North Dakota State Men's Basketball 2020 NCAA Tournament Capsule


North Dakota State Bison

Summit (25-8, 13-3)

Back in 2014, North Dakota State upset Oklahoma as a #12 seed. Coach David Richman took over the following season and led the Bison back to the NCAA Tournament in 2015 and then again in 2019. Last season the Bison beat North Carolina Central in the First Four to earn the right to get crushed by #1 seed Duke. NDSU returned most of that team so this group has some quality NCAA Tournament experience and that will come in handy as they attempt to pull off another upset.
Big Wins: 12/7 East Tennessee State (78-68), 2/27 South Dakota State (71-69), 2/29 Omaha (87-67)
Bad Losses: 11/23 Utah Valley (62-68), 1/9 at Oral Roberts (73-79), 2/22 at North Dakota (68-71)
Coach:  David Richman
Why They Can Surprise:
The Bison do the basics very well. They take care of the basketball and are one of the best free-throw shooting teams in the nation. The team commits just 10.3 turnovers per game, which is eighth best in the nation. If the Bison can avoid turnovers in the NCAA Tournament, the backcourt duo of Vinnie Shahid and Tyson Ward just need to knock down their shots and NDSU can keep things close. Shahid is the team’s top scorer at 18.4 points per game. The 5-11 senior is a threat to score from anywhere on the floor. Ward is actually more consistent from beyond the arc, hitting 41.0 percent of his attempts, but the 6-6 guard is even more dangerous attacking the basket.
Why They Can Disappoint:
The Bison will not throw out gimmicky defenses and lack a shot blocker in the paint too. For some opponents, this defense can be pretty easy to break. An opposing point guard will not have to worry about being pressured and opposing slashers and big men do not have to worry about a weak side defender coming over and swatting away shots. If that happens, North Dakota State will have to step up their offense and attempt to go blow for blow with a more talented team. That usually does not end well for the team looking for the upset.
Probable Starters:
Vinnie Shahid, Senior, Guard, 18.4 ppg, 3.0 apg
Tyson Ward, Senior, Guard, 16.9 ppg, 2.8 apg, 7.2 rpg
Jared Samuelson, Senior, Guard, 6.3 ppg
Sam Griesel, Sophomore, Guard, 6.6 ppg, 5.5 rpg
Rocky Kreuser, Junior, Forward, 10.0 ppg, 6.0 rpg
Key Role Players:
Cameron Hunter, Junior, Guard, 6.6 ppg, 1.6 apg
Jaxon Knotek, Sophomore, Guard, 3.0 ppg
Tyler Witz, Junior, Forward, 3.2 ppg, 2.3 rpg
By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 74.3 (93rd in nation, 6th in conference)
Scoring Defense: 66.5 (96, 1)
Field-Goal Percentage: 44.5 (132, 6)
Field-Goal Defense: 43.9 (228, 2)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 9.1 (35, 1)
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 35.0 (90, 3)
Free-Throw Percentage: 79.4 (3, 1)
Rebound Margin: 3.6 (71, 2)
Assists Per Game: 11.8 (272, 7)
Turnovers Per Game: 10.3 (8, 1)
Recent Postseason Appearances:
2019NCAAFirst Four win over North Carolina Central
2019NCAARound of 64 loss to Duke
2015NCAARound of 64 loss to Gonzaga
2014NCAARound of 64 win over Oklahoma
2014NCAARound of 32 loss to San Diego State
2013CBIFirst Round loss to Western Michigan
2012CBIFirst Round loss to Wyoming
2009NCAARound of 64 loss to Kansas
*all team stats through 3/8