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TENNESSEE BASKETBALL: Scouting Saint Peter's

By: Dallas Bowlin

Senior Staff Writer/Editor/Host

The All Vol Call In Show

It’s March, and Saint Peter’s is squaring off against an SEC school in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. Sound familiar? Luckily for Tennessee, the eye test and analytics suggest that the outcome may not be so "Cinderella" for the Peacocks this time.

Beginning with the most commonly known theme surrounding this matchup: Armoni Zeigler is the younger brother of Tennessee point guard Zakai Zeigler. As a freshman, Armoni Zeigler averages six points per game, shooting 39.1% from the field and 35.4% from behind the arc. While Armoni is Zakai's younger brother, his six-foot-four-inch stature means Zakai will likely not be guarding him. Those duties will probably be reserved for Santiago Vescovi, among others.

While the coaching staff and roster are notably different, four players from the Peacocks' run two seasons ago are still on the team, including this season’s MAAC Defensive Player of The Year, guard Latrell Reid. In an 89-57 win over Manhattan, Reid dished out a career-high 17 assists to go along with 15 points.

Defensively, Saint Peter’s held its opponents to 63.4 points per game, the 12th-lowest in the country. However, the Peacocks boast the 242nd-ranked strength of schedule, not necessarily facing a murderer's row of opponents. According to Evanmiya, the toughest game Saint Peter’s faced was against Seton Hall, resulting in a 70-59 loss. They shot 42% from the field and 33% from three while allowing the Pirates to shoot 50% from the field and 42% from three.

Offensively, things start to slant in favor of Tennessee. Saint Peter’s is shooting 33.9% from three for the season, slightly below the NCAA average. Interestingly, per EvanMiya, the Volunteers perform at their best when teams shoot 31% or worse from three-point land. The good news for Tennessee is that teams are shooting 31.4% against them.

In the paint, the Peacocks will simply be overmatched. They are shooting 11.9% below the NCAA average at the rim and 4.9% lower than average in the paint area. Coupled with the tallest player they play being six-foot-nine, this game could be a throwback grind-out-in-the-paint game for Tennessee.

EvanMiya’s Matchup Preview suggests that Tennessee is expected to win 75-52, but as with every game in March, victory isn’t assured until the final buzzer sounds.

Stats and Analytics | EvanMiya and CBB Analytics. 

Photo | Tennessee Athletics

Graphic | Dallas Bowlin


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