|Montana||M Ward 14.8||K Jamar 6.0||K Jamar 4.1|
|Syracuse||C Fair 14.3||C Fair 7.1||M Carter-Williams 7.7|
13th-seeded Montana matches up against No. 4-seeded Syracuse in the second round of the NCAA Tournament at HP Pavilion on Thursday. It gets started at 9:57 p.m. ET and you can catch it on truTV.
In their last outing, behind 20 points and five rebounds from Kareem Jamar, the Grizzlies defeated Weber State 67-64 on Mar. 16. With 6.0 rebounds per game and 4.1 assists per game, he has team-best marks in both categories. For the Orange, C.J. Fair put up 21 points and seven rebounds in the 78-61 loss to Louisville on Mar. 16. With 14.3 points per game and 7.1 rebounds per game, he has team-best marks in both categories.
Syracuse has a statistical edge over Montana in two key areas. One concern is blocked shots, a key defensive component, in which the Orange hold the advantage over the Grizzlies, 6.2 per game to 3 per game. Syracuse also has an advantage in rebounding, 38.7 per game to 31.2 per game. Syracuse ranks second in their conference in offensive rebounding percentage at 39.8, which also places them ninth in the country.
- Montana has a better record on the road than Syracuse this season (10-4 vs. 5-5).
- Montana is a better free-throw-shooting team (77.5 percent vs. 68.5 percent) than Syracuse this season.
- Syracuse has been ducking Montana for over 30 years.
- The Big Sky had fewer blowout games in conference (meaning there is greater parity within the conference) than in the Big East.
- Montana has a better record in close games than Syracuse this season (7-2 vs. 3-4).
- You'll do better on next semester's exams, right? Montana currently has a higher Academic Progress Rate (960 to 936) than Syracuse, per the NCAA.
- Montana has a better conference record than Syracuse this season (19-1 vs. 11-7).
- Montana is a better three-point shooting team (39.1 percent vs. 32.0 percent) than Syracuse this season.
- Last year the top-ranking players between the two conferences for points, free throws made, and three-pointers were in the Big Sky.