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NCAA Tournament Play-In: Clemson - UAB Preview

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Clemson Tigers (21-11, 10-8 ACC) vs. UAB Blazers (22-8, 12-5 CUSA Reg Season Champions)

Time: 9pm, TruTV (formerly Court TV)

Common Opponents: UAB probably played the weakest schedule of any at-large team, but we did end up with some common opponents. Clemson played ECU earlier this season and handled them well, 71-59. UAB played ECU 3 times this year, sweeping the regular season series and losing to them in the CUSA Tournament 75-70 OT. Clemson got beat by Duke 70-59 and so did UAB, 85-64.

UAB lost their only neutral court game this year, which was the CUSA Tourney game vs ECU. They lost to a bad AZ State team, got swept by Memphis, and lost to UGA. Their best win via rankings is over VCU, who also made the tournament. Their SOS ended up at #72 nationally, and #173 in NonCon play. They're 1-4 vs the RPI Top 50 and their own RPI is #31, curiously.

How has UAB been recently? Well they have handled their CUSA opposition pretty well. Memphis can outcat them, and was their most recent loss (last month) before losing to ECU in their Tourney.  ECU beat them with free throws, hitting 33 of them in their Overtime contest. They had just defeated ECU in the reg. season finale a week beforehand.


Points Per Game
68.9 62.3
Points Per Possession (PPP)
1.07 0.96
Points Per Shot (PPS)
1.25 1.16
2-PT FG% 44% 41%
3-PT FG% 33.7% 31%
FT% 71.9% 69.8%
True Shooting % 53.9% 49.3%
Assists/Gm 13.7 10.7
Steals/Gm 5.3 5.9
Turnovers/Gm 12.3 12.4
Turnover Pct 19 19.2
Offensive Rebounds/Gm 11.5 11
Defensive Rebounds/Gm 24.5 22.6
Off Reb Pct 33.8 30.9
Ken Pomery Statistics
UAB Clemson
Pace 318
UAB Offense vs Clemson Defense Ranks
UAB Offense CU Defense Advantage
Efficiency 74 9 CU
Effective FG% 92 21 CU
Turnover % 125 38 CU
Off. Reb. % 128 142 UAB
FTA/FGA 323 100 CU Big
Clemson Offense vs UAB Defense Ranks
CU Offense UAB Defense Advantage
Efficiency 77 49 UAB
Effective FG% 111 32 UAB
Turnover % 205 244 CU
Off. Reb. % 119 114 UAB
FTA/FGA 144 66 UAB


I don't think many of you find these numbers all that surprising. Clemson's defense has carried us all year, and has been one of the best in the nation. Both these teams are half-court minded. Clemson is considerably better in the turnover department as you can see.

Offensively UAB is a a motion team, and runs quite a bit of 5-out. They attack off the dribble to the corners quite a bit. They like a double high post set with their wings on the corners. They'll send an entry to one high post and screen for the PG, their best player, coming off. Though they do run motion that pressing teams run, this is a half court squad. They try to be patient, but in their losses this patience has disappeared.

Aaron Johnson is the best player on the squad, the PG. He really makes their offense with his passing, a nice outside jump shot, but he's not a threat from the arc (23%). He's averaged 7.7 assists per game and 12 ppg. 2G Jamarr Sanders is a real threat from the corners however, hitting 38% from 3 and averaging 17.7ppg. 6'10" Jr 4 Cameron Moore racks up 9 boards per game and 14 points, so hopefully Jerai Grant will be able to handle his size inside. He'll get it low, turn and face up, then hit his shot. Not a back to the basket player.

Very similar to Boston College overall, but without Trapani. Stop a couple of these guys, and its an easy win. The rest are role players.

Defensively they're a Mike Davis team, which means they are descended from Bob Knight. Exclusively 1/2 court Man defense. It appears they were recruited to play a pressure system, because theyre quite long and skinny. UAB ran a pressure defense under the last coaching staff, but Davis has been there long enough to change some of that. Their lack of mass defensively should bode well for Booker and Grant inside.


NCAA Basketball Stats