After a loss last Saturday to Rhode Island, the Cincinnati Bearcats have responded with two-straight wins and will look for a third when they host the Lipscomb Bisons on Saturday. Lipscomb has started poorly this season with a 2-4 record, and Saturday's matchup with the Bearcats might set it back even further.
Get to Know the Opponent
The Lipscomb Bisons haven't shown any good signs this year outside of sophomore guard Garrison Mathews. He has been the do-it-all player for the Bisons as he leads the team in both points (15.7 PPG) and rebounds per game (5.3 RPG). The young guard has plenty of size, standing 6'5" and weighing in at 210, to go to battle with the Bearcats who are known country-wide for their aggressive defensive approach. Other stats to look into for Lipscomb are its 81 points per game and 18 assists per game. Clearly, the Bisons love to move the ball around and the Bearcats love to pour on the pressure, so it should be a fun matchup to watch in the early going.
Consistency is Key
UC is certainly the more proven and more experienced team headed into Saturday's game. The problem that the Bearcats seem to be having is keeping momentum up throughout a contest, which could be from lack of focus. Although UC is winning, being focused is the only way that it will find consistency. Speaking of consistency, Jacob Evans and Kyle Washington have been on warpaths to start the season. Evans (19.0 PPG) and Washington (17.2 PPG, 10.0 RPG) have been a spectacular duo. I feel like we have talked about these two a lot in this young season, but they deserve every second of attention they are getting.
Troy Caupain is the senior leader for this group of Bearcats and since he’s been playing at UC for so long (appearing in 106 games in the red and black) he is going to make some history this season. On Saturday, he has a chance to do just that as he is just 11 points away from becoming the 50th Bearcat to reach the 1,000-point mark. He is only averaging 9.8 points per game this season and has been held below 11 points in three of five games, but 11 is well within reach, especially if he starts replicating his offensive success of last season (13.0 PPG) more regularly.
The Bearcats should be on pace for a smooth win on Saturday against Lipscomb. UC is certainly the more talented team, so if the the Bearcats remain focused, they should walk out of Fifth Third Arena with a record of 5-1. After Lipscomb, UC's next game will be on the road against No. 21 Iowa State, which should be a thriller like it was last year.