Which Falcon Team Shows Up Saturday?

This has not been a great 7 days for Bowling Green Men's athletics.<br><br> The <b>Basketball</b> team lost both the MAC opener last Saturday, and a key starter. <br> Then their <b>Football</b> team got pounded by Miami of Ohio in the MAC Title game.<br> So Saturday at Noon, the <b>NU Wildcats</b> get to take on the 2-2 <b>Falcons</b> at their house where they just happen to be 2-1 against the Big 10...

You're BGSU and your Basketball team is 2-2 so you're upset, right?
Right! Former Indiana player and assistant Dan Dakich is really fired up, and for a guy with a reputation for being intense and passionate that sounds about right.  Its bad enough BGSU lost big to arch rival Miami in football last night, but the night before, the Falcons lost their  MAC Basketball opener to the 0-3 Buffalo Bulls.

Not to denigrate the Bulls, but the Falcons started off with a 5-0 lead, then the roof caved in. Turnovers, and fouls [4 Falcons fouled out] did them in. The leg injury to their #2 scorer, forward John Reimold [who is out for a week] also cut down their attack.
I thought the only guy that has played at a championship type level in practice has been John. - [Falcon Coach Dan Dakich - BGSU Photo left]
Another problem is spotty play from their guards.
We're not a very good basketball team right now," BGSU Coach Dan Dakich said. "We're not in a position at the guard spot where we handle the ball well." [BGNews]
Last week, they did get a decent game from #40 Frosh guard Austin Montgomery [right] - 20 points and 4 treys, but all and all, BGSU will miss Junior Forward #14 John Reimold's 15.5 points and 6.5 rebounds a game.

It also hurts the team depth in that 2 players are still playing football, and 6-8 Soph Forward  Germain Fitch is out until January following knee surgery. They still have 12 players with playing time.

One thing you do notice about the Falcons, they've started 8 different players, as their coach tries to find a lineup that works. Our Probable Starter list is based on what BGSU says in their official release, but don't be surprised to see them come out in a 2-1-2 set with Eyink up front, or either of the frosh guards starting in place of the upperclassmen. Nobody, not even their leading scorer Soph Forward Ronald Lewis [left] has started all 4 of their games!

And don't forget their Senior Center, Kevin Netter who is quietly lurking as the #3 scorer [11.5 ppg] and #2 rebounder [5 per game]

Putting them in categories:
  • The Big Gun - #12 Ronald Lewis the Soph forward is averaging 17.3 ppg, while grabbing 4 rebounds a game.
  • Deadeye Dick - #2 Jr. Forward Josh Almanson [Jr 6-8] is shooting .900 [9-10] from the floor and averaging 7.3 ppg. 
  • The Bomber [most 3 Point shots] - # 40 Austin Montgomery [Jr 6-4] is 5-14 from the arc, but #43 Corey Eyink is 6-13, and #12 Ron Lewis is 2-12, in fact 4 BGSU Players shoot 3s in double figures.
  • Off the Boards - #43, Junior forward Corey Eyink [left] is the big man here with31 rebounds in 4 games. [7.8 avg]
  • Charity Stripe - don't foul #40. Frosh guard Austin Montgomery is 12-12 from the line. Ron Lewis has the most attempts with 38 free throws.
  • Pickpocket - Lewis and Steven Wright lead the Falcons with 5 each.
  • Super Sub - #40 - Guard Austin Montgomery with 9.3 ppg averaging 23 minutes.

Probable Starters: [don't be surprised if this is wrong]

  • Forward: #2 Josh Almanson [Jr 6-8 7.3 ppg]
  • Center: #45 Kevin Netter [Sr 6-10 11.5 ppg/5 rb]
  • Guard: #32 Steven Wright [So 6-3 6.7 ppg]
  •    #12 Ronald Lewis [So 6-4 17.3 ppg]
  •    #5 Jabari Mattox [Sr 6-0 .5 ppg]
Off the Bench [Averaging more than 10 mins]:
  • Forwards: #43 Cory Eyink [Jr 6-8 5.5ppg/3 starts].
  • Center: #41 Matt Lefeld [Fr 6-112.5 ppg]
  • Guards: #40 Austin Montgomery [Fr 6-4 9.3 ppg], #33 Chris Hobson [Fr 6-2 5.3 ppg]
Challenges for the Wildcats
  • Contain the high scoring forwards - we haven't been able to really shut down any of the inside gunners lately. The Falcons leading scorer is a forward, and their most accurate shooter also plays up front. Something new for defense this week.
  • Kevin Netter [right] - I remember him from last year, he's a decent scoring center - averaging double figures and has a block in each game - He's another big man in the middle to deal with.
  • Keep the Bombers quiet - four different Falcons have attempted more than 10 3 pointers this year [4 games], in fact the team averages 16 outside shots a game. You can count on any of them to try to shoot from the arc. We've got to keep them far enough away to keep that average at .323 [21-65].
  • Get some rebounds- not easy against these guys, they're almost +6 in rebounds against opponents. NU's leading rebounder is Jitim Young, 6-1 Forward/Guard. This game will be a challenge for Vedran Vukusic and Davor Duvancic our big guys up front.
  • Take care of the ball - Last game was great, 10 turnovers - the Falcons are -3.5 on turnovers so far - they average over 18 per game. Just what T.J. Parker, et. al. love to hear.
  • Score off of turnovers - do the math - 18 TO's a game should be 36 points for the opposition. We need to make those layups Saturday.
  • Watch out for another high scoring guard - don't forget that the star of their last game was a freshman guard - Montgomery's 20 points was the only bright spot for the Falcons last Saturday.
  • Put the game away - if we manage to get up on them by any margin. Everyone has to score down the stretch.
  • Play well on the road - We're only the 4th Big 10 team to visit BGSU. The Falcons are 2-1 against the Big 10 at home,
Pretty long list, right? Right - I'm sure the Wildcats won't be taking this one lightly. These guys have a lot of reasons why they should beat us at home -- their record against Big 10 teams at home, revenge for last year, making a statement about the football loss Thursday, making a statement figuring that their football team may play us in 3 weeks, and remember that they're 2-2, and will want to improve that to a winning record.

Then there's their coach - Dan Dakich sounds riled up. He doesn't like to lose, home or away, and if he can get his Falcons to take care of the ball, this one could be very, very close.

We beat these guys
62-60 last year at Welsh-Ryan and need a win to also go above .500.
The game is at Noon Central - WGN will have the broadcast with Mr. Wildcat - Dave Eanet at the mic. I'll be in the chat room around 11:30 AM.

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