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MBB Game 22: GTech 58 at FSU 62

After losing a heart breaker to the Tarheels, the Noles face the Yellow Jackets, who until recently were being left behind in the ACC. However, they decided to upset Wake Forest, who was the #1 team in the country at the time, proving that anyone can win at anytime in the ACC.

Take a look inside for the game preview and game thread.

N.B. It wasn't pretty but it was a win. After a 10 day lay off, the Noles shot a terrible 30% from the floor and 60% from the FT line to beat GTech. Clemson on Saturday. I'll take any win in the ACC.

Despite a revolving door at the #1 spot in the nation, the ACC continues to be the best conference in the country according to Ken Pomeroy. As we have seen the emergence of Connecticut and Louisville, the arguments for the Big East being the best conference are becoming louder and louder from the media. I still feel that from top to bottom the ACC continues to be the strongest.

Overall Conf
W-L W-L Pomeroy/Rnk AdjO/Rnk AdjD/Rnk AdjT/Rnk SOS/Rnk NCSOS/Rnk

Duke 19-2 6-1 .9852/1 117.0/7 81.2/1 69.1/84 .6878/24 .6272/82
North Carolina 20-2 6-2 .9746/3 123.0/1 89.6/21 76.1/4 .6938/21 .5668/121
Wake Forest 17-2 4-2 .9547/10 110.3/48 84.6/5 74.3/8 .6108/79 .3913/273
Clemson 18-2 4-2 .9286/23 113.9/25 91.2/32 70.2/53 .5800/101 .3964/266
Boston College 17-6 5-3 .8082/69 111.5/35 98.4/125 68.2/120 .5932/87 .3961/267
Virginia Tech 14-7 4-3 .8287/64 110.5/46 96.3/88 65.6/219 .6629/42 .4665/210
Florida St. 16-5 3-3 .8419/56 101.9/145 88.1/16 68.1/123 .6651/39 .5246/162
Miami FL 14-7 3-5 .8761/44 113.4/27 95.7/77 66.1/198 .6387/60 .4273/243
Maryland 14-8 3-5 .7974/75 104.5/110 92.8/51 69.8/62 .6396/58 .4307/240
North Carolina St. 12-8 2-5 .7177/94 109.3/57 100.8/175 63.8/294 .5157/163 .2464/337
Virginia 7-10 1-5 .6929/102 104.3/113 97.2/104 69.2/82 .6982/19 .4936/192
Georgia Tech 10-10 1-6 .7010/99 98.6/206 91.6/36 71.9/22 .5821/100 .3653/290


11 of the 12 teams in the conference are in the Pomeroy Top 100. 11% of the top teams in the country are in our conference. What about the top 64 teams in the country? We have 7 or roughly 11%. I'm not convinced that 7 teams will make it from the ACC. Currently, Joe Lunardi at ESPN.com has 7 ACC teams in the Big Dance, with us sitting as a 10 seed. If we do make it in, I think 10 is about as good as it will get...and I won't be complaining about that at all.

One last image about the UNC game from nolesports.com:

Tonight we take on the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets who are coming off a 76-74 win against Wake Forest at home. They are currently 10-10 overall and 1-6 in ACC play. Their OOC play included a solid win over Vanderbilt and they have played close games againt NC State, Boston College and Virginia, losing in overtime to each.

