While basketball is a game won and lost on the proper execution of back-cuts, outlet passes, and technically sound box-outs, the game can also be broken down analytically.
Each of the past five national champions fit into a statistical profile. That statistical profile gives us a head-start at picking the champion to be crowned in Indianapolis in early April.
The profile of a champion was developed using tempo-free statistics provided by Ken Pomeroy.
The statistics that encompass the profile of a champion include: Offensive and defensive efficiency, each of the four factors for offense and defense (effective field goal percentage, rebounding percentage, turnover percentage, and free throw to field goal attempt percentage), and the top five possession users for each team.
The profile was developed using data from the 2005 and 2009 North Carolina team, 2006 and 2007 Florida team, and the 2008 Kansas team.
The 2010 teams that will be included for evaluation are Kansas, Kentucky, Syracuse, Duke, Ohio State, Kansas State, West Virginia, New Mexico, and Baylor.
Those nine teams represent the projected two seeds minus Purdue (although the Boilermakers will receive a two or three seed, they are not that elite of a team without Robbie Hummel) with New Mexico, the strongest three seed, and Baylor, a sleeper because of its strong offense and tricky defense, instead.