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2017 MAC Tournament First Round Preview: Miami RedHawks at Western Michigan Broncos

The Broncos are riding an 8 game winning streak

NCAA Basketball: Charleston Classic-Western Michigan vs Boise State Joshua S. Kelly-USA TODAY Sports

The Western Michigan Broncos have won 8 in a row. The Miami University RedHawks have lost 9 of their last 11. It’s the MAC, so anything can happen.

The winner takes on the Ball State Cardinals on Thursday in the second afternoon game.

Game Details

When: Monday, March 6th, 7:30 P.M.

Where: University Arena, Kalamazoo, Michigan

Watch: ESPN3 or via stream at WatchESPN

Line: Western Michigan -11

Scouting the RedHawks

The RedHawks are dead last in scoring in the conference, barely over 70 points per game. Part of the problem is turnovers. They tied with Ball State for the most per game in the conference.

They are solid on defense, giving up 74.8 points per game. Not a very tall or athletic team, they are also dead last in rebounding.

Scouting the Broncos

The Broncos are 9th in both scoring offense and defense. That stat is misleading, because the new and improved Broncos are a much better team.

Defensively they are rotating much better, and offensively they are doing a great job of getting open looks.

Players to Watch

Thomas Wilder, WMU: One of the best point guards in the country, he reminds me a lot of former Bowling Green great Antonio Daniels.

Reggie Jones, WMU: The freshman from Marion, Indiana is a future star. At 6’6 he is capable of scoring at the rim, but is also one of the better ball handlers on the team.

Michael Weathers, Miami: The freshman phenom is averaging 16.7 points, 4.1 rebounds, and 4.7 assists per game.

Logan McLane, Miami: The 6’9 forward is the RedHawks second leading scorer, and capable of scoring in bursts. He has a season high of 29, but has scored in double digits only once in the ‘Hawks last 5 games.

Keys to the Game

Miami has to protect the ball, and find some offense. On defense, they need to figure out how to contain Wilder, who is on a terror. He has scored over 20 8 times in MAC play.

The Broncos need to make sure they don’t fall into their bad habits from earlier in the year. Specifically make sure they rotate well on defense and take good shots on offense.


Western Michigan is on a roll, and Miami is not. Basketball is a game of momentum and the Broncos are at home. I don’t think the win at Akron means anything, though I have been wrong before. WMU should win going away, 80-65