James Madison Men's Basketball 2013 NCAA Tournament Capsule

James Madison Dukes
CAA (20-14, 11-7)

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There are reasons to think JMU’s run to the CAA championship is not all that impressive or unexpected. Not all of the conference was eligible for the tournament, so it only took three wins; the really good CAA teams are no longer in the CAA, so…yeah; the Dukes had been very good all year in neutral site games, going 6-1 counting this past set of wins. And then there are the reasons to think this may have been one of the most unlikely turn of events in recent college basketball history. Excuse the hyperbole but, according to most metrics and numbers, this JMU team is plain bad! But, nevertheless, they are dancing.

Big Wins: 12/23 vs San Diego (62-59), 2/17 at Delaware (72-71), 3/11 vs Northeastern (70-57)
Bad Losses: 11/24 at Miami Ohio (58-76), 1/7 at Hampton (65-69), 2/23 Georgia State (62-66)
Coach: Matt Brady (5 seasons at James Madison)

Why They Can Surprise:
There can be a lot to draw from a team’s home/road splits or, more accurately in this instance, true road games versus not true road games. In all true road games this season, JMU had a record of 4-9. In all other contests (home or neutral), JMU went 16-5. It seems like a strong possibility that any opponent James Madison faces in the NCAA Tournament will not be playing on their home floor. This is a very good thing. Because when there is no raucous crowd (or whatever the cause of road failures may be), JMU can hang with lots of teams thanks to their veteran athletes. This roster is filled with seniors and filled with leapers. Even without do-it-all, fifth year senior Andrey Semenov for most of the season, JMU has relied on their upper classmen for leadership and scoring. Senior leaper A.J. Davis may be the best dunker in the conference. Senior Rayshawn Goins leads the Dukes in points. Senior Devon Moore recently became the school’s all-time assists leader. Along with monster jumpers Andre Nation and Alioune Diouf, JMU can run and hang with just about anybody when their shots are falling and they are getting to the foul line.

Why They Can Disappoint:
The thing with athletes is that they are known as athletes for a reason. If someone is a knockdown shooter or great facilitator, they are not usually tabbed as “athlete.” As weird as it sounds, that label is almost an insult. The implication is that the player’s best attribute is his leaping because the rest of his game is not refined. Unfortunately, this seemed to be the case for JMU. They finished the year ranked 234th or worse in the nation in the following categories: points per game, rebounds per game, assists per game and field goal percentage. They also finished with probably only one win that can be considered anything worth mentioning, and that was their final win of the season. This team, led by a slew of seniors, also relied heavily on a number of freshmen. Pretty much their whole roster is seniors and freshmen. While that isn’t necessarily a bad thing, it did bite them a few times during the year, relying on important minutes from such green players. Out hustling, out muscling and out jumping their opponents is kind of how JMU made the Big Dance in the first place; it will be hard to win a tourney game that way though.

Probable Starters:
Devon Moore, Senior, Guard, 11.6 ppg, 4.9 apg
Andre Nation, Freshman, Guard, 8.7 ppg, 1.5 apg
A.J. Davis, Senior, Guard, 12.1 ppg, 3.6 rpg
Alioune Diouf, Senior, Forward, 4.8 ppg, 3.4 rpg
Rayshawn Goins, Senior, Forward, 12.7 ppg, 7.4 rpg

Key Roleplayers:
Ron Curry, Freshman, Guard, 6.0 ppg, 1.8 apg
Charles Cooke, Freshman, Guard, 5.1 ppg, 2.6 rpg
Enoch Hood, Sophomore, Forward, 3.0 ppg, 1.9 rpg
Taylor Bessick, Freshman, Forward, 2.3 ppg, 2.2 rpg

By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 65.0 (237th in nation, 7th in conference)
Scoring Defense: 64.6 (124, 3)
Field-Goal Percentage: 41.8 (247, 7)
Field-Goal Defense: 42.9 (180, 4)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 5.8 (204, 5)  
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 33.5 (199, 7)
Free-Throw Percentage: 70.0 (152, 7)
Rebound Margin: -1.8 (249, 9)
Assists Per Game: 11.7 (254, 6)
Turnovers Per Game: 11.0 (22, 1)

Last Five Postseason Appearances:
2011    CBI        First Round loss to Davidson
2009    CIT        First Round win over Mount St. Mary's
2009    CIT        Second Round win over Liberty
2009    CIT        Semifinal loss to Old Dominion
1994    NCAA    Round of 64 loss to Florida
1993    NIT        First round loss to Providence
1992    NIT        First round to Rutgers

*all team stats through 3/10


See All Men’s Basketball Postseason Capsules