NIT 2022

Citizen X

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On to MSG for the semifinal game against Xavier, one with interesting historical antecedents. Of course, all of us here would like to see a repeat of the 2012 A10 championship. For their part, the X fans are hoping for something on the order of the 1958 semifinal. I think 1958 was the only time they won the NIT. Notice all the familiar past and present A10 teams that were in the bracket:

 

Jive36

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Scouting Report:
Xavier is a difficult team to trust the numbers on since their PG is out and have an interim coach. One thing I'm sure about is they will play faster than Virginia, but I dont expect them to try to run us off the floor. Without Scruggs they only play 7 guys if you count Hunter getting 8min/game in the NIT.

Key Players
Nunge is a stretch the floor 7 footer making 36.6% from 3 while being excellent around the basket as well and great at getting defenders in foul trouble
Freemantle is their backup PF and C who is more of a traditional big man but will shoot from 3 if left open. He plays about half their minutes and will play in a double big lineup
Colby Jones is a 3/4 slasher/garbage man that contributes on the glass and by getting to the free throw line
Nate Johnson is a 2/3 shooter that can be white hot or stone cold depending on the night. He has multiple 7-11 from 3 shooting games this year
Adam Kunkel - is a guard/wing that is having a good shooting season if you over commit to Johnson, Kunkel can make you pay
Dwon Odom - PG and a bit of an unknown. Similar to Posley his first year, he was playing some at the 2 and then would take over PG duties when Scruggs went out but is now full time PG. He is not a threat from the outside but has a nice mid range and around the basket game. Not the guy we want to send to the line as he is their best FT shooter

I cant say I have watch much Xavier basketball this year to know what they like to run. Judging by the players numbers I expect to see pick and pop actions for Nunge or dribble hand offs with him and Johnson/Kunkel. I anticipate we see the matchup zone from the Bonnies at times and see Shoon/AKC guard Freemantle at times when they play the double big lineup. This would mean we switch on Nunge and could give up a mismatch if Lofton or Holmes end up on him but would allow us to defend the perimeter better.

On the other end of the floor, I dont expect us to get a lot of Shoon lobs or for there to be many second chance points. I think Adaway and Holmes will need to have big games as X seems to struggle with guards getting to the basket and athletic wings. In their losses Xavier tends to give up a lot of 3s so that could be something to watch for early.
 

Bona03

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Dec 29, 2019
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Now that the NIT is behind us, time to wait and see how the roster takes shape for next year. I know we have all heard various things about 1,2 or all 5 coming back but the fact is nobody knows shit until its official. It will be interesting for sure.

The Garden was a lot of fun. That was the best crowd I have been a part of. The 2012 Nashville was close but we owned MSG. I can only imagine how much more nuts it would have been last night had we been there.
 
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