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MAC Men’s Basketball Tournament Preview: Ohio Bobcats at Miami RedHawks

Another chapter in this storied rivalry

NCAA Basketball: Ohio at Georgia Tech Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

In the first round of the MAC Tournament, the 10th seeded Ohio Bobcats will head over to Oxford to take on the 7th seeded Miami RedHawks in a rematch of the last regular season game for both teams. In that contest, the Ohio Bobcats rallied late to take care of business. In their other game this season, the Bobcats won in overtime.


Game Details

  • Who: Ohio Bobcats and Miami RedHawks
  • What: Rivalry Game!
  • When: Monday, March 5th, 7 PM
  • Where: Millett Hall, Oxford, Ohio
  • Why: First Round of the MAC Tournament
  • How: As in how much am I fixin to bet? AKA the line, Miami minus 3
  • Watch: ESPN3
  • Stream: Via the WatchESPN app

Scouting the Bobcats

Ohio has struggled a bit with injuries. They are also breaking in a freshman guard, however the process is starting to come together, as the Bobcats have won 4 of their last 5.

On offense, the Bobcats like to work the ball around and open up outside shooters. Freshman Teyvion Kirk is raw but impressive. A long 6’3, he can take people off the dribble and should be a great one. He does have his moments where he struggles, but there are plenty of weapons on the team, including the streaky but successful Jordan Dartis.

As a team, they average 76 points a game and shoot 37.6% from beyond the arch, good for third and second in the conference, respectively.

On defense, well they kinda suck. A big reason why is because they struggle to rebound. A big reason for that is the loss of Jason Carter to injury.


Scouting the RedHawks

While far from great, I think the RedHawks are much better than most people expected this season. With the firing of their coach, and the departure of players they counted on as the future, they looked dead in the water. Sometimes an 8-10 conference record can be a little impressive.

While dead last in the conference in offense, they are second in defense.

The good news, if you are a Miami fan, is that the offense has a lot of pieces. Transfer Darrian Ringo has been a huge get, and is currently 6th in the country in assists per game. Freshman Nike Sibande is the only RedHawk in double figures in scoring, at 14.6 points per game. While I don’t believe he is always being used correctly, or enough, senior Logan McLane adds stability.


Players to Watch

A freshman and senior for each team!

Nike Sibande, Miami: Freshman gonna freshman. A talent, however he is streaky. Which streak he is on could easily decide a close game.

Logan McLane, Miami: The senior has struggled a bit to find his place on this retooled squad. He has the tools to work inside against Ohio, especially without Carter in the mix.

Teyvion Kirk, Ohio: Google what I just wrote about Sibande.

Jordan Dartis, Ohio: Sometimes, seniors are streaky, too! For example, he scored 21 in the win against Miami, and 3 in the loss to Buffalo.


Prediction

You have two squads that have shown promise, but have struggled to find their way this season. Both are loaded with streaky players. My obsession with patterns tells me that it’s nearly impossible for a team to win 3 in a season against a similarly matched opponent, however I believe the senior Dartis lights it up, and the Bobcats pull out a close one, 82-81.