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Miami RedHawks vs Ball State Cardinals men's basketball preview: Ball State looks to continue strong start

Ball State looks to move to 3-1 in the MAC while Miami is looking for their first win on Saturday afternoon.

Joe Maiorana-USA TODAY Sports

The Ball State Cardinals (11-5) has had an up and down season thus far. In two of their first three games they lost close games to Bradley and Eastern Kentucky teams they probably shouldn't have lost to. They then went on a six game win streak with a very impressive win against Valparaiso (13-3). After a milestone win for the season they ended non-conference play with a split in their last four games against lowly foes.

The season gets even stranger once MAC play begins as they dominate on opening night vs Toledo. The Cardinals have been an interesting team to follow this season due to being such a young team and senior Ryan Weber. Weber and Bo Calhoun have been mainstays for the Cardinals driving a lot of their scoring. The Cardinals rank 25th in the nation in points per game allowed at 63.9 points per contest. This poses a problem for the Miami RedHawks as they deeply struggle to score as they rank 306th in the nation in scoring.

Miami has been on a 6-game losing streak however they haven't been blown out in the streak. The key game to remember was the one point loss at Dayton who at the time was on the verge of being ranked. I wrote a recap after the game saying that it would be a turning point for the RedHawks but the change hasn't happened yet. The tough part is while they have scored more points lately they have given up more points which doesn't bode well for the RedHawks.

Some players to watch are Eric Washington and LJ Livingston for the RedHawks who have been active on both ends this season. Washington has been a big contributor to the RedHawks scoring with 15 points and three rebounds and four assists. I'm predicting a 75-64 victory for Ball State and the Cardinals will grab their 3rd victory in the MAC this season.

The game will be on ESPN3 at 2:00 p.m. (EST) in Muncie, Indiana.