"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, December 28, 2012

Gardner about to crack top 100 players in the country

We are planning a national release of the Value Add stats early next week, but we can preview the Marquette rankings before the rest are public and on www.valueaddbasketball.com.

Many were surprised when I wrote preseason that I just didn't believe MU had a top 100 player, and now I may be wrong.  Davante Gardner has shot up 141 spots to 114th - putting him in the top 3% of all basketball players and in a spot where he could give Marquette an All-Big East selection.

I realize Chris Otule is playing great defense and Davante let a big man that Otule had contained go baseline on him verses LSU, but Gardner is getting so dominant in just 20 minutes a game that I almost believe you need to start Chris but perhaps go to a 15/25 minute rotation to get Davante a few more minutes.  In addition to unbelievably efficient numbers including the only 270-pound or better player hitting over 75% of his free throws (81% to be exact), he is truly a force.  His two 5-steal games make up for a few defensive lapses - the guy is just clever.  Who would believe he would be one of only a few players in the country to be among the national leaders in both blocked shots and steals.

RnkMarquette playerHtYrOffDefPG/PerTotal
114Davante Gardner6' 8"Jr4.40-1.55 5.95
332Jamil Wilson6' 7"Jr3.12-0.82 3.93
713Junior Cadougan6' 1"Sr1.170.241.502.43
1051Chris Otule6' 11"Sr1.38-0.25 1.63
1179Juan Anderson6' 6"So0.17-1.23 1.39
1194Derrick Wilson6' 1"So0.35-0.530.501.38
1196Vander Blue6' 4"Jr1.000.120.501.37
1261Steve Taylor6' 7"Fr0.99-0.29 1.29
1327Jake Thomas6' 3"Jr0.96-0.22 1.18
1542Trent Lockett6' 5"Sr0.16-0.74 0.90
1881Jamal Ferguson6' 4"Fr0.18-0.38 0.56

Overall, the story continues to be incredibly balances as everyone on the roster is in the top half of all players, except for Todd Mayo who doesn't have enough minutes but was projected to be the 4th best player on the team behind Gardner, J. Wilson, Blue.

Despite fluctuations from game-to-game, Jamil Wilson has been very consistent over every few game stretches.  He was projected at 329th, was 366th early this month, and is now 332nd, always in the top 10% of all players.

Despite the bad outing verses Green Bay, Junior Cadougan held very steady as the third best player due to dominating Wisconsin and second most valuable player against LSU.

Chris Otule's defensive presence cannot be measured, and when you account for that on top of him already ranking as the 4th most valuable on the team, you can see why it is a tough choice for Buzz to decide which of his four most valuable players to play.

While certainly we see the key moments from Vander Blue and Trent Lockett, missed shots and turnovers have them both below the average 1.00 overall offensive rating in www.kenpom.com as doing a little more to hurt the offense than help it - but we can see they could take off.

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