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Oklahoma State Cowboys

by Curtis Claassen | March 14th, 2010

Good wins: Kansas, at Kansas State, Baylor, Texas A&M.

Bad losses: at Oklahoma 

Strengths

James Anderson. The Big 12 Player of the Year is the real deal. In the regular season he averaged 22.5 points, 5.9 rebounds and 2.4 assists. He carried the Cowboys to their win over Kansas, scoring 28 points. He also shoots 81.1 percent from the free-throw line. He is the kind of player who can score from anywhere on the floor and single-handedly carry his team to one or two wins in the NCAA Tournament. 

Weaknesses

Big men: Oklahoma State does not rebound the ball well. The Cowboys averaged 38.4 rebounds in the regular season, which ranked at the bottom of the Big 12. The biggest guy in their starting lineup is 6-8 Matt Pilgrim, who averages 6.8 rebounds per game. Marshall Moses leads the team in rebounds, averaging 8.4 rebounds in the regular season. 

Sharing the ball: The Cowboys only averaged 12.5 assists per game, which also ranked at the bottom of the Big 12. The problem stems from the lack of a true point guard. Keiton Page is the team’s unofficial point guard, but he only averaged 2.6 assists in the regular season. Anderson works as the team’s point/forward. His only weakness may be that he tries to take the Cowboys on his shoulders a little too much, taking the majority of the team’s shots, which often results in the other Cowboys players standing around a lot, thus the low assist rate on the team. Ray Penn leads the team with three assists per game. 

Other factors: The Cowboys have some great wins this season. They’ve defeated the top four teams in the Big 12, which includes a win over No. 1 Kansas and a road win at Kansas State. They should be between a seven and nine seed in the NCAA Tournament. 

NCAA Tournament Prediction: Second Round. Anytime a team has a prolific scorer like Anderson, a team can make a run. He has the ability to take the Cowboys on his back, but Oklahoma State doesn’t have a whole lot of strength outside of him. They have no post game and don’t rebound or pass the ball well. The Sweet 16 is a stretch but can be attainable with the right matchup, but the more likely scenario is the second round or possibly even getting knocked out in their first game.

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