Team: Central Michigan Chippewas
Coach: Keno Davis
Record Last year: 10-21, 3-15 MAC
Early 2014-15: (Record: 9-1)
An 84-73 loss to Bradley back on Dec. 7 is the only blemish on Central Michigan ’s record through 10 games.
-- CMU ranks first in scoring (84.1) and fifth in defense 62.5). The bottom line is excellent, since the Chippewas are No. 1 among MAC teams in scoring margin (21.7 ppg). The next closest is Eastern Michigan at 15.6.
-- Junior Chris Fowler (6-1, 191) , a cornerstone on the team last year when he averaged 17.4 ppg with 5.3 assists leads a team that has not only improved its offensive weapons, but other areas as well with the addition of several players who can contribute sooner rather than later. It could well be that CMU doesn’t show its value as much among individual MAC leader stats as it does with the collective product.
-- The Chippewas are first in rebounding margin (8.0).
-- CMU is fourth in turnover margin (2.4) and first in assist-to-turnover ration
-- John Simons, a 6-8 junior forward is averaging 11.1 ppg and 5.6 rpg. Sophomore guard Braylan Grayson (5-9, 185) , meanwhile, is averaging 11.0 ppg. with 3.8 assists per outing.
-- CMU ranks first in 3-point field goals made (11.0 per game) and second in 3-point field goal percentage (41.6%).
Overview: Central Michigan has strengthened itself with personnel additions that complement a talented nucleus. It also gives coach Keno Davis a few more options and depth. The Chippewas could well be a significant player in the MAC West race. That side of the conference, however, will be very strong.