"The next time you hear a coach say his team needs to make free throws or get to the line more often, you can be a little more skeptical. Team free throw shooting is not highly correlated to reaching the Final Four. Over the last 10 years, the average national rank of Final Four teams has been outside the top 100 in both free throw percentage (110.2 average rank) and free throw rate (134.075).
Boeheim was not surprised to hear this.
“We’ve had bad free throw shooting teams that went to the Final Four and won the national championship,” he said. “I never put a lot of stock in that. The difference between shooting 72 percent and 80 percent is 2 points, maybe. It’s not that much.”
Huggins and Pitino were not especially surprised, either, but they did offer possible explanations for generally weak free throw shooting teams reaching the Final Four, both related to well-timed efficiency.
“I would venture to say in the tournament they probably shot it well,” said Huggins.
Said Pitino: “Free throws come into play more at the end of the game.”"
http://thequad.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/10/27/what-it-takes-to-make-the-final-four/Edited by HissingPrigs77 at 11:47:43 on 05/07/12