Kent State Golden Flashes Vs. Fairfield Stags 3/19/13 Mark’s Free College Basketball Pick Against the Spread CIT Opener
The MAAC and MAC collide when the Fairfield Staggs and Kent State Golden Flashes open CIT play.
Fairfield has been a major player in the MAAC the past few years and looked to be in 2012-13, before tailing off the last several weeks and finishing tied for 6th with Manhattan at 9-9. The Stags have to control the pace and the scoreboard to survive with 62 points scored not giving their defense much to work with. Having said that, the defensive end of the floor allows only 61 points so this end of the floor is certainly doing their best to make life easy for the offense. However, scoring has been very difficult at times which has the team competing in the CIT as opposed to the Big Dance. Veteran Derek Needham has shouldered the scoring load at 14.4 points but is hitting at less than 40%, while Maurice Barrow is the only other player approaching DD with nine points.
Kent State was labeled as a challenger in the preseason and in the early part of the conference schedule. That label was removed and the Golden Flashes were than labeled a middle of the pack team. However, Kent State came on like gangbusters over the last month or so as winners in eight of nine before a 62-59 defeat at the hands of Akron in the conference semifinals ended their NCAA aspirations. Perfect example of too little, too late but the way this team ended the regular season, they were easily the 3rd best team in the MAC behind Akron and Ohio. We have seen the Golden Flashes D up during their hot streak but in my estimation it will be whether they score or not that determines their fate. If true, expect the ball to be in the hands of Chris Evans and his 16.6 points and eight rebounds says that's a good plan. Plan B is Randal Holt (14.6 ppg) but every one has been getting in to the act and that has to continue.
Fairfield is operating with little margin for error with their offense a cause for concern while Kent State is playing their best basketball. If they can get out to an early lead I think they will control the tempo and scoreboard...