FAU coach Mike Jarvis expects leading scorer Greg Gantt to face more double teams. (Photo courtesy of Owl Pix)
FAU is about to embark on its toughest road trip of conference play. Will the Sun Belt's top teams be able to slow down Greg Gantt?
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Greg Gantt's scoring run even has his coach surprised.
"In a way I am," Jarvis admits. "I'm really glad that he's finally realized that he can do more things than shoot a 3-point jump shot. That's really been the difference for him."
Gantt, who earlier this season became the Owls' all-time leading scorer, entered Wednesday fifth in the nation in scoring at 22.4 points per game. He's scored 23 points or more in each of the Owls last seven games, and has eclipsed the 20-point mark in 11 of the Owls' last 12.
Those streaks will be in jeopardy this week when FAU takes its toughest conference road trip of the season, stopping at Middle Tennessee (12-4, 4-1 ) and Western Kentucky (10-7, 4-2) - the top two teams in the Sun Belt Conference's East Division.
MTSU, in particular, is the top-rated defensive team in the conference.
Jarvis expects teams to start double teaming Gantt, a move that would likely impact his scoring.
"It's not going to be easier for him, but he's going to have to make some adjustments," Jarvis said. "As the year goes on he might get a few less points but maybe some more assists."
Stefan Moody figures to be on the receiving end of some of those assists. After sitting out three games for a violation of team rules, Moody struggled in his first game back.
Nonetheless, Jarvis reinserted Moody into the starting line-up in the Owls' last game, a victory over Louisiana-Lafayette. The freshman responded with 16 points and nine rebounds.
"The biggest difference was that he had a game back," Jarvis said. "He's still a freshman and at times he allows a couple of missed shots to affect the rest of his game. When he realizes it's not just about a jump shot - that he can do many other things - he'll be fine."
FAU (8-8, 3-2 Sun Belt)
at MTSU (12-4, 4-1 Sun Belt)
About the Owls: FAU is looking to climb above the .500 mark for the first time in a month. ...Concussion-like symptoms will keep guard Rich Morrow from making the trip. ...Pablo Bertone has scored in double figures in three of the Owls' last four games. ...FAU is converting 74.1 percent of its free-throw attempts - tops in the Sun Belt.
About the Blue Raiders: The reigning Sun Belt regular season champ, MTSU's 12 wins are the most in the Sun Belt. ...MTSU leads the all-time series 9-4 and has won the last two meetings. ...The Blue Raiders are only allowing 59.2 points per game - best in the Sun Belt. ...Marcos Knight (12.4) and Shawn Jones (10.0) are the only Blue Raiders averaging double figures in scoring this season.