Coach: Brad Underwood
Record: 27-5, 18-0
Ratings and Rankings
– Kenpom: 35
– RPI: 71
– AP/USA Today: N/A
Seeding: Stephen F. Austin will likely find itself as a No. 12 or No. 13 seed.
Names you need to know: Senior Thomas Walkup averaged 17.5 points, 6.9 rebounds and 4.6 assists per game and is the Southland’s best player. Senior guards Demetrius Floyd (14.0 ppg) and Clide Geffrard Jr. (13.2 ppg, 5.8 rpg) can also score.
Stats you need to know: The Lumberjacks move the ball with the best of them. They average 19 assists per game, which is only behind Michigan State. Stephen F. Austin has also won 20 consecutive games entering the NCAA tournament.
Big wins, bad losses: Stephen F. Austin didn’t pick up any key wins in the non-conference portion of the schedule, but they tested themselves by playing Baylor, Northern Iowa, Arizona State and UAB.
How’d they get here?: Stephen F. Austin defeated Houston Baptist in the semifinals and Texas A&M-Corpus Christi in the title game of the Southland tournament.
Outlook: A veteran team with a winning coach and three years in a row of tournament appearances is a scary thought for some higher seeds. Stephen F. Austin might have more experience than their first-round opponent — and also be more talented.
How do I know you?: Stephen F. Austin has been to the NCAA tournament three consecutive years and they beat No. 5 seed VCU two years ago in a thrilling overtime game. Head coach Underwood, and Walkup, have been a key part of all three runs.