Behind Enemy Lines: Breaking down UNC Greensboro with WFMY’s Amanda Ferguson
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) - The Florida State Seminoles open their 2021 NCAA Tournament on Saturday afternoon against the UNC Greensboro Spartans in Indianapolis, Indiana.
The Spartans are impressive on paper: A 21-8 overall record, SoCon regular season and tournament champions and boast the SoCon Player of the Year, Defensive Player of the Year and Tournament MVP in Isaiah Miller.
But what else is behind the Spartans?
For help getting behind enemy lines, we reached out to Amanda Ferguson, a sports anchor at our CBS sister station WFMY in Greensboro, to see what makes this year’s UNCG team tick.
WCTV: What is your elevator pitch on the Spartans - what do they look like when they play, how tough was their road to get to the Dance?
Amanda Ferguson: UNCG is a scrappy team. The team didn’t look in the beginning of the season, but they really got it together, especially in March. They’re a great defensive team with the SOCON player of the year and the SOCON defensive player of the year on its team, Isaiah Miller. He can also make plays too which makes him so dangerous on the court. He has said all year he wants to make history for UNCG.
WCTV: A lot of the headlines heading into Saturday for UNCG surround Isaiah Miller, but with any dangerous mid-major team there are two or three guys behind “the name” that are just as key to success. Who are those couple of guys for the Spartans?
AF: Isaiah Miller is definitely the threat for UNCG. Keyshaun Langley is the Spartans second leading scorer and on the other side of the ball, Hayden Koval could be dangerous too. The 7′1 center can match FSU’s size and be a big difference maker in a game where UNCG is outmatched in size.
WCTV: Not only are you an FSU grad, but you got to see a bit of the Noles in your own backyard last week during the ACC Tournament. What about this FSU team do you like and think matches up well with UNCG?
AF: Florida State is so athletic and big. The Seminoles are hard to defend and hard to score on. They’re deep. They’re one of the best 3 point shooting teams in the country and it’s not just one player. It’s most of them. As for matching up with UNCG, the Noles are going to stretch the Spartans with the 3 then beat them in the paint with their size. However, FSU is plagued by turnovers, like we saw in the ACC Championship game. UNCG creates a lot of those, so that’s in its favor.
WCTV: Finally, do you have a prediction for how things will shake out on Saturday?
AF: I think UNCG can hang with Florida State. If Isaiah Miller blows up and the Spartans can force turnovers, it could be a game. If FSU secures the ball, the Noles walk out with a W. I say FSU does that and wins it 72-58.
Thanks to Amanda for taking the time to give us some insight. For her coverage this weekend, be sure you’re following her on Twitter.
The Seminoles and Spartans are set for a 12:45 p.m. tipoff from Bankers’ Life Fieldhouse.
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