Make your own free website on Tripod.com
NCAA College Football, Basketball, and Baseball - SouthernCollegeSports.com
SouthernCollegeSports.com
CONTACT SCS.com
SCS.com STORE
HOOPS FEATURES
 TV Listings
HOOPS COLUMNS
 Daniel
HOOPS LINKS
 Live Scoreboard
 Conference Standings
 Top 25 Polls
FOOTBALL FEATURES
 Free Pick'Em Contest
FOOTBALL COLUMNS
 David
FOOTBALL LINKS
 Live Scoreboard
 Conference Standings
 Top 25 and BCS Polls
 Statistics
ABOUT US
 The Work Force
Site Developed by AdcockDesign.com

FINAL FOUR PREVIEW: LSU vs UCLA
March 29, 2006

A LOOK AT THE TIGERSSCS.com

How they got here

An easy first round victory over Iona was followed by a down-to-the-wire battle in round two against Texas A&M. It took a Darrel Mitchell three-pointer with just under 4 seconds remaining to allow the Tigers to prevail by a single point. Then came the huge upset victory over Duke. John Brady's squad played outstanding defense and advanced to the Elite Eight with an eight-point win over the top-ranked Blue Devils. LSU capped off their run to the Final Four with a double-digit overtime victory over second-seeded Texas.

Player to watch

The Tigers have counted on senior guard Darrel Mitchell and sophomore big man Glen Davis all season long, but the player who has stood up to make a name for himself this March is forward Tyrus Thomas. The SEC's freshman of the year has averaged nearly a dozen points, nine boards, and four blocked shots in each of the Tigers' NCAA Tournament games, including back-to-back thirteen rebound performances against Duke and Texas. Thomas has given the LSU the extra boost it took to get past the Devils and Horns, and he'll have to stay hot, both on the offensive and defensive ends, for the Tigers to take down UCLA.

Why they'll go down on Saturday

Past the top three scorers, LSU sometimes finds offense hard to come by. The next leading scorer is Tasmin Mitchell, just a true freshman, and past him, no other Tiger scores more than a half-dozen points per game. And we haven't even mentioned yet that UCLA plays perhaps the stingiest defense in America. That's not a good sign for a team that has just one three-point shooter hitting better than 30% from downtown.

Why they'll advance to Monday's title game

The good news for LSU is that they don't need a whole lot of three-point offense. They've gotten the job done down low all season long, and with the emergence of Thomas in recent weeks, that production has gotten even better. The Tigers are athletic enough to guard UCLA on the perimeter and look to have the Bruins out-matched down in the paint.

A LOOK AT THE BRUINSSCS.com

How they got here

A breeze past Belmont in round one was followed by a tight battle with Alabama in the second round. The Bruins held off the Tide thanks to a late Aaron Afflalo three-pointer. Another close one against Gonzaga was next, and it was perhaps the most exciting game of the entire Tournament. The Bruins trailed for all but 10 seconds of the game, but that brief lead was enough to capture the two-point victory and move on to the Elite Eight. A weekend win over top-seeded Memphis came thanks to outstanding defense on the Tigers' top player Rodney Carney, moving UCLA on to Indianapolis and into this weekend's Final Four.

Player to watch

Center Ryan Hollins will have his work cut out for him on Saturday. The 7'0" senior has nearly doubled his average points per game from 7 during the regular season to a dozen during the Tournament, while also increasing his rebound and blocked shot totals. He'll have to have a similar performance on Saturday in an effort to slow down LSU's Glen Davis and Tyrus Thomas. If he can't hold his own, it could be tough for UCLA to come out with a win.

Why they'll go down on Saturday

Guards Aaron Afflalo and Jordan Farmar are solid, but their play has been a bit shaky at times during the Tournament. When you figure that LSU's guards, though not scorers like these two, are just as athletic on the defensive end, it could be difficult for the pair that averages a combined 30 points per game to get to that total. Then consider how tough it is to defend the Tigers down low, and this looks to be a tough matchup for the Bruins, especially if Hollins were to get in foul trouble.

Why they'll advance to Monday's title game

The team's top four scorers are either sophomores or freshmen, so these guys have nothing to be scared of. They've marched right into the Final Four, and who's to tell them they won't take the title home with them when they head back to L.A.? If UCLA can double-team down low and force the Tiger guards to make shots, they'll likely be hanging around Indy until Monday night.

STAFF PREDICTIONS
BEN CORTNEY DAVID JEFF JONATHAN REED
LSU UCLA LSU LSU LSU LSU

U.S.A.
SCS.com STORE
SCS.com - Shop for NCAA gear here!
ITEMS OF INTEREST
CONFERENCES
CHRIST IN SPORTS
Place your ad here. Contact SCS.com for more info.
SOUTHERNCOLLEGESPORTS.COM
Copyright 2004-2009 SouthernCollegeSports.com. All rights reserved. This website is an unofficial and independently operated source of news and information not affiliated with any school, team, or league.