Baylor vs. South Dakota State [Game info and open thread]
The Bears (27-7), got out like gangbusters this year, starting 17-0. They didn't close quite as well, but consider that four of their six losses were at the hands of Kansas and Missouri, and they didn't lose to a non-tournament (or non-Big 12) team all year. Finally, in the Big 12 Tournament semifinals, the Bears got the signature win their season needed, defeating Kansas 81-72. If you can get past their ghastly uniforms, you'll see that the Bears are scary athletic, and at the center of that is do-everything forward Perry Jones III. The 6-foot-11 Jones can bang down in the paint, and also step out and hit threes. If Jones is having a bad day Pierre Jackson, Quincy Acy and Quincy Miller all have the ability to take over a game.
About South Dakota State:
The Jackrabbits (27-7) enter the tournament hot, having won eight straight games. They finished second in the Summit League regular season, but won the conference tournament to earn the conference's auto bid. South Dakota State can really score the basketball, averaging 77.3 points per game (18th nationally). The leader of that is junior guard Nate Wolters, who can score in bunches. Wolters averages 21.3 points per game and topped 30 points six times this year. If he gets hot, watch out. The Jackrabbits didn't beat a tournament team all season, but they did beat bubble team Washington on its home floor by 19 points back in December.
What's at stake?
The winner plays the winner of No. 11 UNLV and No. 6 Colorado.
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