2008 NCAA Tournament Capsule: Texas A&M
Texas A&M Aggies
Big 12 (24-10, 8-8)
Big Wins: 1/30 Texas (80-63), 2/2 Oklahoma (60-52), 3/5 at Baylor (71-57)
Bad Losses: 1/16 at Texas Tech (53-68), 2/16 Oklahoma State (54-59), 2/23 Nebraska (59-65)
Last NCAA Appearance: 2007, Sweet Sixteen loss to Memphis
Coach: Mark Turgeon (2-1 in 1 NCAA appearance)
Donald Sloan, Sophomore, Guard, 9.4 ppg, 3.4 apg, 4.0 rpg
Dominique Kirk, Senior, Guard, 8.6 ppg, 3.5 apg, 3.4 rpg
Josh Carter, Junior, Guard, 11.9 ppg, 4.0 rpg
Joseph Jones, Senior, Forward, 10.4 ppg, 5.1 rpg
DeAndre Jordan, Freshman, Center, 8.2 ppg, 6.2 rpg, 1.3 bpg
Derrick Roland, Sophomore, Guard, 5.8 ppg, 1.1 apg
Bryan Davis, Sophomore, Forward, 8.6 ppg, 4.9 rpg, 1.1 bpg
Why They Can Surprise:
Texas A&M has a couple dominating big men in senior Joseph Jones and freshman DeAndre Jordan. Both are solid post scorers and Jones will even occasionally step outside and hit a three-ball. That is good for stretching out the defense, but sometimes Jones will be a little too much perimeter orientated. Jordan, a seven-footer, is a better shot blocker and can be an intimidating presence on the defensive end.
The Aggies should play through their big men a lot more than they do, but they still do a decent job sharing the ball in general. It is just that many times that sharing the ball results in a bad shot. Dominique Kirk and Donald Sloan are both decent ballhandlers and average over three assists per game. Kirk spends more time on the perimeter, but Sloan does a decent job using his strength and speed to get to the basket.
Why They Can Disappoint:
Usually Texas A8M will score quite a few points, but they have to work really hard for most of them. This is not a team that will get easy buckets off steals or make a lot of three-pointers. Since they can be unwilling to get the ball inside to their big men at times, the team does not even get to the free-throw line very often. And when they do they are one of the worst shooting teams from the charity stripe in the nation. The lack of depth can be a concern as well. Yet, foul trouble is rarely a problem in the frontcourt and the Aggies have a quality sixth man in 6-9 forward Bryan Davis.
Who To Watch:
Do-it-all wing Josh Carter is the team’s top scorer. He is not the type of player that will score 25 points, but he is pretty consistent game in and game out. Carter is easily the biggest threat from long range on the team, but he will use his 6-7 frame to find shots around the basket. His size and rebounding ability is one reason why Texas A&M is one of the best rebounding teams in the nation, but Carter might have to become more of a leader on the floor to help his team through their all too often scoring droughts.
By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 71.8 (118th in nation, 6th in conference)
Scoring Defense: 61.4 (32, 3)
Field-Goal Percentage: 46.6 (55, 2)
Field-Goal Defense: 38.7 (12, 2)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 5.8 (244, 10)
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 35.4 (151, 5)
Free-Throw Percentage: 63.5 (306, 12)
Rebound Margin: 7.3 (9, 3)
Assists Per Game: 13.4 (158, 6)
Turnovers Per Game: 12.8 (53, 3)
Joel’s Bracket Says: First Round loss to BYU
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