Buffalo Bulls 2010 NCAA Men's Basketball Post Season

<?xml:namespace prefix = st1 />Buffalo Bulls

Mid-American Conference (18-12, 9-7)

Seed: #


Big Wins: 12/22 Green Bay (71-65), 1/17 Akron 78-65), 2/13 Kent State (70-55)

Bad Losses: 11/24 Canisius (71-73), 1/28 Ball State (69-75), 2/4 at Central Michigan (82-88)

Coach: Reggie Witherspoon


Why They Can Surprise:

Buffalo has not been known as a high scoring team, but Coach Reggie Witherspoon loosened the reigns on this team a little bit this season and the result has been a positive one. With the experience and talent that the Bulls have on the wings, this is suddenly a team that will push the tempo when given the opportunity. Rodney Pierce is the main scorer. The 6-2 senior can do it all. He averages nearly 19 points per game and connects on 2.0 three-pointers per contest. He also is the most aggressive player on the team attacking the basket and a very good free-throw shooter. In years past if somebody scored that many points on Buffalo, nobody else would be scoring, but Pierce dishes out 3.2 assists per game as well.


Fellow wing Calvin Betts is often the beneficiary of Pierce’s passes. Betts has a little more size at 6-4, but it is not his height that makes him special…it is his strength. Betts will battle his way through the paint to finish around the basket, but he can also make the outside shot. His strength is most obvious when he is going for a rebound and Betts leads this team in rebounding and without him Buffalo would struggle on the boards. Sean Smiley averages less than 19 minutes per game and comes off the bench, but he is still the team’s third leading scorer. Smiley is mostly a shooter and when his shot is falling, he can put up a lot of points in a hurry.


Why They Can Disappoint:

Buffalo’s frontcourt has some big bodies, but they are not the most intimidating group around. Mitchell Watt and Titus Robinson are the usual starters under the basket. Watt is the only shot blocking threat on the team, but his rebounding leaves something to be desired. The 6-10 sophomore is a good athlete, but he still needs to add strength before he will be much of a rebounding or scoring threat. Robinson is the best rebounder of the bunch, but he too is an underclassman who is not much of a threat to score. Max Bourdreau is the best interior scorer and will usually spend more time on the floor than any other forward whether he is starting or not. His senior leadership has to hold together this young group. Jawaan Alston has worked his way into the regular rotation as well and gives Coach Reggie Witherspoon yet another frontcourt player who can at least grab some rebounds.


Who To Watch:

John Boyer has pretty much come out of nowhere. For three years he barely played for the Bulls. Now he is averaging 7.2 points and 5.3 assists during his final season with Buffalo. His 5.3 assists and 1.4 turnovers have kept this team under control while the offense has picked up its pace. He is not a great scorer, but Boyer can knock down the long ball and attack the basket when he needs to do so. But as long as he finds the scorers on the wing and keeps the turnovers down, Buffalo’s backcourt can lead this team to victory.


Probable Starters:

John Boyer, Senior, Guard, 7.2 ppg, 5.3 apg, 4.2 rpg

Rodney Pierce, Senior, Guard, 18.4 ppg, 3.2 apg, 1.5 spg

Calvin Betts, Senior, Guard, 10.7 ppg, 2.0 apg, 7.7 rpg

Titus Robinson, Sophomore, Forward, 5.8 ppg, 3.7 rpg

Mitchell Watt, Sophomore, Forward, 5.5 ppg, 2.5 rpg, 1.3 bpg


Key Roleplayers:

Jawaan Alston, Junior, Forward, 4.0 ppg, 3.5 rpg

Max Boudreau, Senior, Forward, 8.3 ppg, 3.6 rpg

Sean Smiley, Senior, Guard, 8.7 ppg, 1.6 rpg


By the Numbers:

Scoring Offense: 72.8 (91st in nation, 2nd in conference)

Scoring Defense: 71.1 (237, 11)

Field-Goal Percentage: 43.5 (175, 4)

Field-Goal Defense: 45.0 (266, 12)

Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 6.9 (92, 3)

Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 34.4 (155, 4)

Free-Throw Percentage: 71.7 (80, 4)

Rebound Margin: 1.4 (139, 7)

Assists Per Game: 15.2 (40, 1)

Turnovers Per Game: 14.3 (206, 8)


Joel’s Bracket Says: