If you saw Creighton play last week, you know both the pitfalls and the power of the 3-point shot. In the Bluejays' 81-68 loss at Providence, coach Greg McDermott's team made just 4 of 19 3-point attempts. Keep in mind that Doug McDermott has recorded five outings this season where he alone made more than four 3s. It was an unusual showing by the team, to say the least.
Just two days later, Creighton shredded the No. 4-ranked Villanova Wildcats 96-68 in Philadelphia, thanks in large measure to a 21-of-35 showing from beyond the arc. If "live by the 3, die by the 3" has ever been true, it was an apt description of Creighton over the course of those two games.
But it turns out the game is not always as simple as just living and dying by 3s. After all, some perimeter-oriented teams play very good defense. Some are good at shooting 2s. And some love to crash the offensive glass.
I'm here to sort out which perimeter-oriented teams seem to be on a solid footing and which ones present a more worrisome aspect. My selection criteria for "perimeter-oriented teams" were simple. They have to be devoting at least 38 percent of their attempts to 3s, and they have to currently be appearing as an at-large team on reputable NCAA bracket projections.
Here's a look at seven of nation's most perimeter-oriented teams.
Note that these percentages for 3-point attempts are taken from conference play, since season-to-date numbers for perimeter orientation can be influenced by a coach's nonconference scheduling preferences.
Long-range rate: 43.1 percent of attempts are 3s