After a disappointing loss, the Wildcats come back home. They will try and start the Thanksgiving break off right Wednesday night by taking down the San Diego State Aztecs. The Aztecs have lost 4 of their starters from their elite team last year, including the 15th overall pick in the NBA Draft, Kawhi Leonard. They are coached by a respected mentor, Steve Fisher, who is responsible for coaching the FAB FIVE at Michigan. Standing with a record of 5-1, the Aztecs seem to be a tough opponent. Their only loss comes from the 12th ranked team in the country, Baylor. Following are a few key notes Miller is sure to address before his team hits the floor against the Aztecs:
FREE THROWS: After stating last week we didn’t have difficulty getting to the line, the cats only made it to the line 9 times, converting 5 of them in the loss to Mississippi State . Some of this probably had to do with the refs not calling the same calls they were calling for Mississippi State, but it also had to do with us not being aggressive. This brings me to my next point.
LIVE AND DIE BY THE THREE BALL: After shooting lights out against St. John’s, going all in from long distance, the cats struggled to shoot just as well agaisnt Mississippi State, only making 6 out of 20 shots from behind the arc. I love our shooters and think we are a really good shooting team, but if we aren’t making our threes, don’t keep taking them. We need to drive in the lane, try to get fouls and high percentage shots, build our confidence up and then work our way outside.
WILDCATS ON THE RISE: Freshman PG Josiah Turner showed flashes of brillance in NYC. Look for him to either start or play a major role in tomorrow’s game. Solomon Hill is playing consistently in all categories at 12 points and 8 rebounds per game. Jesse Perry is a beast having a double-double in 4 out of the wildcats first 5 games; he can be the wildcats X factor this year if he continues this streak.
DON”T GET CAUGHT UP: With the season just starting, there have been numerous rumors surrounding certain wildcats with different issues. Freshman Sidiki Johnson has been suspended from the team for violating team rules, Josiah Turner did not record a minute in a game for an unknown reason, and Kevin Parrom surrounded himself with the wrong crowd it seems. In order to be successful this year the wildcats cannot take risks nor get caught in the wrong places.
AZTECS TO WATCH: The only returning starter from last year’s team is Chase Tapley, a 6’2 Guard. He’s averaging 16.5 points, 4.8 rebounds, 2.5 assists, 3.5 steals per game. Look for this speedster to take control of his team and lead the way with his creativeness. 6’5 Guard Jamaal Franklin is the leading scorer on the Aztecs at 18 points a game to go along with 5 rebounds a game. He will be tough to handle in a lane with such a big frame and the athleticism to score in bunches.
PREDICTIONS: Wildcats have a bitter taste in their mouth from NYC, a home game is the perfect recipe to recuperate. Cats win 76-63.