The Basics6:30 P.M. PST. Pac-12 Network. Alaska Airlines ArenaIdeasLoyola of Maryland's mascot is the Greyhounds. Albany's mascot is the Great Danes. Man, there have been a lot of dogs in Seattle recently. Also, Albany's mascot is a dog (clearly) and their colors are purple in gold. Coincidence? I THINK NOT. The University of Albany wants to steal the University of Washington's identity. This game just became that much more important. There are simply too many story-lines tonight folks.
Breaking Down The University of Albany Great DanesAlbany finished 9-7 last year in a very mediocre America East conference and 19-15 overall. They are 1-1 this year, with a 3 point victory over Duquense at home and a 22 point loss to #4 Ohio State on the road. The Great Danes are averaging 64.5 points per game and are shooting 20.5 threes per game. It's always essential to look at how teams shoot from beyond the arc because South Dakota State happened last season. Albany is 13-41 from beyond the arc this year and uh, yeah, that's pretty average.6'0 senior guard Mike Black has lead the way for Albany this season with 17.5 points, 2.5 assists and 1.5 steals per game. Black and 5'10 senior guard Jacob Iati have combined to go 8-21 from three this season, which is much more interesting than the team shooting statistics as a whole. The Great Danes also start a 6'10 junior center, John Puk, who is averaging 9 points and 7.5 rebounds per game.It will be vital for the tall UW guards to exploit Albany's extremely small backcourt, as both of the starting guards for the Great Danes are eligible to compete in your local 6'0 and under league. After the Loyola game, I am very interested in seeing how the Dawgs handle Albany's small and quick guard play.PredictionAlbany will not be overwhelmed tonight, as they have already traveled to face a very tough Ohio State team. This does not change the fact that UW's strength is in their guard play. These Husky guards are fairly tall by guard standards. Albany's guards are very short by guard standards. This won't decide the game, but definitely look for Abdul Gaddy, C.J. Wilcox and Andrew Andrews to be aggressive off the dribble. Washington cruises 84-60.