Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Gonzaga Box Score Observations

Opening Comments: Thanks to Shetown for covering for the Arizona game while I was hopelessly wondering the north woods.

I will not draw conclusions based upon a November game.

I will not draw conclusions based upon a November game.

I will not draw conclusions based upon a November games …

Summarizing the game in a few words: While UW was launching 3’s and missing them, the Zags were going to the line and making them.

Pace: The game had 65 possessions, which is the high side of normal for UW (last year we played at 60). That is pretty low considering the Zag’s propensity for running (compared to MSU on the radio). Last year, Gonzaga averaged 68.2 possessions, somewhat above the D1 average of 66.5.

Efficiency: Zag’s scored at a1.14 PPP. Ugh. Last year we kept teams to .95 overall. UW scored at .94 PPP.

Was it good Zag defense or bad UW offense? Was it good Zag offense or bad UW defense? The numbers do not say. When you play good teams, bad things can happen.

Shooting: Neither team shot well from beyond the arc, both were good inside the arc, and Gonzaga was decisive at the line.

eFG%: Zag’s had a 50.0 eFG% to UW’s 43.2%. This is directly related to UW taking a greater percentage of 3’s and missing them.

3 pt shooting: UW invested 13 more shots in threes than Gonzaga. What did they get for this investment? 6 points. Zag’s were a lowly 3-11 or 27% from deep while UW was an even worse 5-24 or 21%. UW’s eFG% from deep was 31% while the Zag’s were a nearly respectable 41%. At this rate, neither team should be launching 3’s. On the other hand, 5 of those misses go in and we win the game (I know, that is a big stretch).

2pt shooting: Gonzaga took 7 extra shots from inside the arc. What did they get for that investment? An extra 8 points, or slightly over 1 PPP. Zag’s were 22-42 or 52% while UW was 18 -35 for a similar 51%. Both teams were comparably efficient within the arc, but the Zag’s won in quantity.

1pt shooting: The Zag’s won the game at the line. They hit a blistering 21 or 25 for 84%. UW was 10-14 for 71%, which is not bad. So, Gonzaga had both a quality and quantity edge at the line. Gonzaga had an estimated 12 possessions end at the line. They scored 21 points or 1.75 PPP from the line.

Rebounding: The rebound wars were a draw, which surprised me because the game did not start out that way.

UW Defensive end: There were 29 rebounding opportunities and UW got 21, or 72%, thus holding the Zag’s to 28% offensive rebounding. That is good.

UW Offensive End: Because of UW’s brick laying ability from deep, there were more misses at UW’s offensive end of the floor. Of the 40 misses, UW got 10 and the Bulldogs 30. UW had 25% offensive rebounds, which is on par for what UW should expect.

Turnovers: First, the good news. UW turned the ball over only 9 times for a sparkling 14% TO ratio. Fantastic, especially when playing a team that likes force TO’s like the Zags.

The bad news is that, yet again, UW did not take advantage of the low TO rate. Gonzaga actually bettered UW with only 8 TO’, or 12%. When it was all said and done, the Zag’s had a +1 TO margin.

Fouls: Fouling was not the issue it was in the AZ game. Gonzaga had 18 to UW’s 19. But, the Zag’s translated those fouls into 25 FTA’s and held UW to only 14. This, along with their superior marksmanship, was the game.

Playing time: Bo played 7 players 10 or more minutes (Bruesewitz being one of them). Evans had 8 and Wilson 7.

Notable Performances: Offensively, Taylor was an ultraefficient 19 points on 10 shots from the floor (added 3 FT’s). He hit 2-3 from deep. Jordan, long will the tales of your exploits be told around the campfires of my people.

JBO had 8 rebounds.

Leuer scored 18 on 17 shots and added 5 boards (1 TO).

How Shetown did in his predictions:

1. Both teams protect their defensive glass. Arizona and UW will not allow more than 33% of the misses on defense to be grabbed by the offensive team. Hit. UW held the Zag’s to 25%.

2. Leuer, Nankivil, Berggren, and Evans hold their bigs in check. Sacre, Harris, and Olynyk to combine for less than 23 points. Miss. They scored 27, but not too far off.

3. Hughes has another big game, scoring at least 12 points. Hughes is significantly quicker than Goodson, Bouldin, and Vilarino, leading to him attacking the rim at will, racking up lay-ups, assists, and free throw attempts. Miss. Hughes scored 10 points on only 8 shots. He had 0 turnovers. BTW, Boldin, Goodson and Vilarino combined for 27.

4. The Badgers score on the Zags inside, shooting better than 44% from 2-land. I like our bigs and guards to shoot better than the average team against the Bulldogs interior defense. Hit. UW scored at a 51% clip on shots inside the arc. But, we invested too many shots in the deep ball, which did not drop.

Closing Thoughts: UW did the things we often do - protect the ball, protect the glass but could not overcome poor shooting.

It is still November. One loss to a good team on a neutral court is not a big deal. I think of this game as a missed opportunity, not a bad loss. All teams are trying to find themselves at this point. JBO hits a few shots and this is a different game. Oh well, that is why you play them.

The We Make for Free Throw than the Other Team Attempts scoreboard:

UW needs to make 37 unanswered FT’s to be able to make this claim. At this point, we are closer to the reverse.


FGM 67

FGA 87

% 77%


FGM 51

FGA 73

% 70%

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