North Texas Basketball Breakdown: UNT in Middle Tennessee

North Texas to Middle Tennessee

When: 17:00 Saturday

Where: Murphy Center, Murfreesboro, Tennessee

Entries: UNT 12-3, 3-1 Conference USA; Middle Tennessee 9-6, 2-2 Conference USA

Last game: UNT 70, Western Kentucky 66; UTSA 75, MTSU 72


Radio: Mean Green Learfield IMG College

Projected UNT starting lineup

PG: Kai Huntsberry, 6-3, Sr – Huntsberry scored nine points and provided three assists in UNT’s win over WKU. Senior continued to come out of a drought against the Hilltoppers and is averaging 11.5 points and 3.0 rebounds per game.

GRAM: Tylor Perry, 5-11, Sr – Perry reached the 20-point mark for the second consecutive game when he finished with 22 points in UNT’s win over WKU. Senior hit multiple 3-pointers in seven straight games and is averaging 17.9 points and 2.7 rebounds per game.

GRAM: Tyri Go, 6-5, senior. Eadie scored 3, which was his only points in UNT’s victory over the Hilltoppers. He has three rebounds against WKU and is averaging 3.2 points and 3.8 rebounds per game.

F: Aaron Scott, 6-7, So. – Scott tied his season high with 11 points in UNT’s win over WKU. The sophomore hit all three shots from three-point range and also made three assists. He averages 5.1 points and 5.5 rebounds per game.

F: Abu Usman, 6-10, Jr. Usman scored six points and grabbed six rebounds in UNT’s win over WKU. The junior was one of the Mean Greens’ top scoring players throughout the season, averaging 11.9 points and 6.4 rebounds per game.

Scouting in Middle Tennessee

Last season, MTSU won the US Conference East Division title and has been in the lead in this season’s title race until Thursday.

UTSA expected the Blue Raiders to fold but ran into trouble. MTSU lost 17 in the second half and came back late to equalize, only to see John Baggs III knock out 3 to win the game.

The Blue Raiders will be itching to get home and avoid a third defeat in the C-USA game. MTSU has two players with double-digit averages: senior forward DeAndre Dishman and junior defenseman Eli Lawrence. Dishman is up 12.0 points per game while Lawrence is up 11.8.

What do you need to know

It’s still early in the C-USA season, but the league race got a lot more interesting on Thursday, with UNT beating WKU and Florida Atlantic beating UAB.

Before the start of the season, the Blazers looked like the best team in the league. They may still be the best team, but now every team in the league has at least one championship loss except FAU.

The Owls beat UNT 3-0 in addition to UAB.

It’s too early to start looking too closely at the league standings. What we do know is that UNT can really help their cause by beating MTSU and completing their trip.

The Blue Raiders will definitely come out ready to play after they turn in the game at UTSA. It’s a terrible loss, no matter how you look at it.

UNT has been posting some of the best performance in basketball lately, mainly because it has managed to convert some of its minor threats. Scott was great against WKU and Ruby Jones is getting back into shape after knee surgery in the off-season.

The win over MTSU will be another big step forward for UNT, who will have a tough game ahead of them in the FAU. The Owls have inflicted the only defeat in the league on Ming Green to date.

Here’s a link to today’s preview of the UNT men’s and women’s games on Saturday.

BRETT VITO can be contacted at 940-566-6870 and on Twitter at @brettvito.

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