Pregame:  #16 Butler Bulldogs vs.  #22 Cincinnati Bearcats

#22 Cincinnati travels to Hinkle Fieldhouse to take on #16 Butler on Saturday December 10th at 4:30. The game will be televised on FS1. The game is also a part of the first ever “Indiana Basketball Day”.

Fresh off of their first loss to lowly Indiana State University, the Bulldogs look to regroup against a solid Cincinnati team who beat Iowa State last week.

The Bulldogs will look to remedy their loss by locking down on defense and spreading the offense away from relying on Kelan Martin: two things that they struggled to do against Indiana State on Wednesday night.

The Bulldogs allowed Indiana State’s Matt Van Scyoc and Brenton Scott 23 and 25 points respectively. Butler star Kelan Martin shot a poor 26% from the field on 15 shots. Many of which were questionable, including contested midrange jumpers and floaters. The Bulldogs were lead in scoring by Tyler Lewis and Andrew Chrabascz with 15 and 18 points respectively and shot a combined 10 for 19- a nice break from Martin’s excessive volume shooting. Indiana State also dominated with 12 offensive boards, four of which coming from Junior Forward Brandon Murphy off the bench.

Cincinnati is 7-1 on the season and has an impressive one point overtime-win over Iowa State. The win snapped Iowa State’s 37 home-game winning streak against nonconference opponents. In the victory, the Bearcats held the Cyclones to just 54 points, despite going into overtime. Cincy big men dominated the boards in the contest with three players reaching double digits in the rebound column.

Butler will look to contain big man Kyle Washington, who leads the Bearcats in scoring with 17.3 and rebounds with nine per game. Washington also is a force defensively with a strong build and nearly two blocks per game.

Cincy’s second highest scorer is three man Jacob Evans scores 15.6 points per game on 42% three point shooting. He also averages a couple of steals every game.

Butler’s big men will have to dominate the boards on Saturday if they want to win. The Bearcats picked apart Iowa State by owning every rebound. This will be a key for the Bulldogs victory.

Despite their loss to Indiana State on Wednesday. I still believe that the Dawgs take the W at home on Saturday. The Indiana State game was the first time all season that Butler gave up over 70 points to an opponent. Look for the Bulldog’s defense to once again steal the show against this Cincinnati team.

Butler is also playing at home, at the legendary Hinkle Fieldhouse. This is a clear boost to the Dawgs, seeing as they are still undefeated at home. Hinkle magic will definitely be in the air come Saturday afternoon. The hometown crowd should be a real pick-me-up to a rebounding Butler team after their first loss of the season.

Players to watch:

Butler-

Avery Woodson continues to be Butler’s biggest scoring threat from the outside. Look for him to get some serious looks after Martin’s previous poor offensive efforts.

Tyler Lewis continues to be a rock for this Butler team, shooting high percentage shots and facilitating at an extremely high level. He is currently within the top 5 in assists for the Big East. Watch for the Dawgs’ veteran guard to take control of the game when his number is called.

Cincinnati-

Kyle Washington will look to take control of the game from the post. He is a decent outside shooter as well, so look for him to help space the floor as well.

Gary Clark is also one of Cincy’s best rebounders. He will need to be shut down on the boards if Butler wants to remain undefeated at home.

 

Photo credits: @angeliallen12 on Twitter

Jackson Borman

I am from St. Louis, Missouri, and Butler University’s Class of 2020.
I played Basketball at Lindbergh High School, but because of my 5’10” wingspan and even lower shooting percentage, I’ve decided to stick to writing.

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