South Dakota State Men's Basketball 2016 NCAA Tournament Capsule

South Dakota State Jackrabbits
Summit League (26-7, 12-4)
Once again South Dakota State finds themselves in the postseason. Last year the Jackrabbits were the best team in the conference, but lost in the Summit League Tournament. They did manage to beat top seeded Colorado State in the NIT and came into the 2015-2016 campaign as the clear favorites to win the conference. However, it was not that easy for the Jackrabbits. They ended up 12-4 in Summit League action and tied atop the standings, but did not dominate as much as many expected. Still, SDSU got the job done in the conference tournament.
Big Wins: 12/13 UCSB (86-68), 12/27 Middle Tennessee (65-61), 1/14 Fort Wayne (92-76)
Bad Losses: 11/28 at Kansas City (57-64), 1/7 at IUPUI (67-74), 1/16 at North Dakota State (57-68)
Coach: Scott Nagy
Why They Can Surprise:
The backcourt trio of George Marshall, Deondre Parks and Jake Bittle has a ton of experience. All three are seniors who can take over a game. Marshall dishes out a team high 2.7 assists per game, while adding 14.9 points. Parks is another big time, versatile scorer who can knock down three balls or attack the basket. Bittle’s scoring has taken a step back this year, but he is more than capable of dropping 20 points on any given night. While it was the backcourt that was getting the attention coming into the year, some of their flair has been taken away by the emergence of freshman forward Mike Daum. It is Daum that leads the team with 15.2 points per game and he has been one of the most productive sixth men in the country. Daum also spearheads a strong team effort on the glass. He leads the team with 6.1 rebounds per game and gets plenty of help from the backcourt and wing Reed Tellinghuisen and forward Ian Theisen. The impressive rebound margin may not be all that impressive against NCAA Tournament teams compared to Summit League teams, but this is a group that will compete hard on the glass against anybody.
Why They Can Disappoint:
The bigger issue in the frontcourt is in the shot blocking department. Daum is 6-9, but he is a shooter who likes to hang out on the perimeter quite a bit. He is not a shot blocking threat at all. Theisen is a big body in the paint at 6-9 and 241 pounds, but he is not much of a shot blocker either. The result, especially against big slashing wings, is occasional easy buckets for the opposition. On the other end of the floor, the offense may be relatively potent, but they do not share the ball particularly well. South Dakota State often ends up with somebody trying to take a defender on one-on-one. That is not a terrible thing, but the team needs to remember that there are plenty of other scorers out there and an extra pass or two would likely get a quality player a quality shot. And this team cannot afford to force bad shots if they want to pull off another upset in the NCAA Tournament.
Probable Starters:
George Marshall, Senior, Guard, 14.9 ppg, 2.7 apg
Deondre Parks, Senior, Guard, 14.7 ppg, 1.5 apg, 4.7 rpg
Jake Bittle, Senior, Guard, 8.6 ppg, 2.2 apg, 4.8 rpg
Reed Tellinghuisen, Sophomore, Guard, 9.1 ppg, 1.2 apg, 4.9 rpg
Ian Theisen, Sophomore, Forward, 6.2 ppg, 3.5 rpg
Key Roleplayers:
Mike Daum, Freshman, Forward, 15.2 ppg, 6.1 rpg
Tevin King, Freshman, Guard, 3.7 ppg
Keaton Moffitt, Senior, Guard, 5.8 ppg, 2.0 apg
By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 76.6 (91st in nation, 3rd in conference)
Scoring Defense: 68.1 (87, 3)
Field-Goal Percentage: 45.3 (113, 6)
Field-Goal Defense: 41.5 (81, 1)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 7.5 (125, 3)   
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 35.7 (124, 5)
Free-Throw Percentage: 73.8 (39, 4)
Rebound Margin:  5.2 (41, 1)
Assists Per Game:  11.4 (301, 7)
Turnovers Per Game:  11.9 (97, 2)
Recent Postseason Appearances:
2015    NIT      First Round win over Colorado State
2015    NIT      Second Round loss to Vanderbilt
2014    CBI      First Round loss to Old Dominion
2013    NCAA Second Round loss to Michigan
2012    NCAA Second Round loss to Baylor
*all team stats through 3/6