Big East Tournament 2012: Louisville Basketball Preview

The Big East Conference Tournament 2012 tips off Tuesday afternoon at Madison Square Garden, and this SB Nation New York StoryStream is the place to come for every tidbit of information. For a full schedule with results and updates of the bracket, click here.

The Louisville Cardinals may not enter the Big East Tournament as one of the favorites to win the crown, but there's no doubt that nobody wants to face them. The Cardinals (22-9, 10-8 Big East) shoot a lot of 3s and play extremely good defense. When the long-range shots are falling and the D is allowed to clamp down on opponents, Louisville maybe the toughest match up for anybody.

Head Coach: Rick Pitino, 11th season

One of the top coaches in the nation, Pitino has been around college basketball for nearly 40 years. He’s made the Final Four with three schools; Providence, Kentucky and Louisville.

Team MVP:
Kyle Kuric, senior guard/forward

When Kuric gets going, the Cardinals have a good chance of winning. He can get scorching hot from the perimeter, but every now and then disappears altogether. The Cardinals aren’t exactly dependent on Kuric to score a lot in order to win, but he can put them on his back if need be.

Playing For: Seeding in the NCAA Tournament

Winning the Big East Tournament could see Louisville end up on the 3-line. A quick exit and they should be looking at a 6 seed.

Breakdown: Louisville doesn’t have a go-to guy and isn’t incredibly deep, but they get their scoring from all over the place. Senior Chris Smith is an x-factor type with his ability to get hot from behind the arc, but he’s been struggling from the field as of late during the Cardinals’ 2-4 finish. Sophomore center Gorgui Dieng nearly averages a double-double and gives the Cardinals a solid interior presence on both ends of the floor.

A key player for Louisville is point guard Peyton Siva, who has been an underachiever as a junior. Louisville expected a lot more out of him, and if they want to make any sort of noise in the Big East and NCAA Tournaments, Siva will need to be good. The Cardinals aren’t expected to go very far, but Pitino knows what it takes to succeed in the postseason.

Big East Tournament Seed: No. 7, will played Tuesday's winner of No. 15 Providence Friars and No. 10 Seton Hall Pirates.

Roster and stats:


FG 3PT FT Rebounds Misc
G M M A Pct M A Pct M A Pct Off Def Tot Ast TO Stl Blk PF PPG
Kyle Kuric 29 36.3 4.4 10.2 43.4 2.1 6.2 34.4 1.9 2.3 80.9 1.3 3.3 4.6 1.3 1.2 1.3 0.4 2.2 12.9
Russ Smith 30 21.6 4.1 10.9 37.3 1.1 3.9 28.2 2.7 3.5 75.5 0.7 1.9 2.6 2.0 2.2 2.3 0.0 2.9 11.9
Chris Smith 31 28.2 3.1 7.7 40.2 1.7 4.3 39.4 2.2 2.9 75.6 1.2 2.6 3.8 2.2 1.1 0.9 0.0 1.5 10.1
Gorgui Dieng 31 32.3 3.7 7.0 53.2 0.0 0.0 0.0 2.0 3.0 66.7 3.6 5.5 9.1 1.2 2.1 1.2 3.2 3.4 9.5
Chane Behanan 31 25.0 3.5 7.0 50.0 0.2 1.0 16.1 2.2 3.7 59.6 3.0 4.6 7.6 0.9 1.9 0.8 0.4 1.9 9.3
Peyton Siva 29 31.6 2.8 7.2 38.8 0.4 1.9 20.0 2.5 3.4 73.5 0.4 2.5 2.9 5.4 3.5 1.7 0.1 3.0 8.4
Mike Marra 2 12.5 2.5 4.0 62.5 0.5 2.0 25.0 0.5 1.0 50.0 0.5 2.0 2.5 1.0 1.0 0.5 0.0 0.0 6.0
Rakeem Buckles 11 13.5 1.5 3.4 43.2 0.2 0.5 40.0 0.9 1.6 55.6 1.6 2.2 3.8 0.3 1.4 0.6 0.2 1.8 4.0
Wayne Blackshear 6 9.0 1.3 4.7 28.6 0.8 2.3 35.7 0.3 0.8 40.0 0.5 0.8 1.3 0.2 0.7 0.3 0.2 0.7 3.8
Jared Swopshire 30 12.8 1.3 3.1 40.4 0.1 0.7 15.0 0.7 1.2 62.9 0.6 2.1 2.8 0.4 0.6 0.4 0.2 1.1 3.4
Angel Nunez 12 4.6 0.7 1.8 38.1 0.5 1.3 37.5 0.2 0.3 50.0 0.2 0.5 0.7 0.2 0.5 0.1 0.2 0.1 2.0
Mark Jackson Jr. 3 4.0 0.7 1.3 50.0 0.3 0.3 100.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 1.0 1.0 0.0 0.7 0.0 0.0 0.3 1.7
Stephan Van Treese 3 6.7 0.3 1.0 33.3 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.7 1.3 50.0 1.3 0.7 2.0 0.0 0.3 0.3 0.3 1.7 1.3
Tim Henderson 11 5.2 0.4 1.0 36.4 0.3 0.6 42.9 0.3 0.5 50.0 0.3 0.5 0.8 0.5 0.5 0.1 0.0 0.6 1.3
Elisha Justice 18 5.9 0.5 1.3 37.5 0.1 0.6 9.1 0.1 0.1 100.0 0.1 0.4 0.5 0.5 0.6 0.3 0.0 0.8 1.2
Kevin Ware 18 5.4 0.4 1.4 32.0 0.0 0.2 0.0 0.2 0.7 33.3 0.2 0.5 0.7 0.4 1.1 0.4 0.2 0.7 1.1
Zach Price 14 5.4 0.3 0.9 33.3 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.1 0.7 20.0 0.4 0.6 1.1 0.0 0.1 0.1 0.2 1.2 0.7

For a SB Nation New York preview of other Big East schools, click on its respective links: Syracuse, Marquette, Notre Dame, Cincinnati, Georgetown, South Florida, Louisville, West Virginia, Connecticut, Seton Hall, Rutgers, St. John's, Pittsburgh, Villanova, Providence, DePaul.

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