Rutgers (3-1) at UNC Greensboro (1-3)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Sunday, November 25, 2 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Greensboro Coliseum (10,862) -- Greensboro, North Carolina. Television: None. Home Record: Rutgers 2-1, UNCG 1-1. Away Record: Rutgers 0-1, UNCG 0-2. Neutral Record: Rutgers 0-0, UNCG 0-0. Conference Record: Rutgers 0-0, UNCG 0-0. Series Record: First-ever meeting.
GAME NOTES: Riding the momentum of a three-game winning streak the Rutgers Scarlet Knights will battle the UNC Greensboro Spartans in a non-conference tussle at Greensboro Coliseum.
After a disappointing opening to the season, the Scarlet Knights have kicked it into gear with wins in their last three games. That included a thrilling 81-79 triumph over Boston University last time out. The other wins came against Sacred Heart (88-62) and Princeton (58-52). This game is the first of a three-game road trip for Rutgers which continues against Ole Miss as part of the Big East/SEC challenge.
The losses have already begun to pile up for UNC Greensboro which enters this game with an overall mark of 1-3. The Spartans have lost each of their last two games including a 96-87 defeat to Virginia Tech that opened up the current four-game homestand.
When these teams tip off on Sunday afternoon it will be for the first time.
Rutgers never trailed against BU but got a real scare after leading by as many as 18 points in the game. The Terriers cut the Knights lead to 75-73 with 23 seconds remaining but Rutgers hit all six of its foul shots the rest of the way to earn the win. Rutgers shot 48.3 percent overall in the game but was outscored by a 36-12 margin on points from beyond the arc. Eli carter was the lead scorer with 20 points off the bench.
The Scarlet Knights boast a +7.7 scoring differential entering play, although the bulk of that comes from the 26-point victory over Sacred Heart. In the rest of their games the outcome has been decided with six or fewer points. Rutgers does rebound well, pulling down 41 per game, while owning a +12.5 edge overall. carter (16.2 ppg) is almost exclusively a scorer off the bench and doesn't contribute much in other areas. Myles Mach (12.5 ppg) is a similar specimen who scores but doesn't do much in terms of rebounding or distributing. Wally Judge (7.5 ppg, 9.0 rpg) and Dane Miller (6.0 ppg, 6.8 rpg) are not called on to score as much but power the team's rebounding efforts.
In its loss to Virginia Tech, UNCG kept up with the Hokies by putting up an incredible 75 shots in the contest, hitting on 32 of them (42.7 percent). however in the end deficits from 3-point range (42-33) and the free-throw line (34-12) were too much for the Spartans to overcome. Trevis Simpson (25 points) and Derrell Armstrong (23 points were spectacular in the losing effort.
As has become the trend, it wasn't the scoring that UNCG struggled with against Virginia Tech but the defending. On the year the Spartans are being lit up for 79.5 points per game which washes away any of the positives of the team's hefty 78.5 points per game scoring average. Simpson has been the major cog on the offensive end of the floor. He is scoring 22.0 points per game and shooting at a 43.7 percent clip. Simpson is also on the floor more than any other player as he averages an even 30.0 minutes per game. Armstrong (15.5 ppg, 4.8 rpg) is also capable of big offensive games, while Kayel Locke (11.0 ppg, 4.8 rpg) rounds out the players in double figures. Kelvin McNeil (5.5 ppg, 7.2 rpg) is the top rebounder.
Until it can find a way to slow down opposing teams, UNCG will continue to struggle to get in the win column. While Rutgers is no offensive super power the Scarlet Knights have more balance at both ends to come away with another win on the road.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Rutgers 76, UNC Greensboro 72
11/25 10:41:44 ET