Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Illinois Box Score Observations

Opening Comments: Congratulations to Illinois on a difficult but hard earned victory. They were losing 24-13 with 6:38 in the first half and then the shots started to drop. I believe they scored 20 points on their last 9 possessions of the half.

On Bo’s weekly TV show he mentioned (I paraphrase), “we try to get the points per possession we need.” So, to those who have resisted getting on the points per possession bandwagon, our coaching are all over the concept.

Summarizing the game in a few words: UW got up more shots, Illinois made more shots.

Pace: The game had 56 possessions. UW has been playing at 58 possessions per game in conference play, fewest in the B10. Illinois has been at 68, tied for most in conference.

Efficiency: Was it good offense or good defense? Mostly poor UW defense, or good Illinois offense, take your pick, although our offense was below expectations.

Illinois scored 1.13 PPP. Illinois has been scoring at 1.04 PPP, #6 while UW has been giving up .93 PPP, #1 in conference. So, Illinois scored much better than might be expected.

UW scored 1.0 PPP. UW has been #4 in the league scoring 1.06 PPP. Illinois has been bleeding at .99 PPP, #4 in conference.

Shooting: UW paid the price for being a perimeter oriented team. We outscored them from the arc, gave it back inside the arc, and then lost it at the line. Perimeter oriented teams simply do not get to the line much.

eFG%: Illinois stroked it at a good 58%, second best of the year against us (PSU hit slightly better than 58%). On the other end, UW hit 46%, not nearly enough.

Illinois and UW have been pretty similar in shooting this year. Illinois has an eFG% of 50.6%(#5 in conference) while UW has 50.2% (#6).

3 pt shooting: UW was 11 of 29, or 38%. Illinois was 4 of 11 for 36%. So, UW picked up 21 points at the arc.

In conference, UW has been hitting at 33.3% while Illinois has been at 36.7% (#4).

2pt shooting: Illinois rocked inside the arc. They hit 20 of 24 for 59%. UW was a lowly 9 of 27 for 33%, our worst performance of the year inside the arc. Illinois made up the 21 points they gave up outside the arc and one scoring an extra 22 points inside the arc.

1pt shooting: At the line, Illinois was 11 of 15 while UW was a mere 5 of 9 or 56%. That gave Illinois a plus 6 from the line.

Rebounding: Rebounding was more or less a draw, despite Illinois winning the raw rebounding total 38 to 24. Both teams effectively defended the defensive glass. How can that be? UW clanked so many shots that Illinois was able to run up the raw numbers. Read on.

UW Defensive end: There were only 24 rebounding opportunities and Wisconsin got 7 or 29%.

UW allows opponents 25% of their rebounding opportunities, second fewest in league play (behind PSU’s 23%). Illinois has been crashing the offensive glass at 29%, good for #8 in conference and well below the national average of 33%.

UW Offensive End: With UW’s lousy shooting, there were an extra 14 opportunities and UW got 10 or 26%.

UW has been getting 25% of their misses in league play, worst in the league. Illinois defends the glass giving opponents 32% of their misses, an average number and #6 in conference.

Turnovers: UW enjoyed a substantial advantage in turnovers. Illinois had 10 for 18% while UW had only 6 or 11%. That gave UW a +4 rebounding margin.

On UW’s offensive end, UW has been giving up turnovers at a rate of 14%, #1 in conference. Illinois’ offense gives it up at 18%. So, 6 for 11% was better than expected.

On UW’s defensive end, UW does a decent job of forcing turnovers getting their opponents to cough it up 20% of the time, #6 in conference. When Illinois has the ball, they protect the ball fairly well and give it up at 18%, #4 in conference. Illinois having 18% was right on schedule.

Opportunity Index: UW was plus 4 on turnovers and plus 3 on offensive rebounds giving an Opportunity Index of +7.

UW took 11 more FGA’s and 6 fewer FTA’s, 3 fewer trips, giving UW 8 more possessions that ended with a shot. That is a big advantage in a 56 possession game, if you make your shots.

Here is a look at the team Opportunity Index in B10 play before the game:


Offensive Rebound Margin

Turnover Margin

Opportunity Index

Ohio State
























Michigan State




Penn State
















Fouls: Both teams got whistled for 15.

UW has been fouling at 15.8/game (#3 in conference) and getting their opponents to foul at 16.5 (#7).

Playing time: Bo shortened the bench to 6 players with 10 or more minutes. All the starters played more than 30.

Bruce Weber played 7 ten or more.

Notable Performances: JBo had a nice line scoring 15 on 10 FGA’s, no free throws, and 6 boards. He had two turnovers. That was 15 on 12 possessions or 1.25 PPP. Ever since I anointed him my favorite player he has performed admirably. JBo, long will the tales of your exploits be told around the campfires of my people.

Jarmusz got 5 on 3 shots, one trip to the line, 3 boards and no turnovers.

Taylor and Hughes combined for 20 points, but needed 25 FGA’s to get there. They had 4 TO’s between them, which was negated by 4 offensive rebounds, 6 total. That gave them a combined .8 PPP.

Wilson got 7 on 4 shots, but was an uncharacteristic 2-5 from the line.

Keaton scored 9 on 14 shots, six boards (3 offensive), and no turnovers.

For Illinois, it was all about McCamey and Tisdale, and their pick and roll/pop play. McC scored 27 on 17 shots, chipped in two boards, but had 5 turnovers. That gave him 27 on 22 possessions or 1.22 PPP.

Grading Shetown’s Predictions

1. Illinois takes 9 or less free throws. As a primarily jump shooting team and the Badgers not fouling ways, Illinois shouldn’t get to the line much. Miss. Illinois made 11 on 15 tries.

2. Trevon Hughes and Jordan Taylor combine for 26 points or more. McCamey and Richardson are great offensive players, but are suspect on defense against dribble penetration. Miss. They combined for 20. That was not enough.

3. Badgers shoot better than 40% from beyond the arc. They’ve been on a roll at threes lately, and I think it continues despite Illinois’ great defense. Miss. They were at 38%. They hit 55% in the first half and then cooled off to 28% in the second.

My Prediction: The Badgers win 68-58 in 61 possessions. Miss. UW scored 56 to Illinois’s 63 in 56 possessions.

Closing Thoughts: Make shots.

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