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FSU vs Cincinnati preview and game thread

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For the 2nd straight season the Seminoles have been placed into the "nobody cares about these two teams so we'll have them play at 9:40 on Sunday" slot in the NCAA round of 32. Last year the Seminoles were able to dominate Notre Dame to advance, and this year they get another Big East opponent: the Cincinnati Bearcats.

As I covered in yesterday's film review, Cincinnati is a unique team. They're below average at shooting the 2; they're below average shooting the 3; and they're horrible from the line. Yet, despite this, they have a top-50 offense. So how do they do it? First, they don't turn the ball over (10th nationally), so they end up putting up more shots than their opponents (+131 vs their opponents on the season. FSU is -42). Second, they're a very good offensive rebounding team (42nd).

Cincinnati also attempts to make up for poor shooting by generating transition buckets. They play pressure defense and they trap at times when teams aren't used to being trapped. In conference play they created more steals than any other Big East team. The Bearcats have the 24th ranked defense in the nation, they do it with pressure, and they're able to play that way while also committing fewer fouls than all but 5 teams in the nation.

For further insight into the Bearcats, their system and their players, we did a Q&A with the Bearcats Blog. Read it.

The game tips at 940 pm and will be broadcast on TBS. Vegas has FSU -2 to -2.5, while Pomeroy has FSU -1. The winner advances to play Ohio State.