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2022 March Madness: 5 Best Defensive Teams In the Nation

Who are the best defensive teams in March Madness? Handicapper Jason Radowitz breaks down his top five best defensive units that made the 2022 NCAA Tournament.
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2022 March Madness: 5 Best Defensive Teams In the Nation

You know what they say! Defense wins championships. And that has stood true throughout March Madness' history. Most teams that win the NCAA Tournament are top-25 defense according to KenPom. So which teams are the best defenses in the nation? I've listed them below ranking from the top defense to the fifth-best defense in the NCAA.

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5 Best Defensive Teams In the Nation

1. Texas Tech

The Texas Tech Red Raiders are, by far, the best defense in the nation. Texas Tech has held opponents to a 45.5% effective field goal percentage while forcing 23.6% turnovers per game this season. Texas Tech is also holding opponents to a 26.1% offensive rebounding percentage while holding teams to 31.3% from three and 44.3% from two. It's extremely hard to score against Texas Tech.

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2. San Diego State

San Diego State's defense is so elite that opponents are using 19.2 seconds per possession against the Aztecs this season. That's literally the longest number in college basketball for opponents against a team. San Diego State is holding teams to a 44% effective field goal percentage while earning 21.7% turnovers. Teams are only shooting 30.4% from deep and 43.1% from inside the arc. Also, San Diego State has held teams to 27% offensive rebounds. However, San Diego State's offense is the real issue for this team and that will hurt the Aztecs when they look to win the NCAA Tournament.

3. Tennessee

The Tennessee Volunteers have held teams to a 46.2% effective field goal percentage while also earning 22.9% turnovers. Teams are shooting just 31.2% from deep and 45.8% from inside the arc on the season. In the SEC Tournament, Tennessee held Mississippi State, Kentucky, and Texas A&M to an average of 57 points. In tournament play, the defense is providing a big spark. That could continue into the NCAA Tournament, however, the offense just isn't going to do enough.

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4. LSU

The LSU Tigers will have to play in the NCAA Tournament without Will Wade. We won't get into all of the allegations, but he was caught doing some bad things and was fired by LSU. Therefore, nobody knows what to expect from LSU. However, the team has shown so much effort on the defensive end this season, holding teams to 28% from downtown and 47.7% from inside the arc. The Tigers also earn 25.3% turnovers per game. That's literally a turnover once every four possessions on the defensive end. It's not going to be fun facing this LSU team in the postseason.

5. Gonzaga

Gonzaga is elite in every category. On the offensive end, the Bulldogs are ranked first in the nation. On the defensive end, the Bulldogs are ranked as the fifth-best in the NCAA Tournament. Gonzaga is holding teams to just a 43.2% effective field goal percentage while allowing teams to shoot just 30.7% from deep and 41.6% from inside the arc. Gonzaga won't earn a whole bunch of turnovers, but second chances are limited by Gonzaga, as the Bulldogs only allow 23% offensive rebounds. Gonzaga is a Championship contender. But that's obvious.

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Jason grew up an avid sports fan. His passion for sports writing grew in high school and he developed a blog that was strictly for New York Sports. From his work, you will quickly realize that he loves looking at games from an analytical and numbers perspective and hopes to provide you with that same perspective in his articles.


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