Vermont Men's Basketball 2019 NCAA Tournament Capsule


Vermont Catamounts

America East (27-6, 14-2)

Vermont has won their third straight America East regular season title. This is also the Catamounts third NCAA Tournament appearance since Coach John Becker took over the squad prior to the 2011-2012 campaign. Vermont did not get a huge win against a top team during the regular season, but they played well against the two major conference teams on their schedule, losing at Kansas 84-68 and Louisville 86-78 in November.
Big Wins: 11/21 Yale (79-70), 12/8 Harvard (71-65), 12/16 Northeastern (75-70)
Bad Losses: 11/25 Bucknell (61-69), 1/23 UMBC (61-74), 2/21 at UMBC (56-65)
Coach: John Becker
Why They Can Surprise:
This is a Vermont squad that plays solid defense and takes care of the ball. The team commits just 11.1 turnovers per game and that will be a key factor in the attempt to pull off an NCAA Tournament upset. The backcourt trio of Ernie Duncan, Stef Smith and Ben Shungu must continue to take care of the basketball. Ernie Duncan is also a prolific shooter and the senior will need to keep knocking down shots. Forward Anthony Lamb, who averages 21.4 points, 7.8 rebounds and 2.2 assists, can knock down three-point shots as well. The 6-6 junior is also extremely tough in the paint on the both ends of the floor.
Why They Can Disappoint:
Vermont is a solid rebounding team thanks to Lamb, but there is not much size on this roster. Lamb is only 6-6 and Samuel Dingba, who usually starts beside Lamb in the frontcourt, is just 6-5. Ra Kpedi has more size at 6-9 and 220 pounds, but his playing time has been inconsistent this season. This group will struggle on the glass against any team they are going to see in the NCAA Tournament and they will need all of the extra possessions they can get. If Lamb can get some more help on the glass though, Vermont has enough offense firepower to keep things interesting.
Probable Starters:
Stef Smith, Sophomore, Guard, 12.3 ppg, 4.2 rpg
Ben Shungu, Sophomore, Guard, 4.0 ppg, 2.9 rpg
Ernie Duncan, Senior, Guard, 13.8 ppg, 1.8 apg
Samuel Dingba, Senior, Forward, 2.9 ppg, 3.4 rpg
Anthony Lamb, Junior, Forward, 21.4 ppg, 7.8 rpg, 2.2 apg
Key Role Players:
Everett Duncan, Junior, Guard, 6.3 ppg, 3.5 rpg
Robin Duncan, Freshman, Guard, 4.5 ppg, 3.7 rpg, 2.5 apg
By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 73.8 (141st in nation, 3rd in conference)
Scoring Defense: 63.5 (18, 2)
Field-Goal Percentage: 45.6 (108, 3)
Field-Goal Defense: 42.2 (89, 3)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 7.6 (190, 7)
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 34.6 (160, 4)
Free-Throw Percentage: 75.0 (31, 1)
Rebound Margin: 4.1 (53, 2)
Assists Per Game: 11.7 (291, 6)
Turnovers Per Game: 11.1 (35, 1)
Recent Postseason Appearances:
2018NITFirst Round loss to Middle Tennessee State
2017NCAARound of 64 loss to Purdue
2016CBIFirst Round win over Western Carolina
2016CBIQuarterfinal win over Seattle
2016CBISemifinal loss to Morehead State
2015CBIFirst Round win over Hofstra
2015CBIQuarterfinal win over Radford
2015CBISemifinal loss to Louisiana Monroe
2014NITFirst Round loss to Georgia
2013CBIFirst Round loss to Santa Clara
2012NCAAOpening Round win over Lamar
2012NCAARound of 64 loss to North Carolina
2011NITFirst Round loss to Cleveland State
2010NCAARound of 64 loss to Syracuse
2009CBIFirst Round win over UW-Green Bay
2009CBISecond Round loss to Oregon State
2007NITFirst Round loss to Kansas State
2005NCAARound of 64 win over Syracuse
2005NCAARound of 32 loss to Michigan State
*all team stats through 3/10