“It’s just another business trip,” Dayton guard Kyle Davis said before a 2016 game against Northwestern in his hometown of Chicago.
“Obviously, we’re going there for business,” Dayton forward Luke Fabricius said before the 2011 Orlando Old Spice Classic.
Do not. 21 Dayton (2-0) rose three places in the AP’s first regular-season poll to start its next business trip on Monday when it flew west. It plays UNLV (2-0) on Tuesday at 11 p.m. at Tarkanian Court at the Thomas and Mack Center in Las Vegas. This is the time starting at 8:00 PM Pacific Time.
It was Dayton’s first road game and the latest start of the season, based on Ohio State time. The Flyers won’t have much time to adjust to the timing changes, though Grant isn’t too concerned about that.
“In this day and age, our players are international,” he said. “We have some guys who are used to playing AAU basketball every day. I don’t think that’s going to be a major issue. We have to understand it’s different, but hopefully we can get out of there early, get a good night’s sleep, get some rest, and get ready .”
Dayton hasn’t traveled this far west for a game since December 2019 against St. Mary’s in Phoenix, Arizona. It also played in the Maui Invitational that season.
For Sherlock Holmes, of Goodyear, Arizona, it will be the closest he has come to home in his college career.
“It’s going to be a great experience,” he said. “I’m excited to be back out West. I haven’t been to (Las Vegas) for a minute since I’ve been in Arizona. I think our team is going to love it.”
UNLV was selected sixth out of 11 teams in the Mountain West Conference preseason voting. It ended last season at 18-14, the first game for coach Kevin Kruger. It hasn’t won 20 games since the 2017-18 season and hasn’t played in an NCAA tournament since making its sixth appearance in seven seasons in 2013.
Kruger’s first team has lost top scorers Bryce Hamilton (21.8 ppg), Donovan Williams (12.7 ppg) and Royce Hamm (8.6 ppg), and has a 20-year-old record this season. 8 new scholarship players. One of those returnees, Keshon Gilbert, scored 23 points in Friday’s 88-63 victory over Incarnate Word.
The team’s four leading scorers for the next two games are all new transfer players this season: Jackie Johnson III (Duquesne); EJ Harkless (Oklahoma); Luis Rodriguez (Mississippi) State); and Elijah Parquet (Colorado).
UNLV had 53 turnovers in its first two games and was fifth in the nation in turnovers per game (26.5).
Kruger said Saturday that he would like to see his team improve in offensive rebounding and 3-point defense.
“I think we’ve done a really good job of helping each other, even tonight, I think we’ve done a really good job, maybe even on the first failure,” he said. “But it’s a second effort, consistent effort, multiple rotations, maybe we’re a little tired. Our players are a little longer than we hoped, or we’ll be in the future. But probably I think those two areas have to be addressed. “We have to understand, especially on Tuesday, that if we don’t get those two things sorted out soon, we’re going to get a good wake-up call.”
Dayton at UNLV, 11 p.m., CBS Sports Network, 1290, 95.7