WVU Hosts NJIT in First Meeting Between the Two Programs
|Points Per Game||75.3||87.9|
|Field Goal %||48.7||43.7|
|Rebounds Per Game||34.7||41.4|
|Assists Per Game||14.8||17.1|
|Blocks Per Game||3.8||5.9|
|Steals Per Game||9.0||11.7|
Tip-off: 7:00 pm est
TV: AT&T Sportsnet
The West Virginia Mountaineers (6-1) take on the New Jersey Institute of Technology (4-2) Highlanders in the first meeting between the two programs.
Highlanders head coach Brain Kennedy is in his second year at the helm and was an assistant under Jim Engles, when NJIT shocked the college basketball world three years ago, going into Ann Arbor, Michigan and pulling off the upset of the #17 Wolverines, 72-20.
NJIT will come into Morgantown with a Princeton style offense, using four guards to spread the floor and using back door cuts to create offense. They can shoot the three as well, although on the season the percentage is not there (36%), they have hit the 50% mark or better twice this season.
Guard Diandre Wilson leads the Highlanders in scoring (11.5), with 56.8% from the field and 50% from three.
Forward Abdul Lewis is second on the team in scoring (11.0), creating his offense in the paint, mid-range jump shots and offensive rebounding.
Guards Anthony Tarke (10.5), Shyquan Gibbs (6.7) and Reilly Walsh (4.7) round out the starting five. Tark has 10 blocks on the year, Gibbs in 7-9 from three and Walsh is 60% from the field this year.
Guard Chris Jenkins can come off the bench and provide an offensive spark along with guard Zach Cooks.
West Virginia is coming off winning their 3rd early season tournament in four years, after winning the Advocare Invitational.
Tournament MVP Jevon Carter averaged 21.6 points, 4 assists, 4.3 steals and 4 rebounds per game and all-tournament team member Daxter Miles averaged 17.3 points, 4.3 assists, 2.7 steals and 5.3 rebounds.
The two veteran guards came into their own in the tournament and they are starting to figure out how to play with the newest Mountaineers and some of the guys that didn’t see much time on the floor last year.
The last two games, West Virginia was the undersized team, but going into this game they will have the advantage on size and athleticism.
This is game the Mountaineers must remain focused and cannot look ahead to the Virginia game on Tuesday December 5th.
West Virginia should not have a problem with the Highlanders, but if they do not play with energy and don’t show discipline on the defensive end, NJIT will light up the scoreboard.
With the veteran guards Carter and Miles, the focus should be there, and I have the Mountaineers rolling in this one 97-62.