This is arguably Senderoff’s best team. Kent St.'s 3 losses are to Houston (top 5), Gonzaga (top 15), Charleston (currently in the top 25 rankings though 87th in Kenpom). Per Kenpom, Kent St. has a top 40 defense nationally, including 8th best at forcing turnovers and 30th best in defensive effective field goal percentage. Offensively, they’re just outside the top third in Division 1. They’re an average shooting team and don’t rebound the particularly well (at either end), but they take care of the ball as well as anyone. But maybe the biggest thing is that they play with no fear and want to come right at you. They went toe-to-toe with Houston in their gym which says enough about their toughness and willingness to scrap and fight.
Kent St. still has the 3-headed backcourt of Carry, Jacobs, and Santiago. The shooting numbers are down for Carry and Jacobs, but I don’t think that diminishes the scoring threats that they are. Carry can get on a heater, even while shooting low percentage shots and Jacobs is deadly in the mid-range. Santiago’s 3 point shooting numbers are up after a down last year. He has some mid-range ability as well. Miryne Thomas transferred from Ball St. and is a 6’8" player who’s shooting 36% from 3. He isn’t shy. Jalen Sullinger comes off the bench and is shooting 44% from 3. Their big guys have some bulk and shoot well around the basket. Cliron Hornbeak is a sophomore who is shooting 75% from 2 and rebounds at a healthy rate. VonCameron Davis is another wing that can score inside or outside.
Another crazy stat from the Houston game, the 3-headed monster shot 5/38 (Carry was 2/22) and they only lost by 5. They forced Houston into 23 turnovers.
This will be the ultimate test of Miami BB.
Isn’t Santiago in like his 9th year? Dude seemingly has been around forever.
Kent is definitely the second best team we’ve played behind IU.
Santiago is in his third season. Redshirt junior, so he only has another four or five seasons left to go.
It’s hard to know when a team is going to flip the switch and improve dramatically. For some reason, I was curious about how Pat Kelsey was doing at College of Charleston and saw last year they went 17-15 and this year they are 15-1. Amazing. If we can hang with Kent, it’s a huge step in the right direction. If we somehow won, well…that would likely be the moment we look back on where things started to radically improve. Either way, I’m excited to watch.
Edit: they are top 25. I should prolly have looked at espn rankings first. Doh. Time for more coffee.
Kent favored by between 11 and 11.5. Keeping it that close would actually be a very positive sign.
The O/U is right around 150.
Hope I’m wrong but I’m “guessing” 85-68…bad guys.
I have a feeling last week was a tough week of practice and the guys come out ready
Unless our players’ bodies have changed significantly, we are going to see a big difference in strength alone. Kent’s players are strong.
I’m not expecting a win by any stretch. Would just like to see it be closer than I expect. Keeping it within 10 would be amazing. And because this year, I could care less about the w/l record, I’d love to see the defense show improvement.
Worst case scenario- We get blown out on our home court again. 95-65
Best case scenario- We cover the spread and lose 84-75
Prove me wrong, Steele and Co.
I’ll be interested to watch Lairy. Will he try to score a bunch early, or will he make an effort to get others involved?
Lairy is going to have his hands full with Sincere Cary. And the problem for Steele is who Lairy can guard if we decide to place a bigger player on Sincere which we may need to do, as really the other players on Kent aren’t a good defensive matchup for Lairy either.
I would think about starting Lewis so you could match up this way: Safford on Carry, Lewis on Jacobs, Lairy on Santiago.
I think Safford is probably our best defender not playing the post. My issue with Lewis on defense is for whatever reason, he seems foul prone. I would not be surprised to see Safford on Sincere. Again, the issue is who can Lairy guard. Even to Santiago he gives up 3-4 inches and 25 pounds. Lairy in reality is 5’6". Even if Santiago’s height is exaggerated a couple inches, he still is much taller than Lairy. And heavier. But we have to have Lairy’s offense on the floor. Kent, like Marshall and Indiana, presents a lot of matchup problems. I hate to be a pessimist, but realistically, I see a score similar to the Marshall game. Mabrey has made some nice improvements in his defense which we need to continue to see. Looking ahead to next year’s roster, I think Ipsaro on Sincere or Santiago would be a fascinating matchup. Ipsaro has a very sturdy looking frame.
Lewis and Etzler not dressed.
Etzler the most snake-bitten MU player I can remember in a while.
Chuck Martin in the house.
Jim Christian is a Kent asst. Did not know that.