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Friday, January 27, 2012
Stats in the Paint: Weekend outlook

By ESPN Stats & Info

Peyton Williams/UNC/Getty ImagesNorth Carolina lost starting junior guard Dexter Strickland to a torn ACL, and replacing him will have
an effect both on the offensive and defensive sides of the floor.
Let’s get you warmed up for the "College GameDay" road show (live Saturday from Tucson at 11 a.m. ET on ESPN) by taking a look at some notes and nuggets from our college hoops advanced stats research team (a group we call the "Stats in the Paint" team).

Saturday’s Matchups
(5) Kansas at Iowa State, 2 ET on ESPN and ESPN3
Key stat: The Cyclones are the best team in all of college basketball in plays after timeouts, ranking first in points per play (1.14), adjusted field goal percentage (65.1) and scoring percentage (49.4). But Kansas is one of the best half-court defensive teams in the nation, ranking fifth overall in opponent field goal percentage (35.3) and seventh overall in opponent scoring percentage (33.4).

St. John’s at (6) Duke, Noon ET on ESPN and ESPN3
Key stat: Duke allows 31.4 points per game in the paint this season, which is the most in the ACC and the fourth most among schools from the "Power Six" Conferences. Duke allowed opponents to shoot 57.9 percent on two-point field goals in its three losses this season.

(16) Mississippi State at (13) Florida, 1:30 ET on ESPN3
Key stat: Mississippi State averages 33.6 PPG in the paint, second most in the SEC, but allows 31.7 PPG in the paint, which ranks last in the conference. However, the Bulldogs allow opponents to grab only 27.5 percent of their missed shots and score 8.5 second-chance points per game, both of which lead the SEC. Florida is averaging 13.2 second-chance points per game, the second most in the conference.

Game Plans
West Virginia -- Limit easy baskets
Syracuse scored a season-low 11 points off turnovers against Notre Dame -- its only loss so far. The Orange average 22.6 points off turnovers this season, which leads all schools in the power six conferences.

Florida -- Score on pick and rolls
Among the 102 teams with at least 100 shots off pick-and-roll plays this season, Florida’s effective field goal percentage (50.0) ranks fifth in the nation. Forty-seven percent of Florida’s shots off pick-and-roll plays have been 3-pointers, the second-highest percentage in the SEC. The Gators are making 40 percent of these threes, the highest percentage in the conference.

Arizona -- Get Kyle Fogg open shots
Fogg is shooting 44.4 percent from 3-point range this season, third in the Pac-12, and just 39.1 percent on 2-point field goals this season. Fogg also averages one point per field goal attempt when coming off screens this season.

Tell Me Something I Don’t Know
Among the topics Rece Davis, Digger Phelps, Jay Bilas and Hubert Davis plan to tackle:

How will North Carolina fare without Dexter Strickland?

The Tar Heels were at their best defensively with Strickland, the team’s best on-ball defender, on the floor. The Heels were allowing 64.1 points per 40 minutes with Strickland on the court, compared to 72.0 with him off.

Offensively, however, the Tar Heels have been more efficient with Strickland off the court, playing with Reggie Bullock at the off guard spot. North Carolina averaged 91.9 points per 40 minutes with Strickland off the floor. With him on the court the Heels averaged 80.6.

North Carolina’s offense has a different identity with Bullock, who leads the Heels with 93 3-point field goal attempts this season. When Strickland was on the floor, North Carolina attempted a 3 on just 17 percent of its shots. That number jumps to 30 percent when Strickland is on the bench.