Wednesday, November 16, 2011

USA Today Previews Big Red at Bulls

Get all the information you need about the Big Red's game tonight, Wednesday, November 16, 2011, at Buffalo (7 pm) with The Cornell Basketball Blog's Game Preview Center. Also, JOIN THE MESSAGE BOARD and discuss the game with your fellow fans. Below, the USA Today preview of tonight's game:

GAME NOTES: Cornell will travel to Buffalo this evening, for non-conference action in the Empire State.

Bill Courtney is in his second season at Cornell after a 11-19 finish in his first season. Courtney's squad evened its record at 1-1 with a 76-61 win over Binghamton after falling 79-58 to St. Bonaventure in its opener.

Reggie Witherspoon is now in his 13th season as the Bulls' head coach and ranks third all-time on the program's career wins list with 164. Witherspoon has been successful at Buffalo as he is the only coach to lead the Bulls to 20-plus win seasons, a feat he accomplished in three different seasons. Witherspoon's Bulls are off to another good start after taking down Saint Peter's 72-65 in the season opener.

Cornell holds a 27-14 advantage in the all-time series between the programs. Buffalo won the most recent match up in the 2010-2011 season as the Bulls left Ithica victorious after beating the Big Red 78-66.

Freshman Shonn Miller is leading the Big Red in scoring and rebounding through their first two games with 13 points and six rebounds per game. 2010-2011 Second Team All-Ivy League selection Chris Wroblewski is off to a good start averaging eight points and eight assists per contest. Cornell exploded for 48 second half points against Binghamton to run away with the victory. The Big Red's defense limited the Bearcats to 37 percent shooting from the field and 24 percent from beyond the arc while forcing 20 turnovers.

Buffalo is 1-0 after the victory over Saint Peter's. Four different players reached double figures in the opener for the Bulls. Last year's MAC Freshman of the Year Javon McCrea pushed Buffalo in the victory with 18 points and six rebounds. Zach Filzen, who scored a game-high 17 against Cornell in 2010-2011, hit three shots from beyond the arc as he had a total of 11 points and six rebounds. Mitchell Watt added 12 points and four blocks in the win. Jarod Oldham performed well in his first start at point guard for Buffalo. The sophomore finished with eight points, six assists, and only one turnover in 36 minutes of action.

Buffalo is an athletic and talented team that will give Cornell all it can handle. The Bulls will continue to ride McCrea until someone can find a way to stop him. McCrea should see that same success against Cornell. Filzen struggled making just 3-of-13 shots in the opener. This Buffalo team will be much harder to beat once he finds his stride (15.1 points per game in 2010-2011).


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