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Mizzou-Texas: Statistical Fist Pump

What an interesting game.  After a hectic first few minutes, it was played at the pace that Mizzou didn't want to play, Texas had their way inside for most of the first half, and Mizzou got almost nothing offensively from DeMarre Carroll (yes, he had 13 points, but it took him 12 shots and he went 3-for-7 from the line).  And Mizzou won.  I realize Texas is struggling right now, and I realize Mizzou will now probably follow this up with a loss at Ames (and I'm strangely almost okay with that), but...what a win!

Mizzou Horns
Points Per Minute
1.73 1.63
Points Per Possession (PPP)
1.02 0.96
Points Per Shot (PPS)
1.13 1.10
2-PT FG% 47.8% 44.9%
3-PT FG% 33.3% 30.0%
FT% 52.6% 60.0%
True Shooting % 49.7% 47.9%
Mizzou Horns
Assists 12 15
Steals 8 5
Turnovers 7 15
Ball Control Index
(Assists + Steals) / TO
2.86 1.33
Mizzou Horns
Expected Offensive Rebounds 14 14
Offensive Rebounds 9 12
Difference -5 -2
  • Shooting stats were even, and Texas won the rebounding battle...but Mizzou once again dominated in the Ball Control Index figure, and that won them the game.  They didn't even have that many assists--12 is pretty low for this team--but they forced 15 turnovers and committed only 7 of their own.  Great performance on the road against a physical defense.
  • This is where I think the "expected rebounds" figure tells you more than the actual rebounds total does--in the box score, Texas outboarded Mizzou by 7, but in reality it was closer to 3.
  • MAJOR dap to the mishmash lineup of Tiller, Denmon, Goose, Ramsey and Bowers that played the last 2-3 minutes of the first half and not only didn't let a 10-point deficit grow, but actually cut the deficit to 5 at half.  They really stemmed the bleeding a bit and ended the Horns' momentum.
  • Also, did you see where Mike Anderson is 3-1 in Stillwater and Austin after Quin Snyder went 0-13 there?  Good times.  This is EXACTLY why individual head-to-head records don't really matter, though.  I think back to about a month ago, when I was having to justify why Mike Anderson is a better coach than Doc Sadler despite Sadler's head-to-head success against him.  Is Mike Anderson a better coach than Rick Barnes?  Probably not, but his style apparently works pretty well against Barnes'
  • This is why, really, the only thing that matters is overall wins and losses.  I'm not high on Mike Anderson right now because he's now 2-1 against Texas--I'm high on him because we're 19-4, and it appears plausible that his system might succeed in this conference now that he has players more well-suited for his system.  The better team you build, the more big wins you'll have, period, whether against Texas or whoever else.
Player AdjGS* GmSc/Min Line
Zaire Taylor 23.00 0.66 17 Pts, 3 Reb, 3 Ast, 3 Stl
J.T. Tiller 15.15 0.52 10 Pts, 3 Reb, 5 Ast
Leo Lyons 14.24 0.53 14 Pts, 3 Reb, 2 Ast
DeMarre Carroll 6.94 0.25 13 Pts, 4 Reb, 2 Blk
Keith Ramsey 4.02 0.24 2 Pts, 4 Reb, 2 Stl
Matt Lawrence 4.02 0.20 4 Pts, 3 Reb, 1 Blk!
Kim English 2.92 0.15 2 Pts, 2 Reb
Laurence Bowers 0.55 0.11 2 Pts, 3 Reb
Marcus Denmon -0.18 -0.01 5 Pts, 2 Reb
Justin Safford -0.37 -0.18 0 Pts, 2 Reb
Miguel Paul -1.28 -0.43 0 Pts

* AdjGS = a take-off of the Game Score metric (definition here) accepted by a lot of basketball stat nerds.  It does the same thing my previous measure of choice did (it takes points, assists, rebounds (offensive & defensive), steals, blocks, turnovers and fouls into account to determine an individual's "score" for a given game), only the formula is more used and accepted.  The "adjustment" in Adjusted Game Score is simply matching the total game scores to the total points scored in the game, thereby redistributing the game's points scored to those who had the biggest impact on the game itself, instead of just how many balls a player put through a basket.

