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Thursday, March 22, 2012
Why Kentucky needs Davis "on" vs Indiana


(10) Xavier vs (3) Baylor, Friday 7:15 ET
Baylor has outscored its opponents by 20 second-chance points, the most of any team in the 2012 Men’s Basketball Championship. The Bears entered the tournament averaging 12.4 second-chance points (third in Big 12), but allowed a Big 12-worst 11.4 second-chance points per game.

Xavier outscored Lehigh 15-6 in the final five minutes of the game and 17-6 in the last five minutes of the first half. During those two runs, the Musketeers shot 75 percent. The Mountain Hawks shot 21.1 percent in that span. Baylor has outscored its opponents by 13 points and is allowing 29.6 percent shooting during the final five minute of halves during the tournament.

Kenny Frease scored 22 points in the paint in Xavier’s win over Lehigh, tied for the most paint points in a game in this year’s tournament. (Ohio State’s Deshaun Thomas had 22 against Loyola-MD).

Xavier’s tournament opponents are shooting 26.9 percent outside the paint (T-19th in field), including 2-12 in the final five minutes.

Baylor is 23-1 when shooting at least 33 percent on 3-pointers this season (13-0 when making at least eight threes), but 6-6 when shooting below 33 percent. The Bears only have two players who make at least one 3-pointer per game: Pierre Jackson and Brady Heslip, both of whom shoot better than 40 percent beyond the arc.

All 14 of Heslip’s field goals in the tournament have been catch-and-shoot threes. He’s 0-for-3 off the dribble and 14-for-20 when shooting without a dribble. Heslip has scored 44 points in the tournament -- 42 on 3-pointers, the most points outside the paint by any player in the field.

(4) Indiana vs (1) Kentucky, Friday 9:45 ET
Due to foul trouble, Anthony Davis played just 24 minutes in Kentucky's 73-72 loss to Indiana on Dec. 10. Kentucky was not the same without Davis, outscored by 12 points in the 16 minutes that he sat.

Davis leads the nation with 166 blocked shots this season. More than 82 percent (137 of 166) of Davis’ blocks have come in the paint, but he has also blocked 14 3-point attempts.

Indiana is shooting 43.7 percent on 3-pointers this season, the second-highest in the country behind Northern Colorado. The Hoosiers are 10-0 when shooting better than 50 percent beyond the arc.

Their primary 3-point threats (Jordan Hulls, Christian Watford, Matt Roth) each make more than 44 percent of their 3-pointers.

Kentucky outscored Indiana, 50-24, in the paint on Dec. 10, but the Hoosiers have matched Kentucky point-for-point in the paint through two games of the tournament.

Kentucky leads the 2012 Men’s Basketball Championship with 46 transition points, scoring 69.5 percent of these points off missed shots.

In transition, Kentucky has five made 3-pointers, committed no turnovers and racked up 14 assists, all of which lead the tournament. Indiana has allowed 8.5 transition points per game in the tournament (T-31st most).