Two games into Mid-American Conference play, men’s basketball has yet to earn a conference win, but hopes to change that on the road against Bowling Green tonight.
The Falcons have also yet to crack the win column in the MAC and are ranked near the bottom of the conference in several statistical categories. With plenty of time left to rise in the rankings, the matchup between these still-developing teams will be entertaining basketball to watch.
“We are really looking forward to this one,” said head coach Keno Davis. “We are still early in the MAC schedule so it’s hard to measure yourself against other teams. We have lost two tightly-contested games, so our progress is coming along.”
Although CMU and BGSU have struggled in conference play thus far, bright spots remain on either team.
Bowling Green junior forward Richaun Holmes leads the MAC in blocked shots (48) and has scored in double figures in his last nine games.
Holmes is a 6-foot-8, 232-pound force to be reckoned with as CMU big man John Simons and the Chippewas (7-7, 0-2 in MAC) have been preparing all week for the physicality Holmes brings to tonight’s game.
“We have been practicing pump-fakes underneath the rim and things like that,” Simons said. “Toledo was pretty big, too. We are going to try to find ways to get shots regardless.”
Sophomore guard and leading scorer Chris Fowler said the Chippewas are keeping ball protection in the front of their minds as they prepare for Bowling Green.
“Sometimes balls get away from you,” he said. “But we have been working on cutting down on that type of thing. It’s a point of emphasis with coach and we are looking to correct it.”
CMU is 2-4 on the road this season, while Falcons are 4-4 at home.
The Chippewas are 3-7 in their last 10 meetings with Bowling Green. They beat the Falcons, 73-67, the last time the two teams met at McGuirk Arena last season. The last time CMU beat BGSU on the road was March 2012.
“You know when you come to play for this conference, that it is going to be tough to get MAC road wins,” Simons said. “We would love to get our first one down there, but we’ve got Eastern Michigan here on Saturday, so that first conference win will come.”