Arizona - Purdue Preview
Arizona (8) Vs. Purdue (9)
Friday, 3/16 @ 7:20 pm
Betting Line From Bookmaker: Arizona -2.5
The Arizona Wildcats (20- 10, 11- 7 Pac-10) finished fourth in the Pac-10 but managed to beat some important teams during the regular season, including Washington, Louisville, Memphis and Oregon. The Purdue Boilermakers (21- 11, 9- 7 Big 10) ended up fifth in the Big Ten, where they played tough against many of the country’s best clubs.
Arizona has performed inconsistently throughout most of the season and has often looked lackadaisical. The team has talent both upfront and in the backcourt. Senior guard Mustafa Shakur (12.0 PPG, 4.0 RPG, 6.9 APG) has good hands and eyes and can find the open man. Sophomore forward Marcus Williams (16.8 PPG, 6.9 RPG) leads the team in scoring, while senior forward Ivan Radenovic (15.2 PPG, 7.6 RPG) is tops grabbing the ball off the boards.
Purdue enters the tournament hungry for some respect and with two talented senior leaders to show the way. Forward Carl Landry (18.9 PPG, 7.1 RPG) lead the club in points and rebbies this season, while guard David Teague (14.3 PPG, 5.1 RPG, 2.0 APG) is second in both categories. For the Boilermakers to succeed these two players have to be at the top of their game and then the rest of the team’s role players must contribute. Freshman guard Chris Kramer has developed into a fine defender.
The Wildcats will help themselves most by getting out of the gate quickly. Purdue can do damage from the outside and inside and will exploit Arizona’s weak “D.”