Quinnipiac vs UMass Preview and Prediction
Quinnipiac vs UMass Preview
Quinnipiac men’s basketball (2-2) begins a three-game road trip on Wednesday evening, traveling to UMass (4-3) to square off with the Minutemen at 7:00 p.m. from the Mullins Center. The game will be televised regionally on NESN (New England Sports Network), as well as streamed live on ESPN+.
UMass is 3-1 all-time in the recently developed series with Quinnipiac. The series began in 2009 with a 62-58 win for the Minutemen at the Mullins Center. The four games have been tightly contested with the average margin of victory at three points including last year’s 68-62 win for the Bobcats in Hampden.
LAST TIME OUT
- Quinnipiac earned its second straight non-conference win on Sunday afternoon, topping Maine by the final score of 58-50 on Lender Court at the People’s United Center in Hamden.
- UMass lost 110-87 to No. 6 Nevada, the Minutemen kept pace with the Wolfpack through the first half, but could not get enough defensive stops in the second half. Luwane Pipkins scored 30 points in the loss as five Minutemen reached double-figures overall.
For the season, five Minutemen are now averaging double figures led by Pipkins’ 19.6 per night. A pair of Minutemen are now over 11 points a night in Carl Pierre (11.1) and Jonathan Laurent (11.1). Both Holloway (10.6) and Cobb (10.1) round out the top scorers. Holloway and Pipkins each lead the Minutemen in rebounding (6.1), while Pipkins also leads the team in assists (6.3).
In the early goings of the season, UMass has the best scoring average (83.4 pts) in the Atlantic 10 and ranks second in field goal percentage (48.1). Defensively, UMass ranks 12th (out of 14 teams) in the league giving up 74.9 points per night.
UMass has scored at least 80 points in all four of their victories this season and five games overall. If the Bobcats are going to want to pull the upset they will need to keep the Minutemen below that 80-point threshold.
Minutemen head coach Matt McCall is in his first season with the program after spending the previous two seasons at Chattanooga – where he went 48-18.
QUINNIPIAC’S WINNING TIES
The 2018-19 season marks the second year at the helm of the Bobcats’ program for Baker Dunleavy, a very successful former player and coach under Jay Wright at Villanova. The Dunleavy name probably sounds familiar as his dad, Mike, is currently the head coach of Tulane after a long NBA coaching career, including stops with the Milwaukee Bucks and Los Angeles Lakers. Mike and Baker are the only father-son combination currently serving as head coaches at the Division I level. Baker’s older brother, Mike Jr., had a 16-year NBA career (most recently with the Atlanta Hawks) after winning a national title in college with Duke in 2001. Mike Jr. was recently hired as a pro scout for the Golden State Warriors.
In his first season with the Bobcats, Dunleavy led the program to the MAAC semifinals for just the second time since Quinnipiac joined the conference in 2013-14. Quinnipiac went 12-21 in 2017-18 (7-11 MAAC), topping No. 10 Siena and No. 2 Canisius in the MAAC Tournament to advance to the Semifinal Round.
Senior Cameron Young leads the Bobcats in scoring with 16 points per game–he is also tied for the team lead in assists (1.8), steals (1.0) and is the best shooter beyond the arc (42 percent).
Junior Kevin Marfo only scores around five points per game, but he averages nearly double-digit rebounds (9.5) and is a force in the paint weighing in at 250-pounds while standing at 6’8. He can cause matchup problems for the Minutemen.
LINE: -13 UMass
UMass looked impressive against one of the best teams in the nation in No.6 Nevada. As long as they are focused, they should have no problem in winning this game. Their offensive firepower will be too much for Qunnipiac who only has one consistent scorer in Young. Look for UMass to jump out to an early lead without looking back.
UMass 85 Quinnipiac 68