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NIU

NIU men's basketball preview: Huskies at Central Michigan

Lacey James dribbles at the top of the key during a Nov.  15 home win over Coppin State
Lacey James dribbles at the top of the key during a Nov. 15 home win over Coppin State

Tip-off: Tuesday, 6 p.m. CT at Central Michigan's McGuirk Arena in Mount Pleasant, Michigan.

Records: NIU 8-6, 1-0 in Mid-American Conference; CMU 8-6, 1-0 in MAC.

All-time series: NIU owns the series advantage 56-52 over CMU. The two teams split their series last year, with the Huskies winning the most recent meeting 89-86 in Mount Pleasant.

Who to watch: CMU's Dallas Morgan is trying to regain the early success he had in the beginning of the season. Morgan, who enters averaging 13.6 points per game, scored 23 in a win over Miami Saturday. Before that, he had been held under 10 points in four of his last six games. NIU's Lacey James is coming off double-double performance of 18 points, 13 rebounds, which included 16 second-half points. James scored 16 points and grabbed 19 rebounds in last season's 89-86 win at CMU. His performance in the road win at Buffalo has him at 9.4 points per game and 8.0 rebounds per game.


The lowdown: The Huskies and Chippewas enter with identical records, and with both coming on the heels of MAC-opening wins. The Chippewas defeated Miami 93-82 Saturday. The Chippewas will find ways to score points and enter at 86.4 points per game, which as of Monday stood second in Division I men's basketball. The Huskies, meanwhile, will likely look for ways to slow the game down.

Key to the game: Huskies must limit second-chance points and get some of their own, as the Chippewas, largely due to their pace of play and tendency to shoot long 3-pointers that bounce far off the glass, collect 12.1 offensive rebounds per game. James' own 11 offensive rebounds were a critical part of NIU's win in Mount Pleasant last spring.

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