The 12th edition of the UAlbany-Siena men’s basketball series takes place tonight at 7 at the Times Union Center.
Since the rivalry between the two Capital Region teams was renewed when the Great Danes went Division I, there has always been pressure on the Saints to win this game because they have been a D-I program longer.
But the men who will be calling the game, Rodger Wyland for the Danes on FOX Sports 980 (WOFX) and Robert Lee for the Saints on Time Warner Cable SportsChannel 50 and 1803 HD, believe the pressure on the Saints has never been greater because of how the teams are performing this season. The Danes are off to a 5-2 start. One of their wins came at defending Pac-12 champion Washington.
On the other hand, Siena is off to a 2-5 start, and is coming off a tough 64-63 loss to UMass on Wednesday in a game that saw the Saints blow a 17-point lead.
“They need a win,” Wyland said. “Siena has dominated the series, but I think the pressure is still on Siena and on their home court to win.”
“The pressure has always been on Siena because they are the big brother in town,” Lee said. “As far as what team is playing well, it’s Albany, but the pressure is on
Siena because it’s kind of common for Albany to lose to Siena, but it’s not common for Siena to lose to Albany, at least since they restarted the series. So, I would say the pressure is still on Siena, even though Albany has the better record.”
Wyland believes the Danes are a slight favorite to win.
“I would give them the edge,” Wyland said. “The 5-2 record, and the fact that they won at Washington turned some heads.”
Wyland believes the Danes need other players to step up and help Mike Black and Jacob Iati with the scoring.
“The key for UAlbany is, outside of Black and Iati, who else is going to make some shots [tonight],” Wyland said. “Iati and Black have consistently been the top scorers. But when UAlbany has played really well this year, Jayson Guerrier has made some shots, and [John] Puk and Peter Hooley have, too”.
Containing Black and Iati will be important for the Saints, according to Lee.
“They’ve both been shooting the ball real well so far,” Lee said. “I think Siena’s biggest advantage over Albany in the past couple of years is probably inside in the paint. Siena’s really dominated in the paint against Albany’s big guys. They have to establish O.D. Anosike and some of the big guys down low.”
Kelly O’Donnell will have the radio call for the Saints on WGDJ-AM (1300).
Here are the upcoming games in the NFL and college football that will be on TV and the Internet. Most of the ESPN and ESPN2 games will also be available on ESPN3, ESPN’s Internet outlet.
Announcers, in order of play-by-play announcer, analyst and sideline reporter, are in parentheses:
FOX23 (WXXA) and FOX23 HD — Arizona at N.Y. Jets, 1 p.m. (Thom Brennaman/Brian Billick/Laura Okmin).
CBS6 (WRGB) and CBS6 HD — New England at Miami, 1 p.m. (Greg Gumbel/Dan Dierdorf); Pittsburgh at Baltimore, 4:25 p.m. (Jim Nantz/Phil Simms).
NBC13 (WNYT) and NBC13 HD — Philadelphia at Dallas, 8:20 p.m. (Al Michaels/Cris Collinsworth/Michele Tafoya).
ESPN and ESPN HD — N.Y. Giants at Washington, 8:30 p.m. (Mike Tirico/Jon Gruden/Lisa Salters).
NFL and NFL HD — Denver at Oakland, 8:20 p.m. (Brad Nessler/Mike Mayock/Alex Flanagan).
ESPN and ESPN HD — Oklahoma at Texas Christian, noon (Joe Tessitore/Matt Millen/Shannon Spake); ACC championship game: Florida State vs. Georgia Tech, 8 p.m. (Brent Musburger/Kirk Herbstreit/Heather Cox).
ESPN2 and ESPN2 HD — Conference USA championship game: Central Florida at Tulsa, noon (Dave Pasch/Brian Griese/Jenn Brown); Pittsburgh at South Florida, 7 p.m. (Mark Jones/Brock Huard/Quint Kessenich).
FX and FX HD — Oklahoma State at Baylor, noon (Craig Bolerjack/Joel Klatt/Darius Walker).
ESPN3 — FCS championship second round: New Hampshire at Wofford, 2 p.m. (Mike Gleason/Rocky Boiman/Rontina McCann); FCS championship second round: Coastal Carolina at Old Dominion, 2 p.m. (John Sadak/Jay Walker); FCS championship second round: Central Arkansas at Georgia Southern, 2 p.m. (Shawn Kenney/John Bunting/Tiffany Green); FCS championship second round: Illinois State at Appalachian State, 2 p.m. (Ryan Rose/Rene Ingoglia/Angela Mallen); Middle Tennessee at Arkansas State, 3 p.m. (Brock Bowling/Cole Cubelic); Boise State at Nevada, 3:30 p.m. (Mike Patrick/Ed Cunningham/Jeannine Edwards); FCS championship second round: South Dakota State at North Dakota State, 4 p.m. (Dan Gutowsky/John Gregory); FCS championship second round: Cal Poly at Sam Houston State, 4 p.m. (Jonathon Yardley/Forrest Conoly); FCS championship second round: Wagner at Eastern Washington, 6 p.m. (Larry Weir/Paul Sorensen/Keith Osso); Stony Brook at Montana State, 7 p.m. (Peter Young/Cory Chavous).
MSG Plus and MSG Plus HD — Kansas at West Virginia, 2:30 p.m. (Steve Physioc/Brian Baldinger/Jim Knox).
Pac-12 and Pac-12 HD — Nicholls State at Oregon State, 2:30 p.m. (Kevin Calabro/Glenn Parker/Ryan Nece).
ABC10 (WTEN) and ABC10 HD — Cincinnati at Connecticut, 3:30 p.m. (Bob Wischusen/Danny Kanell/Maria Taylor); Texas at Kansas State, 8 p.m. (Brad Nessler/Todd Blackledge/Holly Rowe).
CBS6 and CBS6 HD — SEC championship game: Alabama vs. Georgia, 4 p.m. (Verne Lundquist/Gary Danielson/Tracy Wolfson).
FOX23 and FOX23 HD — Big Ten championship game: Nebraska vs. Wisconsin, 8 p.m. (Gus Johnson/Charles Davis/Julie Alexandria and Petros Papadakis).
Here is the list of today’s college basketball games that are on the specialty channels, such as Big Ten and Pac-12 networks.
BTN and BTN HD — Nicholls State at Michigan State, noon; Xavier at Purdue, 2 p.m.; Northern Kentucky at Ohio State, 4:30 p.m.
Pac-12 and Pac-12 HD — Arkansas-Pine Bluff at Oregon, 6:30 p.m.; Sacramento State at Arizona State, 7:30 p.m.; Portland at Washington State, 10:30 p.m.
Time Warner Cable SportsNet and TWCSN HD — Hawaii at UNLV, 7 p.m.
The Bowl Championship Series Selection show will be on ESPN and ESPN HD at 8:30 p.m. Sunday. . . .
NBC Sports Network and NBCSN HD televises the Boston University-Boston College hockey game tonight at 7:30. It will also have the Vermont-Dartmouth matchup at 7 p.m. Wednesday. . . .
Houston meets Los Angeles for the MLS Cup at 4:30 p.m. today on ESPN and ESPN HD. . . .
The Syracuse men’s basketball team hosts Eastern Michigan at
7 p.m. Monday on ESPNU and ESPNU HD. . . .
Legendary Los Angeles Dodgers play-by-play announcer Vin Scully turns 85 on Monday.