2010-11 Season Wrap-Up (Part Two): The Team Stats

COLUMBIA MO - JANUARY 17: Phil Pressey #1 of the Missouri Tigers reacts after Shane Southwell #1 of the Kansas State Wildcats is called for a foul during the game on January 17 2011 at Mizzou Arena in Columbia Missouri. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

As MIZZOUHELDHOSTAGEPALOOZA™ rolls on, we move forward with the Season Wrap-Up series, continuing to assume, until proven otherwise, that the coach Mizzou had this year is the coach they will have next year.


Last year was easy to describe.  Missouri lost three key pieces to the 2008-09 Elite Eight run, displayed grit and flaws, and found their way into the second round of the NCAA Tournament to keep the overall momentum of the Mizzou program at a rather high level.  They were to lose another three seniors, but they were plugging some of their holes in recruiting, and the future was bright at Missouri.

Then, as happens at most schools at one point or another, things went off-script a bit.  Missouri didn't necessarily get worse in 2010-11 -- they finished with the same record, and any losses by the defense were more-or-less countered by increases in offense (until the calendar turned to March, anyway) -- but they didn't get better.  They peaked at the wrong time, they entered the tournament with a lower seed (11) than in 2010, and they quietly bowed out to Cincinnati, wrapping up a semi-baffling season of basketball.  Last year, we looked at team and player stats with an eye toward the next season; today, we look at them still trying to figure out exactly why Mizzou ran in place in 2010-11.  (It's just as well that we take a longer gaze at what happened this year ... since we still don't know key details about next year ... you know, things like "Who is the coach?" and "Who are we signing?")

Mizzou Offensive Stats

2009-10 2008-09
Pace (No. of Possessions)
Points Per Minute
2.00 1.92 2.04
Points Per Possession (PPP)
1.12 1.10 1.14
Points Per Shot (PPS)
1.28 1.25 1.30
2-PT FG% 50.0% 47.6% 52.7%
3-PT FG% 36.6% 36.8% 35.3%
FT% 73.9% 72.4% 67.2%
True Shooting % 55.7% 54.3% 56.1%

2009-10 2008-09
Assists/Gm 16.4 15.2 18.4
Steals/Gm 9.7 10.9 10.2
Turnovers/Gm 12.6 12.7 11.8
Ball Control Index (BCI)
(Assists + Steals) / TO
2.06 2.06 2.42

2009-10 2008-09
Expected Off. Reb./Gm 13.0 13.2 12.9
Offensive Reb./Gm
12.5 13.1 12.8
Difference -0.5 -0.1 -0.1

Ken Pomeroy Offensive Stats

2010-11 2009-10 2008-09 2007-08
Efficiency 34 43 8 41
Effective FG% 65 102 47 137
Turnover % 21 43 6 19
Off. Reb. % 163 126 116 219
FTA/FGA 262 269 172 297

What Got Better?

  • Free Throw Shooting.  This was circumstantial and slight. Mizzou guards shot a bit higher percentage of the free throws (Ricardo Ratliffe has not yet mastered the art of drawing fouls), and Marcus Denmon shot his a bit better (69.7% last year, 75.8% this year).
  • Passing.  In 2009-10, J.T. Tiller averaged 0.13 assists per minute, Mike Dixon 0.10, Zaire Taylor 0.09 and Miguel Paul 0.13.  In 2010-11, Dixon (0.16) and Phil Pressey (0.18) raised Mizzou's game in terms of assists.  Between Pressey's quickness and Marcus Denmon's increased catch-and-shoot-ability, Mizzou's ball movement improved over the previous season.  (For that matter, Kim English improved in that regard too, from 0.05 to 0.08.)  And with Dixon (junior to be) and Pressey (sophomore) maturing, this could be a strength for quite a while.  (Assuming no transfers, of course.)
  • Turnovers.  Mizzou's raw turnover numbers did not necessarily improve, but Ken Pomeroy's numbers suggest that their numbers stayed steady against a tougher set of turnover-forcing defenses.  Plus, a smaller percentage of their turnovers were of the steals variety.  Again, not a bad thing considering their primary ball-handlers were seniors in 2009-10 and underclassmen in 2010-11.
  • 2-Point Shooting.  Ratliffe (58.9%) and Keith Ramsey (58.0%) made two-pointers at a similar rate, but Ratliffe took many more of them.  Add to that Marcus Denmon's 54.4% shooting on such shots, and you've got a pretty good overall percentage.  Plus, a smaller percentage of Mizzou's overall field goal attempts were 3-pointers (36% in 2009-10, 34% in 2010-11), which helped Mizzou's overall True Shooting % rise a bit.  And again, looking at Pomeroy's numbers, it appears that their shooting numbers improved despite a tougher slate of defenses.

