Saturday, November 19, 2011

UNCG (1-2) @ Middle Tennessee State (3-0)

When: Saturday, November 19 6 pm
Where: Murphy Center (11,802)
TV: None

MTSU Athletics
MTSU Forum (Scout)

Preseason Preview

Spartan Notes:
- On Thursday night, UNCG opened the home portion of their schedule with a 71-58 win over UNC Pembroke. The NCAA Division II school used their size to play a close first half before the Spartan methodically pulled away in the 2nd half. Trevis Simpson led the way for UNCG with 22 points, including a career high 4 three pointers. Kyle Randall also scored 12 points and handed out 5 assists.
- Today's game is part the Maui Invitational tournament's "mainland" bracket. The Spartans have already played 2 opening round games against Georgetown and Tennessee. The winner of today's game will play the winner of the contest between Belmont and Towson for the bracket championship. The losers of the 2 contests will square off in the consolation game that will also be played at MTSU's Murphy Center.
- All 13 of UNCG's scholarship players have seen game action this season. 12 of the 13 have played in all 3 regular season games.
- After this weekend's games, UNCG will take over a week off before returning to action in the Greensboro Coliseum against NC A&T.
- Simpson is averaging a team best 14.3 points and 4.0 rebounds. David Williams in leading the team in rebounds (5.7) and Kyle Randall leads in assists (1.7)
- After 3 games, UNCG is shooting 37.8% from the field, 31.4% from behind the arc and 55.1% from the free throw line.

Blue Raider Notes:
- Last time out, Iowa State transfer LaRon Dendy scored 16 points and pulled down 13 rebounds as Middle Tennessee State stunned UCLA at home 86-66. The Raiders shot an amazing 71.9% from the field that included going 10-11 from behind the arc.
- MTSU's game against UCLA was their only opening round game for this year's Maui Invitational.
- The Blue Raiders were selected to finish 2nd in the East Division of the Sun Belt Conference in preseason predictions.
- Dendy is leading MTSU is points (15.3) and rebounds (9.3). Bruce Massey leads the team in assists (3.7).
- For the season, the Raiders are shooting 53.7% from the field, 46.2% from behind the arc and 63.9% from the free throw line.

My Thoughts:
I think this weekend's games should give UNCG fans a much better feel for this season's team. The first two games were on the road at power conference teams and last night's game was against a DII school. Those are not good indicators for this team. This weekend's games will be against other mid major programs.

MTSU shoots the ball very well and judging from the stat line against UCLA, can get very hot from behind the arc. The Spartans need to carry over the defense they played in the second half on Thursday night. They will also need Trevis Simpson, Kyle Randall and Nick Paulos to continue shooting the ball as well as they did in the 2nd half also.

The Blue Raiders are ranked in the Mid-Major top 25. SO, UNCG will have to play very well on the road to come out with a victory.

Go Spartans !!!