UC Davis Preview and Game Thread -- 11/05/2019

Loyola University Chicago men's basketball, 2017-18 MVC Champions.

UC Davis Preview and Game Thread -- 11/05/2019

Postby JCT » Sun Nov 03, 2019 8:41 pm

Tuesday, November 5, 2019 7:00 p.m.
Gentile Arena, Chicago, Ill.

Loyola kicks off the 2019-20 campaign against UC Davis. The Aggies are coached by former Bradley Head Coach Jim Les, a Chicago-area native and Notre Dame Prep grad who's done quite a bit of recruiting in Illinois. These two teams faced each other six years ago, in a tournament at Portland State, where UCD won 64-61 in OT.

UC Davis is a great school, often ranked in the top 50 among all national universities in US News and World Report. They're known for their exceptional veterinary and agriculture programs, and the town's phenomenal embrace of bicycle transportation.

What's not so well known about UC Davis is the ability and potential of this year's men's basketball team. The Aggies said goodbye to five seniors from their 2018-19 squad, including their top two scorers and two part-time starters from the frontcourt. Coming off an 11-20 season overall and 7-9 in conference for a 6th place finish, UCD is not playing any exhibition games this season. The Big West Preseason Poll of coaches and media picked Davis for 8th in the nine-team conference. But like Illinois State in the MVC Preseason Poll, the Aggies somehow got a first place vote despite a predominantly negative overall prediction.

One of the primary reasons for UC Davis tossing aside their bikes and heading to frosty Chicago to open the season is to thank one current player and to court recruits for the future. UCD's top returning scorer is five-year senior Joe Mooney, a native of Wauconda and a Notre Dame College Prep grad. UC Davis also has an offer out to 6'5" forward Troy D'Amico of Notre Dame's class of 2021, as well as two Wisconsin recruits.

The Aggies are likely to start a five man roster of Mooney, 6'11" senior center Matt Neufeld, 6'2" senior guard Stefan Gonzalez, 5'11" freshman guard Ezra Manjon, and 6'7" juco transfer Kennedy Koehler. This is just totally speculation on my part from reviewing the past starting lineups and bios of the new players. Let's see how it turns out....

As for the Ramblers, the two-time defending MVC Regular Season Champions will return three players to their starting lineup. Junior center and 2019-20 MVC Preseason Player of the Year Cameron Krutwig will anchor the Loyola linuep, bolstered by junior guard Lucas Williamson and junior forward Aher Uguak. Two newcomers, 6'1" freshman point guard Marquise Kennedy and 6'6" junior transfer guard Tate Hall, are likely to fill the other two starting slots.

The Ramblers will be soft at the center and point guard spots with 6'9" Frank Agunanne and 6'1" Keith Clemons out with short term injuries. Sophomore shooting guard Cooper Kaifes is out for the season, crippling Loyola's three-point shooting attack. Someone (newcomer Tate Hall, defensive whiz Lucas Willamson, or rangy power forward Tom Welch) will have to take up the three point shooting demand, because the lack of an attack from outside has led to bleak offensive stretches in scrimmages and exhibitions.

Loyola game notes: https://loyolaramblers.com/news/2019/11 ... davis.aspx

UC Davis game notes: https://ucdavisaggies.com/news/2019/11/ ... icago.aspx

TV/Streaming video: ESPN + https://www.espn.com/watch?id=d65b4e40- ... c4ef099f0e

Internet audio feed: https://loyolaramblers.com/watch/?Live=2&type=Live

Live stats: http://stats.statbroadcast.com/broadcast/?id=279998

Vegas odds: Loyola by 14
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Re: UC Davis Preview and Game Thread -- 11/05/2019

Postby 25yearstreak » Mon Nov 04, 2019 8:01 am

You know the season is near when JCT does his great season and league review and then even closer when he does his GREAT pre game preview.
I really look forward to these insights as it make the games so much more enjoyable.
Thanks, JCT! It takes extra time to do this for all of us but I know everyone appreciates it.
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Re: UC Davis Preview and Game Thread -- 11/05/2019

Postby ToledoRambler » Mon Nov 04, 2019 8:23 am

It looks like UC-Davis is a good draw for our first game of the season. They seem like they have lost a lot of talent, have a lot of newcomers, and are not highly touted in their conference. I'm assuming that, losing five seniors, they are working through a lot of growing pains and chemistry problems as well.

I'm hoping that Krutwig gets going early and his experience leads us to an early lead so we can spend some time working on our ball movement and finding good lineup combinations. Obviously, I could see us slipping up and losing this one, but it looks like the kind of game that we need to get the season started and start building confidence in our newcomers.
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Re: UC Davis Preview and Game Thread -- 11/05/2019

Postby Blers42 » Mon Nov 04, 2019 9:11 am

JCT thanks for continuing to do these game previews, I always look forward to them.
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Re: UC Davis Preview and Game Thread -- 11/05/2019

Postby ahunte1 » Mon Nov 04, 2019 9:29 am

Ramblers 68
Bicyclists 59
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Re: UC Davis Preview and Game Thread -- 11/05/2019

Postby swellafelon » Mon Nov 04, 2019 9:49 am

Public transportation and bikes are for TREE-HUGGING COMMUNIST LOSERS.

