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Charleston Dominates for Sixth CAA Victory, Wins at Campbell 90-67

Updated: Jan 29

Saturday's matchup between Charleston and Campbell was a reunion of sorts between head coaches Pat Kelsey and Kevin McGeehan. After going head-to-head for 8 seasons in the Big South at Winthrop and Campbell respectively, Saturday marked Kelsey and McGeehan's first meeting as coaches in the CAA.


Campbell entered this contest winning three of their last four games overall, seven of the last eight at home. According to Kenpom.com, this game was bound to be a clash of styles, as Charleston ranks 36th nationally in adjusted offensive tempo compared to 317th for Campbell. Campbell head coach Kevin McGeehan said pre-game that "controlling tempo" would be a key to victory.


On The Two Pointers Podcast recently, I did an episode with Coleman Crawley that discussed the mid-majors in college basketball this year that opponents should fear come March. This game confirmed my explanation for why Charleston deserves to be in that conversation. Charleston came out immediately with a sense of urgency on offense and a focus on defense. Their ball movement was incredible and even a defense like Campbell, which has been strong throughout the full shot clock this year, had trouble stopping it.


One of the few bright spots for the Camels in this contest was Jasin Sinani, who scored Campbell's first seven points of the contest. Back on December 30th in the Camel's final non-conference game at Saint Francis (PA), Sinani went off for 20 points, which at the time was his career high. He has been on a tear for the majority of CAA play averaging 11.8 points, 5.8 rebounds, 2.5 assists, and 0.6 steals per game on shooting splits of 46/40/88. Here is what Coach McGeehan had to say after the game when I asked him about Sinani's career day:

"Today he [Jasin Sinani] was one guy that I thought looked like he was competing his tail off from tip to horn. That's become who he is pretty consistently, someone you can count on. He'll make a mistake here and there, usually a mistake of aggression but he's become reliable."

 

When you couple the ball movement, the physicality, and the ability to play eleven players reliably, you are a nightmare to play against. Charleston did all of those things effectively and has the coaching expertise of Coach Kelsey and his staff to be prepared for these tough CAA opponents. In this game, they were a well-oiled machine despite only a six-point outing from Ante Brzovic. However, as we have seen versus UNC Wilmington and Towson, the Cougars are beatable, just not when they play like they did in this game.


Campbell and Charleston were previously conference opponents as part of the TAAC (ASUN). Charleston leads the series 14-4 all-time and Campbell's last win was in 1991, losing the last 12 matchups. The Camels have a chance to break that streak in a rematch on February 29th, 2024 at Charleston.


Campbell's next game is at Elon on Thursday, February 1st at 7 pm EST. College of Charleston's next game is their rematch versus UNC Wilmington at home on Thursday, February 1st at 7 pm EST. Follow along on X (@TrevorEverette) for more content and read my work for House of College Hoops and House Enterprise here.

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