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Home > 2012 NCAA Tournament > NCAA Tournament Predictions: Midwest 2. Kansas vs. 15. Detroit

NCAA Tournament Predictions: Midwest 2. Kansas vs. 15. Detroit

By: Kels Dayton

 2 Kansas (27-6, 16-2 Big Twelve)-The Jayhawks had another great season thanks in large part to National Player of the Year candidate Thomas Robinson, who averaged 17.9 points and 11.8 rebounds per game. The 6-10 junior forward has been an absolute beast down low for Kansas this season, drawing double teams and allowing for post players Jeff Withey to shine. His emergence as an

Forward Thomas Robinson (Getty Images)

All-American player has buoyed Kansas into returning to the nation’s elite.

Senior guard Tyshawn Taylor (17.3 ppg, 4.8 apg) has taken over a leadership role with this year’s team. This is his team, and his legacy in Lawrence is on the line in this NCAA tournament. Taylor has had a rocky career and an up-and-down season, but he has proven he can make plays when the game is on the line for Kansas.

If role players like Elijah Johnson, Travis Releford and Conner Teahan can step up in the tournament, KU is a threat to get to the Final Four. If not, the ‘Hawks are an upset candidate, although they did receive a favorable draw with 3-seed Georgetown on their half of the bracket.

KEY STATS:

21st Assists Per Game (15.6)

14th Field Goal Percentage (.485)

36th Points Per Game (75.0)

Team stats courtesy ESPN.com

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 15 Detroit (22-13, 11-7 Horizon)- This is not a typical 15-seed. Detroit owns a McDonald’s All-American in sophomore guard Ray McCallum, Jr., who just happens to be the son of head coach–you guessed it, Ray McCallum Sr.

Prized recruit Ray McCallum Jr. went to Detroit to play for his dad. (Nelson Chenault/ US Presswire)

Junior averaged 15.6 points, 4.5 rebounds and 3.9 assists per game for the Titans this season.

But it wasn’t just about him. Four other players averaged in double figures in scoring. 6-10 center Eli Holman put up 10.9 points and 6.8 rebounds per contest.

Detroit dominated Valparaiso on the road to win the Horizon League championship, which incidentally is the same league that two-time national runner-up Butler won the past two seasons. McCallum gives the Titans a chance to pull an upset, although it hurts that Detroit has to go up against 2nd-seeded Kansas.

KEY STATS:

9th National Prospect ranking for Ray McCallum Jr. coming out of high school in 2010

61st Points per game (72.8)

 

PREDICTION: Kansas 

Team stats courtesy ESPN.com

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Categories: 2012 NCAA Tournament
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