Xavier Men's Basketball 2012 NCAA Tournament Capsule

Xavier Musketeers
Atlantic 10 (21-12, 10-6)

Xavier hit a rough spot with some suspensions following the unpleasantness that happened during the Cincinnati game in December. But other than that, the Musketeers had a pretty good season. Their losing streak took them out of the national radar, but they still managed to stick around the top of a very good Atlantic 10 conference.  

Big Wins: 11/28 at Vanderbilt (82-70), 12/3 Purdue (66-63), 1/18 Saint Joseph’s (68-55)
Bad Losses: 12/23 at Hawaii (82-84), 1/4 at La Salle (70-80), 2/21 at Massachusetts (73-80)
Coach: Chris Mack (3 seasons at Xavier)

Why They Can Surprise:
Tu Holloway is the man that makes this team go. He could have left early for the NBA, but he had some unfinished business to take care of at Xavier. The 6-0 point guard is a prolific scorer, a great passer, a fine defender and surprisingly good rebounder for a guard. Holloway is not a great outside shooter, but he is certainly a threat to hit the long ball and that is what makes him so difficult to defend. When the opposition presses up against Holloway at the arc, he will use his speed to get to the basket and finish, or at least get to the foul line. Mark Lyons is the shooter for Coach Chris Mack. Lyons knocks down about two long balls per game and has mixed up his offensive attack more this season by getting to the basket. With freshman wing Dezmine Wells getting better by the day, the Xavier backcourt can score a lot of points. Kenny Frease is the interior scorer and can have some good games. Andre Walker, a transfer from Vanderbilt, is not much of a scorer, but he compliments Frease quite well in the paint and will at least help out on the glass.

Why They Can Disappoint:
Xavier had their chances later in the season to get some big wins, but after the Cincinnati game, the Musketeers failed to get a big victory. This may not be a team that has a ton of momentum going through February and March, but they have the weapons to win some games. Holloway can lead this team to victory over just about any team, but the team as a whole does not do much of anything particularly well. They do not block a ton of shots or nab a bunch of steals. The team does not shoot very well from the floor and they commit too many turnovers most of time. If they can avoid some mistakes, the Musketeers can certainly win a game or two in March.

Probable Starters:
Tu Holloway, Senior, Guard, 17.0 ppg, 5.1 apg
Mark Lyons, Junior, Guard, 16.0 ppg, 2.7 apg
Dezmine Wells, Freshman, Guard, 10.3 ppg, 1.2 apg, 4.8 rpg
Andre Walker, Senior, Forward, 5.4 ppg, 5.9 rpg
Kenny Frease, Senior, Center, 9.5 ppg, 6.2 rpg, 1.2 bpg

Key Roleplayers:
Dee Davis, Freshman, Guard, 1.8 ppg,
Justin Martin, Freshman, Forward, 2.9 ppg, 2.2 rpg
Brad Redford, Junior, Guard, 3.5 ppg
Jeff Robinson, Junior, Forward, 3.6 ppg, 2.7 rpg
Travis Taylor, Junior, Forward, 4.9 ppg, 4.0 rpg

By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 71.3 (95th in nation, 7th in conference)
Scoring Defense: 67.5 (193, 6)
Field-Goal Percentage: 45.4 (94, 5)
Field-Goal Defense: 39.8 (29, 2)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 5.0 (280, 12)  
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 35.4 (121, 6)
Free-Throw Percentage: 68.9 (184, 9)
Rebound Margin: 2.5 (91, 4)
Assists Per Game: 13.9 (84, 8)
Turnovers Per Game: 13.2 (137, 8)

Last Five Postseason Appearances:
Xavier    2011    NCAA        Round of 64 loss to Marquette
Xavier    2010    NCAA        Round of 64 win over Minnesota
Xavier    2010    NCAA        Round of 32 win over Pittsburg
Xavier    2010    NCAA        Regional Semifinal loss to Kansas State
Xavier    2009    NCAA        Round of 64 win over Portland State
Xavier    2009    NCAA        Round of 32 win over Wisconsin
Xavier    2009    NCAA        Regional Semifinal loss to Pittsburgh
Xavier    2008    NCAA        Round of 64 win over Georgia
Xavier    2008    NCAA        Round of 32 win over Purdue
Xavier    2008    NCAA        Regional Semifinal win over West Virginia
Xavier    2008    NCAA        Regional Final loss to UCLA
Xavier    2007    NCAA        Round of 64 win over BYU
Xavier    2007    NCAA        Round of 32 loss to Ohio State

*all team stats through 3/4

See All Men’s Basketball Postseason Capsules