"My rule was I wouldn't recruit a kid if he had grass in front of his house.
That's not my world. My world was a cracked sidewalk." —Al McGuire

Saturday, December 13, 2008

IPFW Preview

Missed our post yesterday? Here is some additional information getting ready for IPFW, including game notes, podcast links, and a Rosiak blog entry.

Rosiak has a feature for the morning paper talking about how the starters are cranking out the minutes. It's interesting, but are the starters really playing that much more?

This year
McNeal 32 min/game, Matthews 31.4, James 29.1 and Hayward 28.6.

Taking a look at last year's numbers
McNeal 30.2, Matthews 28.8, James 30.3, and Hayward 25.4

No offense to Todd, but it's not as though the numbers are all that significant in terms of difference so far. Sure, the big four all played a TON of minutes in the UW game. However, in the cupcake games, the starters play far less, which is causing the average to be not that far off. Luckily, this is the month of December. Honestly, I think the bigger story has been the lack of contribution from anyone not named McNeal, Matthews, James, or Hayward. In fact, I don't calculate any of the other players on the team as "net positive" contributors.

Anyways, moving onto the numbers, I calculate MU as a 95% favorite to win the game tomorrow. MU's offense should be a little stagnant (~1.06 points per possession), but not by much. The expectation is that the defense should be stronger (0.80 points per possession). Here are the statistical keys to the game tomorrow.
#1 - Limit IPFW's eFG% - their Pomeroy rank for eFG% is #195. Their one area of real strength is their three point shooting , where IPFW hits 37.7% from behind the arc. However, after some early struggles, Marquette is up to #45 at three point defense
#2 - Marquette's eFG% - MU is ranked #100. How well will Marquette put the ball in the basket tomorrow?
#3 - Limit IPFW's OR% - this is an area where the Mastadon's are terrible (ranked #324). Expect to see very few offensive rebounds, as in less than eight total by IPFW

Pretty basic.... prevent shots, make shots, and limit offensive rebounds. Again, although IPFW will put up a fight, we should all expect Marquette to win fairly comfortably and then we can move onto the big test in Nashville.

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