Enjoy good guard play?
Tuesday night is for you, specifically if we’re talking about Dayton visiting St. Bonaventure in an early A-10 test for the front-running Flyers.
The Bonnies’ high-scoring backcourt duo of Jaylen Adams (23.5 PPG) and Matt Mobley (20.5 PPG) lead the most efficient offense in the league. Mobley, in his first year at St. Bonaventure after transferring from Central Connecticut, has surprised even his coach with how well he’s played right away.
"You never know when someone plays at a lower level. We knew when he played on the scout team last year that we had a good player," said [Mark] Schmidt, following Friday's 89-77 victory over the Minutemen at the Mullins Center. "Saying that, you just never know when the lights come on how a player is going to respond. Matt has a done a really good job of responding and being one of our go-to guys."
Adams and Mobley will contend with a Dayton defense that is 23rd in the country in KenPom defensive efficiency. They Flyers have already junked up one of the country’s best offenses, holding Saint Mary’s to just 0.98 points per possession in a 61-57 loss in November.
Dayton has good guards of its own, but the attention will be on one that might not play: preseason all-league first teamer Charles Cooke.
Dayton's Charles Cooke (back) will travel to St. Bonaventure and is a game-time decision for Tuesday's game, per a school spokesman.— Jon Rothstein (@JonRothstein) January 2, 2017
Cooke, who had been dealing with wrist issues, injured his back late in the Flyers’ victory over La Salle. If he’s out, it’ll put immense pressure on fellow seniors Scoochie Smith and Kyle Davis to contain Adams and Mobley. Junior guard Darrell Davis is also dealing with a hamstring injury that kept him out of the La Salle game.
Dayton’s frontcourt - once seen as a weakness - may prove pivotal in this game.
After missing the first six games of the year due to injury, Kendall Pollard had his best offensive game of the year against the Explorers (20 points, 7-10 FG). And in his absence the Flyers developed some depth with sophomore forwards Ryan Mikesell and Xeyrius Williams.
Central Michigan and Eastern Michigan will also feature high-scoring guards, including the nation’s leading scorer Marcus Keene (30.7 PPG), as the MAC opens league play. Buffalo (6-7) and Toledo (7-6) is also game to watch in a match up of teams that are probably better than their records suggest after two difficult non-con schedules.
Here’s all the information you need, all times are Eastern.
Buffalo vs. Toledo, American Sports Network/ESPN3, 6:00 p.m.
Northern Illinois vs. Miami (OH), ESPN3, 7:00 p.m.
Central Michigan vs. Eastern Michigan, ESPN3, 7:00 p.m.
Western Michigan vs. Ohio, ESPN3, 7:00 p.m.
Bowling Green vs. Akron, ESPN3, 7:00 p.m.
Ball State vs. Kent State, kentstatesports.com, 7:00 p.m.
St. Joe’s vs. Rhode Island, CBS Sports Network, 7:00 p.m.
Dayton vs. St. Bonaventure, American Sports Network, 8:00 p.m.
UNC Asheville vs. Liberty, ESPN College Extra, 7:00 p.m.
Middle Georgia State vs. Jacksonville, ESPN3, 7:00 p.m.