"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

Friday, January 30, 2009

Marquette faces off against Georgetown

Yet again, Marquette takes on a desperate opponent that needs a win. Just like Notre Dame, Georgetown (12-7, 3-5) needs to win a game badly. The Hoyas have lost four in a row, and six of their last eight, including a 65-57 loss at Cincinnati. However, a team that managed to take on a desperate ND team and win on the road should have the mental toughness to deliver another knockout blow.

Compounding matters for the Hoyas is that leading scorer DaJuan Summers is day-to day. Buzz fully expects him to play. In addition, Georgetown will still have Greg Monroe, the superlative 6'11 frosh, as well as a host of other talented (but young) players.

With the string of losses, poor three point shooting, and bad defensive rebounding, this is clearly not the same team that delivered a crushing home loss last year. The Hoyas are young and dealing with growing pains. I hope that Marquette goes out and buries them, because I still haven't forgotten last year's loss. The home crowd tomorrow needs to be out for blood. Wear gold. Get yourself "extra ready" for the game however you usually do. Whatever else, cheer as loud as you can.

Game time is 1:00 Milwaukee time. Check here to see if you get local TV coverage.

Opponent Strengths and Weaknesses
As usual, most of this information comes from the Pomeroy scouting report and game plan

1. Winning the free throw battle – Georgetown is #6 in the country at getting to the FT line (FTA / FGA = 48.5%). They are #27 in the country at preventing their opponent from getting to the FT line (FTA / FGA = 27.8%)
2. Offensive Field Goal percentage – Georgetown is #47 in the country at effective FG% (52.8%). They make 55.3% of their two-point baskets (#11 in the country)
3. Defensive Field Goal percentage – Georgetown is #24 in the country at defensive eFG% (44.1%). This includes being #15 at preventing threes (30.3%) and #39 at preventing twos (43.5%)

1. Defensive Rebounding – Georgetown is #318 in the country at defensive rebounding. Opponents get an OR% of 38.1% against them
2. Making three-pointers – Georgetown only makes 32.3% of their threes (#231 in the country). This is notable because 36.4% of their FGA’s are threes (#84 in the country)

Specific Statistics Recommendations (In order of importance)
1. Make shots (eFG% of 52% or higher), which is slightly lower than average
2. Stop Georgetown from making shots (eFG% of 51% or less)
3. Force turnovers (TO Rate of 24% or higher). This translates to sixteen turnovers for GU, which is two more than their average
4. Don’t turn the ball over (TO Rate of 18% or lower), or right around the season average of 12 turnovers
5. Prevent offensive rebounds (OR% of 31% or lower), by keeping GU to about their average of 11 OR's

Bottom Line
Pomeroy predicts a 60% chance of victory. However, my analysis gives Marquette an 82% chance of victory in a slower game (66 possessions). The model predicts that the FG% will be about even, but MU will have an advantage on turnovers, offensive rebounds, and free throw attempts. Offense is predicted to be about average, but defense is predicted to be worse than average.

Media Updates

Stay tuned... I'm sure there will be more articles about this game from the GU blogosphere

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