Men’s basketball to open season on the road at Drake Saturday

To prepare for their season opening game, head men’s basketball coach Chris Jans looked back at the tape from their exhibition win against Notre Dame College this past Friday.

While looking back at the tape, he was hoping to be a little bit more positive about the way the team played, instead he wasn’t, he said.

“Maybe I expected too much,” Jans said. “After the way we played in the closed door scrimmage and having an additional week to practice I thought we would play a little bit better.”

Since then one of the emphases in practice has been on a defense that allowed 12 layups out of NDC’s 25 total field goals.

“That’s not acceptable,” Jans said.

In practice the last week, they have been working on guarding the ball correctly and their positioning individually and as a team.

“I thought that for the majority against Notre Dame [the defensive struggles] were at the point of attack,” Jans said. “We were getting beat too early and giving our opponents straight line drives. We didn’t give our help defense much chance to react to the ball.”

The Falcons are going to be looking to improve on those defensive woes as they prepare for their season opener against Drake University Saturday. Early in the season it is hard for teams to scout because of the limited film to watch, but Drake being a part of the Missouri Valley Conference helps the Falcons. Jans was the associate head coach at Wichita State last year, a member of the MVC, and they defeated Drake both times they played them. His familiarity with Drake isn’t going to change much about what the Falcons will do on the court Saturday he said.

“Everybody is working with a smaller size,” Jans said. “So you have to just focus on yourself and execute your style of basketball.”

That’s just what the Falcons are doing as they have come into practice with a bit more intensity for a few reasons, Jans said.

“One reason being our disdain for the results in the exhibition game,” Jans said. “The second reason being because it’s game week. Especially for the guys who have been around, they know what they are excited about.”

It has been a week since the exhibition game and now the Falcons have a chance to improve from that outing when the games count. First tip is scheduled for 3:05 p.m. in Des Moines, Iowa.

“A few of [the players] have a little bit more bounce in their step and we are hoping to ride that momentum to a better outing this Saturday.”