Checking in on the… Sun Belt

Posted by rtmsf on January 16th, 2009

Rick Henderson of The Owl’s Nest is the RTC correspondent for the Sun Belt Conference.

sbc-standings-011609

Toppers Move into Two-way Tie for First

We pegged University of Arkansas-Little Rock and Middle Tennessee as the teams to beat this season, and thus far, that is the case.  However, Middle Tennessee was defeated last night by the Hilltoppers in a nail biter 61-63.  Steffphon Pettigrew’s offensive rebound and subsequent put back with four seconds remaining sealed it for WKU.  Unbelievably, the Blue Raiders have not won at Diddle Arena since 1977.


Bi-Polar Pioneers

Denver, who was red hot as of late, has recently become ice cold; dropping four of their last five.  Most recently, Collin Dennis of North Texas scored 14 points and the Mean Green rallied from a 21-point deficit to beat Denver 69-62.  Just for the math challenged, that is a 28 point swing.  Yikes!

Aspirilla Starting to Shine


Florida International
rookie center Freddie Asprilla dominated the paint against two of the Sun Belt Conference’s top programs last week. First, he scored a career- and team-high 21 points when FIU snapped a six-game losing streak in an 81-79 upset victory over the Western Kentucky. But then Asprilla  picked up his 7th double-double in points and rebounds, in the last nine games, with 10 points and 12 rebounds on the road at Florida Atlantic. Asprilla has a near double-double average of 13.0 points and 8.5 boards each time out, and leads the SBC in rebounding.

Owls Continue What Could be a Record Slide

FAU can’t buy a win lately.  The Owls are on an 0-9 stretch going all the way back to their last win against Southeastern Louisiana on December 13th, 2008.  FAU has played a ridiculous 12 games on the road; while only having 6 at home.  If this keeps up, Mike Jarvis will enjoy his worst season as a Division I head basketball coach, since going 14-15 with St. John’s in 2000-2001.

Tidbits From Around the League

Middle Tennessee’s Brandon Davis scored a career-high 30 points and grabbed 10 rebounds to lead MTSU to a 90-57 rout of Louisiana-Monroe recently.

Kyndall Dykes scored 23 points to lead New Orleans in a 77-56 win over Loyola-New Orleans on Monday night.  The Privateers lead the whole way, and a 23-9 first half run put the game out of reach.  UNO has been a bit of a surprise story this year given the scoring losses they faced after last season with the departure of Bo McCalebb.

Junior guard Donald Boone led Arkansas State with a 25.5 points per game average in his last two starts, while shooting an impressive 62 percent (18-29) from the floor and 70 percent (7-10) from beyond the arc.

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