Why they Will: Kelvin Sampson’s program has been one of the most consistent teams in the country, with just two losses (Temple,UCF) this season this and wins over LSU, Utah State, and Cincinnati.The Cougars also lead the American Athletic Conference with a 38.2 percent clip from the 3-point line.
Why they Wont: They don’t have an offensive alternative when Corey Davis and Armoni Brooks are off. In the Temple loss, the duo went 6-for-23, and Brooks went 1-for-5 from the 3-point line in Saturday’s loss to UCF. If they’re in a rut in the NCAA tournament and those two are struggling, who will save them?
They also forgot to mention that we have a win over UCF on our resume, as well. We are 2-1, so far, vs UC and UCF.
UNLEASH Nate Hinton!!! I think he’s holding back or being told to.
If the shooters are not making their shots teams will stop respecting the drive and kick-out that we do. They will start collapsing on the driver and shut down the lane. We have to make our jump shots/3-pointers to have a chance to win against good teams. There are a few teams in conference that we can beat with our paint game but most won’t make it to the second round. In the NCAA, it depends on who we draw as to whether or not we can stink from the outside and still win Just my opinion.
This assumes that our shooting from this point forward will be so bad in all our games that teams are justified in not contesting outside shots during the tourney. There’s no way that will happen. I have never seen a situation where in-game outside shooting was bad so teams started sagging off normally good shooters. That kind of defensive scheming doesn’t happen that quickly. If it does, we would destroy them though. I dare teams to sag off and leave Corey and Armoni wide open. I’m willing to bet Armoni’s struggles from deep lately are due to the fact that teams guard him VERY aggressively on the perimeter. If they start giving him space, he’s going to go off.
Whether or not it happens depends on who we play. Cincinnati can do it and we play them at their place in 6 days. UCF has already shown they can do it. Temple could potentially do it but Brady plays well inside against them usually. AAC tourney is in Memphis so I wouldn’t be surprised if Memphis plays their best ball of the year during the tournament so they could be trouble. And then there are the free throws. If we learned anything Saturday, I hope it was how to play relaxed, hard but relaxed, in big games.
I’m not sure what you mean by Cincy, UCF and potentially Temple can “do it.” Do what? Beat us? They certainly can if we have an off game. I don’t think any of those teams will sag off our shooters in order to do so, though. In fact, Temple and UCF beat us precisely because they played great perimeter defense. Armoni had trouble getting shots off over longer defenders against both Temple and UCF. The inside game was mostly gone against UCF because of Tacko, but I do think we should have been more aggressive in there. That’s something Jarreau is really good at. He was somewhat aggressive, but could have been even more aggressive. There’s no excuse for the FT shooting and that was an anomaly this year. I’m just chalking that up to a bad game. And I think you could be right that the guys were just tight because of all the Game Day buzz. I think they’ll relax and turn it around Thursday night.