(1) Kansas vs. (12) Richmond
Senior NBA Writer & College Basketball Editor
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(1) Kansas Jayhawks
Much like their first game against the Boston University Terriers, the Kansas Jayhawks needed over a half to get going. However, once they did the Illinois Fighting Illini couldn’t keep up as they saw their season end with a 73-59 defeat. The Morris brothers were absolutely dominant; Markieff had a game-high 24 points with 12 boards while Marcus matched his 12 boards with 17 points of his own. Defensively the Jayhawks did a very nice job containing future pro point guard Demetri McCamey, who only scored six points while dishing out seven assists with four turnovers. Tyshawn Taylor shot the ball well, keeping the defense honest so the Morris brothers could wreck havoc. The Richmond Spiders are a team who Kansas will want to get off to a good start against in order to keep their confidence from growing because if it does the Jayhawks could be in for a real fight. The Morris brothers have to be the focal point of the offense from opening tip and throughout the course of the contest.
(12) Richmond Spiders
The Richmond Spiders made the clock strike 12 on the Morehead State Eagle’s Cinderella run, eliminating them 65-48. Just two days after having success against one of the nations’ top defensive teams in Louisville, the Eagles couldn’t get anything going against the Spiders. They were held to 37% shooting from the field and 14% from deep. Kenneth Faried had a decent outing with 11 points and 13 rebounds, but Justin Harper’s impact on the game was much bigger as he went for 19 points with six rebounds and two assists. Although not on fire like he was against Vanderbilt, Kevin Anderson was solid with 14 points three rebounds and four assists. In the Sweet 16 they will go up against the very formidable Kansas Jayhwaks. Slowing the Morris brothers down like they did Faried is the only way they’ll have a chance to pull off the major upset. They also have to be very sound defensively against the talented perimeter players of Kansas.
HOOPSWORLD’s Pick: Kansas. The Jayhawks have yet to play their best basketball yet; with a national championship four wins away they’ll kick it up a notch and get past Richmond.
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