Sunday, February 27, 2011

Guest Contributor Ray Floriani: Rhode Island at Fordham

by Ray Floriani

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - Fordham's final Izod Center appearance for this season , was a less than memorable one. Rhode Island dominated the home standing Rams 90-58 in an Atlantic Ten Conference game on Saturday.

Outside the Izod Center
on a bright (Spring?) day

The efficiencies:

Rhode Island75120

Both teams entered the game averaging 67 possessions. With a significant deficit for most of the game Fordham was not about to milk possessions. They needed more, not less. The Four Factors:

Rhode Island58181420

The above table does a fairly good job telling the story. Rhode Island dominated. They started on a 10-0 run and never looked back nor were seriously threatened. Free throw rate divides made free throws by field goal attempts. Fordham had twelve free throws and 67 FGA while also canned a dozen but attempted 67 field goals. That slight 'edge' by Fordham proved a bit trivial as Rhody enjoyed huge advantages in eFG and offensive rebounding percentages.

Pre-game captains conference
run by Brian O'Connell (c).
Flanking Brian are Gary Prager(L) and John Gwynn (R)

Rhode Island coach Jim Baron made a point of how well his team shared the ball. Decided to run Synergy on both URI and Fordham. Synergy is a metric derived in this manner:

Synergy = FG PCT/(A/FGM)

The higher the number the better. Synergy is another metric to show how teams distribute the ball. The totals for this game:

Rhode Island0.914

Rhode Island's Synergy, as the numbers show, was near excellent.

The Manley Numbers...
...provide a good illustration of Rhode Island's complete effort. Taking a look at URI's and Fordham's two leading scorers...

Player, TeamPts.Eff.
Delroy James, URI2935
N. Malesevic, URI1320
Brenton Butler, For123
Chris Gaston, For107

URI-Fordham action at Izod

Rhody's outstanding forward Delroy James played 28 minutes and his efficiency per minute was a superlative 1.25. Breaking 100 on the per minute efficiency is excellent and of the not too frequent variety. Butler's 5 of 11 from the floor and one assist, 5 turnovers significantly affected the efficiency of Fordham's senior guard.

Chris Gaston did not start but played 27 minutes. Gaston was late for the team bus and Fordham coach Tom Pecora had the sophomore star sit out the opening minutes. A perimeter oriented team, Fordham never got the inside game going. By the time Gaston entered the contest, with about 6 minutes gone, Fordham was already looking at a double digit deficit. The result saw 26% of their field goal attempts from beyond the arc. Their two point shooting , 17 of 48 (35%) was subpar. Overall a long afternoon.

On the other end URI relentlessly attacked and frequently got good or uncontested opportunities in the paint. For Fordham it was a total breakdown on both ends of the floor.

'Dance Rhythm', the Fordham dance team
Were one of Fordham's bright spots

Rhode Island improved to 18-10 (9-5 in the A-10). Fordham fell to 6-20 and 0-14 in conference. Both teams committed 15 turnovers and had equal turnover rates. Rhode Island made Fordham play dearly for their miscues. URI enjoyed a 29-13 edge in points off turnovers.

Rhode Island finishes the A-10 regular season slate hosting George Washington Wednesday then traveling to St. Bonaventure on Saturday. Fordham wraps up at LaSalle Wednesday and home for UMass three days later.

"We will get back to work.
If we play as we are capable we can win our last two
against LaSalle and UMass."
-- Fordham coach Tom Pecora.

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