This is what real men like me drive:

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Re: UC Davis Preview and Game Thread -- 11/05/2019

Postby goramblers2011 » Mon Nov 04, 2019 10:25 am

Need Krut and Lucas to really step up and take over this team, especially in the early going. Their leadership will make or break this season.
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Re: UC Davis Preview and Game Thread -- 11/05/2019

Postby UCD Aggie » Mon Nov 04, 2019 11:32 am

Just thought I'd drop in and give my 2 cents on the Aggies this year. Great game pre-view by the way!

As has been pointed out, the Aggies have a bunch of questions, and since we've had only a couple of closed scrimmages (no exhibition games) us fans are left to wait patiently for tomorrow night. As far as the starters go, you're right that Neufeld will start at the 5, and I can almost guarantee he'll score our first two points. They like to get him on the low block right away and he does have a decent hook shot. I can almost also guarantee that his first bucket will be followed by 2 fouls and a long stint on the bench. Mooney will start at the 2 spot. He's got good range, in general, and will probably lead our team in scoring most nights. After that, the starting lineup is anyone's guess. I'm going to assume that Damion Squire starts at point as Coach Les likes his experience. Manjon is an exciting freshman, but he'll probably get eased into the rotation. The third guard could be Gonzalez, but he might start off on the bench to give some maturity to the second team. If that's the case, Caleb Fuller could start at wing. He started some as a true freshman last year but lost a ton of confidence and rode the bench during conference play. He's got good size but we'll see if he remembers how to shoot. The 4 spot is a mystery. Koehler could well start as a JC transfer (stretch 4 who averaged a double double last year), or Les could go with Rogers Printup, a very undersized 4 but a real hustler and he does know the system well (by the way, Printup is deaf, so you may see players and coaches get right in his face). Printup does have range, but when he misses, he misses by a mile. We'll also see Harris, an athletic 4 that doesn't have range but can jump through the roof. Red shirt freshman BJ Shaw might also get some time (son of former NBA player/coach Brian Shaw). That's probably the extent of the rotation, though Les might get another freshman or two some time.

In general, Les is a very defensive minded coach. If you're not playing hard on defense, you will not be playing much. We usually play man, but we'll mix in a 1-3-1 every once in a while. We don't traditionally press, but with a young team, we might try and force some turnovers to get easy baskets. If the Ags keep the final score below 65, we have a decent shot at winning. But as someone pointed out, with so many new players, and existing players who are now being asked to play bigger roles, it will probably take some time for the defense to gel. I hope we can give you all a good competitive game and NO injuries for either side!

As for any Aggies fan in attendance, Mooney and Les are both from the area, so there will be some friends and family. I know the local Aggie alumni chapter is trying to get people there, and my daughter, an alum who is getting her PhD at UChicago is going (with her LU alumni boyfriend), so there will be a handful of Aggie faithful. And if you're interested, come on over to http://www.aggiesportstalk.com/ We are still in football mode, mostly, but there are a couple of us who talk bball and we are a friendly group.
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Re: UC Davis Preview and Game Thread -- 11/05/2019

Postby brot4britu » Mon Nov 04, 2019 4:53 pm

Dais Defense -Oxen ball- vs LUC run game or perhaps bicycle vs Swellas mash vehicle !!! WE open by say 73-57 !!

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Re: UC Davis Preview and Game Thread -- 11/05/2019

Postby JCT » Mon Nov 04, 2019 7:36 pm

OK, I'm skeptical about the 14 point line.... I would have put it around 8.

I haven't seen us play well yet (I saw the scrimmage at the open practice and the loss to D-II Indy). I don't think we have a plan for properly using the newcomers yet. I think some players (I won't name them) play impressively in private and nervously in public. I think we have big 3-point problems. I think we're vulnerable to physical teams (I don't think Davis is in that category, but watch out for Furman, Davidson, Ball State, and especially St. Joes-- and most of the MVC). And I think

But maybe I'm over-valuing Davis' potential because of Jim Les, their previous win against us, their two nice seasons back in 2016-17 (when they made the NCAA Tournament for the first time with 23 wins) and again in 2017-18 (22 wins overall). I will add they have a nice schedule this year-- they play Cal, Utah, New Mexico, San Francisco, Loyola Marymount, and us. That's a solid schedule. There's probably 3 Q1 opportunities on their schedule, and 0 or 1 (possibly Davidson) on ours.

We need to win, we need to gel as a team, and we need to stay healthy. If we do those three things, it works for me.
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