The Colonials of Robert Morris (23-9, 16-2) enter the NCAA tourney as a #15 seed, but despite the low seeding by the tournament committee, enter the single elimination tournament as one of the hottest teams in the nation. Robert Morris has won 17 consecutive games, while their last, a victory over Long Island, 86-75, earned the conference's automatic bid to the NCAA tournament. It was the Colonials' second consecutive NEC tournament championship and third victory over LIU this season.
Robert Morris' last appearance in the NCAA tournament was last season. The Colonials, a #13-seed, were defeated in the first round by North Carolina State, 84-52. Their curent winning streak of 17 games is the fourth longest in the nation.
The Colonials are led by scoring sensation Jr. G Sade Logan, who ranks second natitonally notching 25.2 points per game. Logan, who was also named the NEC Player of the Year, leads the nation in three-pointers with 124 (the the all-time national record is 126).
The Colonials' 2008 schedule has featured a pair of NCAA teams, though Robert Morris fell to both: they lost 73-58 at #5-seed Nebraska #13-seed Miami of Ohio.
Though Rutgers and Robert Morris have never met on the hardwood, the Scarlet Knights are 17-0 all-time vesus the NEC. It's been several years since the Knights have locked horns with a member of the NEC however, as RU hasn't faced a member of this conference since the 2002-03 season. That game resulted in a 70-41 victory for RU, versus Wagner.
Perhaps the most polarizing statistic among the pair of teams is the affinity and efficiency by which both teams shoot from downtown. The Colonials are ranked second nationally in three-point field goal percentage, coming in at a shade under 41%, while the Scarlet Knights are ranked 162nd nationally, shooting at a meager 32% from downtown.
The Scarlet Knights feature a pair of Srs. in their starting five, a pair of Jrs., and So. sensation Epiphany Prince, who leads RU in scoring with 13.7 ppg. Prince is also averaging better than 5 rebounds per game and has been a model of consistency during the season, recording 21 double figure games on the season, and leading the squad with 30 treys on the year.
Sr. Essence Carson, the Big East's Defensive Player of the Year, has now moved to 20th on the RU all-time scoring list, 14th in rebounding, and 9th in blocked shots.
This appearance marks the sixth consecutive NCAA appearance for Rutgers, 10th under legendary Coach C. Vivian Stringer, and 19th overall (out of 27 such possibilities).
|60.4||Points Per Game||74|
|51.3||Opponent's Points Per Game||62.4|
|.440||Field Goal %||.450|
|.316||3-point FG %||.408|
|36.2||Rebounds per game||39.8|
|7.8||Steals per game||10.4|