Date Opponent Result Location Record Conf
Fri Nov 14 (339) Winston Salem St. W, 92-47 77 Home 1-0
Sat Nov 22 (244) Mercer W, 82-76 86 OT Away 2-0
Tue Nov 25 (315) Arkansas Pine Bluff W, 74-47 73 Home 3-0
Fri Nov 28 (105) Jacksonville W, 79-76 79 Home 4-0
Wed Dec 3 (57) Penn St. L, 85-83 71 Home 4-1
Sat Dec 6 (87) Vanderbilt W, 63-51 67 Home 5-1
Sun Dec 14 (137) Illinois Chicago L, 66-60 68 Home 5-2
Wed Dec 17 (257) Georgia St. W, 84-64 79 Home 6-2
Sat Dec 20 (305) Pepperdine W, 86-58 75 Away 7-2
Mon Dec 22 (27) Southern California L, 76-57 74 Away 7-3
Sun Dec 28 (102) Virginia L, 88-84 82 OT Home 7-4 0-1
Tue Dec 30 (281) Tennessee St. W, 63-58 68 Home 8-4
Sat Jan 3 (129) Alabama L, 88-77 75 Away 8-5
Tue Jan 6 (180) Georgia W, 67-62 74 Home 9-5
Sat Jan 10 (75) Maryland L, 68-61 82 Away 9-6 0-2
Wed Jan 14 (1) Duke L, 70-56 66 Home 9-7 0-3
Sat Jan 17 (94) North Carolina St. L, 76-71 77 OT Away 9-8 0-4
Tue Jan 20 (69) Boston College L, 80-76 81 OT Home 9-9 0-5
Sun Jan 25 (23) Clemson L, 73-59 71 Away 9-10 0-6
Sat Jan 31 (10) Wake Forest W, 76-74 74 Home 10-10 1-6

Georgia Tech's struggles derive from the mismatch of their offense and defense, ranking 206th and 36th respectively. Despite holding teams to a below average offensive efficiency and playing a high tempo game, Georgia Tech has not been successful on the offensive end, which may be due to their relative lack of experience, going through similar growing pains that we witnessed in our own team.

Offense Defense
Raw Efficiency : 96.7 (248) 92.3 ( 29)
Adj Efficiency : 98.6 (206) 91.6 ( 36)

Effective FG% : 47.6 (221) 45.2 ( 43)
Turnover Pct. : 22.6 (267) 21.2 (145)
Off. Rebound% : 37.1 ( 49) 30.1 ( 66)
Free Throw Rate: 38.4 (108) 36.6 (177)

3-Point FG% : 30.4 (300) 32.2 ( 82)
2-Point FG% : 48.2 (163) 43.7 ( 41)
Free Throw Pct.: 60.9 (333) 65.0 ( 35)
Block Pct. : 6.5 ( 38) 12.1 ( 46)
Steal Pct. : 11.2 (277) 10.6 (118)

3PA/FGA : 23.1 (337) 32.5 (169)
A/FGM : 54.9 (159) 55.0 (193)


Where do they get into trouble....shooting the ball. They are terrible from the three point line and the free throw line. Where they do get a lot of their points is the mid range jump shot and around the basket, as demonstrated by their excellent OReb% and that 62.5% of their points are 2-point baskets. That said, they 2 point shooting percentage is a reasonable 48.2%. To me, that means they get a lot of easy put backs off misses; our big guys must do an effective job boxing out and grabbing boards. We took a major step in the UNC game in this category, but there is a lot of room to grow.

Georgia Tech does an excellent job of challenging shots on the defensive end and this may in part be due to their size. They rank 15th overall in effective and average height at 78.2". As you can already see, there are a lot of similarities between Geogia Tech and the Noles. In my season preview, I thought that Georgia Tech might be one of the surprises of the season. Unfortunately, their talent level isn't to the level of ours yet. However, with the addition of Derrick Favors they will be a legitmate threat in the ACC next year as they are a relatively young team as well.

So where do we stand these days:

Raw Tempo: 68.4 poss/40 min National Rank=115
Adj Tempo: 68.1 poss/40 min National Rank=123

Offense Defense
Raw Efficiency : 99.7 (194) 91.9 ( 24)
Adj Efficiency : 101.9 (145) 88.1 ( 16)

Effective FG% : 48.8 (179) 43.8 ( 17)
Turnover Pct. : 23.9 (308) 23.5 ( 39)
Off. Rebound% : 37.5 ( 42) 35.5 (269)
Free Throw Rate: 42.0 ( 48) 36.9 (183)

3-Point FG% : 33.6 (185) 32.5 ( 96)
2-Point FG% : 48.0 (170) 41.0 ( 12)
Free Throw Pct.: 70.7 (107) 66.4 ( 77)
Block Pct. : 7.2 ( 62) 16.6 ( 8)
Steal Pct. : 10.4 (214) 13.1 ( 17)

