BKB Pregame Intel: IPFW Mastodons

In this increasingly politically correct world, we're seeing all kinds of new animal mascots, but this Saturday at noon, the NU Wildcats face off against the IPFW Mastodons. Now normally, Wildcats steer clear of such large objects, but these Mastodons appear have the ability to play basketball, and Northwestern University is taking them on. Both teams are coming off a win, so this could be interesting. Its Cats vs Elephants - here's some info you won't read in the Chicago papers...

Northwestern is the fourth Big 10 Team on the Mastodon's schedule this year.
and IPFW is 0-3, having already lost to Michigan State [84-73], Purdue [79-69], and Penn State [74-59].

The Coach
Their coach, former Indiana assistant [and player] Dane Fife, is in his first year as a head coach after 2 years as an assistant at Indiana. He is the youngest in Div I Basketball at 26. His lifetime Div I coaching record is the same as the 'Dons: 7-15.

The style of play appears to be a 3 forward offense rather than the standard 2-2-1, with one of those forwards stepping out to take a lot of treys. You have to expect similarities with Indiana's 3 guard offense, and both his forwards are 6-6, a little shorter than most.

This year his team is playing OK. They average 64 points a game, not bad, but only hold opponents to 69.9 ppg - not that good, but its improving. As a team they average just under 42% shooting, but one of their starters hits 48.8%, and another over 44%.

Last Wednesday, their defense stopped their opponent from making any 3 pointers. Yup, South Dakota State was 0-10 from outside the arc, but you can't be sure if it was good D or bad O. We'll find out Saturday.

One big problem for the 'Dons [short for Mastodon] is not playing at home, but that translates to problems for their opponents on the road. The 'Don's have 7 wins, 4 on the road. They haven't played a true home game since early January...
The Team
Up front is a Chicago guy - Soph DeWitt Scott, one of the 'Don's 6-6 forwards, who is averaging 13.5 points and 3.8 rebounds per game. He's also their bomber - 115 attempts outside the arc, and he hits over 45% of those shots. Don't foul him either, he's over 84% from the line.

Scott originally signed with University of Maryland - Eastern Shore, but transfered back to IPFW this year. Its his first full year of play in Div I.

He's joined up front by Junior Justin Hawkins, who averages 7.5 ppg, with 4.2 rebounds. He's a little behind Scott in making shots, only 41% from the field, but he's way ahead on blocked shots. He's right behind Center Tyler Best, the team leader off the boards.

Both Forwards, Scott and Justin Hawkins tend to play all or most of a game. Last time out they played all 40 minutes, they average over 32 minutes a game.

The newcomer who's starting to play well at guard is D.J. Posley - last time out  he came off the bench to score 12, along with 5 assists and 2 steals.

Its easy to overlook Junior Guard Quintin Carouthers and Brad Pompey. Carouthers is just the team's 2nd leading scorer with 11 ppg, and Pompey has started to heat up his game, he's adding another 8 1/2 points a game from his point position.

Then there's the Croatian connection with this team - IPFW has a pair of 6-9 Croatian sophomore forwards, #44 Armend Ademi and #50 Zeljko Egeric.

Ademi doesn't play much, but Egeric started their last game at center which was a win over SD State. He only scored 1 of 4 from the field, but had 9 rebounds, a block and an assist in 27 minutes. He averages 1.2 points per game. He's also got 8 assists, 4 blocks, and 8 steals.

Ademi, Egeric and starter Tyler Best are the 'Don's tallest players, all at 6-9. Best is listed as the probable starter in the middle, but don't rule out Egeric as a starter somewhere against NU, especially if Best is still hurt.

Tyler Best, the 'Don's top rebounder had started at Center up until the last game. He was injured on February 4th, in a game they lost to North Dakota. He tried to play through the injury, but didn't play at all in the 2nd half. He's listed as day to day.

