Saturday, February 13, 2010

Indiana Box Score Observations

Opening Comments: UW cruised to a decisive 83-55 win against an IU team that considers defense to be an optional pursuit, apparently. JBo lit them up for 30, but most everyone else had productive games as well.

I have been toying with the idea that the game is basically one of quantity and quality. If you get more shots, you win the quantity battle. If you make a better percentage, you win the quality battle. Last week against Illinois, we won the quantity battle and lost the quality battle by such a large margin we lost the game.

I am adding a section called Quantity and Quality. Let me know what you think and how it could be improved. It really is an extension of the opportunity index we worked up earlier.

Summarizing the game in a few words: IU gave UW 18 more chances to score and UW took them and made 28 more points.

Pace: The game featured 63 possessions, our 8th most of the year and 3rd most in conference (PU had 69, PSU 68 in OT). There were a lot of wide open looks. When you consider the number of possessions extended with offensive rebounds (15 for UW, 8 for IU), the game was pretty zippy.

Efficiency: Was it offense or defense? A major dose of both. UW scored at an incredible 1.32 PPP. Yikes! That was best in conference and third best for the year (in such company as Cal Poly – 1.38, UIC – 1.34, and ahead of Grambling St – 1.27.) To say IU does not have a B10 quality defense would be a conservative statement, I would think.

Meanwhile, IU shot well, but could not get shots up (21 TO’s) and posted a .87 PPP. I think it would have been worse except the last few minutes of the game got a little ragged and IU got some points.

Shooting: It is well documented that UW is a POT (perimeter oriented team) without Leuer. In this game, UW put up 40% our out shots from deep, 15th most out of 25 games. In conference we have been at 46%.

eFG%: IU hit a very good 51% eFG%. UW hit 59% eFG%.

3 pt shooting: The good news for IU was they hit 57% of their threes, the best for an opponent this year. The bad news was they only took 7, making 4. Meanwhile, made 10 of 25, or 40%. UW outscored IU by 18 at the arc.

2pt shooting: Inside the arc, IU was 16 of 36 for 44%. UW stroked 22 of 38 for 58%. So, UW took two more shots inside and scored 12 more points. That gave UW a +30 from the floor. Yikes!

1pt shooting: IU took 5 extra FTA’s, 16 to UW’s 11, and made 2 more - 11 to 9. So, IU got two points back at the line, not enough given the 30 they bled from the floor.

Rebounding: IU did pretty well getting offensive rebounds – UW was outstanding.

UW Defensive end: On UW’s defensive end, 26 rebounding opportunities resulted in 18 UW defensive boards and IU getting 8 offensive, or 31%. That is more than our usual 26%, but not bad.

UW Offensive End: IU clanked enough shots to give UW 7 more rebounding opportunities than IU got on their offensive end. UW took advantage and grabbed a stunning 15 offensive rebounds compared to IU’s 18 defensive boards. Given that IU got two of those on missed 1-and-1 free throw opportunities, UW got nearly as many misses as IU on UW’s missed FGA’s (IU 16 to UW 15). That is amazing for UW. They smelled blood in the water and went for it.

Turnovers: Turnovers separated the teams. IU had 21 of 33% of their possessions. Double yikes!! That must drive the IU faithful nuts.

UW had 10 for 16%, excellent as usual.

Opportunity Index: UW was +7 on offensive rebounds and +11 on turnovers for an OI of +18. That is stunning. No wonder this was a blow out.

Quantity and Quality: This is a new feature. I figure that basketball is about scoring and there are two ways to get it done: quantity (Take more shots) and quality (make more shots).

The Opportunity index helps describe the quantity. UW had 18 possessions to work with compared to IU (remember, we consider an offensive rebound an “anti turnover”). So, UW easily won the quantity battle. From a shot perspective, this is borne out. UW took 20 more FGA’s but had 3 (or 2? – IU took 5 extra free throws) fewer trips to the line.

Last game Illinois took fewer shots but made a bunch more (less quantity, more quality). This game, UW had a better eFG% (59 to 51), better FT% (82% to 69%), so we had superior quality possessions.

UW won both the quantity and quality aspects of the offense.

Fouls: IU fouled 18 times to UW’s 17. But, IU ended up shooting more FTA’s 16 to 11. Shetown, do you know if the ref’s checked the right garbage can for those unmarked bills?

Playing time: Bo played 8 ten minutes or more. Besides the starters, Evans got 14, Bruesewitz 18 and Wilson 17.

Crean also played 8 double digit minutes looking for a solution. None were to come.

Notable Performances: What can you say about JBo? He had yet another great game since being anointed my favorite player. He scored 30 on 16 FGA’s, 7-11 from deep, 1-2 from the line, 3 boards, and one TO. But, he also made my prediction come true and blocked a shot. JBO, long will the tales of your exploits be told around the campfires of my people.

Hughes scored 16 on 11 shots and Taylor got 11 on 13 shots (but negated two misses with offensive rebounds),

So, our three primary guards – JBO, Taylor and Hughes, were a combined 21 of 39 FGA’s, 10/21 from deep, 5/6 from the line, 6 boards – two offensive, scored 57 and had 5 TO’s. That comes to 57 points on 45 possessions for 1.27.

Bruesewitz played 18 minutes and grabbed an eye-popping 6 offensive rebounds, 7 total. The bad news was he had 4 fouls, so we cannot extrapolate those numbers to 40 minutes. But, a fine job none the less. Mike, you will be talked about around our fires for years to come.

For IU, Watford scored 15 on 12 shots, 7-8 from the line, three boards (one offensive) and was tagged for 3 TO’s. That gave him 15 points on 21 possessions .71 PPP. But, I would guess the announcers would simply focus on the 15 points.

In a similar manner, Jones scored in double figures – 11 – but needed 17 possessions to get there for .65 PPP.

I mentioned in Shetown’s pregame analysis that I thought Rivers would be better off if he switched to decaf. In this game, he scored 4 points but consumed 5 possessions or .8 PPP.

Grading Shetown’s Predictions

My expectations:

1. Indiana takes 10 or less free throws. The money we stash in the third trash can left of the Nicholas-Johnson Pavilion rigs it for us again. Miss. They tried 16. Which trash can was it?

2. Jordan Taylor and Keaton Nankivil combine for 30 points or more. They make up for their previous performances with great afternoons against the Hoosiers. Miss, they got 20. But JBo and JP Gavinski combined for 30.

3. Badgers shoot better than 40% from beyond the arc. They’ve been on a roll at threes lately with the exception of the desperation attempts at the end of the Illinois game, and I think it continues. Miss. They shot 40%. This was your weekly narrow miss. You truly have developed this into a fine art.

Shetown’s Prediction: The Badgers win 72-51 in 61 possessions, making Tom think that he should have stayed at the hotel and tanned instead of coming to the game. Hit. They cruise in at 83 to 55 in 63 possession, and Crean made a mad dash for the tanning salon.

Closing Thoughts: Last game I told them to make shots. They did. I wonder if that had anything to do with the quality of the competition?

Thursday’s game with Minnesota will be very big. If we win, we should win the subsequent games with NU at home, Iowa at home and Indiana on the road. That will make the showdown with Illinois that much more interesting.

Bo has done a fantastic job with this team. If Leuer can come back for Thursday’s game, that would be even better. He is one of our most efficient players.

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