Florida State will take on Davidson in the first round of the NIT. Here's five things to know about the Wildcats, including where they excel and where they are vulnerable.
1. Very good offense - Coach Bob McKillop's teams are known for scoring, and while this version of the Wildcats doesn't have Steph Curry, they are very efficient on offense. In fact, Davidson ranks as the 29th most efficient offense in the country on KenPom, scoring more than 1.1 points per possession on the year. And this isn't efficiency while playing crawl ball either. Davidson averages 70.5 possessions per game, ranking them 96th in the country and would place them 5th fastest in the ACC.
2. Weak on defense - The reason why Davidson is in the NIT and not the NCAAT is because of their defense. The Wildcats' D ranks 250th in the country in efficiency, giving up over 1.07 points per possession, and was even worse in A-10 play, finishing 13th out of 14 teams, only ahead of a woeful La Salle team. Davidson is particularly poor inside the paint (no player taller than 6'9) ranking 303rd in the country in 2-pt% defense.
3. No turnovers - This game might not feature many turnovers by either team, as Davidson is quite good at not turning the ball over on offense (3rd in the country at 14.1% of possessions) and a poor job of creating turnovers on defense (310th in the country at 15.8% of possessions). The lack of turnovers on offense might hurt FSU's ability to get out and score in transition--although blocked shots could be a difference maker here.
4. Money from the FT line - Davidson does not typically get to the free throw line that often--only 19.4% of their points come from the charity stripe, just 237th in the country. However, when they do get fouled they make you pay. The Wildcats shoot 76.2% from the stripe as a team, good for 12th in the nation, and they have four rotation players who make better than 83% of their FTs on the season. FSU will have to be very disciplined on defense to contest shots without fouling.
5. Brian Sullivan can light it up from deep - Brian Sullivan, a transfer from Miami of Ohio, is not a very big guard (listed at 5'11), but he can fill it up from three and he's not afraid to bomb away. He's shooting 40% from deep this year--on 230 attempts--and for his career the senior is 341-865 from deep, good for 39.4%. For comparison, Devon Bookert is a 42.4% career shooter from deep, but on nearly half as many shots (188-443).
The game tips at 7pm on Tuesday night at The Tuck. Should be a high scoring, up tempo affair.