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Here Are Some Numbers That Will Help You Get Your March Madness Fix for the Sweet 16
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By Associated Press
Published 4 weeks ago on
March 27, 2024

In the Sweet 16 Tournament, UConn is the team to beat. (GV Wire Composite/David Rodriguez)

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Sixteen may be sweet, but it isn’t the only relevant number as the NCAA Tournament heads into the regional semifinals.

Here are some other numbers worth knowing for each team. These statistics will help you learn more about each of the remaining teams and could explain how some of them got this far.

East Region

UCONN: In UConn’s second-round victory over Northwestern, Donovan Clingan became just the third player in tournament history to get 14 points, 14 rebounds and eight blocks in a game. The others to do it were Hakeem Olajuwon for Houston in 1983 and David Robinson for Navy in 1986. The blocks also were the most ever by a UConn player in a tournament game.

SAN DIEGO STATE: The Aztecs’ Sweet 16 matchup with defending national champion UConn will mark the fourth time that two teams have faced each other in the tournament a year after meeting in the final. The losing team from the championship won the rematch in one of the three previous instances, when Duke beat UNLV in a 1991 semifinal. Cincinnati won two straight championship games over Ohio State in 1961-62. Florida beat UCLA in the 2006 championship game and in a 2007 semifinal.

ILLINOIS: Illinois has won six in a row, and Terrence Shannon Jr. has scored at least 25 points in each of those games. The 6-foot-6 guard has averaged 30.5 points and has shot 52.8% (56 of 106) from the floor during that stretch. He also shown an uncanny knack for drawing fouls during the streak. Over his last five games, Shannon has gone 51 of 58 on free-throw attempts.

IOWA STATE: Iowa State is allowing just 61.2 points per game to rank fourth among all Division I teams in scoring defense. Since falling 73-65 to Houston on Feb. 19, the Cyclones haven’t allowed any of their last 10 opponents to exceed 65 points. The Cyclones next face Illinois, which ranks ninth in points per game (84.6) and has averaged 91.3 points over its last four contests.

West Region

ALABAMA: Mark Sears and Aaron Estrada were the first set of Division I teammates since 1996-97 to both have at least 410 points, 125 assists, 120 rebounds, 50 3-point baskets and 40 steals during the regular season. Sears is averaging 21.5 points, 4.2 rebounds, 4.2 assists and 1.7 steals. Estrada has 13.3 points, 5.4 rebounds, 4.7 assists and 1.7 steals per game.

NORTH CAROLINA: Armando Bacot had seven straight tournament double-doubles and six consecutive tourney games with at least 15 rebounds before he ended up with 18 points and seven boards in a second-round victory over Michigan State. His seven straight NCAA double-doubles matched Tim Duncan and Olajuwon for the NCAA record.

ARIZONA: Arizona’s first-round triumph over Long Beach State marked the 19th time this season the Wildcats had five different players score in double figures. No other Division I team had that many games this season in which five different players had at least 10 points.

CLEMSON: Each of Clemson’s first two tournament opponents has shot below 40% against the Tigers. Clemson won its first-round game by limiting New Mexico to 29.7% shooting, the lowest percentage the Tigers had ever allowed in an NCAA tourney game. Clemson now faces Arizona, which shot 52.8% in its second-round victory over Dayton.

Midwest Region

CREIGHTON: Baylor Scheierman is the first Division I men’s player in history to have at least 2,000 career points, 1,000 rebounds, 500 assists and 300 3-point baskets. Scheierman, who is in his second season at Creighton after playing three seasons at South Dakota State, has 2,208 points, 1,250 rebounds, 578 assists and 352 3-pointers.

TENNESSEE: Tennessee is making its 10th Sweet 16 appearance – including its seventh in the last 18 years – but the Volunteers have never reached the Final Four and earned their lone regional final berth in 2010.

GONZAGA: Gonzaga is in the Sweet 16 for the ninth straight time, the longest active streak of any Division I team. Going back to 1975 – the first year that all teams had to win at least one game to reach the Sweet 16 – the record for consecutive Sweet 16 appearances is owned by North Carolina with 13 straight from 1981-93.

PURDUE: Zach Edey is the first player since Kareen Abdul-Jabbar (then known as Lew Alcindor) in 1968 to have at least 50 points and 35 rebounds while shooting 65% from the field in his first two games of an NCAA Tournament. Edey has shot 67.9% (19 of 28) and has totaled 53 points and 35 rebounds in victories over Grambling State and Utah State.

South Region

DUKE: Jared McCain has gone 10 of 17 from 3-point range through the first two rounds. In the Blue Devils’ second-round blowout of James Madison, McCain became the first freshman to score at least 30 points without committing a turnover in an NCAA Tournament game since the event expanded to 64 teams in 1985.

HOUSTON: The Cougars showcased their depth by surviving a second-round matchup with Texas A&M in overtime even after four of their five starters fouled out. They became the first team to win an NCAA game while having at least four players foul out since 1987, when UTEP overcame foul trouble to beat Arizona.

MARQUETTE: Marquette owns a 75-29 record under coach Shaka Smart despite posting a negative rebound margin in each of his three seasons. The Golden Eagles have been outrebounded in each of their last eight games but have gone 5-3. They’re getting outrebounded by 3 boards per game this season. The only other Sweet 16 team with a negative rebound margin is North Carolina State (minus-0.8), which faces Marquette on Friday.

NORTH CAROLINA STATE: Mohamed Diarra has 6.4 points and 7.7 rebounds per game this season, but he’s averaged 11.7 points and 13.5 rebounds over his last six. Michael O’Connell scored in double digits three times and totaled 14 3-point baskets in 31 regular-season games. He’s reached double figures in six of seven postseason games and has gone 12 of 22 from 3-point range during that stretch.

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