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College Basketball Week 12 Takeaways

Creighton

Creighton showed what they are capable of in their performance against Villanova on both sides of the ball. The tone was set with the aggressive play of Marcus Zegarowski leading the way on the offensive end. Christian Bishop is one of the best bigs in the country with his versatility and efficiency around the basket. The mobility of Bishop makes this Creighton offense difficult to defend. Next, the wings of Denzel Mahoney and Damien Jefferson are very difficult to defend with their size and shot-making ability. Having an elite shooter in Mitch Ballock adds another element to their elite offense. They have consistently improved on the defensive end and have made major strides to slow down offenses like Villanova. Creighton is going to be a major factor heading into the NCAA Tournament.

Michigan’s Return

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The return of Michigan got off to a slow start in the first half against Wisconsin. They responded strongly in the second half to win the game. The backcourt of Eli Brooks and Mike Smith are tone-setting with their energy, effort and defense. Having a post presence of Hunter Dickinson allows the rest of the Michigan offense to be in great positions to succeed. Isaiah Livers is as consistent as they get with his scoring ability and size defensively to disrupt other wings. Franz Wagner is a matchup problem for teams with his scoring, size and overall skill set. Michigan is very good on both ends of the floor and gives Michigan a strong chance to win the National Championship.

Oklahoma

Oklahoma continues to win the big games. This time they beat West Virginia in double overtime. The playmaking ability of Austin Reaves makes this offense very difficult to slow down. Also, the guard play of De’Vion Harmon and Elijah Harkless provides the ability to have dribble penetration and toughness on the defensive end. Also, Ujo Gibson is a great shot-maker and makes this Oklahoma offense even more potent. The frontcourt is the most important factor for Oklahoma’s long term ability needing Brady Manek and Kur Kuath to play well on both ends. Lon Kruger is one of the most underrated coaches in the country and has Oklahoma in a great position towards the NCAA Tournament.

Oregon

Oregon is finally getting healthy and will be a dangerous team when they get to the NCAA Tournament. Furthermore, Will Richardson gives them a primary ball-handler who can get others involved and make key shots. Along with, having Eugene Omoruyi who is a physical forward who becomes a matchup problem for opponents. Also, having a go-to scorer in Chris Duarte will be key in tight games as the season moves forward. The versatility of LJ Figueroa will be important to have on both ends to match up with multiple perimeter players. Dana Altman will have this team ready to go for the remainder of the season and will be a major factor come March.

Virginia

Virginia is starting to be their vintage selves with their defensive ability as they held North Carolina to 48 points. Their frontcourt is a massive reason for their success as the duo of Sam Hauser and Jay Huff take over with their scoring. The defense of Huff has been consistent factor around the rim. Furthermore, Kihei Clark sets up this Virginia team to have success on both ends with his leadership ability. Trey Murphy is a major factor for the success of Virginia with his shot-making ability from the perimeter. The continued growth of the depth of this team will important for the NCAA Tournament if foul trouble becomes a factor. Tony Bennett has this team playing at an elite level being favorites yet again in the ACC.

Images Courtesy of, 247 Sports, Crieghton University Athletics, Detroit Free Press

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