Monday, November 16, 2015

Game Preview: at Dayton

Alabama travels to Dayton for their first road game of the season. The game will be televised on ESPN tomorrow at 12:00 PM as part of the College Basketball Tip Off Marathon event. It's a great opportunity early in the season for this Alabama team to make a statement against a top 40 program. Dayton has won 53 games the past two seasons while advancing to the NCAA Tournament. This game will be a challenge. Dayton is experienced, well-coached, and UD Arena is one of the tougher places that Alabama will visit this season.

Stats Comparison

Alabama                                                  Dayton

77.0                           PPG                       84.0
.509                           FG%                      .519                     
.235                           3PT%                    .364
.556                           FT%                      .595
38.0                           RPG                       52.0
12.0                           TOPG                    17.0

Three Players to Watch for Dayton:

1. Scoochie Smith - G - 6'2, 180 lbs - 8.0 ppg, 5.0 apg, 4.0 spg.
2. Kendall Pollard - F - 6'6, 235 lbs - 8.0 ppg, 10.0 apg
3. Ryan Mikesell - F - 6'7, 195 lbs - 21.0 ppg, 8.0 rpg, 4.0 apg

It's a small sample size for the Flyers, but Mikesell, a freshman, exploded for 21 points (5 of 7 from 3) in a 31 point victory in their season opener against Southeast Missouri State. Sophomore Darrell Davis also contributed 15 points and 8 boards. But it's Smith and Pollard, both veteran guards, who will be the heart and soul of this team. If the game is close late, it will be Pollard or Smith who will be called on to make plays. This Dayton team has won 53 games the last two seasons despite a lack of depth and size. While they will miss Dyshawn Pierre, their leading returning scorer and rebounder, as he serves a suspension, this is a deeper Dayton team than they've had in years. Throw in the edge in experience and a strong home court advantage, and Alabama will have its hands full tomorrow.

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