Xavier’s 3-point defense
Does Xavier improve the perimeter defense that has plagued the Musketeers throughout the first leg of the season? After getting doused by Long Beach State from the 3-point line, giving up 10-of-22 from outside the line, Coach Mack emphasized the importance of shoring up the perimeter defense. Whether or not that is the case, it will be seen in some fashion this Saturday evening. Xavier’s penchant of lackluster perimeter defense has been on notice the past few years, but with the athleticism of this year’s "Team 93", there is no reason to believe that Xavier can’t improve.
The Musketeers’ offense hit some speed bumps in California, scoring noticeably less than at Cintas. Against a slow-paced Alabama offense, the Musketeers need to be able to break the half-court of Alabama with scoring efficiency. Look for Trevon Bluiett, the freshman Phenom, initiate scoring runs.
A gifted athlete with great potential, Jalen Reynolds has had some recent woes when it comes to staying in basketball games. He is the most athletic of Xavier’s playing big men and he needs to be able to stay on the court. Hopefully Coach Mack has helped Jalen when it comes to playing efficient and effective defense.