Tuesday night represents a critical point in the season for the Buffalo Bulls and the Miami RedHawks with their game in Millett Hall as both teams are in desperate need of a win. For the Bulls (9-10, 3-3 MAC), a win tonight could put them just two games back of the Akron Zips depending on what happens in Kalamazoo and it would give them some momentum with a little over a month of the regular season left. Meanwhile, Miami (8-11, 1-5 MAC) needs to stop the bleeding after dropping five straight games and find a way to salvage the season.
Despite its inconsistent play this season, Buffalo does have some players that are more than capable of having big nights with Blake Hamilton, C.J. Massinburg, and Nick Perkins each averaging 12+ points and 6+ rebounds per game in MAC play. The free throw shooting has let UB down at times with a 63.2% shooting percentage from the charity stripe in league games, while the defense hasn’t helped matters as it has allowed opponents to shoot 41.8% from the floor.
Miami hasn’t had the success it wanted so far this season, but it had some strong play from Michael Weathers and Logan McClane as they are tied for 10th in the MAC with 15.8 points per game in conference action while Weathers leads the league with 5.8 assists per game as a true freshman. The defense has let the RedHawks down for much of the MAC season as it is last in the MAC in opponent shooting percentage (50.2%), opponent three point percentage (43.5%), and defensive rebounds (19.3 per game).
All signs point to Buffalo controlling this game, but its struggles at the free throw line could give some life to a Miami team that has nothing to lose at this point in the season. Expect a spirited effort on the defensive end from the ‘Hawks after they got torched by the Central Michigan Chippewas for 20 treys and 101 points. It should be a great battle to the very end, and we’ll see if the veterans of the Bulls can put it all together for a tough win on the road.
When: Tuesday, January 24, 2017, 7 p.m.
Where: Millett Hall, Oxford, Ohio
Listen: WMOH 1450 (Hamilton, Ohio)
Line: Buffalo -4