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Coppin State men looking to better home record in second half

Coppin State UniversityMid-Eastern Athletic ConferenceMaryland Eastern Shore HawksMorgan State University

Fang Mitchell doesn't like Coppin State's Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference home record, and he doesn't know what to do about it. 

"We're 2-2 in the conference at home, and that is not what I expected at this time," the coach said. 

Coppin State (8-14), in sixth place in the MEAC, is 3-2 in conference play on the road. The Eagles will need to play better at home if they want to improve their seeding for the MEAC tournament, which starts on March 10.

“We haven’t played as well at home as we have on the road,” Mitchell said. “I’m basically trying to figure out why. It’s a situation where I know we’re capable of winning these games, but we just have to play better to see those type of results."

The Eagles shoot 40 percent from the field at home and on the road in conference games. However, they shoot 37.3 percent from 3-point range, 75.7 percent on free throws and score 69.6 points per game on the road; 29.4 percent from 3-point range, 64.1 percent from the free-throw line, and average 64.5 points per game at home. 

Another possible factor for the home disappointment is the split between first- and second-half performance. The Eagles have been outscored by their opponents 804-697 in the first half this season. But they have scored 813 total points in their second halves. 

“It probably goes back to preparation,” Mitchell said. “It’s going to take sometime to discover what the problem is. But we don’t have a lot of time. So I’m just going to keep knocking at the door until we get the results I’m looking for.”

Of the Eagles' remaining seven games, four are home, and two are in-state at Morgan State (8-12, 6-2) and Maryland Eastern Shore (3-16, 1-6). The Eagles, who have already travelled over 14,000 miles this season, have just one long road trip left, to play Florida A&M (8-14, 4-5) on Feb. 15. 

Like other coaches who see a disparity between results at home and on the road, Mitchell has debated changing Coppin State’s pregame routine. 

“I talked about taking their phones, “Mitchell said. “It’s what we do on the road. The phones are their life. That is something I have contemplated. But I’m just going to try and work it out in reason."

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