The Buffalo Bulls are back in action today for a mid day match up with the Ohio Bobcats! The Bulls are coming off a very disappointing game on the road against the Miami(OH) Redhawks. Even with the loss, the Bulls magic number dropped down to 2 with a Toledo loss. The Rockets did win last night, so it will be crucial for Buffalo to get the job done with just 3 games left.
As for this game, the Bulls will need to work on their ball control. They seemed to struggle getting the ball up the court against Miami(OH), something that hopefully was a one game issue. When you play as fast as the Bulls do, you’ll sometimes get sloppy, but they will have to make sure that the issues don’t snowball on them. Dontay Caruthers, Wes Clark, and Davonta Jordan will need to be diligent with the ball and help to set the tempo of the game.
As for Ohio, they’re having a tough year, at just 5-10 during MAC play, and they have struggled with consistent play. They are currently on a 2 game winning streak, against Kent State and Miami(OH). They’re led by junior Jordan Dartis, who can be deadly from beyond the arc, shooting 42% this season. Buffalo will need to limit him, especially in the second half when teams seem to start shooting lights out against UB. If Buffalo contains Ohio from beyond the arc, their athleticism should push them to victory. Let’s take a look at a few other things to watch for today.
What to Watch For
Recently, Massinburg has been struggling with his scoring. Against BGSU, he seemed to find his stroke, which led to him attacking on the boards a lot more. Whether he needs to rebound hard and have that transfer to his scoring, or vice versa, the Bulls need a strong game out of their leader.
Jordan really does have a lot of talent as a slasher. Recently he’s also been struggling in traffic with scoring. When he attacks the rim, he just needs to trust himself more and attack the rim. When he does that, it sets the tempo for the three point shot as well as the aggressive pace the Bulls look to play. Look for him to try and shake his jitters today.
The Bulls seemed to be lacking any kind of confidence against Miami(OH). They need to right the ship in that department for these final three games before heading to Cleveland. Luckily, they should be playing in a very full alumni arena today, which normally seems to energize the team.
I’m not in panic mode yet with this team. I know I’ve seen a lot of people ready to write this team off, but they’re still most likely going to win the one seed, and will be a tough out in Cleveland. They’re built to win 3 in 3 days with their athleticism where they can hopefully out work teams that may tire as the tournament continues. As for today, if they get back to their game, I see no reason why Buffalo should drop this game. If they keep up as the aggressor, I think Tuesday’s game will be a distant memory. Enjoy the game today and as always, go Bulls!