Game Day 11/28: UAlbany @ Xavier

The bottom line form the enemy, Dana and Victory:

We’ve played a lot of very tough games against unheralded opponents at home – beating Western Michigan by 3, IPFW in overtime, Wofford in three overtimes, etc. The students probably won’t be around. I don’t foresee a letdown from the Muskies. Of our next five games (including tonight’s game at Gonzaga), we’ll be underdogs in four of them. X will definitely need a win over the Great Danes. I’m guessing the line will be 10 or 11. I think XU wins but doesn’t cover.

With a view from the student section we have “Yo Damien,” a moniker perhaps taken from Rocky?

As deflating of win as Colgate was, I still like our chances against the Musketeers. Timing could be everything for the Danes in their second to last out of conference game as they travel to Cincinnati to face off against A10 power Xavier. If you’re a Dane fan it’s hard not to think, or at least hope, this has all the makings of a trap game for the Musketeers.

The Danes come into the game with a bit of momentum after avoiding a hiccup against Colgate last week, the win was their third in a row and sixth in their last seven. Xavier, however, comes into the game lacking consistency and looking for some kind of momentum. Even a veteran team like Xavier can’t forget they face a tough Florida team just 3 days after the Danes. Albany should expect a tough crowd despite classes being out of session. As Xavier beat Wofford in triple OT in front of 9,500 plus over Thanksgiving weekend and defeated Georgia Tech by eight in front of more than 10,000 a week before Christmas.

Given the limited access to the game and proximity to the holidays, it’s expected that not much of the Daneger Zone will be tuned in to the game, but a win of this magnitude would pay huge dividends towards the revival of our own attendance heading into conference play. Once again this young Albany team faces a “gut check” on the road, but does so with little to lose and so much to gain. Although the Danes are not expected to win, there’s a bit of reason to think “why not?” given their improved play in the month of December.

And finally, my MidRange take:

I was starting to see things Damien’s way… before the Xavier-Gonzaga game. Xavier’s big men were embarrassed on the road (especially 7-footer Kenny Frease, who had zero points and zero boards and he averages almost a double double) so I expect the Xavier bigs and slashing guards to savagely attack out interior defense in a way no team this year has. UAlbany’s best hope is to pack in the zone and turn it into a jump shooting contest. I think the upset would take a career night Mike Black, who is running the show against very talented guards, and some great shooting from the likes of Aronhalt, Devlin and maybe Allen. I don’t think the Good Samaritans can hang with Xavier this time and I think to keep it under ten would a solid showing.

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~ by TheMidRangeGame on December 28, 2010.

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