Robert Morris Colonials 23-10 (14-4), 1st in Northeast Conference
2013 National Invitation Tournament (NIT)
Charles L. Sewall Center, Moon Township, Pa.
ESPN 7:30 PM EST
2012-13 ROBERT MORRIS COLONIALS SCHEDULE
* Game played at neutral location
2012-13 ROBERT MORRIS COLONIALS
*left the team for personal reasons
The Wildcats were seeded No. 1 overall in the NIT and will play No. 8 Robert Morris, which finished 23-10 and 14-4 in the Northeast Conference. Their two best opponents bested them by a narrow margin, as they lost by two at Xavier and by five at Arkansas. UK and Robert Morris will meet for just the second time in school history, with the Wildcats having won the only meeting, which was a 92-67 victory over the Colonials on December 30, 1993, at Rupp Arena.
Robert Morris’ campus is less than a mile down the road from Moon Area High School, where John Calipari went to high school, so this will be a homecoming of sorts for the 2012 National Championship head coach.
The Colonials are making their second appearance in school history in the NIT and first since 2008, when RMU dropped an 87-81 decision @ Syracuse
RMU is led by junior guard Karvel Anderson, who averages a team-high 12.7 points per game and leads the Colonials with 78 three-pointers.
Another player to watch is senior guard Velton Jones, the RMU career record holder for free throws (493), free-throw attempts (686) and consecutive games played (121),
The Colonials are a guard-oriented team, with no big men over 6″10″. Willie Cauley Stein and Alex Poythress have to assert themselves early and often and take advantage of the Colonials’ lack of size if the Cats hope to jump out to a significant lead early and silence what will be a rocking crown in a compact gym. Their leading rebounder is 6’6″ Lucky Jones, so there’s not reason the Cats should be giving up a lot of offensive rebounds, something they’ve struggled with all season long.
The ultimate factor that will decide this game is motivation. If the Cats play with the heart and passion they showed against Florida and Missouri, this game should be over by halftime. If they come into this game flat and disinterested, RMU will make this a 40-minute ball game that the Cats sweat-out until the final minutes.Ultimately, I see the Cats getting a 69-57 victory.