East Region - Second Round
(26-8, 12-6 Big Ten)
Michigan State Spartans
What You Need To Know: The Spartans are talented, but they’ve been beaten up all season leading to an inconsistent campaign. However, they’re getting healthy and hot at the right time, and if anything, now they appear to be fresh with the key parts back and rolling. The duo of Gary Harris and Adreian Payne provide an inside-outside threat that’s tough to match up with. Harris is a confident scorer who is great off the dribble but also can knock down the long three, and he's a strong defender as well. Payne has been banged up this year, but healthy again, he’s a man in the post and can dominate on the glass. Offensively, he has also has developed some range, and he isn't afraid to pull the trigger if given some room. Branden Dawson is a versatile swingman, and senior guard Keith Appling is a good passer and defender who’s at his best when he’s pushing the tempo. As always under Tom Izzo, MSU is a quality defensive team that will play with a chip on its shoulder.
Strengths: Assists, Three Point Shooting, Rebounding
Weaknesses: Turnovers, Free Throws
(25-9, 14-2 CAA)
Delaware Fightin' Blue Hens
What You Need To Know: Delaware earned its fifth trip to the NCAA Tournament with a 75-74 win over William & Mary in the CAA title game helped by one of the best offensive attacks in the country. The Fighting’ Blue Hens averaged nearly 80 points a game, but they don't really worry about a go-to scorer. Instead, they boast a wicked balance with both Devon Saddler and Davon Usher averaging better than 19 points a game. Jarvis Threatt chips in 18.1 points per outing while also doing good work hitting the glass. Threatt also is a fantastic passer, doing a great job of getting the ball to his teammates in a position to score. Forward Carl Baptiste is Delaware's biggest player at 6-9, and he's a solid scorer who also can run the floor. Defense, along with size, are the biggest issues for this up-tempo squad.
Strengths: Scoring, Turnover Margin, Three Point Shooting
Weaknesses: Assists, Rebounding, Scoring Defense