Tuesday, December 01, 2015

Retriever Preview

So amidst the Babers drama, the men's basketball team chugs merrily along with its second game of a 3-game homestand.  Tomorrow, the University of Maryland Baltimore County comes to town.

This is a tough place to be a basketball player right now.  They are in the America East Conference, where they were picked to be 7th out of 9 in the pre-season.  For the last 5 seasons, their RPI has been over 300 each year.  Last year, at 346, they were among the 10 worst...there are only 351 D1 teams total.

They were 4-26 last year, and are 21-70 over the past three seasons.

This year they are 1-6 to date.  They actually played Wake really tough, losing by 5 on the road.  They then lost in double-digit margins @St. John's, @Cal Poly, Loyola Marymount, @Navy and Colgate.  Their one win was at Northern Colorado, a team with no D1 wins and a 340 RPI.

So, look, the Retrievers aren't a highly successful basketball program.

Let's hope they stay that way for one more night.

Looking deeper, the Retrievers have the stats of a 1-6 team.  Remembering that the average D1 teams gets 1.04 PPP this year (as the rule changes start to make a difference), you can see that UMBC is a very poor team on both ends of the floor.  BG is nothing to write home about on offense, but to date is playing very efficient defense.  (Note:  I'd say that UMBC has actually played a tougher schedule than BG).

Comparing the BG offense to date with the UMBC defense, we see pretty evenly matched teams.  They allow teams to shoot better than BG has been shooting, which is a good sign (and the primary reason they are scored against so much) while the other categories are about the same.  

Flipping this around, you can see where the Retrievers really struggle.  They are just a very poor team when it comes to putting the basketball inside the basket.  That 44% EFG comes from shooting 38.4% from the field overall and 26% from 3FG.  That's just very difficult to win with.  The first number is 318th in the nation and the second is 331st.  It is a little better on free throws, where they make a very average 69%.  They do take good care of the ball and are decent on the offensive boards, but their shooting woes are their primary contributor to their .94 points per possession.

Their leading scorer is Rodney Elliott.  He's a G who had a big FR year (America East Rookie of the Year) for the Retrievers and then got injured in the first game last year, immediately harshing the buzz of last year.  He is scoring 13 PPG on 37% and 29% shooting, so that's a leaky 13 points. He also leads the team with 3.5 assists per game.

Their second leading scorer is Joe Sherburne, a 6'6" FR from up in Wisconsin who played prep ball last year.  He is scoring 12.6 PPG on 40% and 32% shooting.  He also averages 4.9 RPG.  Their third-leading scorer (10.1) and leading rebounder (5.7) is Cody Joyce, a 6'8" Sr.

This is a very, very young team.  Of the 14 players on their roster, there are 5 SO and 6 FR.

This is the first time the two teams have played.

So this was a game BG scheduled in order to let our team pick up some wins and get some confidence.  Anything less than a win on Wednesday would be a disappointment.

No comments :