Sunday, February 20, 2000

UC-Temple Scouting Report

        Temple is familiar to Cincinnati basketball fans but plays an uncommon, uncomfortable style. Here are five keys to look for when the Bearcats and Owls play:

        1. Pepe Sanchez. If he plays the point guard position for the Owls, they are an entirely different team. In his absence, they averaged just 56.3 points and 8.9 assists.

        2. Quick shots. Temple has a reputation for slowing games because of its matchup defense, but the Owls shoot early in possessions to avoid turnovers and trust their big men to collect misses. They turn it over 9.7 times per game; the Miami RedHawks are second in the nation at 11.4.

        3. Transition. Few teams are better at denying fast-break baskets than Temple. The Bearcats will have to be extraordinarily proficient or patient.

        4. Kenyon Martin. Late in last season's NCAA Tournament loss to Temple, Martin began to find a seam in the Owls zone near the foul line. He wound up 7-of-9 for 16 points, nearly all of those coming in the second half. “It's just a matter of me wanting the ball more,” Martin said.

        5. Mark Karcher vs. Pete Mickeal. On a team scoring 80 per game, Karcher's 15.7 scoring average would equate to 18.6 points — which is top 50 in the NCAA. With Karcher strong enough to score on post-ups and slick enough to score off the dribble, this will be one of Mickeal's toughest assignments. “They say he's one of the best defensive players in the country,” Karcher said. “That's like a challenge.”


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