3PA/FGA : 32.7 (173) 35.5 (257)
A/FGM : 52.1 (219) 46.6 ( 18)


We continue to dominate on the defensive end, forcing teams to play our style of game. We held UNC to their lowest pace of the year. We challenge shots like no body else and scoring in the paint on us in a half court set is almost impossible. Alabi, Reid and Echefu continue to dominate inside. We are also seeing more minutes from Xavier Gibson, who I think will develop into an outstanding player with time. Where we get into trouble is the offensive turnover percentage, which continues to creep up and on the defensive glass, which is in effect a turnover. With our size, it is inexcusible to be giving up so many second chance opportunities. Granted, teams miss a lot of shots against us, allowing for more opportunities...but that goes both ways.

Here are the likely starting line ups courtey of Seminoles.com:

PROBABLE STARTERS FOR FLORIDA STATE
F #31 Chris Singleton (8.9 ppg, 5.7 rpg; First career game vs. Georgia Tech)
F #41 Uche Echefu (8.1 ppg, 4.7 rpg; 11 pts and 8 rebs vs. Georgia Tech, Dec. 30, 2007)
C #32 Solomon Alabi (7.4 ppg, 2.0 bpg; First career game vs. Georgia Tech)
G #22 Derwin Kitchen (7.4 ppg, 3.8 rpg; First career game vs. Georgia Tech)
G #23 Toney Douglas (20.1 ppg, 2.0 spg; 22 pts and 4 stls vs. Georgia Tech, Dec. 30, 2007)


PROBABLE STARTERS FOR GEORGIA TECH
F #31 Gani Lawal (16.1 ppg, 10.4 rpg; 6 pts and 1 reb vs. Florida State, Dec. 30, 2007)

F #35 Zachery Peacock (10.1 ppg, 5.7 rpg; 7 pts and 4 rebs vs. Florida State, Dec. 30, 2007)
F #44 Alade Aminu (12.2 ppg, 8.8 rpg; 0 pts and 1 reb vs. Florida State, Dec. 30, 2007)
G #0 Lewis Clinch (13.2 ppg, 3.6 rpg; 7 pts and 3 asts vs. Florida State, Dec. 30, 2007)
G #1 Iman Shumpert (11.6 ppg, 5.4 apg; First career game vs. Florida State)


So what do you need to know about their guys? Lawal, a 6'8 216 So, is their major offensive threat and rarely comes off the floor. He gets the ball on a quarter of possible possessions. He shoots an eFG of 56% and takes an overwhelming majority of their shots. He also gets it done on the offensive and defensive glass, ranking 69th and 98th nationally in OR% and DR%. This is the GTech equivalent of Tyler Hansbrough (just an analogy...they are not in the same category...but in terms of constantly hustling).His is an athletic beast and it will be interesting to see how we match up with him. He gets it done in the paint night in and night out. If we want to keep Tech out of this game, we have to limits his work down low.

Alade Aminu, a 6'10 Sr. and Iman Shumpert 6'4 185 Fr are their next best players. Neither gets a lot done on the offensive end but certainly worth paying close attention to.(However, Shumpert lead the way to Tech's win over Wake) Shumpert has done an excellent job stepping into the starting role and playing a ton of minutes. He does distribute the ball well but has a tendency to turn it over as well, with a 28% TO%. Keep in mind that point guards are more likely to have higher TO% than a center for example.

Our friends at Blogger So Dear have some great info about the Yellow Jackets and their recent match up with Wake. Tech is coming off a huge win that provided their young team a lot of confidence. I think this could be close for the first half, but look for the Noles to start to pull away at the end. This one is going to be closer than expected, folks.

Also, please don't forget to contribute your questions to our upcoming conversation with the experts at Blogger So Dear about our match up with Wake Forest. They do excellent work there and I recommend taking a minute to check out their work.

The game will be televised on ESPNU tonight.

Go NOLES!

(No graphs this week...work too busy and boards are coming up...and no offense to the Tech fans in the house...it's GTech not Duke, Wake, or UNC)