There certainly does seem to be far more of the Half-Empty types around lately. In truth, neither answer is completely right and neither answer is completely wrong, although one of those viewpoints is certainly more recent and more vivid. Let's move onto the numbers and address the silver linings and the clouds of our most recent game.
Four Factors Review
Half-Full? Marquette won on three of the Four Factors, including on Offensive Rebounding for the second game in a row.
Half-Empty? This was our second worst effective Field Goal Percentage of the year. The worst was our first game against Louisville. It was our third worst Offensive Efficiency outing.
Season Projections based on Offensive and Defensive Ratings
Half-Full? Pomeroy projects us with a season record of 23-7 (12-6 in the Big East)
Half-Empty? Based on our Big East Conference averages (Team ORtg 102.5 ; Team DRtg 100.7), we project to a conference record of 9.8 - 8.2. Looking at how we've been playing the last five games (Team ORtg 101.9 ; Team DRtg 101.9), we project to a conference record of 9-9. That would mean losing six times out of the next nine games.
Half Full? We got net positive games from Wesley Matthews, Jerel McNeal, and Ousmane Barro. Matthews appears to be really coming into form during conference play. Plus, Maurice Acker was the net points leader for the team and fan fave Scott Christopherson continues to provide a net positive impact in limited minutes.
Half-Empty? Yet again, Louisville managed to shut down Lazar Hayward. Hayward has had only four games with a net negative impact, for a total of -10.7 points. Almost all of those negative net points (-10.1) have come against Louisville. Our top two three point shooters, Cubillan and Fitzgerald, were negative net contributors. Fitz and Burke had offensive ratings of zero! Plus, James continues to endure his slump.
In other news, Jonah Keri (from the New York Sun and ESPN.com) recently published an interesting article on Inconsistent Teams. One of his featured teams was Marquette, who ranks at the bottom of Pomeroy's inconsistency rankings, saying:
Don't be surprised if you see one or more of these three make the Elite Eight — or all three bow out in the first weekend of the big dance.
Mr. Keri also thought well enough to consider Marquette as a potential Final Four Team way back in early November. Let's not let that ruin his credibility, though. Maybe he's just a Half-Full kind of person...
What do you think?
Talk about it here on MUScoop - - half full or half empty.