Boston University draws Kansas in opening round

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Boston University draws Kansas in opening round

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After winning the America East Conference championship in impressive fashion, the Terriers of Boston University have qualified for the NCAA Men’s Basketball Division I tournament.

BU has been on quite a roll since the New Year commenced, losing only four of their last 19 contests en route to adding another AEC championship to their collection. Senior John Holland played a pivotal role in the team’s recent success, with the New York native providing his own 14-point run to bring the Terriers back from a 15-point deficit against Stony Brook University in the AEC championship game.

Holland would prove to be the hero for BU in this contest, not only bringing his team back into the game, but also coming through at the free throw line with just seconds remaining and sealing a Terrier victory.

Holland was Boston’s MVP for the championship game, but the Terriers also worked well as a team, missing only five of 29 shots at the free-throw line and providing few chances for the Seawolves to catch up. Dom Morris also provided a key basket for the Terriers with just under a minute remaining, while also contributing eight rebounds over the course of the game.

On the shoulders of players like Morris and Holland, Boston University’s basketball program qualified for the NCAA tournament for the seventh time in the program’s history, drawing the unlucky No. 16 seed.

BU finds itself placed in the South West conference in a second-round match up against Division I powerhouse—and No. 1 seed—Kansas. The Jayhawks come into this upcoming contest fresh off winning the Big 12 Championship, and are looking to avenge last season’s tournament loss to Northern Iowa.

History is not on the side of the Terriers, as a No. 16 seed has never knocked off a No. 1 seed in the history of the tournament. Vegas odds have the Jayhawks as 22.5-point favorites heading into the game. And, with such a talented roster at the disposal of Kansas Head Coach Bill Self, there’s little reason to argue with the odds makers.

When looking at the statistics, both teams are almost equal in terms of points allowed. The difference, however, lies in the two teams’ scoring averages. (Kansas averages 17 more points per contest during the season than BU.)

In fact, every other meaningful statistic (outside of points allowed) is heavily in favor of Kansas. BU has not fared well when put to the test against the big names in Division I this season, either, having been blown out on the road against Kentucky and Villanova.

Give credit to the Terriers and their Head Coach, Patrick Chambers, for putting together an impressive 2011 run and taking home their conference title. With that said, it would be the greatest upset in the history of college basketball if Boston could somehow manage to edge out one of the top teams in the country.

Expect the talented John Holland and his teammates to put together a valiant effort against the Jayhawks, but ultimately all signs point to Kansas taking the victory and advancing into the next round of tournament play.

 

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