What Got Worse?

  • Offensive Rebounding.  In all, this was but a slight change -- Mizzou grabbed 34% of available misses in 2010-11 as compared to 35% last year.  (Pomeroy's numbers suggest they didn't face an amazing slate of defensive-rebounding teams.)  Ratliffe (12%) grabbed more than Ramsey (10%), while Laurence Bowers and Justin Safford grabbed the same rate each year.  To the extent that there was a dropoff, it actually came from the wings -- Denmon's offensive rebounding rate shrank from 5% to 3% (likely because he was taking more of the shots), and Kim English's shrank from 4% to 2%.
  • Steals.  But I guess that's more of a defense thing, isn't it?


Mizzou Defensive Stats

2009-10 2008-09
Points Per Minute
Points Per Possession (PPP)
Points Per Shot (PPS)
2-PT FG% 47.9%
3-PT FG% 34.1%
FT% 69.2%
True Shooting % 53.3%

2009-10 2008-09
Assists/Gm 13.5
Steals/Gm 5.7
Turnovers/Gm 18.1
Ball Control Index (BCI)
(Assists + Steals) / TO

2009-10 2008-09
Expected Off. Reb./Gm 12.6
Offensive Reb./Gm
Difference +0.3

Ken Pomeroy Defensive Stats

2010-11 2009-10 2008-09 2007-08
Efficiency 63
Effective FG% 183
Turnover % 9
Off. Reb. % 318

What Got Better?

  • Hmm.  Well, one you make schedule adjustments, the Defensive Rebounding got ever so slightly better.  So there's that.  And look!  Opponents shot 1% worse on free throws!

What Got Worse?

  • Everything Else.  What, not specific enough for you?
  • FG Defense.  Opponents shot 2.7% better on 2-pointers, 2.4% better on 3-pointers.  Not significant -- in the end, opponents averaged just 0.06 more points per shot in 2010-11 -- but in a close game it can add up over the course of 40-60 shots (2.4 to 3.6 points).  And looking at the Pomeroy stats, opponents' field goal percentages rose despite a weaker schedule.
  • Turnovers.  This was still a strength ... just not quite as much of one.  Looking for a reason why considering Mike Dixon (0.08) and Flip Pressey (0.09) averaged more steals per minute than Taylor (0.07) and Tiller (0.07), and Marcus Denmon (0.06) wasn't far behind?  Look no further: Keith Ramsey averaged 0.06 steals per minute in 2009-10 ... and Ricardo Ratliffe averaged 0.01 in 2010-11.  Meanwhile, Justin Safford's per-minute average fell from 0.04 to 0.01.  Mizzou was slightly worse in terms of both forcing turnovers off the press and in post-up denials, and again, it added up.
  • Fouls and Types of Fouls.  In all, Mizzou did not really commit that many more fouls in 2010-11 -- they averaged 0.10 per minute in 2009-10 and averaged the same in 2010-11.  But more of the fouls they committed were shooting fouls (I think, almost a week later, they're still committing and-one fouls against Cincinnati).  Be it poor rotation (Mizzou also allowed a higher assist rate), poor post position, whatever ... the fouls Mizzou committed were more costly this season.

