- Avoid foul trouble: Tyrique Jones is now averaging an astonishing 10.7 fouls per 40 minutes. If you're math challenged, that means it would take him slightly less than 20 minutes to foul out. Sean O'Mara and Rashid Gaston lag somewhat behind Jones, but both are over six fouls per 40. Until the guards can start consistently making shots, the bigs can't keep putting themselves behind the eight ball with fouls. NDSU chokes out the interior well, X needs their talented bigs to stay on the floor.
- Force turnovers: The Bison don't take care of the ball, Xavier takes the ball away at the 40th best rate in the nation. If the game is be played at a slower pace, and yesterday Paul argued that would be good for Xavier, the Musketeers can keep NDSU from ever getting a foothold by turning them over. Xavier is going to be able to score on this defense, which means every possession for NDSU is going to be precious.
- Close off the glass: The Bison aren't bullish (bovine joke!) on getting to the glass on either end. Offensively, they're 229th in the nation against Xavier's 17th best defensive rebounders. On the other end, they allow teams lesser than Xavier to grab 32% of their misses. The Musketeers should absolutely dominate this game on the glass. Actually doing that would go a long way toward getting us all some Tim Stainbrook time.