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Northern Illinois (6-6) at Buffalo (6-4)



The Sports Network

DATE & TIME: Wednesday, January 8, 7 p.m. (ET)

FACTS & STATS: Site: Alumni Arena (6,100) -- Buffalo New York. Television: None. Home Record: Northern Illinois 4-3, Buffalo 5-1. Away Record: Northern Illinois 2-3, Buffalo 1-2. Neutral Record: Northern Illinois 0-0, Buffalo 0-1. Conference Record: Northern Illinois 0-0, Buffalo 0-0. Series Record: Buffalo leads, 14-13.

GAME NOTES: The Buffalo Bulls will finally return to the court after a Jan. 3 game versus South Dakota State was postponed, as the Northern Illinois Huskies travel to Buffalo for the Mid-American Conference opener for both programs.

Northern Illinois hasn't played a game since a Jan. 3 victory over Bethune- Cookman, 65-51, and now embarks on a two-game road stint starting in Buffalo. The Huskies have won three of the past four games and look to start conference play off on the right foot.

Buffalo hasn't seen the hardwood since a Dec. 29 win over Drexel, 55-52, because of the postponed game. The Bulls host the Huskies hoping for a MAC win to start conference play. The Bulls have won two in a row after losing two straight before the holiday hiatus.

Buffalo holds a slim 14-13 all-time series advantage over the Huskies, including a win in the last meeting between the two programs on Feb. 9, 2013.

Northern Illinois dominated Bethune-Cookman in the team's last outing, scoring 65 points and holding the Wildcats to a 29.6 percent shooting performance. The Huskies also outrebounded Bethune-Cookman, 41-26, in the contest. Darrell Bowie and Aaric Armstead each netted 11 points to lead Northern Illinois, while Aaron Armstead delivered 10 points in the win. Bowie just missed out on a double-double, as the forward grabbed nine rebounds in his 25 minutes of play. The team shot 46.3 percent from the floor, but turned the ball over 14 times compared to Bethune-Cookman's 10.

Dontel Highsmith is the only Northern Illinois player to average scoring numbers in the double digits this season, bringing a 10.5 ppg mark in to Buffalo. Highsmith missed a game earlier this season, but is still second on the team in steals with 11 and is tied for the team lead in total points scored with 115. Bowie is second on the team in scoring average with a 9.6 ppg clip, and leads the Huskies this season with a 7.2 rpg mark. The team is shooting 40.2 percent from the floor this year.

Buffalo outscored Drexel 35-28 in the second half on Dec. 29 to claim a three- point victory on the road. Both teams came out of the gate shooting poorly, going 15-of-57 from the floor before things picked up. Javon McCrea led all scorers in the game with 20 points on 8-of-13 shooting, adding nine rebounds to his performance. He was the only Bulls player to score more than seven points in the win. Will Regan netted seven and grabbed a team-high 10 rebounds in the contest.

In the 10 games the Bulls have played this season, McCrea has a steady hold on the team's shooting lead with a 17.7 ppg average. Guard Joshua Freelove is the only other Buffalo player to average double figures, contributing 12.5 ppg. McCrea does it all this season, averaging 9.6 rpg with a team-leading 25 blocks and 17 steals. The Bulls as a squad net 72.1 ppg.

It's clear the Bulls should be rested after so much time off between games. If McCrea can get some help in the scoring department, this could be a dangerous MAC team this season.

Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Buffalo 75, Northern Illinois 70

01/08 11:08:58 ET

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Scoreboard
Local
Final
DUKE 47
TULA 13
Final
ECU 70
UNC 41
 
3rd
TOWSN 24
NCCU 17
 
3rd
NCSU 28
PRES 0
 
Final
KAN 2
DET 3
Final
CHC 8
LOS 7
Final
OAK 0
PHI 3
Final
NYY 3
TOR 6
Final
COL 5
ARI 1
3rd
BAL 0
BOS 2
 
3rd
PIT 0
MIL 0
 
3rd
TAM 2
CWS 0
 
7:10pm Tonight
MIN 0
CLE 0
3rd
ATL 0
NYM 3
 
3rd
HOU 5
SEA 1
 
4th
MIA 1
WAS 0
 
3rd
STL 5
CIN 0
 
8:40pm Tonight
SDP
SFG
9:05pm Tonight
ANA
TEX
Final
WISC 68
BGU 17
Final
MSU 73
EMICH 14
Final
VT 24
GT 27
Final
PITT 20
IOWA 24
Final
RICE 42
ODU 45
Final
UGA 66
TROY 0
Final
SYR 20
MD 34
Final
DUKE 47
TULA 13
Final
COL 21
HAW 12
Final
AKR 17
MARS 48
 
Final
WAKE 24
ARMY 21
Final
KU 24
CMICH 10
Final
ALA 42
UF 21
Final
FIU 3
LOU 34
 
Final
ECU 70
UNC 41
 
Final
NAVY 24
RUTG 31
Final
SMU 6
TEXAM 58
3:30pm Today
MICH 10
UTAH 26
Final
BYU 41
UVA 33
Final
WYO 20
FATL 19
 
Final
MIZZ 27
IND 31
 
Final
PSU 48
UMASS 7
 
Final
MINN 24
SJST 7
 
3rd
ILL 19
TXST 21
 
3rd
WASH 0
GASTATE 14
 
2nd
SMISS 14
APPST 0
 
7:00pm Tonight
TOL 6
BST 0
2nd
OHIO 17
IDAHO 0
 
2nd
CIN 7
UMO 14
 
2nd
MEM 12
MTST 7
 
2nd
LSU 0
MSST 14
 
2nd
ARK 21
NILL 0
 
2nd
ARKST 0
UTST 7
 
1st
SALABAMA 0
GASO 0
 
1st
WVU 0
OKLA 3
 
1st
VANDY 7
SCAR 0
 
8:00pm Tonight
FSU
CLEM
8:00pm Tonight
NEB
MIAMI
8:00pm Tonight
NMST
NMU
8:00pm Tonight
HOU
UNLV
10:00pm Tonight
ARZ
CAL
10:30pm Tonight
BSU
LALAF
10:30pm Tonight
WASU
OREG
10:30pm Tonight
ORST
SDST
3rd
TOWSN 24
NCCU 17
 
3rd
NCSU 28
PRES 0