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FRIDAY, NOV. 24, 2006, 3:28 P.M.

Here’s the skinny on Butler’s Bulldogs

GONZAGA

A couple of notes about the Butler Bulldogs.

They are the winningest team in the state of Indiana in the past 10 years, averaging 21.6 wins per year in that span. …

Seven of the Butler players played their high school hoops in the state of Indiana. …

Believe it or not, the Bulldogs from Indiana are the No. 1 team in the nation, despite not being ranked in the polls. Butler is No. 1 in the RPI, ahead of No. 2 UCLA. …

Tennessee shot 10 percent in the second half against Butler. …

Gonzaga has to fly all the way back to Spokane and be ready to play Idaho on Sunday at 1 p.m. Butler plays Saturday night in Indianapolis against Kent State. …

A.J. Graves, a 6-foot-1 guard, leads Butler in scoring at 17.8 points per game. He had back-to-back games over 20 points in the Bulldogs' wins over Notre Dame and Indiana, but was 4 of 14 while scoring 15 against Tennessee.

My pick: GU shuts down Butler's outside game, limits penetration and executes in the half court to win 78-54.

See you after the game starts.




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