Saturday. 5:30. Breslin Center. Indana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne. ESPNU.
IPFW comes in at 4-4. But two of those wins are against non-Division 1 teams, including Michigan’s own Marygrove College. They do come in on a three-game winning streak: Marygrove, Southern Utah, and Missouri-Kansas City. IPFW opened the season by losing 83-55 to Wisconsin in Madison. MSU beat IPFW 80-43 last season in East Lansing.
Their tempo-free stat sheet (which reflects only Division 1 games) doesn’t give Mastodon fans a lot to get excited about, except this: They don’t give up very many offensive rebounds. They rank 20th in the nation, allowing their opponents to grab only 27.4% of offensive rebound opportunities.
IPFW has a balanced scoring attack, with five players averaging between 10 and 13 points. Freshman Guard Ben Botts appears to be their most dangerous shooter; he’s connected on 22 of 37 3-point attempts to date (59.5%).
The Sagarin Ratings like the Spartans by 25.5 in this one.
And here’s a nonbasketball-related tidbit in honor of Mrs. Spartan Blogger, who heavily factors mascot names into her annual NCAA Tournament bracket picks: The selection of the Mastodon mascot by IPFW is rooted in actual excavation work of a mastodon skeleton undertaken by IPFW faculty and students in 1968 near Angola, Indiana.