Conference: Big South (24-9)
Location: Asheville, North Carolina
Famous Alum: Kenny George is the tallest player in NCAA history at 7’7″.
They’re Back! This will be their third appearance, and they have won the “play-in” game twice, before losing to a #1 seed. Last year, it was a win over Arkansas-Little Rock before losing to Pittsburgh.
Resume: UNC-Asheville lost to North Carolina, North Carolina State, Connecticut and Tennessee. They were far more competitive than last year, though, losing those four games by an average of 9.5 points. They won the Big South with a 16-2 record and rolled through the tournament easily.
Notable Player(s): They are led by the senior guard duo of J.P. Primm and Matt Dickey.
Team Style/Strengths: Most smaller schools will have height mismatches in the tournament, and that’s really true of the Bulldogs, with no starters over 6’5″. They will create turnovers and have one of the more veteran teams in the tourney, but are susceptible to given up rebounds and getting beaten inside.
All-Important Rankings: 108 (RPI), 122 (Pomeroy)
Projected Outlook/Seed: Right now, as one of the first teams in, they project as a 16 seed. By the time the smoke clears, with a few upsets in other conference tourneys, they should rise to the 15 seed line. Their current Pomeroy ranking would place them in 14 to 15 seed range in most years, suggesting they will be a tougher matchup than last year.
[photo via US Presswire]