NCAA Preview: Xavier MusketeersPosted by jstevrtc on March 18th, 2009
Xavier University (#4, East, Boise pod)
vs Portland State (#13)
Fri., 3/20 at 7:25 pm
Vegas line: +10.5
Location: Cincinnati, Ohio
Conference: Atlantic 10, at-large.
Coach: Sean Miller, hired 2004. Record at XU = 118-48
08-09 Record: 25-7 (12-4)
Last 12 Games: 7-5
Best Win: vs Memphis, 63-58, on 11/28/08.
Worst Loss: at Charlotte, 60-65, on 2/19/09.
Off. Efficiency Rating: 111.3 (44th)
Def. Efficiency Rating: 90.4 (18th)
Nuts ‘n Bolts
Star Player(s): B.J. Raymond (14.1 ppg, 4.1 rpg)
Unsung Hero: Dante’ Jackson – leads team in assists (2.8 apg) and steals (1.2 spg)
Potential NBA Draft Pick: n/a
Key Injuries: No significant injuries.
Depth: 31.4% (153th nationally); percentage of minutes played by reserves
Achilles Heel: Care of the basketball. XU averages 14.7 TO per game, ranking 252nd nationally.
Will Make a Deep Run if…: They stay focused. XU has a bad habit of taking a while to wake up for games.
Will Make an Early Exit if…: The threes aren’t falling. Xavier shoots 39.9% from beyond the arc, which is 13th in the nation.
Last Year Invited: 2008; lost to UCLA in an Elite 8 game, 57-76.
Streak: Four years.
Best NCAA Finish: The Elite 8 in 2004 and 2008.
Historical Performance vs. Seed (1985-present): +0.07
Distance to First Round Site: 1948 miles
School’s Claim to Fame: Xavier University graduates 94.7% of its athletes (all sports), which is third in the nation. Every basketball player since 1985 has graduated. The school’s name before it was changed — The Athenaeum.
School Wishes It Could Forget: That 3-point loss to Duke in the Elite 8 in 2004.
Prediction: Xavier has somehow stayed underneath the national radar most of the year, so they’ll be a popular pick to be upset in the first round; but in a 4 vs 13 game it’s hard not to pick a team that beat both Missouri and Memphis this season.
Major RTC stories: RTC Live: Atlantic 10 Tournament
Preview written by Rush The Court.