Saturday’s games– not a lot of info early on. I’m giving you what I have.
CAA teams were 6-5 vs A-14 teams LY, an astonishing 11-0 vs spread. Towson State pulled away in last 10:00 to beat George Mason 75-54 LY; game was 30-28 at half. Tigers have 3 starters back (51 pts/game) back from LY but their 2nd-leading scorer bolted for Murray State. Towson is 75-55 the last four years after going 1-31 in Skerry’s 1st year. George Mason is 31-61 last three years; they’ve got only two upperclassmen, but are deeper, more talented than LY.
St Joe’s was 28-8 LY, won A-14 tourney and a game in NCAAs, but they’re going to miss their great forward, Deandre’ Bembry. Hawks lost 64.8% of their scoring, 56.8% of rebounding from LY’s team- they will be a drop off this year. Toledo was 2-8 LY in games decided by 6 or less points; they lost six of last seven games and finished 17-15. Rockets have 3 starters back this year. A-14 teams were 5-0 vs MAC squads LY, 4-1 against the spread.
Davidson has 4 starters back from 2013, is picked in top 4 of A-14. Wildcats are 115-50 the last five years- they’re headed to Puerto Rico after this, face Clemson in first round Thursday. Appalachian State is 30-60 last three years; they have 2 starters back from 9-22 team that also took trip to Europe last summer. ASU’s two best players are sophomores- they’ve got only one senior, are young and over-scheduled.
Road team won last four Kent State-Cleveland State games; Flashes won by 4-17 points in last two visits here. CSU was 9-22 LY after losing pair of graduate transfers to bigger schools- they brought in 3 JC kids this year, including a new PG, so that should help. Kent State has only 4 scholarship players back from LY; they welcome 5 transfers this year. MAC teams were 14-7 vs Horizon teams LY, 10-5 vs spread when favored.
Akron has 3 starters back from a 26-9 team that lost in MAC tourney final. Zips play two Pos normally and are favored to win MAC this year. Youngstown State is 37-59 last three years, after a couple winning seasons; Penguins have 4 starters back from LY’s 11-21 team and are mostly juniors/seniors- they need to defend better. MAC teams were 14-7 vs Horizon teams LY, 10-5 vs spread when favored.
Northern Arizona has 4 starters back from a 5-25 team that started 7 different freshmen at various times LY. Tennessee State went 20-11 LY after being 10-50 the two years before that; Tigers are relying on transfers to keep their talent level high-they beat Cal-Davis 78-64 last nite, killing Aggies on boards. OVC teams were 3-2 against Big Sky teams LY.
Cal-Davis has lot of good guards, might play two PG’s at same time; Aggies plan to play faster this year. Davis lost 78-64 to Tennessee State last nite, they were -15 on boards and put State on foul line 38 times. After going 39-57 last 3 years, Santa Clara has new coach in former NC State/ASU coach Herb Sendek; Broncos have all 5 starters back from an 11-20 team. WCC teams were 13-9 vs Big West LY, 7-6 vs spread when favored.
Cal-Santa Barbara outscored Omaha 8-1 over final 4:29, nipped Mavericks 60-59 LY in Omaha, after blowing a 14-point second half lead- teams combined to make 7-44 on arc. UCSB has 3 starters back from 19-14 team; they’ve got very good guards but are almost totally rebuilding inside. Omaha was 18-14 LY, their first winning D-I season; they’ve lost 4 of top 6 scorers from that team. Summit teams were 4-2 vs Big West teams LY, 2-1 vs spread as underdogs.
Northern Colorado has a new coach (former Boise State assistant), is on probation this year; they’re going to put in a fast-paced offense, which will be a problem when they play more talented teams. Butler beat Southern Utah of Big Sky by 36 LY; Bulldogs won 45 games last two years, but have six new players this year- they lost 49% of scoring, 36% of rebounding, 53% of assists from LY, but they’re still ranked in top 25 to start season.
Wofford lost by 9-24 LY to SEC teams Mizzou/Vandy; Terriers lost 3 starters from LY’s 15-17 team (they made NCAAs the 2 years before that)- they’re younger than usual this year. LSU begins life after Ben Simmons here; Tigers lost 3 starters from disappointing 19-14 team that lacked shooting and played like they hated each other. SEC teams were 4-1 vs SoCon teams LY, 3-2 vs spread (all as favorites).
Time to watch a ton of games and start learning. Enjoy the season!!!!
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