Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Beaver Basketball: What Exactly Do We Have Here?

After the first road sweep in 16 years and three wins in a row something feels like it might be happening. Its definitely an event you can't ignore. Even in the last winning season in '04-'05 we only won 1 road game. So what is going on? Is it the crazy 1-3-1 defense? The offense that leads to layups? The breakout of Ruland and Calvin? Yes.

I thought I'd take a look at StatSheet.com and see if I can figure out what were doing better and maybe that would help explain if this is a trend or just a hot streak.

Our FG % is pretty high compared to the last few seasons. 47.4% seems pretty good to me. Our opponents are at 44.9%. This is the highest FG% we have shot for the last 12 years. That's pretty awesome. Hopefully that's the extra layups and not just some hot shooting.

Our 3 point FG% has gone back to respectable levels and 34.2%. Our opponents are shooting virtually the same. You can see why we we so good in '04-'05. We hit at an awesome level from 3. And apparently we defended the 3 very well.

Our Offensive Efficiency rating (Points per 100 possessions) is 95.8 in Pac-10 play and 101 overall. That's ninth in the Pac-10. Squarely between the '05-'06 and '06-'07 seasons. In '04-'05 we were 6th in the league. Basically, this measures how well we are using the chances we get.

We have actually lowered the number of turnovers per game in conference play. Down to 12.5 from 14. And we have marginally increased our steals.

Well, nothing in the numbers stands out a ton from previous mildly successful years. If we continue our recent trends and keep our efficiency, FG%, and 3PT% up then we should have a chance in nearly every game the rest of the way. Our rebounding, FT%, and Opponent's Efficiency will costs us a lot of games.

I like what I'm seeing and I'll be following intently the rest of the way. I'm bringing a big group to the Civil War game this weekend!

Go Beavs!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Beavs Make Huge Comeback, Beat Cal on the Road

Whoa. Big win! First road win in the Pac-10 in like forever. Imagine if we had beat WSU...

I started listening with 10 minutes left in the second half. That was the low point. Down 11. From that point Cal made one 30 footer. That's it. The defense, rebounding, and free throw shooting was really clutch.

Great job Beavs! Now go beat Stanford!

Monday, January 05, 2009

Beavers Hoops Beats USC! Snaps 21 Game Pac-10 Losing Streak

The Beavers won this game with defense, some good patient offense, and a couple great individual efforts at key moments of the game.

First, that 1-3-1 zone was perfect. It may not work every night but it was key. By pushing their guards way out past the 3 point line they were removed as a threat. Plus, they couldn't directly enter it into the post. So each play there were really only three legitimate threats each time out. Plus, the Beavers were working hard to prevent drives and getting caught too many times out of position. Great strategy by coach Robinson.

Second, the offense was working well. It seems like everyone gets their role and are really looking to attack the defense with back-cuts and passing. Plus, people were hitting their threes when they were open. I could see how this offense could really work here.

Third, three huge offensive plays sealed the game. Ruland's 3 to send the game into OT was big. He was open and was feeling it. Then the play of Calvin Haynes at the end of the game and in OT. He looked like a poor man's Brandon Roy on those last two layups. Setup the pick and roll and drive to the hoop. He is the key to the team right now.

Great job Beavs! Now go get win #2!

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