Mar 16, 2012; Columbus, OH, USA; Belmont Bruins guard Kerron Johnson (3) drives against Georgetown Hoyas guard Jason Clark (21) during the second round in the 2012 NCAA men

Kansas Non-Conference Basketball Preview: Belmont

On Saturday, December 15th the Kansas Jayhawks host the Belmont Bruins from the Ohio Valley Conference. Last season, Belmont coasted to a 27-8 overall record, including 16-2 in conference. The Bruins made it to the NCAA tournament as the Atlantic Sun representative. Georgetown defeated Belmont, 74-59 in the second round of the NCAA tournament. The Bruins changed conferences after the season.

Belmont is led by senior guard Kerron Johnson who averaged 14 points, three rebounds, and five assists per contest last year. Johnson was shut down by the Hoyas in the tourney game, only scoring four points. Fellow starting senior guard Ian Clark is also a key contributor, averaging 13 points, three rebounds and two assists. In the middle, Belmont lost senior leader Mick Hedgepeth, and Scott Saunders, leaving a hole. The team hopes a group led by junior forward Blake Jenkins can step up. Jenkins averaged six points and three rebounds in 15 minutes of action on average.

The Bruins featured a team last year which ranked fourth nationally in points per game, fifth in assists and 17th in field goal percentage. The team averaged 81 points per game, 17 assists and 48% from the field.  Belmont lost two big guys in the middle but retain a strong backcourt and should be a good opponent for Kansas.



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