Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Dancing with the Stars: Arkansas-Little Rock Trojans

Conference: Sun Belt

Record: 19-16, 7-9

Rankings: 210 (Kenpom), 200 (RPI), 209 (Sagarin)

Potential Seed: 16/Play-in

Best Players: Solomon Bozeman (16.5 ppg, 2.1 rpg, 2.7 apg), Alex Garcia-Mendoza (8.6 ppg)

Big Wins, Bad Losses: There isn't a lot of pretty on the roster of a team that finished fifth in their division of the Sun Belt. They have a win over Tulsa, but they also lost by 26 to Oral Roberts, by 34 to Missouri State, by 15 to Akron, etc.

Tendencies: Frankly, there isn't much that UALR does well. That's generally the case when you are a team buried at the bottom of the Sun Belt. Their best offense, generally speaking, is to give the ball to Bozeman and get out of the way. He's an excellent three point shooter and really excels at getting to the free throw line.

How They Got There: Not the way you typically expect. The Trojans lost three in a row and four of their last five games in the regular season. But they they got hot at the right time. Well, Bozeman did, at least. He averaged 22.0 ppg as UALR ran through the Sun Belt Tournament. In the finals against North Texas, he capped a seven point comeback in the final 90 seconds by hitting a tough, step-back three:

Outlook: The Trojans had a story book run through the Sun Belt tournament. They made a crazy comeback in the finals and won on a game-winning jumper with 1.5 seconds left. Enjoy it, because they won't be winning a game in the NCAA Tournament.

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