- Doug Harris Contributing Writer
Wright State coach Scott Nagy couldn’t find any positive aspects about his team’s performance in a blowout loss at Western Kentucky on Saturday.
But even if the game was more competitive, Nagy probably still would have had trouble seeing any silver lining from that outing.
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“Generally, that’s not my M.O. I see the things that need to be fixed. And right now, I see a lot of things that need to be fixed,” he said.
The Raiders (4-4) took a four-game winning streak into the road trip. That was part of the problem. Nagy believes they became complacent and forgot about the defensive intensity they developed during their hot streak.
The Hilltoppers shot 51.9 percent from the field and 41.2 on 3-pointers.
“We get satisfied way too quickly,” he said. “We won a few games in a row, and everyone is going around patting you on the back. The fact of the matter is, we were 4-3 going into our last game. They think, ‘We’ve won four in a row.’ No, we’re 4-3. Are we OK with 4-3? I hope not, but we certainly played like it.”
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For a team that tends to be inconsistent in the effort department, the Raiders might struggle to get revved up to play Division-II Ohio Valley at 7 p.m. Tuesday. The Scots are 1-3 after finishing 2-24 last season.
But any player showing signs of slacking off can expect a quick hook from Nagy.
“When we play these guys, we don’t say, ‘Hey, we’re playing a Division II team.’ They’re a college basketball team. These guys were really good high school players, and they’re college basketball players for a reason. We need to respect them and play like it,” Nagy said.
The Raiders played Division-III Tiffin earlier in the season. They also scheduled a pair of D-II teams last season in Ohio Dominican and Urbana.
Those games usually are mismatches, and Nagy would prefer to play all D-I foes. But the Raiders need to dip into the lower divisions to make sure they get enough non-conference games at the Nutter Center.
“It ends of being an important piece in putting a home schedule together. Otherwise, you’re just on the road all the time and beating your team up,” Nagy said.
High-major schools don’t have that problem. They can offer hearty paydays to line up as many home games as they want, but Wright State doesn’t have that luxury.
“You don’t see a team like Ohio State playing the number of road games we have to play. So, in order for us to put a home schedule together where we try to get 50-50, at this point we’re going to have to have one or two of these games,” Nagy said.
“People say, ‘Why are they playing them?’ There’s two options: either you play the home game or you go on the road, and it’s hard to win non-conference road games.”
The Raiders host Kent State at 3 p.m. Saturday and then finish their non-league schedule with road games against Toledo, Missouri State and Georgia Tech.
“If you can be a real tough team, that can be a good thing,” Nagy said of the road stretch, meaning they can be RPI-builders. “But we’re not there yet.
“When you go on the road against a good team, you have to believe. And I don’t think we believe. There are many, many players on our team who I believe in more than they believe in themselves.”