  • First things first: The Grey Goose got himself a block!!
  • This is now the second road game where Zaire Taylor said "Get on my back, guys" and carried Mizzou to a win.  You know how we were calling J.T. Tiller "Big Game Tiller" earlier this year?  Forget that--it's Big Game Taylor.  Or just Zaire "I Got This" Taylor.
  • Once again, the youngins didn't play as much last night--yes, Denmon got 14 minutes and English 20, but Mizzou basically had an 8-man rotation with Bowers, Safford, and Paul combining for only 10 minutes.
  • And to single out one of those guys, you can't understate how much Keith Ramsey meant to this team--he not only played better defense against Shaquille O'Pittman and flustered the big man a bit more, but he also ate up precious minutes while Carroll was on the bench in foul trouble.  Ramsey's obviously not a tremendous offensive threat, but he has been a serious asset to this team this year.
  • Because I like Laurence Bowers so much, I'm going to somewhat ignore his 1-for-5 shooting performance for one simple reason: for most of his 5 minutes, he was on the court with only one major offensive threat (Denmon), and nobody else was stepping up and shooting the ball.  Bowers' range needs improving, but I still like what he does close to the basket, and I love his smooth rebounding ability.  (And he's just plain better than Justin Safford at this point.)

vs Big 12
Mizzou: 6-2

Mizzou Opp.
Points Per Minute
2.06 1.78
Points Per Possession (PPP)
1.13 0.97
Points Per Shot (PPS)
1.38 1.22
2-PT FG% 52.5% 46.3%
3-PT FG% 39.7% 36.0%
FT% 68.6% 70.9%
True Shooting %
57.8% 52.3%
Mizzou Opp.
Assists 139 102
Steals 80 53
Turnovers 103 148
Ball Control Index
(Assists + Steals) / TO
2.13 1.05
Mizzou Opp.
Expected Offensive Rebounds 99 103
Offensive Rebounds 83 97
Difference -16 -6
  • The main differences between this team and Mike Anderson's last two: a) they are actually able to force their style on their opponents a much higher percentage of the time (as against Oklahoma State and Baylor), and b) they don't completely break down when the opponent resists their style (like last night). 

    Sure, this is still a two-steps-forward-one-step-back team, but...this is basketball.  EVERYBODY (outside of that 95th percentile anyway) has steps backward.  How you respond to those steps backward determines whether you're a good team or not.  Mizzou has responded brilliantly to all four losses.

Player AdjGS/Gm* GS/Min Line
DeMarre Carroll 17.26 0.60 16.5 PPG, 7.6 RPG, 2.3 APG, 1.3 SPG, 1.3 BPG
Leo Lyons 12.45 0.58 14.7 PPG, 4.6 RPG, 1.7 APG
Zaire Taylor 11.66 0.42 7.1 PPG, 3.4 RPG, 4.0 APG, 1.3 SPG
J.T. Tiller 10.40 0.42 9.1 PPG, 3.5 RPG, 3.1 APG, 1.9 SPG
Marcus Denmon 7.40 0.41 8.8 PPG, 2.9 RPG, 1.4 APG
Matt Lawrence 6.06 0.31 7.1 PPG, 1.6 RPG, 1.0 SPG
Kim English 5.50 0.32 6.8 PPG, 1.3 RPG, 1.4 APG
Keith Ramsey 5.21 0.29 5.3 PPG, 3.0 RPG
Laurence Bowers 3.78 0.53 4.1 PPG, 1.9 RPG
Miguel Paul 2.40 0.26 2.0 PPG, 1.1 RPG, 1.1 APG
Justin Safford 2.09 0.28 2.5 PPG, 2.0 RPG
Michael Anderson Jr. 0.77 0.13 1 Coach's Son
Jarrett Sutton 0.25 0.08 1 Walk-On 3-pointer
Steve Moore -0.50 -0.09 1.5 PPG, 1.0 RPG
  • Zaire Taylor is really starting to remind me a lot of Julian Winfield.  His overall stats simply aren't that amazing (though the fact that Winfield averaged over 7 rebounds a game as a guard in '94-95 was indeed pretty amazing), but he does a little of everything, and when the team needs to be carried and needs a big play, Zaire delivers more often than not.
  • Kim English's per-minute lead over Matt Lawrence is evaporating.  The Grey Goose has almost re-earned his starting job (though I still love him coming off the bench).  English still looks mature and steady on the court, but he does probably need to contribute a bit more at some point.

Rachel Phelps Update: four pieces of the puzzle (i.e. wins to basically clinch an NCAA Tourney bid) to go.