Falcons have challenge ahead

The Bowling Green basketball team may have its greatest challenge just ahead.

Ideally that challenge should be a Saturday afternoon affair against last year’s MAC

Tournament champion Ball State. Realistically, the challenge lies within the team.

Wednesday night the Falcons fell apart defensively, gave up a lead and were upset by conference foe Akron. The performance left BG coach Dan Dakich questioning the heart of the players.

‘We’ve just got no heart,’ Dakich said. ‘This is a game that you lose, but you don’t lose by not coming out and stopping them at all. We just have to grind out and make it miserable for the other team. That’s the heart I’m talking about.’

BG could have turned the tide against Toledo and Central Michigan also, but costly mistakes once again paved the way for conference losses.

Now BG will have to claw its way back up to get to the top of the conference after falling to 6-8 overall and 3-2 in the MAC. The Cardinals are already on the way back up the conference up with two straight wins.

Ball State is fresh off a last second win against Toledo Wednesday night. The Cardinals are big and physical, posing a threat to BG’s interior game.

Staring for the Ball State is Theron Smith, last year’s MAC freshman of the year. Smith leads the squad averaging 17.1 ppg while grabbing 10.2 rebounds a game.

Another inside presence for BSU is junior Lonnie Jones, a six-foot 11-inch center who lead the MAC last year in blocks with 84. Smith had four blocks in a 71-61 win against the Falcons last year in Muncie.

The Cardinals are led by first year coach Tim Buckley, who took over for Houston bound Ray McCallum.

While BG has been down a rough road lately, they still have the ever-present,home court advantage that the Falcons have thrived on the past two seasons. The Falcons recent home loss to Central Michigan was the first time in 20 games that BG fell at home.