NCAA Midwest Region Capsules

March 16, 2014 

1. Wichita State

Record: 34-0. Last 10: 10-0

Bid: Automatic. RPI: 5

Best win: 70-65 at Saint Louis

Scouting the Shockers: Nation’s only undefeated team led by conference player of the year Fred VanVleet (12.1 points per game, 5.3 assists per game, 3.9 rebounds per game).

2. Michigan

Record: 25-8. Last 10: 8-2.

Bid: At-large. RPI: 9.

Best win: 77-70 at Wisconsin

Scouting the Wolverines: Michigan won its first Big Ten regular-season title since 1986 without the services of injured star forward Mitch McGary.

3. Duke

Record: 26-8. Last 10: 7-3.

Bid: At-large. RPI: 6.

Best win: 79-69 vs. Michigan

Scouting the Blue Devils: Duke continues to labor on defense, but freshman forward Jabari Parker (19.2 ppg) and Rodney Hood (16.5 ppg) are good enough to carry the Blue Devils into the Sweet 16.

4. Louisville

Record: 29-5. Last 10: 9-1.

Bid: Automatic. RPI: 18.

Best win: 58-57 at then-No. 7 Cincinnati

Scouting the Cardinals: Senior guard Russ Smith (17.5 ppg, 4.8 apg, 3.5 rpg) led team to share of regular-season title and tournament championship.

5. Saint Louis

Record: 26-6. Last 10: 6-4

Bid: At-large. RPI: 18

Best win: 64-62 vs. Virginia Commonwealth.

Scouting the Billikens: Saint Louis slumped late – losing three straight games and then falling in the Atlantic 10 tournament to St. Bonaventure – after being ranked as high as 10th. Guard Jordaire Jett averages 13.8 points and 4.7 assists.

6. Massachusetts

Record: 24-8. Last 10: 6-4.

Bid: At-large. RPI: 20

Best win: 81-65 vs. New Mexico.

Scouting the Minutemen: Chaz Williams is just 5-foot-9, but he averages 15.6 points, 7.0 assists and is one of the nation’s top point guards.

7. Texas

Record: 23-10. Last 10: 5-5

Bid: At-large. RPI: 36.

Best win: 81-69 vs. then-No. 6 Kansas

Scouting the Longhorns: Back in NCAA tournament for 15th time, behind Jonathan Holmes (13.2 ppg, 7.3 rpg) and Cameron Ridley (8.1 rpg).

8. Kentucky

Record: 24-10. Last 10: 5-5.

Bid: At-large. RPI: 15.

Best win: 73-66 vs. Louisville

Scouting the Wildcats: Youthful Kentucky has been inconsistent but has several talented freshmen (as usual), including forward Julius Randle, who averages 15.4 points and 10.5 rebounds.

9. Kansas State

Record: 20-12. Last 10: 5-5

Bid: At-large. RPI: 47

Best win: 85-82 vs. then-No. 7 Kansas

Scouting the Wildcats: Making fifth straight NCAA tournament appearance behind freshman all-conference pick Marcus Foster (15.4 ppg, 3.3 rpg, 2.4 apg).

10. Arizona State

Record: 21-11. Last 10: 5-5.

Bid: At-large. RPI: 45.

Best win: 69-66 (2OT) against Arizona.

Scouting the Sun Devils: Coach Herb Sendek’s team sputtered down the stretch but has a top point guard in Jahii Carson (18.6 ppg, 4.5 apg).

11. Iowa

Record: 20-12. Last 10: 3-7

Bid: At-large. RPI: 53

Best win: 84-74 at Ohio State

Scouting the Hawkeyes: Iowa faded badly down the regular-season stretch, losing six of its final seven games, including a quick exit from the Big Ten tournament.

11. Tennessee

Record: 21-12. Last 10: 6-4

Bid: At-large. RPI: 41

Best win: 87-52 vs. Virginia.

Scouting the Volunteers: Tennessee returns to the tournament for the first time since 2011. Guard Jordan McRae averages 18.8 points and 2.6 assists.

12. N.C. State

Record: 21-13. Last 10: 5-5

Bid: At-large. RPI: 53.

Best win: 66-63 vs. Syracuse.

Scouting the Wolfpack: ACC Player of the Year T.J. Warren (24.9 ppg) has been sensational since the calendar hit February. He will have to continue his Danny Manning impersonation to carry the Wolfpack past the opening weekend of the tournament.

12. Xavier

Record: 21-12. Last 10: 5-5

Bid: At-large. RPI: 49.

Best win: 75-59 vs. then-No. 9 Creighton

Scouting the Bulldogs: Tied for third in first season in Big East behind sophomore Semaj Christon (17.0 ppg, 4.1 apg, 2.8 rpg).

13. Manhattan

Record: 25-7. Last 10: 9-1

Bid: Automatic. RPI: 62

Best win: Beat Iona twice

Scouting the Jaspers: Returns to NCAAs for first time in decade behind George Beamon (19.2 ppg) and Rhamel Brown (3.8 blocks per game).

14. Mercer

Record: 26-8. Last 10: 8-2

Bid: Automatic. RPI: 80

Best win: 79-76 at Mississippi

Scouting the Bears: Conference player of the year Langston Hall (14.7 ppg, 5.6 apg) leads team to first NCAA berth since 1985.

15. Wofford

Record: 20-12. Last 10: 8-2

Bid: Automatic. RPI: 156

Best win: 63-59 at Elon

Scouting the Terriers: Karl Cochran (15.7 ppg, 5.0 rpg) leads team to third Southern Conference tournament title, NCAA appearance in past five years.

16. Cal Poly

Record: 13-19. Last 10: 5-5.

Bid: Automatic. RPI: 212.

Best win: 61-59 against Cal State-Northridge.

Scouting the Mustangs: The surprise Big West champions are led by forward Chris Eversley, who averages 13.6 points and 7.1 rebounds.

16. Texas Southern

Record: 19-14. Last 10: 9-1.

Bid: Automatic. RPI: 260

Best win: 78-73 vs. Prairie View A&M

Scouting the Tigers: Slides into NCAA tournament for fifth time, first since 2003, behind conference player of the year Aaric Murray (21.7 ppg, 7.7 rpg).

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