Utah Men's Basketball 2016 NCAA Tournament Capsule

Utah Utes
Pac-12 (26-8, 13-5)
Utah had its fair share of doubters after they lost three of their first four Pac-12 games. But since that point the Utes have played very well and were able to end up on the right side of those close games. In a tough Pac-12, finishing with a 13-5 record is no easy task and this is a program that deserves more respect. Coming off of their Sweet Sixteen appearance last year, Coach Larry Krystkowiak and company hope for even more success this March.
Big Wins: 12/19 vs Duke (77-75), 1/27 California (73-64), 2/27 Arizona (70-64)
Bad Losses: 11/20 vs Miami (66-90), 12/12 at Wichita State (50-67), 1/1 at Stanford (68-70)
Coach: Larry Krystkowiak
Why They Can Surprise:
The Utes have one of the most dangerous frontcourt trios in all of college basketball. It starts with seven-footer Jakob Poeltl. He easily leads the team with 17.6 points, 9.0 rebounds and 1.6 blocks per game. Poeltl made a big impact as a freshman last year, but now his numbers are starting to show just how important he is to this team. When the offense works through Poeltl, which it usually does, Utah can score some points. Fellow sophomore Kyle Kuzma has been overshadowed by Poeltl, but he has had a breakout sophomore season and is a great complimentary piece to Poeltl in the post. On the year, Kuzma is averaging 10.8 points and 5.9 rebounds. Those two alone make this a very, very good rebounding team. Small forward Jordan Loveridge is the other dangerous scorer for the Utes. But he does most his scoring from the perimeter, where he shoots an impressive 42.6 percent from beyond the arc. Coach Krystkowiak also has Brekkott Chapman to bring in when the big guys need a rest and he has performed well off of the bench, especially on the defensive end of the floor. Wing Dakari Tucker will spell Loveridge at the small forward spot and he has the size, strength and athleticism to keep Utah tough on the defensive end even when some of the starters need a break.
Why They Can Disappoint:
Brandon Taylor and Lorenzo Bonam man an often forgotten about backcourt. Those two are both solid passers and can run the offense effectively. However, turnovers have been an issue and creating turnovers is even a bigger problem. The team usually ends up in the negative in the turnover margin and they have to make up for that on the glass or by shooting the ball better than their opposition. Shooting is not a problem for the forwards, but it is for the backcourt. Taylor is a threat from long range, but he has been terribly inconsistent from beyond the arc during his senior season. Bonam usually stays inside the arc and attacks the basket with his 6-4 frame. The backcourt does not have to do much, but they do need to get the ball into the big guys without turning it over and help Loveridge with the outside shooting. If that happens at the right time, this is a team that can make another Sweet Sixteen run or beyond.
Probable Starters:
Brandon Taylor, Senior, Guard, 9.6 ppg, 3.8 apg, 1.6 spg
Lorenzo Bonam, Junior, Guard, 9.9 ppg, 3.1 apg
Jordan Loveridge, Senior, Forward, 11.8 ppg, 3.9 rpg
Kyle Kuzma, Sophomore, Forward, 10.8 ppg, 5.9 rpg
Jakob Poeltl, Sophomore, Forward, 17.6 ppg, 9.0 rpg, 1.6 bpg
Key Roleplayers:
Brekkott Chapman, Sophomore, Forward, 4.4 ppg, 2.9 rpg
Dakarai Tucker, Senior, Guard, 5.4 ppg
Isaiah Wright, Sophomore, Guard, 2.1 ppg, 1.6 apg
By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 78.1 (59th in nation, 4th in conference)
Scoring Defense: 68.2 (87, 3)
Field-Goal Percentage: 48.9 (12, 1)
Field-Goal Defense: 40.9 (54, 2)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game:  7.6 (114, 3) 
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 35.9 (116, 7)
Free-Throw Percentage: 70.9 (132, 6)
Rebound Margin:  5.0 (44, 4)
Assists Per Game:  15.9 (35, 1)
Turnovers Per Game:  12.1 (109, 5)
Recent Postseason Appearances:
2015    NCAA Second Round win over Stephen F. Austin
2015    NCAA Third Round win over Georgetown
2015    NCAA Regional Semifinal loss to Duke
2014    NIT      First Round loss to St. Mary's
2009    NCAA Round of 64 loss to Arizona  
2008    CBI      First Round win over UTE
2008    CBI      Second Round loss to Tulsa
2005    NCAA Round of 64 win over UTEP
2005    NCAA Round of 32 win over Oklahoma
2005    NCAA Regional semifinal loss to Kentucky
2004    NCAA Round of 64 loss to Boston College
2003    NCAA Round of 64 win over Oregon
2003    NCAA Round of 32 loss to Kentucky
*all team stats through 3/6