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BGSU MBB vs Arkansas State: A preview of the Red Wolves

%2314+Sam+Towns+finishing+an+alley-oop+dunk+against+Chicago+State
Drake Harlett
#14 Sam Towns finishing an alley-oop dunk against Chicago State

After a dominant defensive performance propelled Bowling Green men’s basketball (1-0) to their first win of the season and the Todd Simon era in their season opener against Chicago State, attention now shifts to their next challenge: a matchup against Arkansas State (0-1) on Saturday, Nov. 11. 

The contest against the Red Wolves marks the first of two games for BG in the Mid-American Conference-Sun Belt Conference (SBC) challenge.  

Matchup History 

All-time, BGSU is 2-2 against Arkansas State, including 2-0 at home. 

However, Saturday afternoon marks the first matchup between the two programs since Dec. 4, 2006. Bowling Green won that matchup at Anderson Arena, 81-72. 

Scouting Arkansas State 

Last season, the Red Wolves finished with an overall record of 13-20, which included a 4-14 record in the SBC and a 2-11 record in away games. 

ASU enters the contest seeking their first win of the season after falling to Wisconsin on the road in their season opener, 105-76. 

Arkansas State had an extremely lackluster defensive performance against Wisconsin, allowing the Badgers to shoot 65% (39-60) from the field and 50% (6-12) from beyond the arc. The Red Wolves also allowed the Badgers to reach the free throw line 30 times. 

ASU’s offensive performance was not much better, shooting just 40.7% (24-59) from the field and 19% (4-21) from three-point range. In the second half, Arkansas State went just 10-30 from the field and 1-10 from beyond the arc. 

Falcon Four Players to Watch 

Caleb Fields (Arkansas State #0) 

Last season, Fields, now a senior guard, was the centerpiece of ASU’s offense, leading the Red Wolves with 11.4 points per game and 4.6 assists per game. Fields did this while playing much of the season with a broken wrist. 

Fields, now in his fifth year at Arkansas State, was one of three double-digit scorers for the Scarlet and Black against Wisconsin, scoring 17 points while leading the team with two assists and 39 minutes played. 

Freddy Hicks (Arkansas State #2) 

Hicks, a junior guard, is in his first season with ASU after playing the previous three years at Tarleton State. 

Last season, Hicks was selected to the All-Western Athletic Conference (WAC) Second Team after leading the Texans with 16.2 points per game and six rebounds per game. His 16.2 points per game marked the best scoring average in Tarleton State’s D1 era. 

Hicks also set a NCAA Division I single-game free throw record with the Texans last season, attempting 28 shots from the charity stripe against Belmont. 

Against the Badgers, Hicks led the Red Wolves with 21 points on 6-15 shooting from the field and 8-10 from the free throw line. Hicks also led the Scarlet and Black with seven rebounds and two steals. 

Marcus Hill (Bowling Green #0) 

Hill, a junior guard for BG, was the offensive sparkplug the Falcons needed in their home opener win against Chicago State. 

Starting in place of the injured Trey Thomas, Hill led the Falcons with 18 points on 7-14 shooting from the field, along with pacing BGSU with 27 minutes played. 

Last season at Southern Union State Community College, Hill led the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) with 780 points scored. Hill was named a NJCAA Third Team All-American at the end of the season. 

Jason Spurgin (Bowling Green #7) 

Spurgin, the seven-foot senior center who followed Simon to BG from Southern Utah, led the Orange and Brown’s historic defensive performance against the Cougars. Spurgin tallied a team-high three blocks in BG’s season opener, recording all three rejections in the second half. 

While he struggled shooting against CSU, going just 1-5 from the field and 1-4 from beyond the arc, Spurgin added six rebounds and committed just one foul across 24 minutes played. 

Spurgin, the primary rim protector for BG, led the Thunderbirds and finished second in the WAC with 63 blocks last season. 

Falcon Media Sports Network’s Steve Iwanek and Ben Corak have the call of the game Saturday on Falcon Radio as the Falcons look for their second win of the season at the Stroh Center. Pregame will begin at 11:45 a.m. with tipoff at noon. 

For more stories related to BGSU Athletics, follow Falcon Media Sports Network on X (@bg_fmsn).

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