"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 16, 2009

Marquette travels to Providence on Saturday

Tomorrow night, Marquette will travel to Rhode Island to face the Friars of Providence College. Last year, in the BE Season Opener, Marquette pounded PC 96-67 at the Bradley Center. However, that was at home, and the Friars were without Sharaud Curry. In Providence's last game, they hung tough on the road at Georgetown before finally falling 82-75.

Similar to Marquette, PC has an experienced lineup with a new head coach. Coach Keno Davis was the AP Coach of the Year last year from his time at Drake. Not only that, but as Buzz mentioned, he's only lost eight games in his entire coaching career. Providence has eight seniors on their roster, including leading scorer Weyinmi Efejuku and five of their top eight scorers. Not only that, but PC basically only goes eight deep, and two of the other top players are juniors. Providence won't be intimidated by Marquette or the #14 ranking. In addition, Providence also has only lost one game at home this season, and that was their first game this season.

Game time is 8:00 pm Saturday on ESPN2.

Pomeroy gives us a 69% chance of victory, but I'm slightly less optimistic at 61%. On the road, that's essentially a toss-up.

Opponent Strengths and Weaknesses
Taken from the Pomeroy Scouting Report and Game Plan.

1. Three Point Defense – Providence is #24 in the country at three point defense (29.7%)
2. Making two-point baskets – Providence is #28 in the country at making two-point baskets (53.1%)
3. Offensive Rebounding – Providence is #41 in the country at offensive rebounding, rebounding a missed field goal 38.0% of the time

1. Shooting three pointers – Providence is #246 in the country at shooting three pointers, averaging 31.8%
2. Preventing two-point baskets (#247) – Providence allows opponents to hit 50.2% from inside the arc
3. Giving up offensive rebounds – Providence is #231 in the country at allowing opponents to get offensive rebounds (34.6% of missed field goals)

Specific Statistics Recommendations (In order of importance)
1. Limit Providence to an eFG% of 50% or less, which is right at their season average and gives 61% chance of Marquette win (3 point win)
2. Achieve an eFG% of 51% or higher, which is slightly less than the season average
3. Force Providence to a turnover rate of 24% or higher (~17 turnovers), which is three more than their average
4. Hold PC to an offensive rebounding percentage of 31% or less (~12 offensive rebounds), which is two less than their season average
5. Get to the line with a Free Throw Rate of 38% or more (~22 free throw attempts), which is six less than season average

Bottom Line
In a slightly faster game (71 possessions), Marquette should win due to an advantage on turnover rate and from the free throw line. Field Goal percentage and offensive rebounding should be about equal. Marquette needs to force a lot of turnovers and get to the line a lot. Expect a fairly defensive oriented game.

Media Updates

1 comment:

Friarblog.com said...

Great preview and thanks for the kind words! I love the site and it was definitely one of the inspirations for my stats themed stuff :)

Keep up the good work, and good luck tomorrow night!