THE BRESLIN CENTER, EAST LANSING, MICHIGAN
Bowling Green is coming off a lackluster 6-10 MAC campaign last season. Despite returning 3 of 5 starters, including the team's top two scorers, the Falcons are off to just a 1-6 start this year. The only win came against Division II (I assume) Ohio Dominican. One of the six losses was a 19-point defeat to Michigan in Ann Arbor.
6'2" junior guard Dee Brown, who played his high school ball at Detroit Country Day, is tied for the team lead in scoring at 10.6 points/game. Brown made 42.7% of his 3-point attempts last season, so he can apparently shoot the rock some despite a 24.0% 3pt FG% this year. 6'7" junior forward Scott Thomas is also averaging 10.6 points per game. Thomas appears to be a poor man's Draymond Green; he leads the Falcons in both rebounds and assists.
Bowling Green's statistical profile isn't much too look at. KenPom has them at #288 nationally on offense and #197 on defense. The only four-factor component in which the Falcons rate as above average so far this season is defensive turnover percentage (22.9%), so they may test MSU's more-down-then-up-so-far ball-handling a bit. It appears Bowling Green uses some sort of zone configuration, as opponents take a full 40% of their shots from 3-point range. MSU shooters will have ample opportunity to show off the 40%+ shooting they've displayed from beyond the arc to date.
Meanwhile, on offense the Falcon players rank second-to-last in the entire country in 3-point shooting percentage at just 21.1%. If this team starts knocking down long-distance shots with abandon, we can officially get very worried about MSU's perimeter defense.
KenPom predicts an 80-53 win for MSU in a fairly-staid 67 possessions. This is a game MSU should build a double-digit lead in early and slowly stretch things out as the game progresses.
Given the short turnaround, we'll make this post the game thread, too. I didn't realize until today this game was only available online. The big spenders among you can keep the spendthrifts updated on events as they warrant.