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Inside the box score: Devin Vassell capitalizes on opportunity

NCAA Basketball: SE Missouri State at Florida State Glenn Beil-USA TODAY Sports
  1. As noted in the historical weirdness of FSU basketball’s defensive success, the sustainability of Florida State’s defense is far from a certainty. The ’Noles are giving up an astronomical number of 3-point attempts, but to this point, most teams haven’t been able to make them pay. Last night, for stretches, Southeast Missouri State looked like the Golden State Warriors. They couldn’t miss. Towards the end of the first half they started chucking more traditional bricks, but still made 14-37 (38%) for the game. The most made 3s vs FSU this year had been 11. This might be a good time to remind everyone that ACC opponents shot over 40% from deep last year vs Florida State, which was last in the conference defensively.
  2. On the other end of the floor, Florida State made just 7-26 3s. The offense got great looks all game, but it was one of those nights. PJ Savoy was 0-5, and is now 9-41 (22%) since the 3rd game of the year. On the flip side, David Nichols has now made 9-14 (64%) in the past four games. 3-pt shooting was expected to improve this year, but the team is actually shooting a lower percentage than last year’s team (34% vs 35%).
  3. Christ Koumadje’s effectiveness vs ACC teams is spotty, but against overmatched foes he absolutely keeps FSU from losing. Versus SEMO he was 6-6 from the floor (all dunks) and was credited with four blocked shots (I counted six). He also grabbed four offensive boards and is currently the 7th best offensive rebounder nationally.
  4. With M.J. Walker sitting out with a tweaked ankle, there were minutes to be had. And credit Devin Vassell for stepping up. The freshman played a season-high 19 minutes and scored 16 points, adding four rebounds, a steal, and an assist. In the post-game Coach Hamilton compared him to coaching Tim James at Miami, saying, “I was always complaining about what he didn’t know, and the mistakes he was making, and my coach tells me, ‘This kid gets more things done by accident than most people do on a normal basis.’ That is what Devin is doing, and he is a player, and he has great instincts, and he figures it out on the floor as he is playing.”
  5. FSU won 85-68 in 70 possession game. LSU and Villanova continue to be the only teams this year that have scored a point per possession vs Florida State. The Seminoles currently have the 26th best offense in the nation, and the No. 14 defense.