Men’s Basketball Preview: Writer Shares “Three-Pointers” As Flyers Prepare To Host Broncos

Roberto De La Rosa-Finch
Circulation Manager

The Dayton Flyers are set to host the Western Michigan Broncos Wednesday, 7 p.m. at UD Arena.

The game can be watched thru Spectrum and live-streamed on ESPN+.

Dayton (5-5) is 1-5 since its 4-0 start, and Western Michigan (5-5) is looking to finish its three-game away stretch with a win.

Here are your three things — or three-pointers — for the game:

Goliath vs Goliath

In the days of flashy handles and step-back threes, Wednesday will likely feature offenses that will attempt to strive in the paint thru their big men.

Dayton senior center Josh Cunningham will go huge sneaker-to-huge sneaker with Western Michigan senior center Seth Dugan.

Both centers lead their team in scoring — Cunningham with 14.8 PPG and Dugan with 16.6 PPG — and each have dropped 15 or more points in five games this season; but the two differ in grabbing boards.

Dugan, a seven-footer, averages 9.9 RPG while Cunningham averages just under six.

Cunningham has not hit his stride this season due to injury and Dayton has faced some tough, physical opponents, which could explain the drop in his rebounding numbers from last year.

Consequently, six-foot-nine sophomore Obi Toppin and Dayton’s leading rebounder, junior guard Trey Landers (7.4 RPG), might need to help Cunningham down low.

Cunningham likely has the advantage in speed, but Dugan’s height may prove to be too problematic. Nonetheless, the big boys will likely get fed and fed a lot.

Shooters Shoot!

Sophomore guard Jordan Davis is shooting 25.6 percent from behind the arc. Last year, as a freshman, he led the team in three-point percentage with 39.4.

Davis is still averaging 9.2 PPG and a steal per game, but he can’t find his stroke from deep — which is a crucial part of his game.

If Davis can drain threes again, his offensive prowess can evolve, and he could even jump to putting up 15 PPG.

But if he can’t flip the switch Wednesday, look for Western Michigan to let him take shots and play the numbers.

Cough it up and they’ll run

Western Michigan commits roughly 16 turnovers per game, and, while it hasn’t happened as much as of late, Dayton makes a concerted effort to get out in transition after a team coughs up the ball.

With sophomore guard Jalen Crutcher’s lob-passing ability, and Landers and Toppin’s knack of jumping out the gym, the team feeds off of forcing turnovers with their length and racking up fastbreak points.

The Broncos will need to limit their turnovers if they want to keep the Flyers from soaring high above the rim.

Make sure to follow @FlyerNewsSports for live coverage of the game. Recaps will be posted on Twitter, so check your feed after the final buzzer for quotes, stats and takeaways from Dayton players and coaches.

Photo courtesy of Andrew Wong.

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