Duke vs. Arizona: Wildcats Bring Unpredictable Offense To Sweet 16

As an observer of the Arizona Wildcats all season long, I have been surprised by what I have seen out of them in the 2011 NCAA Tournament. Judging from their performance in Pac-10 play, there was speculation on my part that they would be unable to hang with top talent during March Madness, and the Wildcats have proven me wrong.

Players such as Jordin Mayes, Solomon Hill, and even Brendon Lavender have stepped up and produced in the spotlight, punishing Memphis and Texas for overextending their defense against All-American Derrick Williams.

When Lamont Jones was held scoreless against Texas, his teammates chipped in and put the basketball in the bucket. Games during the regular season can be won by incredible individual efforts, and Derrick Williams had more than his fair share of those. But to win in the NCAA Tournament -- that requires a full team effort (unless your name is Stephen Curry).

It won't be easy for the Arizona Wildcats to upset the top-seeded Duke Blue Devils, even with the geographical advantage. Duke's roster is filled with quality players, and Nolan Smith is a college player of the year candidate after scoring 21 points a game this season.

Experience and composure are hallmarks of Coach Mike Krzyzewski's teams, and Arizona will need to improve their late game management in order to defeat this mature club.

For more on the Arizona Wildcats, check out AZ Desert Swarm.

Trending Discussions

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join SB Nation Arizona

You must be a member of SB Nation Arizona to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SB Nation Arizona. You should read them.

Join SB Nation Arizona

You must be a member of SB Nation Arizona to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SB Nation Arizona. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.