I am sure Ace will have something more comprehensive later today but a quick fly by of tonght's basketball opponent.
First 4 games:
- W v Lehigh 77-66
- W v Maryland Eastern Shore 81-44
- W v Bucknell (YTB) 72-65
- W v VCU 77-53
Obviously transitive property is not to be trusted but the Bucknell game was 65-65 with 2 minutes to go so that box score is probably the best to show how they will play a close game. They gave up 32 to Chris Hass.
Nova (not Gary) has a 3 guard lineup which is a positive for a team like Michigan which is suffering some growing pains up front and has continued its issues of defensive rebounding from parts of 2013. Oregon is not very tall but as Brian noted they have a lot of "springy" 6'6 types who crashed the boards and overwhelmed UM. Which is what UK did last spring, except with 6'10 guys. I expect defensive rebounding to be an issue all year and cause many hairs to be pulled out of head.
Nova has a 9 man rotation but even against VCU players 8 and 9 were relatively limited so we'll focus on the top 7. That is 4 guards and 3 forwards/centers. Nova is very well balanced with any of 6 guys averaging between 8.5 and 12.5 pts per game, so on any given night any can go off for 15+. We have a "Big 3" - they have a "Medium 6". They jack up tons of 3 pointers from the guards/wings, along with 1 of their forwards (22 a game from those 5 players alone). They also have excellent steal data.
- Starter SR JayVaughn Pinkston 6'7 235
- Starter JR Daniel Ochefu 6'11 245 (matchup nightmare for 2014-15 UM)
- Reserve SO Kris Jenkins 6'6 255
Relative to UM this is an experienced group of big men. But at this point anyone who can roll out more than 2 freshman is an experienced group of big men vs UM.
- Jenkins is currently the 3rd leading scorer at 10.5 ppg but rebounds poorly for his size (1.3 rpg) For a human tree trunk he takes a lot of 3s, 5 per game. 46% shooter, 33% behind the arc. Reminds me of a poor man's version of that bulky PF from TN last year that GR3 was tasked to stop. Will be interesting to see who Beilein asks to defend this type of player. Maybe Irvin will be forced to do it.
- Pinkston averages 10.3 ppg with all of it inside the arc, a traditional power forward type. 45% shooter and average 6 rebounds per game (2nd on team) so most likely will have 10ish tonight. Should be the type to get lot of second chance points. Not sure how Chatman will deal with a guy of this size and heft.
- Ochefu averages 8.5 ppg on 68% shooting and is a guy you dread facing this year. Not a super scorer but finding anyone on our roster to match up with him is a chore. Maybe in February/March this is a guy Doyle has success checking but right now Donnal does not seem to be one with the physicality to deal with him so Max's (short) bulk and Doyle's bulk probably are the best options. He rebounds 9.3 per game so yeah... not going to get a lot of rebounds when he is in the game. It would behoove Caris Walton and Irvin to drive the lane and try to get him early fouls.
- Starter SR Darrun Hilliard II 6'6 215
- Starter JR Dylan Ennis 6'2 192
- Starter JR Ryan Arcidiacono 6'3 195
- Reserve SO Josh Hart 6'5 205
Lots of balance here and a good amount of experience- should be a very good test for our guards/wings. I want to emphasize again the steal numbers - for comparison Caris steals the ball 1.5x a game.
- Ennis is the leading scorer at 12.5 ppg but again any one of these guys can go off on a specific night. Ennis is a 46% shooter and 40% behind the arc - very nice numbers for a guard. Takes 5 treys a night, and rebounds 5 per game - an excellent board figure for a guard, especially a 6'2 one.
- Hilliard is struggling with his shot in 2014 at only 34%. He takes 5 threes a night just like Ennis but only is making 20%. Don't be fooled though - last year he was a 49% shooter from the field and 41% behind the arc - elite numbers for a guard. Hopefully he stays in a slump for 1 more game. Creates 3 assists a game and looks like a defensive presence with 3 steals a game(!!).
- Arcidiacono is averaging 9.8 as the third starting guard. He also is in a slump shooting 28% (!) from the field and only 23% behind the arc - but that doesn't stop any of these guys as he also averages 5 three point attempts a game. He was not a great shooter last year either - his game seems to be assists (5 a game) and defense (2 steals a game)
- Hart averages 7.0 ppg and "only" takes 2 threes a game. Still that is 17 three point attempts a night combined from their 4 guard/wings. Efficient shooter at 58% from the field but only 25% behind the arc. An excellent rebounder at 4.5 per game in just over 20 minutes a night and yet another guy who steals often at 2.5(!) per game.
Should be a fun an interesting game because we have yet to play a team with multiple real big men. Will give us some insight on how we will have to battle the Wisconsin's and Illinois types.
They also jack up a ton of 3 pointers (20+ a game) but thus far this year Hilliard and Arcidiacono have been mostly missing them. Let's hope that continues. They have 3 guards who are very defensively disruptive so ball handling will be important - Spike probably plays a ton to offset their ability to steal the ball.
On paper they look pretty darn good but again - they were tied with Bucknell late so on any given night anything can happen.
Get your excuses for Wednesday morning ready this could be a real late one
When my girlfriend is absent I end up doing stupid shit like this. I hope all of you enjoy. Great win tonight, boys!
I think after tonight's Ricky Doyle coming out party, we can think about a new 5 going forward. I was really excited to see Kam this year but thus far he has underwhelmed greatly. Donnal does not seem to have the physical tools to be the main guy at the 5.
Going forward I think we should see a starting 5 of: Walton, Spike, Levert, Irvin, and Doyle. I believe this lineup gives us the best chance. I hope that coming off the bench will ease Kam into the flow of college ball better, and I hope to see him slide back into the starting lineup come B1G season so we can have Spike coming off the bench where he thrives.
Not sure if anyone noticed but IU lost to EWU eagles at home 88-86 LOL!! Enjoy GO BLUE!!
Wow we all needed this! It's cathartic after all we've been through. Go Blue!