Sports Illustrated college basketball writer and CBS hoops analyst Seth Davis does not think the Arizona Wildcats will make it through their regular season unscathed.
In fact, he expects all three still-undefeated teams to suffer at least one loss during their respective regular seasons.
“I don’t see anybody entering the NCAA Tournament undefeated,” he said.
However, that does not diminish what the Cats (21-0, 8-0) have done or what he thinks they will do.
“You’ve got to be impressed with what Arizona’s been able to do,” Davis told the Burns and Gambo Show Wednesday on Arizona Sports 98.7 FM. “They defend and they attack the offensive glass, and those are two things you can do regardless of whether or not you’re having a good shooting night.
“So that to me is the type of a team that can do very well in the NCAA Tournament because you can withstand a bad shooting night.”
That has been the case all season for the Sean Miller’s team, as they’ve not always won pretty but they have always won.
Arizona is not a bad offensive team by any means, but they rank 100th in college basketball with 75.0 points per game and their .486 shooting percentage places them in a tie for 17th.
But the Wildcats have yet to be outrebounded by an opponent this season and, as of Wednesday morning, are allowing teams to shoot just .372 against them, including a paltry .294 from three-point range.
And offensively, they’re as balanced as any team in the country.
“That’s a great asset to have because you can exploit matchups and you can survive one or two guys (having off nights),” Davis said. “I think the flip side, though, is when you’re talking about a Sweet 16 game and an Elite 8 game, getting down to the end of the game, end of the shot clock, you’re going to have to be able to create some offense, something out of nothing, and I think that’s the one area I still have a little bit of concern about Arizona.”
Davis added that the Wildcats’ struggles from the free throw line are also a bit of a concern.
“They’re not without their flaws,” he noted, adding that there are many outside factors that could contribute to Arizona playing a poor game and losing.
“But so far it hasn’t happened.”