ESPN has a very good article up about how the Louisville Cardinals use their defense to create some easy offense. Without ripping them off, the article is about easy points off of their ability to create a lot of turnovers. In fact, Louisville nearly averaged 23 points per game off turnovers for the season.
While another conference brethren has a zone defense that has become a hot topic for the Final Four — ignoring the Cardinals’ airtight defense is not doing anyone justice. As I am sure the Wichita State Shockers are well aware, Louisville is going to try to make them turn the ball over more times than a tree falls in the woods.
Rick Pitino does not exclusively rely on one defensive set to create these turnovers, either. Pitino will employee man-to-man, variations of zones or any combination of the two to make his opponents crumble under intense pressure. Traps, however, seem to be where Pitino makes his team focus on much of the time.
Regardless of how Louisville plans to create easy offense from their defense, Wichita State needs to be concerned. The Shockers have a propensity to turn the ball over. Proof is in the pudding as they average giving up the ball two out of every eight possessions. Couple that with Louisville forcing teams to turn it over nearly three out of every ten possessions, and that just spells disaster.
Thank goodness is all I have to say. ESPN has brought the attention away from a 2-3 zone and back towards something a little less explainable.