Florida State Men's Basketball 2014 NIT Tournament Capsule

Florida State Seminoles
ACC (19-13, 9-9)


Stuck in the drudgery that was the middle of the Atlantic Coast Conference all season long, the Florida State Seminoles finished just about where they were predicted to be by the ACC media heading into the year. Early season losses to Michigan and Florida removed a couple chances to nab resume-building wins, while wins over both VCU and Umass looked better at the time than they do now.

Big Wins: 11/21 vs VCU (85-67), 12/21 vs Massachusetts (60-55), 2/23 at Pittsburgh (71-66)
Bad Losses: 12/3 at Minnesota (61-71), 2/1 Clemson (49-53), 2/10 Miami (FL) (73-77)
Coach: Leonard Hamilton (12 seasons at Florida State)

Why They Can Surprise:
Florida State's biggest strength continues to be what it has been for a few years now: interior defense. The Seminoles finished amongst the best teams in the country in field-goal percentage defense and blocked shots. While their pure scoring defense wasn't as good as peripheral numbers would seem to indicate, FSU was still a hard team to score on. Half a dozen different players finished with double-digit blocks on the season, led by Boris Bojanovsky, Okaro White and Michael Ojo. The three alone combined to block more than 100 shots. Helping out on the outside, guard Aaron Thomas accumulated one of the highest steals totals in the conference. As far as offense goes, the team is young and deep in the backcourt, and Florida State shot the ball very well from all over in conference play. If that trend continues through the postseason, FSU may be able to pull a few upsets.

Why They Can Disappoint:
While the team as a whole has shot the ball well, there was no go-to scorer on Florida State this season. Years past have brought us Michael Snaer heroics and Chris Singleton domination. The 2013-14 team is a bit rudderless by comparison. Sophomore Aaron Thomas and senior Ian Miller helped share the load, but neither one was without their shortcomings. It didn't help that FSU was very poor in assists, turnover margin and steals: three stats usually associated with good guard leadership. And for all the shot-blockers inside, the Seminoles barely finished the season with a positive rebounding margin. Senior Okaro White has gotten better every year he's been at FSU, however the leap between last season and this season was just not massive enough to push the team anywhere special.

Probable Starters:
Devon Bookert, Sophomore, Guard, 8.0 ppg, 2.7 apg
Montay Brandon, Sophomore, Guard, 7.7 ppg, 1.6 apg, 5.0 rpg
Robert Gilchrist, Sophomore, Guard, 3.2 ppg
Okaro White, Senior, Forward, 13.2 ppg, 6.6 rpg, 1.0 bpg
Boris Bojanovsky, Sophomore, Center, 5.9 ppg, 4.0 rpg, 1.9 bpg

Key Roleplayers:
Aaron Thomas, Sophomore, Guard, 14.1 ppg, 1.9 apg
Ian Miller, Senior, Guard, 13.7 ppg, 2.9 apg
Michael Ojo, Sophomore, Center, 2.6 ppg, 3.2 rpg
Jarquez Smith, Freshman, Forward, 2.5 ppg, 1.5 rpg

By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 71.2 (181st in nation, 6th in conference)
Scoring Defense: 65.9 (69, 6)
Field-Goal Percentage: 46.5 (64, 1)
Field-Goal Defense: 39.7 (23, 2)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 5.3 (267, 8)
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 37.2 (63, 2)
Free-Throw Percentage: 72.6 (72, 4)
Rebound Margin: 0.5 (177, 12)
Assists Per Game: 11.0 (293, 12)
Turnovers Per Game: 13.8 (291, 15)

Recent Postseason Appearances:
2013    NIT        First round loss to Louisiana Tech
2012    NCAA    Second Round win over St. Bonaventure
2012    NCAA    Third Round loss to Cincinnati
2011    NCAA    Round of 64 win over Texas A&M
2011    NCAA    Round of 32 win over Notre Dame
2011    NCAA    Regional Semifinal loss to VCU
2010    NCAA    Round of 64 loss to Gonzaga
2009    NCAA    Round of 64 loss to Wisconsin
2008    NIT        First Round loss to Akron
2007    NIT        First Round win over Toledo
2007    NIT        Second Round win over Michigan
2007    NIT        Quarterfinal loss to Mississippi State

*all team stats through 3/9


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