They did lose one of their players to transfer earlier this month - 6-11 center Mohammed Esseghir left the team to pursue other options. He wasn't getting a lot of playing time anyway.
The Last Word:
Bill Carmody -
I hope that he can get something out of it and continue at least for the next month because if we're going to beat some of these good teams that we're playing, we have to get something from that position where he [Bernard Cote] and Vince Scott are - we have to get 10-12-15 points game in and game out.
Dane Fife -
"Do we want to win? Absolutely, but more importantly we're trying to build and trying to improve. Certainly, we want to get 6-0 in these last six games. Will that happen? I hope so, but if we just improve I'll be happy with that as well." -- Fortwayne.com

Coach Roy's Purple Reign 'Cat'egories:
The Big Gun #3 DeWitt Scott
13.5 ppg
Deadeye Dick #5 Quintin Carouthers*
hits 48.8%
The Bomber Scott
115 3 point attempts
Off the Boards #31 Tyler Best
4.8 rpg
Charity Stripe #11 Brad Pompey
29 of 34 FT-85%
Super Sub #12 Kyle Savely+
20 MIns, 8 Ppg
Pickpocket Pompey
26 Steals
Helping Hands Pompey
49 Assists [46 TO's]
Mr. Defense Carouthers
12 blocks, 51 def
rebounds, 24 steals
Notes: * All their starters shoot above 40% from the field.
+ D.J. Posley hit for 12 last time out, to go with 5 assists and 2 steals.

Expected Starters 


PPG+ RPG+
Guard
#5 Quintin Carouthers [6-4 Jr]*
#11 Brad Pompey [6-1 Jr.]
11.0
8.4
3.5
3.7
Forward
#3 DeWitt Scott [6-6 So.]*
#4 Justin Hawkins [6-6 Jr.]*
13.5
7.5
3.8
4.2
Center
#31 Tyler Best [6-9 Jr]+
10.0
4.8

Totals:

* Best, Scott, Hawkins and Carouthers had started all 22 games this season.
+ Best was injured last Saturday [2/4] and is day to day - he did not play on Wednesday.

Off the Bench
[Have Played in most games, or Averaging 9+ mins]:

Games -
Starts
Minutes PPG+ RPG+
#2 Jakari Johnson [G 6-4 Fr]
#10 D.J. Posley [G 6-3 Fr]
#12 Kyle Savely [G 6-0 Fr]
#44 Armend Ademi [F 6-9 So]
#50 Zeljko Egeric [F 6-9 So]*
12-0
19-0
22-7
8-0
19-1
6.4
11.1
20.2
7.0
10.7
2.9
2.9
8.0
.9
1.2
1.3
1.5
2.7
1.8
1.9
Totals:



Notes: * Egeric actually started the last game, a win over South Dakota State - Had 9 rebounds and 4 assists.
Challenges for the Wildcats:
  • Put down the newspapers, stop reading the internet - go out and play our game well
  • Forget about next Wednesday - we need this win too.
  • Dominate the Paint - Scott and Cote` should have breakout games.
  • Shut Down Dewitt Scott - He'll be playing to his family from Chicago and looking to make a statement against the "home town" Big 10 team. And watch out, he's a true bomber.
  • Defend Our House These guys have been playing on the road so long they think of their own gym as being on the road.
NU has to keep developing, Craig Moore could use this game to break out of his funk, so could Sterling Williams. With Evan Seacat shooting well and finally healthy, Carmody has an older guard rotation - one that can afford to sit someone who is not producing.

If Cote` and/or Scott can get hot inside and out, this could be a very satisfying win for the Cats, and a good tuneup for the final games of the Big 10 season.

Game Starts at Noon - Wildcat Time
Television: No TV

Radio:
Gametracker: NU Sports

You can also Chat in the New Purple Reign Free Chat room


Statistics from the Iowa official site
Links are to the original story source of the quotes
You can send your comments or "back door" information
to Coach Roy
or on AIM: CoachRoy74
Go Cats
Beat 'em All!
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Copyright 2006 by PurpleWildcats.com/Purple Reign
Quotes Copyright 2006 by original holder as noted

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