Hill does what Bucknell wants him to do, but it really is not much. He will likely play the same type of minutes as Mayes and have a similar impact. He averages less than three points, three rebounds, and three assists per game. Hill will have the type of impact on the game that Bucknell wants him to, but he won't be the guy to decide the game, just as Mayes won't be for Arizona.
Fogg is definitely the better player here, but Ayers is extremely dangerous. He shoots above 45 percent from behind the arc and although he only averages about 11 points per game, he does have the ability to get hot. Ayers has struggled as of late, shooting less than 45 percent in his past six games, four of those coming in at less than 33 percent. Fogg should be able to contain Ayers on the perimeter and keep up with his offensive production as well.
Cohen is another player that does a little bit of everything, but nothing spectacular. There is a size advantage here, but Cohen is not an aggressive enough scorer to take advantage of it. Cohen has scored less than five points in five of his last seven games and although he has had games in which he has had success, this is not likely to be one of them if Johnson's defends well. Cohen is the type of player that builds off momentum, so if he misses some shots early, he will likely have an off game. However, if he is able to get going early, the Wildcats could be in some trouble. Either way, Johnson is the better player and gets an advantage because of it.
PF: Solomon Hill (6-6, 226, Jr.) vs. Joe Willman (6-7, 217, Jr.)
Willman scored 17 points against Vanderbilt and 10 against Syracuse, both coming at efficient rate. Hill is the more skilled player, but this has the potential to be an even matchup. Willman is aggressive and has a knack for stepping up in the big games. Willman scored in double digits in each game of his conference tournament and he is more of an inside presence than anything, as proven by the fact that he has only taken one three-pointer all season. Hill has no choice to defend because, if he does not, Willman is going to get buckets.
Arizona's best bet is to try to deny Muscala the ball. He only took eight shots against Syracuse and 10 against Vanderbilt, which is likely where Arizona wants him. Muscala goes to the line about seven times per game and shoots 85 percent from the line. He has the capability of going to the line much more than that and poses major problems for Arizona because of that ability and the fact that he averages nearly nine rebounds per game and has 15 double doubles. Perry is obviously talented enough to compete with Muscala, but Muscala's impact has been so large for Bucknell this season that we are giving him the advantage here.
Bench: Bryson Johnson is a legitimate option off the bench, but he is no better than Brendon Lavender. The key here is Angelo Chol, as Bucknell does not really have anybody off the bench to match him. Arizona could go a little bigger off the bench and even give Kyryl Natyazhko a few minutes, although that seems unlikely now. Still, Arizona's short rotation is better than Bucknell's short rotation.
Coaches: Sean Miller vs. Dave Paulsen
Paulsen is a very solid coach and could be a guy that has an opportunity to leave in a few years. However, he is coaching at a different level than Miller, so it is difficult to compare the two. We're giving the advantage to Miller here, but this game likely will not come down to coaching.
Prediction: Arizona is certainly the more talented team, but the final result will depend on what the Wildcats do with Muscala. If Muscala is allowed to get going early, it will open up the perimeter and this game will be closer than it probably should be. The harder life is for Muscala, the harder it will be for Bucknell to win. The difference in this game will likely be on the perimeter with Fogg, so we're giving Arizona the overall advantage here.
Arizona 70, Bucknell 62