USA TODAY US Edition
All times p.m. Eastern
In NewOrleans No. 3 Brigham Young (32-4) vs. No. 2 Florida (28-7)
Tipoff: 7:27, TBS Coaches: Dave Rose (BYU), Billy Donovan (Florida) Overview: In a first-round meeting a year ago, Jimmer Fredette scored 37 points in a 99-92, double-overtime win. Donovan says he thinks his Gators are better prepared to defend the Cougars star this time. Florida’s bigger front line will pose matchup problems for BYU, so Fredette is going to need teammates to connect as well to limit rebound opportunities.
Difference-makers: Florida — G Erving Walker (14.7 ppg, 3.3 apg); G Kenny Boynton (14.0 ppg, Gators’ best perimeter defender, expected to play through turned ankle); F Chandler Parsons (11.4 ppg, 7.7 rpg, 55.8 ft%). BYU— G Jimmer Fredette (28.8 ppg, 4.3 apg, 40.6 3fg%, 89.1 ft%); G Jackson Emery (12.6 ppg, 2.8 steals a game, 82.9 ft%); F Kyle Collinsworth (5.8 ppg, 4.8 rpg, teambest seven rebounds in each of the Cougars’ two tournament games).
Stattitude: BYU’s team free throw percentage, 76.3%, is second best among the Sweet 16 teams. Florida’s, 67.1%, is 14th.
No. 8 Butler (25-9) vs. No. 4 Wisconsin (25-8)
Tipoff: Approximately 9:57, TBS Coaches: Brad Stevens (Butler), Bo Ryan (Wisconsin) Overview: If you’re a student of defense, this is the game to watch. Butler struggled in that area earlier in the season but has allowed a team to hit the 70-point mark once during its current 11-game winning streak. The Badgers have the stingiest scoring defense among the Sweet 16 at 58.5 a game. Wisconsin has the nation’s best assists-to-turnover ratio, so the Bulldogs will have to control the defensive glass.
Difference-makers: Wisconsin — G Jordan Taylor (18.0 ppg, 4.8 apg, 43.6 3fg%, 85.0 ft%); F Jon Leuer (18.7 ppg, 7.3 rpg, 84.3 ft%); F Mike Bruesewitz (4.5 ppg, 3.1 rpg, nine rebounds vs. Belmont and 11 points vs. Kansas State). Butler — F Matt Howard (16.7 ppg, 7.7 rpg, had winning points in first two tournament wins); G Shelvin Mack (15.6 ppg, 4.4 rpg, 80.0 ft%); G Ronald Nored (5.5 ppg, 3.1 rpg, Bulldogs’ top perimeter defender).
Stattitude: Dating to last year’s Final Four, Butler’s last four NCAA tournament games have been decided by a total of seven points.