Monday, March 12, 2012
The More You Know: UNC Asheville
Syracuse starts the NCAA tournament on Thursday against UNC Asheville, and unless you are an alum or just like rooting for one of the thousand teams that use a bulldog as a mascot, you probably don't know much about them. Unluckily for you, we're here to help......sort of.
Let's learn a little more about the Big South champions. Our friends at Cuse Country let us know UNC Asheville plays at a ridiculously fast pace - which can't bode well for them given how good Syracuse is in the open floor. The bulldogs are 5th in the nation in scoring at more than 81 ppg.
Also from Cuse Country we know they are small and play a bunch of guys who are in the 6'5" range. That means former 7'8" center Kenny George isn't walking through that door.
Unfortunately for Kenny, things didn't work out as he had hoped, in 2008 he had half his right foot amputated after a MRSA infection.
900 Irving thinks Michael Bay will make a film like Valentine's Day before we have to worry about an SU loss. We are fine with that - the Syracuse winning part, not the "more crappy romantic comedies" part.
UNC Asheville is coached by Ed Biedenbach, who gave Texas Coach Rick Barnes his first job. Something tells me Eddie doesn't drop that fact at too many cocktail parties, but he can tell people he's won an NCAA tournament game, as last year UNC Asheville beat Arkansas-Little Rock in one of the first four games....also known as play-in games.
The Bulldogs aren't real deep, as seven players average more double digit minutes and as mentioned above, they aren't big - the team's leading rebounder being 6'4" Jeremy Atkinson.
UNC Asheville isn't a bad team and I'd expect them to play the Orange very tough, but in the end I don't see the Bulldogs pulling off the upset. They play too fast and will give the Orange too many possessions to get back in the game if SU gets off to a slow start.
Now let's enjoy some more Kenny George videos - which was the original excuse for this post. Here Tyler Hansbrough dunks on him.
Here Kenny throws down against Ohio State:
And here Kenny dunks without leaving his feet. I love this guy.