NIT Bracketology - Intro to the final weekend--ChicagoNow.com
Comparing NIT Brackets--ChicagoNow.com
Power Rankings: The Auto-Bidders--Luke Winn at the Tourney
3. BUTLER (Horizon League)
23-9 (13-5), 54th in efficiency
There was an “Old Butler” vibe to its Horizon tourney final win over Milwaukee, in that it was highlighted by clutch late-game play and stingy overall defense. But the Bulldogs haven’t been doing that all year — particularly the defense part. They rank 75th overall in adjusted defensive efficiency after finishing last season fifth. They allowed more than one point per possession in 10 of 20 Horizon games, compared to just three of 20 during the title-runner-up season, as the following graph shows:
Butler Defensive Efficiency
That kind of regression is hard to ignore, and unless they cut down on fouling (there’s been a 4.9 percent rise in their free-throw rate since last year) and create a few more turnovers, it’s hard to envision them winning multiple NCAA tournament games.
NCAA Tournament’s Top 10 Dream First Round Match-Ups--Lost Letterman
4. Butler vs. George Mason: The Battle of Cinderellas
George Mason went to the 2006 Final Four and Butler “pulled a George Mason” by nearly winning the national title last season. What kind of potion would this match-up brew with the two most notorious giant slayers of the past decade going head-to-head in the first round? With the energy and tenacity each team plays with, it’d be a classic. Butler’s projected as a 10 seed, Mason an 8, so they’re close enough to one another that it’s worth wishing for as a potential 7-10 match-up.
Utah Jazz: Love, Beasley lead Timberwolves in rout of Jazz--Deseret News
Gordon Hayward scored 18 points for the new-look Jazz, who have lost 10 of their last 13 games and are falling out of the playoff picture in the Western Conference.
Utah Jazz suffer crushing defeat to Minnesota--Deseret News
Jazz veterans might take a cue from the play of the team's youngsters.
Three Utah rookies scored season/career-highs, with Gordon Hayward leading the Jazz with 18 points, Jeremy Evans throwing down 14 in spectacular dunking fashion and NBA newcomer Marcus Cousin chipping in four in his second game. Derrick Favors added nine points and eight boards.
"They (rookies) played hard. They made some mistakes, but they did play hard," said Corbin, trying to find a silver lining on the lousy night. "They played with some effort and some sense of urgency — I like to see that. But overall, the effort of the entire team was disappointing."
Added Hayward about his professional milestone: "The win is all that I care about, and we lost so it doesn't matter."
Jazz notes: Defensive woes continue to be troubling--Salt Lake Tribune
Jazz rookie forward Gordon Hayward poured in a team- and season-high 18 points on 6-of-8 shooting while knocking down all five of his 3-point attempts. But the big numbers meant little to Hayward, who was as frustrated as anyone in Utah’s locker room after the defeat.
“The win is all that I care about and we lost, so it doesn’t matter,” Hayward said.
Jazz blown out by Love-led Timberwolves--Salt Lake Tribune
Looking at potential first-round opponents--Victory Firelight
Bulldogs Drop Cleveland State, Earn Title Shot--ButlerSports.com
Cleveland State women's basketball team falls to Butler despite Shawnita Garland's 20 points--Cleveland Plain Dealer
Vikings Fall to Butler in Semifinals, 68-54--csuvikings.com
PRESS RELEASE: Norris Cole Named To Two All-District Teams--Let's Go Vikes!
Norris Cole Named To Two All-District Teams--csuvikings.com
Women's basketball: Phoenix steamrolls into Horizon final--Green Bay Press Gazette
No. 13 UWGB vs. Wright State (Horizon League semifinal--UWGB Basketball
Another Dominant Home Effort Sends Green Bay to Title Game--uwgbathletics.com
Postseason Props: Bauer Dominates Second Half of Semifinal--uwgbathletics.com
(1) Green Bay Battles (2) Butler for Horizon League Championship--uwgbathletics.com
Panthers' Focus Turns Toward NIT Preparations--uwmpanthers.com
WSU women fall short of Horizon final--Dayton Daily News
WSU women fall in league tournament semifinal--Wright State University Sports
Women Fall to #13/11 Green Bay in Horizon League Semifinals--wsuraiders.com
#13/11 Green Bay, Butler to meet for Horizon League Women's Basketball Championship--Horizon League Network