Thursday, November 22, 2007

Thanksgiving Odd and Ends

A few things from last night's games...

  • Speclation over how Louisville would respond to David Padgett's latest injury centered on a larger role for sophomore Derrick Caracter and career backup center Terrence Farley. Caracter excites the Louisville faithful as no center has recently. He is agressive and gets to the line frequently. In his first start this season (ever?) he scored 8 points on 4-6 shooting, grabbed 5 rebounds (2-3-5) and 2 steals in 18 minutes. He also fouled out. Coach Pitino subbed him with Farley through much of the second half to keep him available. Last season he logged fouls at the rate of 1 per 4.4 minutes, which would have given him about 22 minutes of PT. This season it's about 1 per 4.6 minutes. Farley saw 21 minutes of playing time, the most for him since Louisville faced Pittsburgh in the 2005 Big East Tournament (their first year in the Big East). Padgett was injured that year also.
  • Dominic James's timing could not have been worse. #13 Marquette was facing #10 Duke in the Maui Invitational when James decided to lay an egg. On a night when his eFG hovered around 25.0 James felt the need to take 41.6% of MU's shots when he was on the floor. Overall shooting aside, James posted a 0.64 PPWS, which was well below Marquette's ORtg of 108.7 for this game. His frusturation was evident in the 4 personals he picked up in 27 minutes of play. A win over Duke would have put Marquette front and center for a promotion in the polls next Monday. Marquette has done well when he and McNeal share the shot responsibility more evenly. McNeal's Shot% last night was 16.4, role player-level involvement in the offense.
  • Georgetown fulfilled it's obligation to play Ball State in Muncie. The arrangements were set when Coach Thompson's brother Ronnie was Ball State's HC. Ronnie Thompson's one year tenure at Ball State abruptly ended last summer very badly. And with that, this early season road trip took on a game-within-a-game element. The Hoya Prospectus Blog provides a good by-half breakdown of the game.

A Four Factors look at Villanova and Central Florida. The Golden Knights are Villanova's first round opponent tonight in the Old Spice Classic.

When the 'Cats are on offense:

VU on OffenseeFGRnkTO%RnkOR%RnkFTA%Rnk
Central Florida46.611022.715531.914718.111

Villanova has valued the ball and done a great job getting misses, no doubt the product of playing 3 frontcourt players (Drummond, Cunningham and Clark), rather than 3 guards. Central Florida's lack of fouling may be in part due to the fact that they have won their games to date (no late game fouling to force change of possession). When the Wildcats are on defense:

VU on DefenseeFGRnkTO%RnkOR%RnkFTA%Rnk
Central Florida48.818517.43642.43115.2301

Ahhh, here is where things get interesting. Villanova has done a terrible job of defending the shot, but has compensated by forcing turnovers and getting rebounds. While UCF has not been especially proficient as getting their shots to go, they have taken care of the ball and rebounded their misses well. Those factors may well decide the game. But only if Villanova can defend the shot better.

Have a Happy Thanksgiving!

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