Marin Maric had a huge game in the Northern Illinois Huskies last outing, helping knock off Kent State in overtime. His 19 points and 11 rebounds were crucial in the win. This is a team that needs a star. It has a bunch of really good role players. On a different team, Maric would be filling the roll of secondary scorer, collect his rebounds and that would be great. If he, or another Huskie, can step up and provide a leading scorer the team can count on each game, it would make them a West contender.
On the other side, the Bowling Green Falcons had been progressing quite nicely until they got hammered on the road against Eastern Michigan. They were winners of 3 out of their last 4 prior to that. The Falcons are also looking for a go to guy. Demajeo Wiggins is going to fill that role, but he is probably a year away from being a super star. Freshman Dylan Frye looks promising, but he also needs more time against D1 competition.
Wes Alcegaire has had his moments, but has also disappeared in games. Zack Denny consistently scores in double digits, but isn’t a take the game over type of scorer. Or maybe he is. Maybe Alcegaire can get some consistency.
This should be a competitive game between two teams looking to take the next step. Bowling Green finished last season with a mini run in the MAC tournament, and then again at the Collegeinsider.com tournament. They were the 12 seed in the MAC, and ended up with 3 wins in postseason play. I think they are working to something similar this season, maybe with a middle seed in the tournament.
For Northern Illinois, gelling sooner rather than later could result in a MAC West title run. No team in that division has really separated themselves from the pack.
When: Saturday, January 13, 12 Noon
Where: Bowling Green
Stream: WatchESPN pending cable provider participation
Listen: WFRO Eagle 99 in Bowling Green, or via stream at niuhuskies.com
Line: NIU -1