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2018-19 MAC Men’s Basketball Game Previews: Dec. 15

We’ve got a strong slate of non-conference games this Saturday.

Rufus with the crowd vs Cleveland State 3/19/2014 (Michael Pronzato, Ohio Athletics) Michael Pronzato, Ohio Athletics

With six games on the docket this Saturday, the #MACsketball action is going to heat up as there are several match-ups throughout the day that will tell us a lot about these teams before we get into conference play. The Ohio Bobcats will get the roundball party started at 1 p.m. with a road meeting at Detroit Mercy. The Cats have jumped out to a 6-3 record with a convincing win over a talented Marshall squad while Jason Carter has been very impressive with 19.2 points per game and 7.3 rebounds per game. Detroit Mercy is 3-7 on the season but two of its wins came against MAC teams (Bowling Green, Eastern Michigan).

At 2 p.m., the Western Michigan Broncos hit the road to take on #5 Michigan. WMU is 5-4 on the season but two of those losses came against an established basketball power in Cincinnati and a talented Ole Miss team. Despite the record, Seth Dugan is having a strong season so far with 17.7 PPG and 10.1 RPG. Meanwhile, the Wolverines are 10-0 and have held teams to 55.2 PPG.

Also playing at 2 p.m. are the Akron Zips as they host Marshall in what should be a very good game. Akron is 7-3 on the year with two of their losses coming by one possession (72-69 vs. Clemson, 68-65 at IPFW). The duo of Daniel Utomi and Jimond Ivey are once again forces to be reckoned with as they have 28.4 PPG and 14 RPG between them. Marshall is 6-4 on the season with losses to Ohio and Toledo while Jon Elmore has averaged 21 PPG this season.

At 4 p.m., we will have the Kent State Golden Flashes be hosted by Louisville. KSU is 8-1 this season with the high point being a win at Vanderbilt and the low point being a seven-point loss at home against Liberty. Jaylin Walker has emerged as a prolific scorer in recent weeks as he has posted 24.5 PPG in the last four games, with 36 points coming against Detroit Mercy. Louisville, meanwhile, is 6-3 with a win over #9 Michigan State and Jordan Nwora averaging 17.8 PPG and 7.8 RPG.

The #14/15 Buffalo Bulls see the court at 7 p.m. as they host Southern Illinois. The Bulls are unblemished at 9-0 thanks to their overtime victory over West Virginia earlier in the year. The senior trio of C.J. Massinburg, Jeremy Harris, and Nick Perkins help power UB with 44.2 PPG and 20.6 RPG between them. SIU is 7-3 and, in an interesting quirk of scheduling, will play UB a second time this season after dropping the first match-up at home 62-53.

To round out the day, the Toledo Rockets will host Middle Tennessee at 7 p.m. UT is 9-1 with its only blemish being a ten-point loss at Wright State. The Rockets have five players averaging double-figures in scoring with Jaelan Sanford leading the way with 17.5 PPG. MTSU has lost seven of their last eight games but Antonio Green has registered 18.5 PPG this season.