DAYTON — A pair of teams looking to bounce back from their first loss of the year will meet on Tom Blackburn Court Tuesday when the University of Dayton Flyers host the Northern Kentucky University Norse. Game time is 7 p.m. ET.
Dayton is 1-1, after a 66-64 buzzer-beating loss to SMU on Saturday. Ibi Watson led UD with 23 points, followed by Chase Johnson (14 points) and Jalen Crutcher (10, with seven assists). Jordy Tshimanga had 12 rebounds in the game. NKU is 2-1 after falling at Chattanooga 79-72.
The game will carried by WHIO Radio, televised by in the Dayton area by Spectrum News 1 and streamed on ESPN+. Streaming audio, video and stats will be available at DaytonFlyers.com.
• Moving into a more visibly primary role this year, Jalen Crutcher is getting the kind of attention from the media during the preseason that he will no doubt get from opponents during the season. He is on the Naismith, Wooden NABC and Bob Cousy Award Watch Lists.
• Crutcher, a four-year starter, was ranked the 12th-best player in the country by ESPN, 16th in CBSSports.com’s top college basketball players. The Athletic rated him sixth among its top 20 guards in the country. He was also named Second Team Preseason All-America by Stadium.
• Keep in mind that Crutcher was UD’s co-MVP last season, sharing the honor with the national player of the year and an NBA lottery pick, as well as his roommate and best friend, Obi Toppin.
• Crutcher lived up to his nickname of “Clutcher” with the pair of free throws with 12 seconds left that turned a one-point lead into a three-point lead in the Eastern Illinois win.
• Rodney Chatman is the only returnee who started every game last season. An elite defender, he held several of the best guards UD faced last year well under their average, including NBA top draft pick Anthony Edwards, Saint Mary’s Jordan Ford and Rhode Island’s Fatts Russell. He had a career-high four steals in the EIU win, and had two blocked shots vs. SMU.
• Ibi Watson has led all scorers in both Flyer games this season. The Michigan transfer had with 16 points (11 in the first half) in the opener, and 23 points (9-14 FG, 3-6 3-pt,) vs. SMU.
• Watson played all 40 minutes Saturday, the first Flyer to do so since Jalen Crutcher against Oklahoma at the Battle for Atlantis on Nov. 23, 2018.
• Chase Johnson had never attempted a three-pointer in his college career, but the first Flyer shot of 2020-21 was a Johnson trey. He made two more en route to a 14-point, seven-rebound, four-assist performance in the Eastern Illinois win. He made five of six shots in the game.
• Jordy Tshimanga was +16 in +/-vs. EIU, with 10 points and eight rebounds, and was +8 against SMU, with eight points, 12 rebounds and three steals.
• Coach Anthony Grant was the consensus national coach of the year in 2019-20, the first UD basketball coach to earn that honor.
• Dayton’s next scheduled game is Saturday, Dec. 12 in Atlanta against Mississippi State in the Holiday HoopsGiving quadrupleheader. The Flyers are back home after exams on Saturday, Dec. 19 against Ole Miss.
GAME PREVIEW COURTESY DAYTON MEDIA RELATIONS