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UND (2-3) @ FIU (4-1) 11/24 10 AM


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UND finished the Paradise Classic on a tough note against UT Martin, falling 77-72 behind 4-26 shooting from 3.  UND looks to bounce back as they stay in Florida and head down to South Beach to take on Florida International.

About Florida International:

FIU has been a squad that, quite honestly, has been looking to make some major strides in the C-USA.  They made the NCAA tournament once in 1995.  They have produced two NBA players in Carlos Arroyo (famous for his Puerto Rico team knocking off Team USA in 2004) and Raja Bell.  This also was the starting point for Baby Pitino, who took the remains of the team left by Isaiah Thomas (yes, that Isaiah Thomas) and nearly got them back to the big dance in his one and only season (before he ran to the Barn).  After some mediocre results, it looked like that they were making some headway in the conference under head coach Jeremy Ballard, winning 20 and 19 games in his first two seasons.  Last year was more difficult, COVID seemed to rear its ugly head and the program took a step back with a 9-17 record.  With a retooled roster, FIU looked to bounce back and so far they have.  They have taken down UW-Green Bay and UNC Greensboro in close wins.  They beat Ball State, who took down Omaha earlier this year and nearly beat Georgia.  It certainly looks like they are back to the form of the first two years, the question is:  How much will they help their climb in the C-USA

About Coach Jeremy Ballard:  (4th season, 52-45 overall, 21-32 C-USA)

The former VCU assistance has certainly done well in 2 out of his first 3 years, taking FIU to the CIT in his first year.  Last year was rough and hopefully was just a fluke due to COVID.   His pressure style of defense and blocking will make like difficult for teams.   Important year to see if last year was a fluke.  Another 20 win season would certainly help matters as he continue to try and build a program that really hasn't had too much success.

Key Player:  Tevin Brewer (5'8 160 Junior)

Do not let the size fool you, this guy is lethal.  He has taken a massive jump this year, averaging 16.6 ppg.  Big season why?  He is red hot from 3 right now shooting 51.7% from downtown.  He also knows how to run the show, averaging just under 5 assists and around 2 turnovers a game (that will work for an assist:turnover ratio).  He also will grab 4-5 rebounds a game (which at 5-8, is pretty damn good).  He will beat you with his speed, so UND is going to have to slow him down.

Series History:

First time ever!

Summit Observations

1) SDSU look lethal, can anybody stop the Bunnies?

2) Coach Jeter... early favorite for COY?  WIU look like the 2nd best team right now?

3) UMKC has a weapons to go with their defense.... uh oh.

4) What is up with ORU and NDSU?

5) UST is going to give Summit teams fits with their style.  

Keys to the game

1) Who handles the early start better?

2) Get back to the good shooting

3) Can UND handle the pressure and size?

The Call:

FIU looks to be back to their old selves and is a far better team that FAU is.  UND is going to have to play their best game of the season to beat them and after a struggle to finish the FAU tournament, it would be nice to see them bounce back in some way shape or form.  It is an early start on a Wednesday, so whoever can handle that better could be the difference on who wins the game.   I expect UND to play better, but FIU would be too much

FIU 81-72

No video for what I see, and given the time I won't be able to give any live updates.  Sorry peeps, work calls. 

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Ran out of gas. 4th game in 6 days appears to have shown up against a quality team.
Perspective on the team and what they can do this year is quite a bit different than it was 9 days ago.
Still a long way to go and the pieces need to click, but they have the chance to make some noise this year.

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