Air Force basketball non-conference schedule preview

Air Force basketball non-conference schedule preview

Air Force

Air Force basketball non-conference schedule preview

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How will Air Force fare in their 13 games non-con slate?


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The Falcons look to gain momentum in 22-23

We’re about six weeks away from college basketball’s opening night. Here’s what Air Force Falcons fans should expect during the first two months of the season.

Air Force at Bowling Green
Date: Nov. 7
The Falcons will go through a transitional period in 2022-23 as top-scorers Daeqwan Plowden and Trey Diggs finished their college careers. Keep an eye on the well-traveled Samari Curtis, point guard Kaden Metheny and Duquesne transfer Leon Ayers to lead the offensive attack for Coach Michael Huger’s squad.
Prediction:
Air Force 60, Bowling Green 67

Air Force Vs. Delaware Nov. 11
Delaware heads to the Academy in the Falcons second game of the 2022-23 season. The Hens went dancing in March but lose three four starters. The lone returning starter is Jameer Nelson Jr, the son of former NBA standout Jameer Nelson Sr.

Prediction: Air Force 57, Delaware 73

Air Force Vs Texas A&M Commerce
Texas A&M Commerece heads to Colorado Springs in one of its first game as a D1 basketball team. As a transition team, it’ll be a tough time for the Lions in its first D1 season.

Prediction: Air Force 71, Texas A&M Commerce 61

Air Force Vs Portland
Date: Nov. 17

Shantay Legans quickly turned the Portland program into the laughing stock of the WCC to a loveable underdog in 12 months. After winning 18 games, the Pilots return its top six scorers, including guards Tyler Robertson, Mike Meadows and former Mountain West foe Moses Wood.

The heavy three-point shooting attack could help Air Force if the shots aren’t falling. However, Portland’s pace is too quick for Air Force to play against. Convincing win for the Pilots

Prediction Air Force 72, Portland 87

Air Force Vs USC Upstate
Date: Nov. 21

USC Upstate isn’t known for basketball success, but returning the dynamic Jordan Gainey is huge for the program in 2022-23. The skilled sophomore from Tucson, AZ averaged 13.8 points in 32 games and shot an astounding 74 of 150, 49 percent from three.

USC Upstate doesn’t have size to outmatch Air Force, so I’ll take the Falcons snagging another non-conf road win.

Prediction: Air Force 73, USC Upstate 66

Air Force Vs. Mississippi Valley State
Date: Nov. 23

I’ll keep it brief here. Mississippi Valley State went 7-75 in the last five seasons and lack talent again this season. It’s probably a double digit victory for Coach Scott’s squad.

Prediction: Air Force 80, Mississippi Valley State 63

Air Force Vs. Montana
Date: Nov. 27

The Grizzlies return dynamic stretch forward Josh Bannan, who posted 15.1 points last season. Bannan and Colorado State transfer Dischon Thomas will give Air Force problems with their size and ability to knock down outside shots. The play from front court players Nikc Jackson and Lucas Moerman will decide whether Air Force can sneak out the victory.

Prediction: Air Force 70, Montana 73

Air Force Vs Arkansas-Pine Bluff
Date: Nov. 30

Last season was one to forget for Arkansas Pine-Bluff, finishing 11th in the SWAC and winning only seven games. Furthermore, Coach Solomon Bozeman’s portal adds of Shaun Doss from SIUE and Rashad Williams will help returning top Kylen Milton ease the scoring load. The Lions just don’t have enough quite yet to win on the road against a Mountain West opponent.

Prediction: Air Force 80, Arkansas Pine Bluff 64

Air Force at Portland State
Date: Dec. 3

Second year head coach Jase Coburn made serious movies in the transfer portal, reeling in point guard Cameron Parker and sturdy wing Keshawn Saunders, among others. The non-conference schedule could present some struggles due to how many new players are on the roster. So I have Air Force winning a road contest here. It won’t faze Jake Heidbreder as an experienced bucket getter heading into a tough road environment.

Prediction:
Air Force 74, Portland State 72

Air Force Vs. Arkansas State
Date: Dec. 9
Arkansas State lost Norchad Omier, Desi Sills and several other key contributors from last season. The Redwolves didn’t make huge moves in the portal and have a young, inexperienced roster. Air Force’s experience and home court advantage should help the Falcons head home victorious.

Prediction: Air Force 69, Arkansas State 63

Air Force Vs. South Dakota
Date: Dec. 6
As many Summit league teams do, South Dakota can put up 90 points in any contest. Big news is standout guard AJ Plitzuweit returns from a serious knee injury after averaging close to 20 points two seasons ago. The Coyotes have so much guard talent and can hold their own in the frontcourt with Tasos Kamateros. I’ll take South Dakota walking into Mountain West country and going back to Vermillion with a win.

Prediction : Air Force 65, South Dakota 72

Air Force Vs. Tarleton State
Date: Dec 18
I would expect AFA and Tarleton to keep things pretty low scoring. While Air Force shoots a lot of threes, it takes a minute to get things rolling in their Princeton offense, while Tarleton loves to play tight defense. The Texas will look at transfers Couryeon Rushin and Courtney Carter from Chicago St and SIU Edwardsville, respectively to play significant scoring roles. However, it’s just not enough to take down the Mountain West opponent.

Prediction Air Force 59, Tarleton State 55

Air Force at Northern Colorado
Date: Dec. 20
I’m excited for this one. The Bears standout guard Daylen Kountz was a top-10 scorer nationally, and is incredibly explosive driving to the hoop. Everyone knows it’s coming but it’s tough to stop and AFA won’t have an answer for it. Other contributors like Matt Johnson and Dalton Knecht will help the Bears secure the home victory in Greeley.

Prediction: Air Force 73, Northern Colorado 75

Conclusion: I have the Falcons finishing 6-7 in their non conference. While the schedules doesn’t have a single “high major” opponent, it features some very good teams from one big leagues. It’ll be a long season for Coach Scott, as AJ Walker is gone and it’ll take time to figure out who’s the consistent go-to guy. For my money, it’s Heidbreder, but we’ll have to wait and see once the season tips off


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