jumpers.
Final score Ball State 85, Saint Louis 64.
Niagara @ Buffalo
Niagara played Buffalo tough. They were leading most of the game, but eventually Buffalo woke up and put them away. After watching their exhibition game, I am starting to worry a bit about the Bulls. Maybe they are playing down to their competition, but maybe they just kinda suck. We’ll see.
Final score UB 76, NIA 66
Indiana State @ NIU
In the last game of the evening, Indiana State played NIU really tough. They even took them to overtime.
This was another one of those “It’s the first game, what am I watching” type of thing. Statistically it was a pretty even game. The eye test told me the same thing. Are they? We have a full season to figure it out. Doing the preseason stuff, I was a believer in NIU. After watching this game, not so much.
Scott had a huge game for ISU, scoring 28. Maric Marin had a huge game for NIU, scoring 25 on 11-14 shooting.
Final score NIU 80, ISU 78.