Thursday, January 8, 2009

Providence Preview

How have the Friars looked so far this season?

Here are the current four factors for the Friars:
.                    Offense         Defense
Adj. Efficiency 105.7 (86) 95.9 (88)
eFG% 51.2 (96) 47.8 (130)
Turnover % 19.3 (88) 22.0 (122)
Off Rebound % 38.5 (39) 34.2 (195)
FT Rate 24.9 (161) 28.9 (49)

Providence has been a balanced team in almost every sense of the word. They have been mediocre, to begin with, ranking 83rd overall in Pomeroy. They are in the 80s in both offensive and defensive efficiency. Their shooting and turnover stats are more or less in that vein as well.

So why should the Hoyas be wary?

Rebounding. With Geoff McDermott (Sr.), Jonathan Kale (Sr.) and Randall Hanke (Sr.) seeing significant time, the Friars are strong offensive rebounders. They have no one in DeJuan Blair's class, of course, but together that big man rotation will generally have two players on the floor grabbing 20%-24% of offensive rebounding chances combined. When you consider that Monroe and Summers combine for about the percentage of defensive rebounds, you can see this being an issue.

Providence's defensive strengths are in not fouling and defending the three. There's certainly a scenario there where the fouls aren't being called inside so the Hoyas fall back on taking threes. This is not a good scenario.

Overall, though, the Hoyas are simply the better team and are at home. If they do not collapse on the boards, they should take this one.

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