Jim Boeheim will look to tie Bobby Knight with his 902nd career win as the Orange take on Central Connecticut State on the Carrier Dome in the last game of 2012. Here is a scouting report:
BLUE DEVILS RELOADING: The Blue Devils had an up-and-down 13-16 season last season, but ended up with a winning record (10-8) in the Northeast Conference. They’re projected as a middle of the pack team, even with losing NEC Player of the Year Ken Horton and 1,500-point scorer Robbie Patcek, the No. 1 and No. 10 scorers in school history. Central head coach Howie Dickenman has managed to keep his offense humming with the Blue Devils averaging 73.9 points per game with two players averaging more than 19 points a game. But they’re one of the smallest teams the Orange will face this season, with 6’7″ forward Brandon Peel as their biggest player in the playing rotation.
SCOUTING THE BLUE DEVILS: Kyle Vinales is the reigning NEC Rookie of the Year and has become the primary scoring option this season. He was the rookie of the week eight times last season, and leads the team in minutes (39.9) and points (21.4). Transfer Matt Hunter has been his sidekick on offense, and he’s averaging 19.0 points and a team-high 7.1 rebounds per game. Indiana fans may know Hunter as “the guy that can shoot,” as he dropped 40 points on the No. 1 team in the country, while hitting 6-11 from downtown. Central Connecticut State hung with the top team in the country for six minutes and didn’t look intimiated on the road.
HISTORICALLY SPEAKING: The two teams have never met before.
GAME INFORMATION: Monday, Dec. 31 at 3 p.m. at the Carrier Dome. TV: ESPNU.Wesley Cheng