"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

Sunday, December 13, 2015

MU 3 of top 6 Shooters in BE; Wisconsin Performance Projects 23-10, RPI of 46

The season-changing win at Wisconsin gives hope of March Madness and leaves MU players among the leaders in Value Add and all of the key stat categories except protecting the ball. Here are the four updates in this edition:

1. Fischer, Cheatham, Cohen in Top 6 Big East Shooters
2. Big East Gets Even Stronger
3. Repeating Badger Performance Just Enough for Bid
4. Updated top 25 Big East Players in Value Add

1. Fischer, Cheatham, Cohen among Top 6 Big East Shooters

Luke Fischer hit five of 10 shots against Wisconsin to fall slightly to a 66.3% field goal percentage - still the top figure of any Big East player to play at least 60% of the team's minutes. Haanif Cheatham's driving four of six against the Badgers leaves him 3rd (63.7%) and Sandy Cohen's two of three including a three-pointer (making his effective Field Goal record as 2.5 of 3) left him in sixth at 60.2%).

If you include all players no matter how much they have played, Fischer drops to 11th as Sacar Anim comes in as the fourth best shooter.

Marquette's weakness this season is turnovers, and therefore Henry Ellenson's rate of turning the ball over 15.2% of his possessions is actually the best on the team but just below average. Just for fun I ran the big eight tempo free categories for all players regardless of minutes played mainly so I could note that Michael Mache is easily the top offensive rebounder in the country - getting 30.4% of all of MU's missed shots while in the game. Here are the MU players in the top 20 in each of the eight big categories.

  • Effective FG% Leader: Darryl Reynolds, Villanova, 77.8%; MU - Anim 4th, 72.2%; Fischer 11th, 66.3%; Cheatham 14th, 66.2%; Cohen 19th, 60.2%.
  • Offensive Reb% Leader: Mache 30.4% (top qualifier James Farr, Xavier, 19.3%), MU - Fischer 12th, 14.2%, 
  • Defensive Reb % Leader: Frederick Scott, DePaul, 40%,(top qualifier James Farr, Xavier, 28.3%), MU - Wally Ellenson 12th,  22.9%; Henry Ellenson, 15th, 21.6%, 
  • Assist Rate Leader: Kris Dunn, Providence, 47.1%, MU - Carter 4th, 31.4%.
  • Turnover Leader: Drew Edwards, Providence, 0% (top qualifier, Ryan Fazekas, Providence, 4.7%), MU- Mache 0%, (top MU qualifier Henry Ellenson 48th, 15.2%).
  • Block% Leader: Kassoum Yakwe, St. John's, 15.2% (top qualifier Yankuba Sima, St. John's 13.1%), MU - Fischer 9th, 7.1%.
  • Steal% Leader: Riyan Williams, Georgetown, 14.6% (top qualifier Kris Dunn 6.4%); MU Anim 4th, 5.1%; Carter 12th 3.3%; Johnson 14th, 3.1%; Heldt 15th, 3.0%; Wilson 20th, 2.8%.
  • Fouls Drawn/40 minutes Leader: Develle Phillips, DePaul, 14.9 (top qualifier, Billy Garrett DePaul 7.2): MU - Mache 7th, 6.8 (top MU qualifier Henry Ellenson, 5.3).

2. Big East Gets Even Stronger

Only the ACC and Big 12 can match the Big East's four teams in the Top 25, and Georgetown is also getting votes and 31st at www.kenpom. Creighton (57 at kenpom), Seton Hall (60) and Marquette (71) give the conference eight teams in contention. MU's upset win at Wisconsin was part of a 3-0 day against other major conferences, with Butler beating Tennessee, and Xavier winning by double digits against Cincinnati in the only match-up of ranked teams.

3. Repeating Badger Performance Just Enough for Bid

RPI Forecast showed MU as a 5-point underdog going into the Wisconsin game, and finishing the season with a 17-14 record and RPI of 127. If MU were to outperform the rest of the projections by the same seven points they did on Saturday (2 point win vs. 5-point underdog), that would play out to a 23-10 record after a 11-7 mark in conference for the 4th seed, win over 5th seeded Providence and loss to the No. 1 seed.

All that would leave MU with an RPI of 46, enough to make the tournament. However, the margin of error is still small as that is about the last spot to get an automatic bid, so even 22 wins may not be enough for a bid. Here is how the season plays out assuming MU outperforming current projections by seven points each:

 And the resulting numbers:

 4. Updated top 25 Big East Players in Value Add

MU players continue to recover from truly dreadful starts in the early Value Add meetings, and are moving up quickly.

Fischer is now all the way up to No. 7 - a second team All-Big East selection at that rate. Henry Ellenson surged into the top 25 after rating near the bottom when he was averaging four turnovers a game through four games and hitting 4 of his first 20 three-pointers. He now has hit 5 of his last 13 three-pointers and in the last six games dropped from 4 turnovers a game to 1 turnover a game.

The entire 7-man rotation is now in the top half of the 130 Big east players to date. Kris Dunn is still first in the conference but dropped with a 0.0 Value Add Saturday for a missed game and almost the same the previous game when he left early with a stomach virus. Here are the top 25 and the other MU players in the top half.

RnkPlayerTeamHtYrOffDefValue Add
1Dunn, Kris 3Providence6'4"Jr3.26-4.998.25
2Smith-Rivera, D'Vauntes 4Georgetown6'3"Sr5.67-1.577.24
3Hart, Josh 3Villanova6'5"Jr3.88-3.317.19
4Rodriguez, Desi 20Seton Hall6'6"So4.73-2.196.92
5Arcidiacono, Ryan 15Villanova6'3"Sr4.65-2.146.79
6Farr, James 2Xavier6'10"Sr3.44-3.216.65
7Fischer, Luke 40Marquette6'11"Jr4.85-1.516.36
8Ochefu, Daniel 23Villanova6'11"Sr3.06-3.206.26
9Bentil, Ben 0Providence6'9"So4.20-1.725.92
10Henry, Myke 4DePaul6'6"Sr4.32-1.505.82
11Bluiett, Trevon 5Xavier6'6"So3.53-2.155.68
12Reynolds, Jalen 1Xavier6'10"Jr2.19-3.335.52
13Davis, Myles 15Xavier6'2"Jr4.66-0.815.47
14Zierden, Isaiah 21Creighton6'3"Jr4.08-1.315.39
15Garrett, Billy 5DePaul6'6"Jr5.430.135.30
16Wideman, Tyler 4Butler6'8"So2.98-2.125.10
17Chrabascz, Andrew 45Butler6'7"Jr4.35-0.544.89
18Bullock, Rodney 5Providence6'8"So2.72-2.124.84
19Jones, Roosevelt 21Butler6'4"Sr3.50-1.324.82
20Macura, JP 55Xavier6'5"So3.84-0.934.77
21Groselle, Geoffrey 41Creighton7'0Sr3.32-1.424.74
22Nzei, Michael 1Seton Hall6'7"So3.82-0.674.49
23Jenkins, Kris 2Villanova6'6"Jr2.53-1.944.47
24Sima, Yankuba 35St. John's6'11"Fr1.18-3.154.33
25Ellenson, Henry 13Marquette6'10"Fr2.12-2.134.25
29Cohen, Sandy 5Marquette6'6"So2.34-1.653.98
44Johnson, JaJuan 23Marquette6'5"Jr0.73-1.282.01
51Cheatham, Haanif 25Marquette6'5"Fr0.92-0.841.76
54Carter, Traci 21Marquette6'0Fr0.00-1.601.60
55Wilson, Duane 1Marquette6'2"So0.00-1.561.56

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