Why VCU could make a Final Four run

The VCU Rams enter the 2013 NCAA tournament as the 5-seed in the South Region, their highest seed since 1985.

Many statistics show that this year’s VCU team is better than the 2011 team that made it to the Final Four as an 11-seed. So why is VCU poised to make another Final Four run?

Best at forcing turnovers

This season, VCU forces a turnover on 28.7 percent of its opponents’ possessions, the highest percentage in Division I. As a result, the Rams hold opponents to 93.5 points per 100 possessions, 7.6 points better than their 2011 Final Four team.

VCU Rams Defensive Comparison

This season, VCU is 26-1 when it forces at least 15 turnovers and 0-7 when forcing fewer than 15. Shaka Smart’s squad scores 24.3 points per game off turnovers, more than any Big Six conference team.

More efficient offense

This season, VCU boasts a more efficient and higher scoring offense than the 2010-11 team. The Rams average 111.6 points per 100 possessions, best in the Atlantic 10. VCU is 24-3 when it has at least 65 possessions in a game, 3-5 when it does not.

The Rams are averaging 77.3 points per game -- also the most in the Atlantic 10 -- almost six more than they averaged two years ago.

Better on the offensive glass

Led by Juvonte Reddic, who leads VCU with 3.5 offensive rebounds per game, VCU grabs almost 14 offensive rebounds per game. The Rams grab an offensive rebound on 37 percent of their misses, 6.1 percent higher than the VCU team that made the Final Four. In the 2011 NCAA tournament, VCU averaged 9.3 offensive rebounds per game and rebounded 24.7 percent of its missed shots.