Saturday, March 27, 2010

Elite Eight Match-up Analysis; Summers POTD

NCAA Tourney: Regional Finals

SATURDAY, March 27
West Region

4:30 pm EDT: 5 Butler (31-4) vs. 2 Kansas St. (29-7)
EnergySolutions Arena (Salt Lake City, UT)

Key Players: Butler: Gordon Hayward (15.3 ppg, 8.2 rpg); Shelvin Mack (14.1 ppg, 3.1 apg); Kansas St.: Jacob Pullen (19.5 ppg); Denis Clemente (15.5 ppg)
Tournament Win Margin: Butler: 8; Kansas St. 12.3
Instant Analysis: Butler needs to stay in zone defense, work ball inside to Hayward and Howard; K-State's Pullen and Clemente best back-court in nation. K-State defense underrated.

East Region

7:00 pm EDT: 2 West Virginia (30-6) vs. 1 Kentucky (35-2)
Carrier Dome (Syracuse, NY)

Key Players: W. Virginia: Da'Sean Butler (17.4 ppg, 3.2 apg); Kevin Jones (13.2 ppg, 7.2 rpg); Kentucky: John Wall (16.6 ppg, 6.6 apg); DeMarcus Cousins (15.1 ppg, 9.9 rpg)
Tournament Win Margin: W. Virginia: 16.3; Kentucky: 25.3
Instant Analysis: Butler has much to do against killer KY defense; Wall and Cousins provide inside-outside game, suporting cast is phenomenal. KY has best record and largest win margin of any team left in tourney.

SUNDAY, March 28
Midwest Region

2:20 pm EDT 6 Tennessee (28-8) vs. 5 Michigan St. (27-8)
Edward Jones Dome (St. Louis, MO)

Key Players: Tenn.: Wayne Chism (12.6 ppg, 7.3 pg); Mich. St.: Raymar Morgan (11.5 ppg, 6.1 rpg); Durrell Summers (10.9 ppg, 4.6 rpg)
Tournament Win Margin: Tennessee: 7; Michigan St.: 4
Instant Analysis: Spartans have squeaked by, keeping games close, Summers has stepped up huge in tourney; Chism is do-it-all guy for Vols, but has talent all around him. will be a war on the boards, where Tenn. has advantage.

South Region

5:05 pm EDT 3 Baylor (28-7) vs. 1 Duke (32-5)
Reliant Stadium (Houston, TX)

Key Players: Baylor: LaceDarius Dunn (19.5 ppg); Ekpe Udoh (13.8 ppg, 9.7 rpg); Duke: Kyle Singler (18.1 ppg); Jon Scheyer (17.9 ppg); Nolan Smith (17.1 ppg)
Tournament Win Margin: Baylor: 16.6; Duke: 19
Instant Analysis: Duke's big three - Singler, Scheyer, Smith - have to continue to carry the load and are capable; Coach K's influence obvious; Baylor has nice inside-outside game, very rugged on the boards and in lane, could dominate. Dunn is the wild card. If he can score, Baylor has great opportunity.

Player of the Day, for Friday, March 26, 2010

Michigan State's Durrell Summers played huge in the Spartans' 59-52 win over Northern Iowa, advancing to the Elite Eight.

Often overlooked, Summers was the game's high-scorer and rebounder with 19 points and 7 boards. He's played a major role in all three Spartan wins in the tourney.

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