Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Frack Challenge: Bearcats Come to Town

One of the thing Bill Frack wanted was to make a donation to Falcon men's basketball that would allow BG to bring top level teams to the Stroh, which involves paying them.  Hence, the Bill Frack Challenge, which is the event we look forward to tomorrow.  The UC Bearcats are coming to town.

This is what Bill Frack was looking for.  UC is a signature program, with six straight 20 win seasons.  Last year there were 23-11, and won a game in NCAA Tourney.

It is going to be a difficult day for the Falcons, I suspect. If BG wins, it will be a pretty big upset.  Not only is UC a great program but they are an especially poor match up for BG.

The Bearcats were good last year and they bring back quite a bit.  In fact, all of their starters and 3 reserves return from last year's NCAA team.  Also, they return their Coach, Mick Cronin, who had to take a leave for health reasons.

This year, they were picked to be 3rd in the AAC and have the best front court in the conference, according to Blue Ribbon.

This year, they have 2 easy wins over Western Carolina and Robert Morris.

The front court is the big worry.  That's not BG's strong point and UC has absolute giants inside and my fear is that they feast all day in the paint.

It starts with Octavious Ellis, an AAC POY candidate.  He's 6'10" and 235 (and a senior).  Last year, he averaged 9.9 PPG, 7.2 RPG and 2 blocks which shooting 56%.  (No Bearcat averaged in double figures last year).

He is joined up front by Gary Clark, who is 6'7" and 235, and had 7.8/7.2 last year while shooting 52%.  Those two guys are formidable.  Also, off the bench they bring 6'7" Shaq Thomas and 6'9" 270 Coreontae DeBerry.

In the backcourt, their PG is JR Troy Caupin.  He scored 9.6 and had 6 assists per game and shot 41% from beyond the arc.  He is joined at guard by Fared Cobb, who scores 8.5 PPG but struggles with the shot (38%).

Their stats this season are a little misleading.  The games have been blowouts, so more minutes have gone to bench guys.  Last year they had no double figure scorers partly because of how they apportion minutes.  No player had more than 31 per game and 7 players played more than 20.

If they had an issue last year, it was scoring.  They averaged 1.02 points per possession (national average was an even point).  Their defense was very solid, allowing .9 points per possession.

Again, this will be a tough one for the Falcons.  It will be interesting to see what happens.


Anonymous said...

Bearcats are playing an unconventional style from the past ... from deliberate to up-tempo. Don't let the blowouts be misleading because they have a deep bench.

Orange said...

Hey, thanks for the comments. What do you mean misleading?

Anonymous said...

A) Bearcats have been running early ... racing to big leads. B) Even when the bench players are in, they keep going - thus they are deep ... and why two frosh have descent numbers. Rob't Morris has been to the tourney more than once in recent years - Came into town with some seniors leading the way ... then got crushed.