Again, in none of these categories was there an outright collapse.  But Mizzou was just a slightly worse defensive team in just about every regard (except defensive rebounding) last season.  Losing three defense-first seniors made a larger difference than we were probably expecting -- or willing to acknowledge -- at the beginning of the year, and we've undergone plenty of discussion regarding the physical makeup of Mizzou's new backcourt (Dixon and Pressey are, to say the least, smaller than Tiller and Taylor).  We'll talk about other causes for regression -- and how much improvement might be expected for next year -- at a later date (like, when we know we have a coach, for instance).


  • Wins (Team Rank is from KenPom.com)
    vs No. 17 Illinois, 75-64
    No. 29 Kansas State, 75-59
    No. 35 Vanderbilt, 85-82 (OT)
    No. 49 Old Dominion, 81-58
    No. 52 Colorado, 89-73
    No. 62 Nebraska, 77-69
    No. 76 Baylor, 77-59
    No. 81 Iowa State, 87-54
    at No. 81 Iowa State, 76-70
    at No. 93 Oregon, 83-80
    No. 112 Texas Tech, 92-84
    vs No. 112 Texas Tech, 88-84
    No. 128 Oral Roberts, 81-62
    No. 135 Oklahoma, 84-61
    vs No. 168 La Salle, 83-71
    vs No. 214 Wyoming, 72-62
    No. 238 North Florida, 96-58
    No. 261 Presbyterian, 70-55
    No. 272 Northern Illinois, 97-61
    No. 330 Western Illinois, 66-61
    No. 335 Central Arkansas, 116-63
    No. 339 Arkansas-Pine Bluff, 91-63
    North Alabama, 98-58
  • Losses
    No. 3 Kansas, 66-70
    at No. 3 Kansas, 86-103
    at No. 5 Texas, 58-71
    vs No. 24 Cincinnati, 63-78
    at No. 29 Kansas State, 70-80
    vs No. 44 Georgetown, 102-111 (OT)
    at No. 50 Texas A&M, 89-91 (OT)
    vs No. 50 Texas A&M, 71-86
    at No. 52 Colorado, 76-89
    at No. 62 Nebraska, 58-69
    at No. 71 Oklahoma State, 70-76

This was an oddly straight-forward season from a wins-and-losses perspective.

  • Missouri was 8-0 against Teams ranked 200th or worse, with only one win coming by single digits.  There were a couple of games that were closer than one might have expected -- Western Illinois, obviously, plus Wyoming and Presbyterian -- but there was also quite a bit of dominance, with four wins coming by 30+ points.
  • Against teams ranked between 101st and 200th, Mizzou went 5-0 with wins coming by an average of 13.2 points.  Not amazing, but comfortable.
  • Against teams ranked between 51st and 100th, Mizzou went 6-3 -- 4-0 at home (avg. margin: 19.3 points) ... and 2-3 on the road.
  • Against teams ranked 50th or better, Mizzou went 4-8 -- 3-1 at home, 1-7 away from home.

Perhaps the oddest part of this season for me was that Mizzou both blew opponents out and got blown out at smaller rates than previous seasons.

2008-09: nine wins by more than 25 points, three losses by more than 15 points
2009-10: seven wins by more than 25 points, two losses by more than points
2010-11: six wins by more than 25 points, one loss by more than 15 points

I had this tidbit lined up for a while, but then Missouri negated some of the impact by losing their final two games of the season by exactly 15 points.  But still.  When it went well for this team, it didn't go quite as well (or as often, anyway); but when it went poorly, it didn't go quite as poorly.

The cause?  I wish I knew.  For one reason or another, Mizzou's identity was not as strong in either direction.

Anyway, we'll tentatively plan on moving to player stats next ... unless we have a "Who's Missouri's Next Coach?" series to start.

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