The fact that I am a huge Tar Heel fan didn't help today as Kansas ran all over Carolina in the second half. So if you hadn't already made the connection, we will play Kansas on Friday evening in the Sweet 16. Kansas is a very tough team that definitely can be beaten but will definitely be quite a challenge. They are a team full of veteran athletes that on good nights can play very effectively on the boards and can knock down jump shots as well. So here are a couple of my keys to the game based on my observation from today:
1. Limit them in the paint- Probably the most obvious of them all and the one I'm most afraid of. When given space Withey and Young are very dangerous on the interior. The key will be to limit offensive rebounds and suffocate them on defense while staying out of foul trouble. With the way McGary played on Saturday, I'm starting to become a little more confident in our play on the inside.
2. Control the pace and win the turnover battle- In the first half today, Kansas looked flat mainly due to the fact that Carolina was able to run at their own pace and force Kansas to double digit turnovers. Kansas ended up making adjustments and eventually slowed UNC down. If we can maintain a steady transition game, force turnovers, and slow Kansas down offensively, Kansas will look just as flat as they did today in the first half.
3. NO MORE HERO BALL- Kansas is more like a Big Ten opponent, and we have no room for Burke to take 25 shots and make 6. Instead, we need Burke to have something more like a 20 and 10 game with many assists. Burke needs to be a leader and create opportunities. We are best when we operate with all players contributing, for example our last two tourney games.
That was just my analysis/preview. Feel free to leave more comments, opinions, and keys to the game. I'm tired of Kansas, so let's beat the crap out of them Friday. GO BLUE!