By Sean Greene 9:28pm, March 19, 2014
VIDEO: Threatt and Baptiste on the importance of rebounding (Courtesy: UD/NCAA)Often times the difference between a major and a mid-major team in the NCAA tournament can be summed up in one word: size.
With a height advantage brings better looks at shots, but also more opportunities thanks to offensive rebounds.
In previous NCAA appearances, Delaware has been as small as 6'5" at their starting center position, but this time they bring 6'9" Carl Baptiste, who at 260 pounds presents a body seen on many campuses around the major conferences, including Big Ten member Michigan State.
6'10" Adreian Payne and 6'6" Branden Dawson fill the positions in the front-court for the Spartans, who are a plus-5 in rebounding margin this season, while the Blue Hens are minus-2.
Payne, a second-team All-Big Ten performer, is collecting 7.4 rebounds a game and has 16 career double-doubles. Combine that with Dawson's 8.3 caroms, when he wasn't out with a broken right hand, and it seems like Baptiste will be in for a busy day on Thursday.
Baptiste says it can't be a one person operation: "We're going to need all five on the glass. That's definitely going to be my main focus tomorrow. I'm going to find Adreian Payne every play and make sure I stop him from getting to the glass, because him and Dawson are monsters when it comes to that."
Delaware is not particularly deep in the front court, so it will be critical for Baptiste to battle hard, but clean against the front-court players with Marvin King-Davis at 6'7" the next best weapon off of coach Monte Ross' bench.
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