Indiana State (0-0) vs. Texas Pan American (0-0)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Friday, November 12th, 6:00 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Gentile Center (5,200) -- Chicago, Illinois. Television: None. Home Record: Indiana State 0-0, UTPA 0-0. Away Record: Indiana State 0-0, UTPA 0-0. Neutral Record: Indiana State 0-0, UTPA 0-0. Conference Record: Indiana State 0-0, UTPA 0-0. Series Record: First-ever meeting.
GAME NOTES: The Greg Lansing tenure at Indiana State will tip-off this evening when the Sycamores meet the Texas Pan American Broncs for the first-time ever when the two schools collide in the Nick Kladis Classic.
Lansing might be the new head coach for Indiana State, but he is no stranger to the program because he was the assistant for eight years. However, now he is the main man for a team that posted its first winning season since 2001 with a 17-15 mark. There is some talent to work with on the roster, and Lansing is hoping the team can continue to improve under his watchful eye.
The Broncs are hoping the new season begins better than last year, as the team dropped 17 of its first 19 games, finishing the campaign with 28 losses. While coach Ryan Marks has some talent on his roster, this is still a young squad, so expect more growing pains, beginning with tonight's contest.
Making the transition from assistant to coach could be easy in this case, considering coach Lansing knows his team very well. What he will benefit from is a solid backcourt, that has three solid players that will open the season fresh and ready to roll. Last year Jordan Printy started most of the games for ISU, but averaging just 6.2 ppg. However, he will likely run the show on the floor, and leave the scoring to Dwayne Lathan. Lathan, who came off the bench last season because of various injuries, averaged 12.7 ppg and will likely be the team's best scoring option throughout the season. The healthy return of Jake Kelly, who tallied 12.7 ppg before tearing his ACL and MCL, should also give this team a nice boost. Coach Lansing does not have that much depth in the frontcourt, so outside of Carl Richard (8.0 ppg, 5.4 rpg) there could be a few different players seeing various minutes until coach Lansing settles on something that works.
Last year the Broncs dropped 28 games, and while the team is still rather inexperienced, there are some veterans on this roster that will make it a point to improve. The backcourt for coach Marks is where most of the talent is, beginning with Perry Petty, who is a transfer from Santa Clara. Jared Maree should also help the cause for the Broncs this season, but look for freshmen such as Malik Jamal Hughes and Dwayne Gutridge to see immediate action. The Broncs could struggle in the paint this evening, and throughout the season, and that is because the team lacks big forwards. Freshman center Enique Mason is the tallest player on the roster at 6-9, but the best low post player could be 6-7 junior Calvin Walker, who plays a physical type of basketball that UTPA will need.
The Broncs lost 28 games a year ago, and while they might improve this season, do not expect them to be a threat to many opponents. This is the perfect matchup for coach Lansing in his first game as the head coach. His Sycamores should have no trouble opening the year with a victory.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Indiana State 69, Texas-Pan American 54
11/12 10:35:44 ET
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