Big East Tournament 2013: Biggest Flaw on Each Contending Team
There are some favorites to win the 2013 Big East tournament, but they are far from perfect. The weaknesses could make this a wide open event.
The Big East tournament is known for its surprising runs to a title. Kemba Walker led Connecticut to an amazing run last season, and Gerry McNamara did the same with Syracuse a few years back.
While the top teams are ahead of the pack as of now, a major flaw could lead to an early exit in the conference and NCAA tournaments. Here are the biggest problems that could hold back the top teams at Madison Square Garden.
Georgetown: Secondary Scorer
Otto Porter has been one of the best players in the country throughout most of the season. He shoots well, rebounds well and is a selfless passer.
However, the rest of the roster can be a bit inconsistent, especially without Greg Whittington. Markel Starks showed what he can do with 19 points in a win over Syracuse, but he has also been held to single-digits in three of the last six games.
The Hoyas need consistent scoring from him and freshman D'Vauntes Smith-Rivera in order to compete against a good defensive team like Louisville.
Georgetown's defense is incredible, but the team is ranked only 236th in average points per game. Obviously, the pace has a lot to with that, but the secondary players on the roster need to come through.
Louisville: 3-Point Shooting
Louisville seems to have all the pieces necessary to succeed in the tournament. The Cardinals are great defensively, have a talented lead scorer and veteran point guard play.
The one weakness is the team's ability to hit shots from the outside. The Cardinals have combined to hit only 32.3 percent of three-point shots this season.
It is not for lack of trying, either. There are four players who have taken more than 100 shots from behind the arc this season, and only Luke Hancock has a respectable mark of 37 percent.
Russ Smith is one of the quickest guards in the country and he can get points by getting to the basket. However, he either needs to improve his outside shooting or stop trying in order to help his squad in the postseason.
Vander Blue has been impressive this season as the new leader of Marquette. The rest of the roster also constantly shows how deep this team is after losing key players last year.
That does not mean that this squad is without flaw, however. One major issue is the team's high turnover rate that becomes a problem at times.
For the season, Marquette averages 13.5 turnovers per game, which ranks 201st in the country. With a relatively slow pace, this is a problem.
Junior Cadougan has been solid at point guard, but the rest of the team has trouble holding onto the ball. The Golden Eagles almost lost to St. John's in the last regular-season game after totaling 18 turnovers. They had 19 in the loss to Villanova.
If Marquette can't play smarter basketball, it will lose early in this tournament.
Syracuse: Backcourt Efficiency
The biggest problem with Syracuse's offense this season is that the wrong players are taking the most shots.
C.J. Fair and James Southerland have shot well from outside and are usually taking good shots around the basket. The same cannot be said about guards Brandon Triche and Michael Carter-Williams.
Over the course of the year, the starting backcourt has combined to make only 40 percent of their field goal attempts, including only 27.8 percent from three-point range. When the team losses, it is usually due to one or both of these players struggling to make shots.
At this point, it is too late to expect the men to simply play through the struggles. If they are not shooting well, it is up to them to pass up shots and give it to the more efficient scorers in the frontcourt.
The defense will keep this squad in games this year, but the offense will not be enough unless the starting guards play with better efficiency.
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