Most people around the nation do not know where Belmont University is located but year after year the men’s basketball team wins and wins. Belmont University is located in Nashville, Tennessee and is a Christian based school with an enrollment of around 5,900 students.
The Belmont Bruins has had a remarkable year with a 30-4 record this year and winning the Atlantic Sun Conference title this year. Belmont was selected for the NCAA Tournament and received a #13 seed where they’ll face #4 Wisconsin Badgers in the first round of March Madness.
The Bruins led by Coach Rick Byrd will be looking to knock off the Badgers and prove that they belong in the NCAA Tournament. Will the Belmont Bruins be the Butler Bulldogs of this year’s tournament? It will be hard to determine unless they come out and dominate the Wisconsin Badgers in the first round. However, the Bruins are deep and can really shoot the ball and should give the Badgers everything they have. A few years back Belmont took the Duke Blue Devils down to the wire before losing 71-70. So this might be this year’s Cinderella team that could advance deep into the NCAA tournament.
Belmont Bruins had an outstanding 2010-11 year with a 30-4 record. The Bruins averaged 80.4 pts per game while shooting 46.4% from the field and 38.1% from the 3-pt line. Belmont finished the season 12-0 at home, 13-4 on the road and 5-0 on a neutral floor. The Bruins only lost 1 conference game to Lipscomb. The out of conference losses was twice to Tennessee, which both were very close games with a decent Volunteer team. On November 16, 2010 Belmont lost at Tennessee 85-76 and on December 23, 2010 the Volunteers beat Belmont at home 66-65. The only other loss was at Vanderbilt on December 4, 2010 with a score of 85-76. Belmont shouldn’t be taken lightly during the NCAA Tournament because they have proved this year that they can play with the BCS Conference teams.
Belmont Bruins are led in scoring by Ian Clark (12.4 pts per game), Mick Hedgepeth (10.6 pts per game) and Scott Saunders at (10 pts per game). However, Belmont Bruins are very deep with 12 players getting playing time. Jordan Campbell, Kerron Johnson, Drew Hanlen, JJ Mann, Jon House, Trevor Noack, Blake Jenkins, Brandon Baker and Adam Barnes who all average between 3-8 pts per game. Belmont plays very hard on defense and runs a precision offense where they all can shoot the ball.
Belmont Bruins will take on the Wisconsin Badgers on Thursday-March 17, 2011 in Tucson, Arizona at 7:27 p.m. Expect a closely contested game that could play out into Belmont’s favor especially if they’re draining the 3-ball.