West Virginia vs UAB/Clemson: Preview & Prediction

    
March 15th, 2011
(5) West Virginia vs. (12) UAB/Clemson

East Region - Tampa

March 17 - 12:15 CBS
 

Play in this grouping begins on Tuesday with UAB and Clemson meeting in Dayton as part of the "First Four". The Blazers have been raked over the coals when it comes to their inclusion in the field, but it's pretty obvious that the selection committee gave them credit for rising above the ruckus to win the regular season title in Conference USA. Senior point guard Aaron Johnson is among the national leaders in assists per game. Clemson's "finishing kick", which included wins over both Boston College and Virginia Tech, likely got them in. Their opponent will be West Virginia, who finished in the top half of the wildly competitive Big East. The Mountaineers have dealt with their share of issues, from Dan Jennings leaving the team to Casey Mitchell being suspended. But they've found a way to win games with the tough trio of Truck Bryant, Kevin Jones and Joe Mazzulla leading the way.

 

CHN Team Capsules (w/ stats, records, and rankings):

Clemson

UAB

 

Stars to Watch:

F Kevin Jones (West Virginia)

G Aaron Johnson (UAB)

F Jerai Grant (Clemson)

 

Vegas Odds:

Clemson -5 (vs UAB. No line for subsequent game vs West Virginia)

 

Predictions:

RealTimeRPI: Clemson 67-UAB 65

KenPom: Clemson 61-UAB 58

CollegeHoops.net Betting Pick: UAB

 

Faces Winner Of: Kentucky vs Princeton