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Inside the box score: FSU 118, Nicholls 63

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NCAA Basketball: Nicholls State at Florida State Melina Vastola-USA TODAY Sports
  1. John Hollinger, now the VP of Operations for the Memphis Grizzlies, is one of the early pioneers of basketball data analysis. One of the metrics he designed is called ‘game score’; it’s used to roughly define an individual’s contribution to a single game. Ken Pomeroy has adopted this to determine the MVP of every game. It’s certainly not perfect, but if you look at the guys who are voted 1st Team All-Americans and taking trophies home it’s pretty much a lock that they’re among the nation’s leaders in single-game MVPs. Through that filter, Xavier Rathan-Mayes has had an interesting career. As a freshman he was MVP six times for Florida State. As a sophomore, that number dropped to zero. Last night, he picked up his first of this season, and it’s true: he absolutely deserved the game ball. He had a heavy line of 16 points, seven boards, seven assists, and three steals, and despite what the announcers keep telling you, the perimeter defense takes a noticeable dip when he leaves the game.
  2. PJ Savoy has become an instant fan favorite, knocking down 15-28 3s (54%) in the past three games. Against Nicholls State, he attempted 14 3s, joining George McCloud, Toney Douglas, and Tim Pickett as the only ‘Noles to jack that many in one game.
  3. As you’ve read here many times, I don’t put a lot of stock in assists, as they’re not indicative of an efficient offense. Duke, for example, has the best offense in the nation, while owning the 2nd worst assist rate in the ACC. Regardless, Florida State had a remarkable 32 assists versus Nicholls. There have been over 1,500 Division I basketball games played this season; FSU was just the sixth team to record 32 or more assists in a game.
  4. Florida State’s bench dropped 70 points last night, outscoring the opponent’s entire team for the 2nd straight game. Even with Jonathan Isaac and Phil Cofer each missing three games, and PJ Savoy missing six (and all but one possession of a 7th), Florida State’s bench has played the 4th most minutes in the nation.
  5. FSU won 118-63 in a 79 possession game. Florida State became just one of five teams this year to score that many points against a Division I team, and the other four teams all played more possessions.