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MEAC Update: Norfolk State and North Carolina A&T vying for top spot

Florida A&M and NC Central are right behind the conference leaders

NCAA Basketball: Coppin State at Houston Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

It’s our weekly update and two things have not changed since we last posted. Norfolk State is still on top of the MEAC and NC A&T is still in second place. Bonus fact, both teams are still undefeated in conference play.

Besides those two teams, there’s been some shuffling in the conference standings. Florida A&M is rising while NC Central is staying close to the top, despite some hard-fought losses. Coppin State is keeping its momentum while rival Morgan State can’t say the same. It’s halfway through the MEAC slate, and here’s where things stand.

Power Rankings

  1. Norfolk State (12-10, 7-0 MEAC)
  2. North Carolina A&T State (11-9, 6-0 MEAC)
  3. North Carolina Central (10-11, 5-2 MEAC)
  4. Florida A&M (8-14, 5-2 MEAC)
  5. Howard (10-12, 4-3 MEAC)
  6. Coppin State (4-19, 4-4 MEAC)
  7. Bethune-Cookman (8-13, 3-4 MEAC)
  8. Morgan State (8-13, 3-5 MEAC)
  9. Savannah State (5-15, 2-4 MEAC)
  10. South Carolina State (4-18, 2-4 MEAC)
  11. Maryland Eastern Shore (3-20, 1-7 MEAC)
  12. Delaware State (3-16, 0-7 MEAC)

What’s Going On In the MEAC?

For the update from the first set of MEAC games last week, click here

Now let’s talk about what happened on Monday night.

Bethune-Cookman’s rough season continues after a close loss to Coppin State. Kent Auslander ruined the Wildcats’ weekend by scoring a season-high 18 points. To make things worse, CSU scored 95 points; a high in the Juan Dixon era and the program’s most points scored since the 2016 MEAC tournament. After losses to Morgan State and now Coppin State, the Wildcats are seventh in the league after being projected to finish first. What’s hurting BCU is the lack of depth not in terms of talent, but just numbers. In most games, they have at least three consistent players coming off the bench. Other MEAC teams have more players to play. As in the Morgan State game, most of BCU’s team got in foul trouble and it made things tough. Endurance will matter for the Wildcats.

Meanwhile, for Coppin State, Juan Dixon is collecting some wins and beating some good teams while doing so.

Morgan State has done the same but close losses have been dragging the Bears down. A few turnovers and missed opportunities at the end of their contest against Florida A&M sank them to their fifth loss in MEAC play. Justin Ravenel’s 19 points and Kamron Reave’s 17 points were hard to stop for the Bears. The Rattlers will face NC Central next week on ESPN U.

The Eagles survived against Savannah State. They held a 14 point lead but things got a little close at the end. Despite the last second push by the Tigers, the Eagles are still undefeated on the road in MEAC play. Raasean Davis and Randy Miller Jr combined for 45 points in the win.

Finishing things out was Howard, as the Bison cruised to an easy win over UMES. Charles Williams scored 21 points in the win. The star was surprised by his mother this past Saturday who has been battling cancer. Truly a touching story as she’s missed most of his games at HU due to treatment. Make sure to check it out below.

Player of the Week: Charles Williams, Howard

With his mother in attendance on Saturday, the Howard star scored 29 points against Delaware State. He continued his hot streak with a 21-point performance vs UMES on Monday night as well. RJ Cole is the team’s scoring leader but Williams has been making his impact all season. He ranks second in the MEAC in scoring and has scored in double figures each game this season except one. That’s just good basketball right there. Williams will be looking to continue his dominance as Norfolk State comes to town on Saturday.

Games to Watch

Saturday, Feb. 2

Morgan State at Coppin State, 4 p.m. (streamed live on FloSports)

North Carolina Central at Bethune-Cookman 4 p.m.

Norfolk State at Howard 4 p.m.

Savannah State at Delaware State, 4 p.m.

South Carolina State at Maryland Eastern Shore 4 p.m.

North Carolina A&T State at Florida A&M, 6 p.m.

Monday, Feb. 4

North Carolina Central at Florida A&M, 7 p.m. (live on ESPNU)

North Carolina A&T State at Bethune-Cookman, 7:30 p.m.

Savannah State at Maryland Eastern Shore, 7:30 p.m.

South Carolina State at Delaware State, 7:30 p.m.