HARTFORD – The UConn men’s basketball team, which has won five of its last six games, will close out the 2019 portion of their season with a non- conference game against a first-time opponent, the New Jersey Institute of Technology.
NJIT (3-9) vs. UConn (8-3)
XL Center, Hartford, Sunday, 1 p.m. EST
BOTTOM LINE: Two guards will be on display as Zach Cooks and NJIT will battle Christian Vital and UConn. The junior Cooks has scored 34 percent of the team’s points this season and is averaging 22.8 over his last five games. Vital, a senior, is averaging 10.6 points over the last five games.
TEAM LEADERSHIP: UConn’s Vital has averaged 13.5 points, 7.6 rebounds and 2.5 steals while Josh Carlton has put up 11.2 points and 7.2 rebounds. For the Highlanders, Cooks has averaged 23.1 points and 5.3 rebounds while Souleymane Diakite has put up 7.1 points and 9.1 rebounds.CLUTCH COOKS: Cooks has connected on 33 percent of the 88 3-pointers he’s attempted and has made 13 of 37 over the last five games. He’s also converted 78.5 percent of his free throws this season.
SLIPPING AT 72: NJIT is 0-9 when it allows at least 72 points and 3-0 when it holds opponents to less than 72.
PERFECT WHEN: UConn is a perfect 5-0 when it turns the ball over 11 times or fewer. The Huskies are 3-3 when they record more than 11 turnovers. The NJIT defense has created 12.8 turnovers per game overall this year and 14 per game over its last three.
DID YOU KNOW: NJIT has committed a turnover on just 17.5 percent of its possessions this season, which is the second-lowest percentage among all Atlantic Sun teams. The Highlanders have turned the ball over only 12.2 times per game this season.