Men’s baskeball lacks offense


Freshman guard Daveon Balls (11) looks to pass the ball in the game against Kent State last Wednesday.

By Brian Earle

In order to be a successful team, you need to be able to play shutdown defense as well as have an electric offense to put points on the scoreboard.

This season, men’s basketball has been one of the strongest defensive teams in the MAC, but has struggled to put the ball in the basket.

The Huskies take pride in their play on the defensive side of the ball, which is coach Mark Montgomery’s philosophy. They give up an average of 64.9 points per game and gave up a season-low 42 points against Eastern Michigan.

The Huskies’ strong defense has been huge for them and allowed them to be competitive in their games. Their defensive play has been just as big a reason in their five victories this season, as in those wins they didn’t surrender more than 65 points.

On the other side of the ball, NIU has struggled, to say the least. It is dead last in scoring offense in the MAC as it averages 56.8 points per game and managed to set the NCAA record for fewest points scored in a half with four.

The Huskies also have the worst field goal percentage in the MAC, shooting 36 percent from the field.

OK, so who cares? NIU is a good defensive team that doesn’t score a lot of points; what’s the point?

The point is: If the Huskies were able to consistently put up better offensive numbers, they could be a more competitive team, which would earn them more wins.

Offensively, the Huskies have a go to guy in sophomore wing Abdel Nader, who averages 14.5 points per game.

What the Huskies need is another scoring option to compliment Nader. Junior forward Aksel Bolin has played well and been consistent for the Huskies, as he averages 7.8 points per game.

Freshman forward Darrell Bowie has been playing well lately and has shown he could be a reliable option. Freshman forward Sam Mader is now back with the team and early in the year he showed he could put points on the board.

The Huskies have players who know how to score. They just need to go out and do it on a consistent basis.

If they do that and continue to play lockdown defense, don’t be surprised if that starts to translate into more wins for the Huskies.