UT Arlington 81 Texas State 73
The two Sun Belt basketball contests against Texas State every year rarely disappoint, and this year has been no different.
UT-Arlington (16-15, 12-6 Sun Belt) won a double-overtime game in San Marcos a couple of weeks ago. The Mavericks, playing on their home floor this afternoon, led wire-to-wire and defeated a very, good Bobcat team (23-8, 12-6 Sun Belt) in convincing fashion 81-73 for the second win against Texas State this season. The College Park Center had a great playoff-like atmosphere today, with probably 20-30% of the 2,702 fans in attendance cheering on the visiting team. A lot like when North Texas comes to town.
UTA (7-3) 78, Florida Gulf Coast (7-4) 85 An energetic crowd of 2600+ was treated to game that saw one team shoot 54% and make over half it’s threes. Unfortunately, it wasn’t the home team.
Florida Gulf Coast University, known as “Dunk City”, plays a very uptempo game and has several players that can really score. The Eagles pushed the ball up the court in transition all afternoon, drove into the paint into open areas for a lot of short jumpers and layups and earning a lot of trips to the free throw line. They also shot the ball well from outside, going 10-19 from three point range. Continue reading →
UT Arlington (6-1) 69, Rice (2-5) 49
Since my last post a couple of games ago (although I had a lengthy and somewhat interesting analysis of the BYU win that my browser and/or blog software didn’t publish correctly), the Mavs went to Provo and beat a good-but-not-great BYU team by double-digits, lost by one point to a (in my opinion, anyway) sweet-sixteen Alabama team, defeated two teams in New York on the road and defeated Div. III UT-Dallas at home in a game without Kevin Hervey and Link Kabadyundi.
The Rice Owls entered tonight’s game with an RPI around 280 and a record of 2-4 with wins over Northwestern State and the University of St. Thomas, a NAIA school in Houston. The Owls jumped out to an 8-0 lead on a couple of quick threes but UTA went on a run and built a 15-8 lead and never looked back. Continue reading →
The 2017-2018 UT Arlington basketball schedule was released recently, and all I can say is that it’s the best single-year home overall schedule that I can ever recall the Mavs putting together. It’s loaded with winnable games against well-known teams at home and on the road that should generate some buzz at the arena’s box office and help the Mavs’ chances for the postseason via strength of schedule and potential RPI ranking.
Mid-major scheduling is never easy: big schools pays mid-majors up to $100,000 to play on the road, and mid-majors with considerable smaller athletics budgets usually scheduling other mid-major or smaller-conference schools to fill out their home slates. In other words, a school’s relative position on the basketball food chain largely determines who it plays on the road––and who it is able to host. And when you win consistently, big schools with big paycheck generally (and understandably) avoid you. The Star Telegram wrote a good piece a couple of weeks ago about UTA’s scheduling difficulties, and this article from 2010 is quite interesting and still very relevant seven years later. You may even recall last year’s non-conference schedule that Texas Southern had to endure, playing in Arlington at 7:00 on a saturday night and then appearing for a lunchtime game in Delaware less than 24 hours later. So, a good strategy for top-50 RPI schools like UTA is to line up home-and-home series with other successful mid-major schools in similar situations. And for the upcoming season, this strategy appears to have worked to perfection.
Over the years, UTA has welcomed well-known non-conference teams like TCU, Air Force, Oral Roberts, Lamar and New Mexico to the stage at Texas Hall. More recently, the Mavs have hosted some impressive squads like Oklahoma and Boise State in College Park’s Center first full home season.
Our fans and players will appreciate that we have some very good home games against quality opponents. Playing in College Park Center gives us a significant home court advantage, especially with the enthusiasm we experienced in last year’s NIT run.
–UTA head coach Scott Cross
The Mavs continue to defend their home court, remaining undefeated at College Park Center this season and have been rewarded with sole possession of first place in the Sun Belt, now with a record of 19-6 and 9-3 league play.
How’d we get here? The 3-0 homestand started a week ago saturday on 2/4 in front a big afternoon crowd of 3483 (lower bowl mostly full, folks sitting in the upper level too). They were treated to an entertaining game against a much improved Texas State team that resulted in a 76-61 victory. Continue reading →
I’ll admit I was intrigued by this matchup for the last few days. UTA still trying to recapture the offensive flow and smooth ball movement that worked so well for them last year and overcoming the well-documented frequent second-half offensive lulls this season; Mount St. Mary’s plays an very uptempo offense with a trapping, pressing defense. I figured it would be Continue reading →
Nothing really unexpected Monday night. Every team plays one or two of those games a year…a smaller opponent comes to your arena, the home team wins by 20 and gets to workon some things offensively, the visitors get to play the biggest opponent they’ll likely face all year.
Like I said, nothing really unexpected but still fun basketball to watch.
It was a nice confidence builder for the Mavs,
who needed one after losing three halftime leads on the road to good opponents in as many games. The final score was 88-67 but felt much closer for most of the game.
St. Francis, an NAIA team playing in the Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference, has some really good players that could play at the mid-major level. And they played a solid game and showed poise breaking through the