The Byrd Cage

Belmont vs. Towson Preview

In Game Posts on November 17, 2011 at 5:05 pm

The “Mann”

Belmont has played two games in the Maui Invitational so far this year, but will start its “Regional” games on November  19th.


The Towson Tigers are in a similar position with the same record, 0-2.  Unlike Belmont, the Tigers (not Memphis) got squashed in their first two games, losing by nearly 50 points in its opener with Kansas, 100-54.  The second game was a bit closer with no. 17 ranked Michigan, but the Tigers let Michigan go on a 21-0 run from the start of the game, and ended up losing 64-47.

Let’s get a closer look at the Towson Tigers.

-Towson University is located 8 miles north of downtown Baltimore, Maryland

-Enrollment: 21,840

Towson will start its game against Belmont on Saturday trying to break a 21-game losing streak


Towson Tigers To Watch:







6-8′ Senior Forward, Robert Nwankwo- Missed last season, but was ranked top-10 nationally with blocked shots for the 09-10 season.  Scored team high 16 points against Michigan, with 10 rebounds.







6-5′ Freshman, Deon Jones– Scored 12 points against Michigan.  Delaware State Player of the Year.


Quick Breakdown

Belmont will have a chance to show its dominance on defense in this game, with both Hedgepeth and Saunders having a small height advantage to Towson’s Nwankwo.

I am also interested to see how Coach Byrd runs the “small forward” position, with the problems of  depth we seem to be dealing with between Baker’s shooting atrociousness and Noack’s lack of play experience.

The Bruins, of course, play one game at a time.  And as a fan of any sport, I tend to cringe when pundits overlook games because they are easy.  I feel like a coach in a way (which is a scary thought), always wanting my focus to be on the next game, no matter how poor the opponent may be playing.

But  I just can’t help but look at who we may be playing on Sunday.  MTSU is likely to beat University of North Carolina (Greensboro) on Saturday, and is hot off the heels of making UCLA look like USC Upstate.  Granted, UCLA lost to Loyola Marymount by 11 its first game and following that loss, star forward Reeves Nelson was suspended for “not looking at the coaches and not listening or something”, but a 20 point win against any UCLA team is impressive.

With offensive explosiveness from Ian Clark, Kerron Johnson, and J.J. Mann’s hot start, Belmont needs to show a shooting dominance against a young Towson team to build confidence going into Sunday against the most confident MTSU we have seen.

But we’ll worry about the Blue Raiders when we get there…




  1. Lets get on the board. I would love to see some three guard and two post sets, because it looks like we’re a little weaker this year from the 3 and strong down low. Just a thought.

    • I still don’t want to give up on the three. Ian and JJ should be the primary looks for them, but I don’t want to necessarily scrap that gameplan yet. Who is plugged in to start your ideal 3-2 set?

  2. Question: is it possible for Belmont to make the Dance without winning the A-Sun Tourney? I don’t think a 1-pt loss at Cameron Indoor will hold any weight with the Selection Committee come the end of February.

    • This link below shows how hard it is to receive at large bids outside of the “Big Six”. I agree, the one point loss to Duke won’t hold much weight come February. The “Committee’s” minds seem to have a very short memory.

      At Large Bids

      I don’t even know if the OVC jump is even going to give us a better “at-large” bid opportunity. I guess it is a step in the right direction.

      What do you think?

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