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Ohio Bobcats vs. Eastern Michigan Eagles men's basketball preview: MAC teams look to halt struggles

Can the Eastern Michigan Eagles secure another conference win on their home floor?

Mark Dolejs-USA TODAY Sports

The Ohio Bobcats visit Ypsilanti on Tuesday to continue MAC play against the Eastern Michigan Eagles. Both Ohio (7-10, 2-4 MAC) and EMU (12-7, 1-5 MAC) have struggled while playing in their conference match-ups so far this season. A win for either team would be huge at this point and would hopefully boost momentum for the victors going forward.

Tuesday marks the third home game for EMU since the start of conference play. It was on their home floor that the Eagles finally defeated their first MAC opponent, the Northern Illinois Huskies.  Struggles continued, however. The Eagles are coming off of two consecutive losses on the road, one to Bowling Green and one to Central Michigan. Both were blowout losses, too. Returning to the Convocation Center should be good for the Eagles, especially since they are taking on another struggling MAC team.

Between Ohio and EMU, the Eagles by far looked like the better team coming into conference play. The Eagles enjoyed an 8-1 start to their season, including a win over the Michigan Wolverines. Their one loss at the time was suffered at the hands of a talented Dayton squad that is now ranked in the AP Top 25. The Eagles went on to finish 11-2 before MAC competition began; their only other loss was to a ranked Michigan State team.

As it turns out however, Ohio will be going into Tuesday's matchup with the better MAC record. The Bobcats are coming off of a 63-61 home win against Buffalo. Ohio's star forward, senior Maurice Ndour, provided an exciting finish to the game with a dunk at the buzzer. Ndour had a great game overall, too; he finished with a career-high 31 points leading all scorers. All season long, opposing teams have had a hard time trying to shut Ndour down. Can EMU?

Tip-off for Tuesday's game is at 7 p.m.