Two games are set for today, with Indiana participating in the Maui Invitational and Minnesota hosting a familiar foe.
Game of the Day
Indiana Hoosiers vs Providence Friars
- Time/TV: 2:30 PM ET (ESPN2)
The Hoosiers will travel to North Carolina to participate in the non-tropical Maui Invitational thanks to COVID-19. Their first game of the event will come against the Providence Friars, followed by either Texas or Davidson tomorrow. They’ll also have one more game on Wednesday against either North Carolina, UNLV, Stanford or Alabama.
In Indiana’s first game they rolled past Tennessee Tech 89-59, while Providence beat down Fairfield 97-56 behind Nate Watson’s 23 points and 10 rebounds. Indiana shut down Tennessee Tech defensively and look to do the same against a more talented Providence program. The Hoosiers have the inside presence to do so, with Trayce Jackson-Davis scoring 26 and bringing in 11 rebounds. Indiana could use a better performance from outside, shooting only 26.3% from three in their first game.
The Friars lost leading scorer Alpha Diallo but they have plenty of pieces on the roster, including former Indiana target David Duke. Duke scored 18 points and hit 3 of 4 threes in the season opener. Nate Watson had 23 points and 10 rebounds, anchoring the Friars inside. He should have a tough matchup today against Jackson-Davis.
Providence has weapons but it’s not known just how they’ll fare without Diallo against a more talented opponent. On the flipside, Indiana has talent but they still need to find some consistency with shooting the ball. If that happens they’ll win, if they have to rely exclusively on Jackson-Davis then it’s going to be a rough start in Asheville.
This is more or less a tossup, but I’m leaning towards Providence just because of Indiana’s shooting woes.
Loyola Marymount Eagles at Minnesota Golden Gophers
- Time/TV: 8:00 PM ET (BTN)
In the other game tonight the Gophers will host Loyola Marymount in what will be a familiar sight as Minnesota also hosted the Lions on Saturday. Due to local COVID-19 restrictions, the Gophers could only play one team in a three-day span at home, so Loyola Marymount is replacing North Dakota State. The first time these two teams played Minnesota won 88-73 behind Marcus Carr’s 28 points, 22 of which were scored in the first half. Minnesota shot 53.3% from three and forced 19 turnovers as they pulled away in the second half.
The Eagles shot 44.1% from the field on Saturday but only hit 35.3% from three and committed 19 turnovers. If they can clean things up and cut down on turnovers they could be in better position for a potential upset. Minnesota didn’t find much success inside, but Marcus Carr has been explosive so far this year and Both Gach added 17 points. The Gophers will look to rely on their backcourt to pick up a second win against LMU in three days.