Tuesday, January 20, 2009

RedHawk Preview

Tomorrow is one of those points in a season. You can kind of just feel it.

On one hand, you have a Miami RedHawk team. One of the MAC's perennial power, and probably the best team in the conference to date. They've played a brutal pre-season schedule, and they play our kind of ball only, you know, better. Michael Bramos is probably the best NBA prospect in the MAC.

And on the other hand, you have the 1-2 Falcons, at home, and at risk of falling to 1-3 after having three MAC homes games in the early going. A team that has looked good at times, but has looked very weak in the last two games. This is a Falcon team that needs a win.

We'll see if the Falcons can turn those circumstances into a win. It is the kind of test that can define a team.

Miami is simply really tough. Their RPI is 36, and they have played the 18th toughest schedule to date, based on the numbers. Their losses this year are to UCLA, Pitt, Xavier, West Virginia, and OU, with only OU qualifying as a bad loss.

They are the most efficient defensive team in the MAC, and they are very solid against the FG, on the boards and fouling. They don't create a ton of turnovers. I have written before that I think this is the model Coach Orr has for our team.

On offense, they are stronger than us. They are the second best effective FG% team in the MAC, and have the second most efficient offense in the MAC, too.

Not to make this into a love fest, but they also have four road wins.

Michael Bramos is their top player, scoring over 17 points a game. Their second leading scorer, Kenny Hayes, however, is out for the season. Tyler Dierkers and Antonio Ballard are their top rebounders.

OK, I'm trying to make a point. If BG plays its game, I think they can win this one. For all their good losses, Miami is short on big wins, too. We're at home, and we need a win. If we "play better" as Coach Orr says, score some points, and play the game we both play BETTER than they play it, we can pick up a much needed win.

Much needed.

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