This is the last 'know your enemy' this season as basketball comes to an end. Let's end this right with a NIT Championship!
Press release from the Shockers website.
The Shockers come in at 28-8, 14-4 in the MVC, and off a beatdown of Washington State in the semifinals of the NIT (75-44). I caught the 2nd half of the game... I thought it was more Washington State not being able to buy a basket than Wichita St playing lights out that caused the blowout. Wichita does play hellacious defense which probably led to Wazzu's poor outing.
Still, this is the team we need to get by to win it all and proclaim ourselves the 69TH BEST TEAM IN COLLEGE BASKETBALL! Okay, that's not really accurate... all of the semifinal teams are better than the all but one of the first 4 in the NCAA tournament and most of the automatic bids.
Outside of that 2nd half Tuesday and the 2nd half of their game vs College of Charleston I haven't seen much of them. In their last game... like I said it was more Wazzu not hitting shots. Their game vs CoC was a different story as they were hitting everything from the perimeter. They jumped out to a huge lead only to let Charleston come back and make it respectable.
Roughly 36% of their shots come from 3... at a 35% clip. Not scary, not horrible. TJ Durley is only guy that averages double figures (11.2) and they only average 72.9 PPG. David Kyles, Ben Smith, and Darrin Hatch are statistically their best 3 point shooters.
Wichita State is a defensive minded team like us. We give up 59.2 PPG, they allow 61.8. Don't expect this game to go into the 70s... unless it's double OT.
They run in a lot of players... we need to keep Green out of foul trouble as he should be able to dominate inside.
The one weakness in the Shockers D is guarding beyond the arc. We need Tony Mitchell and Charvez to exploit that as they allow 34% beyond the arc.
Prediction: we're going to prove that the Paradise Jam was a tougher tournament than the NIT. Charvez has a final game to remember with Green and Releford dominating their positions. Alabama is your NIT champs in front of a mostly hostile crowd of Shocker fans. Tide by 9 as we come home... CHAMPIONS!
Game time is 7PM EST (6PM CST) on ESPN.
If there are any typos, please forgive me as this was written really early in the morning.