Friday, January 2, 2009

All Big East Preseason -- Fall Report Card

The Big East named a preseason All-Big East Team at the conference's Media Day back in October. I was curious to see how these 11 (big conference, big all-star team...) players were doing through the end of their OOC schedules. The data was drawn from ESPN's team stats during Christmas week...

FlynnCuse G So.86.122.358.01.2565.948.6
McAlarneyNDU G Sr.85.921.863.91.3210.210.2
VaughnNati G Jr.82.121.348.71.0729.524.2
WilliamsVille F Sr.
ReynoldsNova G Jr.79.420.648.11.1146.939.2
McNealMarq G Sr.78.131.555.51.1723.818.9
YoungPitt F Jr.73.835.655.81.1632.822.2
ThabeetUConn C Jr.72.425.767.41.3781.454.7
SummersGTU F Jr.67.728.265.21.3659.843.9
PriceUConn G Sr.64.316.548.91.0023.313.3
HarangodyNDU F Jr.63.935.351.71.1343.633.6

Data has been sorted by Min% (percentage of playing time at a position taken by the player), as an indication of how heavily the team relies on the individual's contribution. Note that Luke Harangody has been slowed by pneumonia in December, missed two games at the beginning of the month, and has played reduced minutes through the end of the month. Harangody logged 87.5% of the minutes at his position in Wednesday night's game versus DePaul.

Right on Schedule...
Jonny Flynn, Kyle McAlarney continue to be very efficient through the OOC. Not surprising though neither is the primary offensive option for their respective teams (Syracuse and Notre Dame). Flynn runs the point for the Orange and has brought them to a 13-1 record through their 1st Big East game (a win over Seton Hall). Flynn's assist rate (as of 1/2/09) is 27.9, good for a Top 200 ranking. McAlarney shoots 3s, prolifically and proficiently. Wednesday versus DePaul McAlarney was 4-11 (3-9 from beyond the arc & 2-2 from the free throw line), good for a PPWS of 1.09 (below his average) and an eFG% of 50.0.

The Early POY Field...
If Harangody plays to last season's numbers (and from all appearances, pneumonia aside, it looks as if he will), beating him for POY will require an extraordinary set of numbers (and a lot of publicity) from a group of players who are seen as his peers. An early field would have to include Marquette's Jerel McNeal, Pittsburgh's Sam Young, Connecticut's Hasheem Thabeet and Georgetown's DaJuan Summers. All, like Harangody, provide a POY profile -- his team's 1st/2nd option on offense (Shot% >25.0), efficient scoring (eFG% > 50.0; PPWS >1.10, etc.) and a number of Top 500-level performance in one or more primary (Min%, Poss%, Shot%, eFG%, ORtg) or secondary (OR%, DR%, FTRate, ARate, TORate, Blks%, Stl%) categories per Ken Pomeroy's team Scouting Reports (each player links to his team's current scouting report).

PlayerTop 10Top 50Top 100Top 250Top 400Top 500
Jerel McNealNANANA1/13/11/0
Sam YoungNA1/01/01/01/2NA
Hasheem Thabeet0/11/21/1NANA0/1
DaJuan SummersNA1/0NA0/2NA1/0
Luke Harangody0/10/11/01/10/2NA

Note the breakdown above lists primary/secondary within the ranking category. Thabeet's credentials may have tarnished a bit from his matchup with Georgetown's freshman Greg Monroe, (4 points, 7 rebounds and 7 blocks in 37 minutes versus 16 points, 3 rebounds, 4 assists and 3 steals in 27 minutes). Jerel McNeal on the other hand faces a challenged from teammate Wes Matthews for Marquette's team POY. Two of Marquette's talented guard trio (Dom James, McNeal and Matthews) has already had his time in the spotlight. This season may well be Matthew's turn.

Struggling Right Now...
Terrence Williams' role in the offense has diminished from last season. His efficiencies, never especially dazzling, are well off of last year's as well. The Cardinal team has struggled with the graduation of red shirt (and transfer...) David Padgett and Williams, variously described as a big guard and point forward, has always been plagued with a less than stellar proficiency beyond the arc, is struggling with even worse numbers this season. Connecticut's AJ Price, taken down with a torn ACL in the first game of the NCAAs last season, has yet to hit his stride.

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