Check the comments for how the game went. Noles fall to 7-1
The Men's Basketball Team looks to move to 8-0 tonight against the Northwestern University Wildcats in Evanston, IL.
Despite the blistering start, with big wins over Cincinnati and Cal, Hamilton still feels his team has room to improve: "I think they all understand we're a long way from being where we want to go." Not surprising coming from a coach whose team is loaded with freshman and has squeaked by in a few early games.
Lets take a look at how we match up...
The Wildcats will pose many challenges to the Noles young team tonight, particularly when Northwestern has the ball. They run a Princeton style offense, involving a lot of movement off the ball with precision cuts and back door cuts. The offense runs off the movement and focus of the defense. The key is a center who can pass the ball well. This may explain why their tempo is one of the worst in the country. They like to get into the half court and run their offense. They take their time to get good looks at the basket. To learn more about the "Princeton Offense" go here.
Here are the numbers from our friends at the Pomeroy Ratings:
Raw Tempo: 58.8 poss/40 min National Rank=343
Adj Tempo: 61.5 poss/40 min National Rank=331
Raw Efficiency : 113.6 ( 30) 86.6 ( 31)
Adj Efficiency : 115.3 ( 30) 88.0 ( 41)
Effective FG% : 57.5 ( 12) 44.3 ( 64)
Turnover Pct. : 18.7 ( 64) 27.6 ( 11)
Off. Rebound% : 30.4 (239) 31.2 (120)
Free Throw Rate: 22.8 (206) 38.1 (196)
3-Point FG% : 39.8 ( 41) 30.7 ( 93)
2-Point FG% : 55.9 ( 20) 43.4 ( 74)
Free Throw Pct.: 68.8 (158) 69.9 (203)
Block Pct. : 7.0 (103) 9.8 (134)
Steal Pct. : 10.2 (205) 11.6 ( 83)
3PA/FGA : 40.7 ( 51) 34.4 (227)
A/FGM : 63.9 ( 39) 54.1 (165)
For the second straight game, the Noles face a good shooting team, with an eFG% of 57.5%. So not only do they control the pace of the game well by running a highly structured offense, they get results. Reviewing their last game against Riverside, the word "layup" appears often. The Wildcats don't have an experienced inside presence, but their movement allows them to get easy baskets with their smaller players moving to the basket. This is particularly evident if you look at their A/FGM ratio. However, they get beat on the offensive boards, often as a result of the offense...spread the floor and make a cut...doesn't allow your big men to get good position as shots go up.
Here is the Wildcats likely starting line up:
Season Avg: Min Pts Reb Assist TO Steal
John Shurna F 6'8 210 Fr 19 8.6 4.2 1.2 1.8 1
Kevin Coble, F 6'8 210 Jr 32.8 12 5.4 2 1 1.2
Kyle Rowley C 7'0 280 Fr 13.4 6 1.8 .6 2.2 0 0.2 Block
Craig Moore G 6'3 185 Sr 34.6 14.6 3.8 3 1.2 1.4
Michael Thompson G 5'10 182 So 31.6 10.8 1.8 3.2 1.2 1.6
Similar to the Noles, Northwestern has a young team, with 5 freshman on the roster. But it seems that the young players have not only added size, which they were desperately lacking last year, but results. NU was beat up consistently on the boards last year. So far they are out rebounding their opponents. Granted, they have not entered Big Ten play yet nor have they played any significant competition. See below:
|Sun Nov 16||Central Arkansas (s) (sr)||W, 81-39||H||64||126.7||69.6||15.6||22.5||50.0||61.0||28.4||36.0||31.9||47.7|
|Wed Nov 19||Texas A&M Corpus Chris (s) (sr)||W, 66-48||H||60||109.1||47.1||14.9||31.8||46.1||79.4||40.7||26.5||32.7||41.9|
|Sat Nov 22||Brown (s) (sr)||W, 73-64||A||52||139.7||65.4||7.7||28.9||13.5||122.4||74.3||30.6||36.7||29.7|
|Wed Nov 26||Butler (s) (sr)||L, 57-53||A||57||92.8||56.8||28.0||32.5||13.6||99.8||44.4||19.3||29.7||53.3|
|Mon Dec 1||UC Riverside (s) (sr)||W, 59-43||H||60||98.1||48.9||26.6||34.5||42.5||71.5||38.8||24.9||28.6||18.4|
So what do we do well and how are we going to match up:
Raw Efficiency : 100.8 (159) 90.5 ( 60)
Adj Efficiency : 97.9 (198) 89.8 ( 55)
Effective FG% : 49.3 (147) 43.2 ( 47)
Turnover Pct. : 23.8 (260) 21.8 (154)
Off. Rebound% : 33.3 (168) 31.6 (130)
Free Throw Rate: 43.5 ( 4) 33.6 (117)
3-Point FG% : 36.5 ( 92) 29.4 ( 68)
2-Point FG% : 46.9 (189) 42.6 ( 63)
Free Throw Pct.: 75.4 ( 44) 69.1 (185)
Block Pct. : 3.3 ( 4) 16.9 ( 11)
Steal Pct. : 10.1 (197) 11.5 ( 89)
3PA/FGA : 30.1 (229) 40.2 (317)
A/FGM : 51.7 (213) 48.3 ( 78)
We have seen significant improvement and many areas of the game, specifically on the defense. This team is getting comfortable playing together and are starting to take advantage of the turnovers it creates. We're holding our opponents to a low field goal percentage, especially behind the 3-point line (despite an incredible half by Coastal Carolina a few games ago)
We continue to get to the line. I was surprised that we still got the calls against big name teams like Cincinnati and Cal. As always, we take advantage of getting to the line and make the freebies (like every Hamilton team). I have been disappointed that our turnover percentage hasn't improved significantly. It will take time. Young offenses take time to develop and get used to spacing.
Look for us to look to go to Echefu and Alabi down low early in the game and test their young front court. Toney Douglas will continue to work his defensive magic. This will be a tough road opponent on national television, but I think the Noles continue their streak and move to 8-0 before taking on the delightful Gators at home this weekend.
ESPN2 is televising the game live with Terry Gannon and Stephen Bardo on the call.
In other news, as previously mentioned in the last game post, Okaro White has verbally committed to the class of 2010. He's a 6'7 180# F out of Clearwater, FL, ranked #65 in the Rivals150 of 2010 and is a 4 star player. He is the second 4 start recruit to commit for 2010. The other is Ian Millier, a 6'10 guard out of NC. Hamilton continues his outstanding recruiting ways. To see some video of Okaro go here. It's his Clearwater Tornados season preview, but there is a lot of video of him as well as an interview.
As always I look forward to your comments.