Saturday, June 9, 2012

Tale of the Tape Tips In Favor of the Irish

During the postseason you hear the adage, "You can throw statistics out the window", a lot. In most instances that is true, especially in a single elimination event like the NCAA Basketball Tournament. But when it comes to Thursday's First Round game between 5th seed Notre Dame and 12th seed George Mason, it is hard to overlook.

Here are the up-to-date Division I NCAA Basketball Statistics leading up to the Tournament:

Scoring Offense - Notre Dame 14th (80.6); George Mason 146th (69.9)

Scoring Defense - Notre Dame 211th (70.5); George Mason 42nd (62.3)

Scoring Margin - Notre Dame 26th (10.1); George Mason 48th (7.6)

Field Goal % - Notre Dame 79th (45.9); George Mason 42nd (46.9)

FG % Defense - Notre Dame 55th (41.2); George Mason 83rd (41.9)

3pt. Field Goal % - Notre Dame 5th (41.0); George Mason 161st (35.2)

Free Throw % - Notre Dame 43rd (73.6); George Mason 127th (70.4)

Rebound Margin - Notre Dame 20th (5.8); George Mason 47th (4.1)

Assists per game - Notre Dame 1st (18.9); George Mason 165th (13.2)

Personal Fouls per game - Notre Dame 8th (15.0); George Mason 14th (15.5)

Assist-to-Turnover Ratio - Notre Dame 2nd (1.46); George Mason 69th (1.11)

In what will be a hard fought contest, individuals could dominate the outcome, as well as, a good supporting cast. Below are the statistics for individuals that can change the course of Thursday's game.

Points - Luke Harangody 25th (20.8)

Field Goal % - Will Thomas 7th (63.9)

Rebounds - Harangody 18th (10.2), Rob Kurz 100th (7.5); Thomas 13th (10.5)

3pt. Field Goal % - Kyle McAlarney 13th (44.8), Kurz 92nd (39.8)

Free Throw % - Kurz 42nd (85.1)

Assists - Tory Jackson 15th (6.1)

Both the Irish and Patriots have dominate big men in Big East Player of the Year Harangody and Mr. Reliable Thomas; but Notre Dame should do well with a little deeper bench and great outside shooters. If George Mason is going to concentrate on the inside and deny Harangody looks, the Irish will have some open looks behind the arc with McAlarney, Kurz, Zellar, and Ayers, to name a few.

Tomorrow we'll take a look at the X-factors for both the Irish and the Patriots.

As always GO IRISH!

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