2008 NIT Capsule: Dayton
Atlantic 10 (21-10, 8-8)
Big Wins: 12/8 at Louisville (70-65), 12/29 Pittsburgh (80-55), 3/8 St. Joseph’s (79-67)
Bad Losses: 2/9 at George Washington (54-57), 2/13 Duquesne (61-63), 2/21 at La Salle (78-81)
Coach: Brian Gregory
Brian Roberts, Senior, Guard, 18.4 ppg, 3.7 apg
Marcus Johnson, Sophomore, Guard, 10.2 ppg, 5.2 rpg
Chris Wright, Freshman, Forward, 10.4 ppg, 6.0 rpg
Jimmy Binnie, Senior, Forward, 6.1 ppg, 3.9 rpg
Kurt Huelsman, Sophomore, Center, 5.7 ppg, 4.1 rpg
Andres Sandoval, Senior, Guard, 6.5 ppg, 2.7 rpg
London Warren, Sophomore, Guard, 4.6 ppg, 1.9 apg
Charles Little, Junior, Forward, 8.1 ppg, 4.7 rpg
Why They Can Surprise:
The senior leadership of Brian Roberts has propelled the Flyers into the postseason. Roberts not only dishes out 3.7 assists per game, but he will take all the big shots for Dayton and leads the team with 18.4 points per game. Roberts is easily the most dangerous long range shooter on the team and ranks in the top 15 nationally with his 4479 shooting percentage from behind the arc.
Dayton is also a superb rebounding team. While no one player dominates the glass, everybody will do their share. The forwards do more than just grab boards though; Jimmy Binnie, Kurt Huelsman and Charles Little are also decent scorers. Binnie is more known for doing the dirty work around the basket than scoring, but he does average about six points per game. Little will come off the bench, but he is the most effective interior scorer on the team.
Why They Can Disappoint:
Unfortunately for Dayton, their second best player is the reason why they can disappoint. Before Chris Wright went down with an injury, the Flyers were 13-1. Since then, it has not gone quite as well. If Wright is not at full strength, or playing at all, Dayton will struggle. If he is, the team could regain their earlier form when they beat teams like Louisville and Pittsburgh. The 6-8 forward was a large part of the rebounding success and he was great at playing on the wing and attacking the basket.
Who To Watch:
Marcus Johnson and Andres Sandoval have had to try and pick up the production in Wright’s absence. Both are quality wings with decent size, although at 6-3 and 6-4, not nearly as tall as Wright. Johnson is a good rebounder and will usually lead the team in rebounds when Wright is sidelined. A majority of the outside shooting will be left to Roberts, while Johnson and Sandoval will use their speed and strength to get to basket.
By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 68.8 (175th in nation, 9th in conference)
Scoring Defense: 64.7 (80, 3)
Field-Goal Percentage: 47.0 (42, 5)
Field-Goal Defense: 43.2 (140, 8)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 6.0 (213, 13)
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 37.6 (67, 5)
Free-Throw Percentage: 63.9 (301, 14)
Rebound Margin: 4.9 (37, 2)
Assists Per Game: 11.8 (271, 14)
Turnovers Per Game: 12.9 (58, 4)
Joel’s Bracket Says: Elite Eight loss to Ohio State
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