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Butler 2009 NCAA Tournament Capsule

 

Butler Bulldogs (26-5, 15-3) - Horizon League

Seed: #9 - South Region

RPI: 24

Big Wins: 12/23 at Xavier (74-65), 12/30 UAB (72-68), 2/21 at Davidson (75-63)

Bad Losses: 2/2 at Wisconsin Green Bay (66-75), 2/15 Loyola IL (67-71), 2/18 at Wisconsin Milwaukee (60-63)

Last NCAA Appearance: 2008, Second Round loss to Tennessee

Coach: Brad Stevens (1-1 in 1 NCAA appearance)

Butler Bulldogs NCAA Tournament history



Probable Butler Starters:

  • Shelvin Mack, Freshman, Guard, 11.7 ppg, 3.5 apg, 4.3 rpg

  • Ronald Nored, Freshman, Guard, 4.2 ppg, 2.6 apg

  • Willie Veasley, Junior, Guard, 8.9 ppg, 4.3 rpg

  • Gordon Hayward, Freshman, Forward, 13.2 ppg, 6.5 rpg

  • Matt Howard, Sophomore, Forward, 14.6 ppg, 6.7 rpg, 1.5 bpg

 

Key Butler Roleplayers:

  • Garrett Butcher, Freshman, Forward, 2.6 ppg, 1.5 rpg

  • Zach Hahn, Sophomore, Guard, 5.3 ppg, 1.2 rpg

  • Avery Jukes, Junior, Forward, 3.1 ppg, 2.0 rpg

  • Shawn Vanzant, Sophomore, Guard, 3.6 ppg, 1.0 apg

 

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Why The Bulldogs Can Surprise:
The names are mostly different, but the 2008-2009 Butler team sure looks a lot like the Bulldog teams of the past. They play smart basketball, keep the turnovers down and shoot lights out from everywhere on the floor.

The biggest reason Coach Brad Stevens’ team has dominated the Horizon League is the emergence of Gordon Hayward. The 6-8 freshman was a shooter and distributor in high school, but then he grew six inches. He is still a great shooter who hits 44.5 percent of his attempts from long range and a solid passer, but now he can also grab a ton of rebounds and block a few shots. The Bulldogs have Hayward teamed up with Matt Howard in the frontcourt. Howard is not as talented of a shooter as Hayward, but he is an aggressive player getting to the basket and can break down most opposing big men off the dribble.

 

Why The Bulldogs Can Disappoint:
Willie Veasley is the only upperclassman in the starting lineup and he has to be a leader on the floor. The 6-3 wing is not as good of a shooter as Hayward or Mack or as good of a scorer as Howard, but he will be asked to do quite a bit of scoring to help compliment those guys. He averaged 8.9 points per game during the regular seasonand it will be important for the Bulldogs to have a fourth scoring threat on the floor during the tournament. That fourth threat could also be Zach Hahn. The 6-0 sophomore will take nearly all of his shots from beyond the arc, but he can get hot on certain days and tally 12 or 15 points.

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Who To Watch:
Willie Veasley is the only upperclassman in the starting lineup and he has to be a leader on the floor. The 6-3 wing is not as good of a shooter as Hayward or Mack or as good of a scorer as Howard, but he will be asked to do quite a bit of scoring to help compliment those guys. He averaged 8.9 points per game during the regular seasonand it will be important for the Bulldogs to have a fourth scoring threat on the floor during the tournament. That fourth threat could also be Zach Hahn. The 6-0 sophomore will take nearly all of his shots from beyond the arc, but he can get hot on certain days and tally 12 or 15 points.

 

Butler By the Numbers:

  • Scoring Offense: 68.1 (164th in nation, 2nd in conference)
  • Scoring Defense: 57.4 (6, 2)
  • Field-Goal Percentage: 44.0 (158, 2)
  • Field-Goal Defense: 38.0 (5, 1)
  • Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 8.2 (27, 2)
  • Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 35.6 (112, 3)
  • Free-Throw Percentage: 72.5 (58, 3)
  • Rebound Margin: 3.2 (65, 1)
  • Assists Per Game: 13.3 (144, 3)
  • Turnovers Per Game: 12.5 (50, 2)

 

Joel’s Bracket Says: Second Round loss to North Carolina

 

By Joel Welser
CollegeSports-fans.com Senior Basketball Writer

 

> Find more 2009 NCAA Tournament coverage online from College Sports Fans and print your NCAA Tournament brackets today!

 


 


 

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