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Know Your Awesomely Named Rival: The Presbyterian Blue Hose

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Okay, let's start from the top: What the hell is a Blue Hose?  BRAVEHEART, what's that the hell is a Blue Hose.  FREEEDOOOOOMMMMMM.  With that, let's get to the previewin'.

Presbyterian: 3-5


Hose
Opp.
Pace (No. of Possessions)
62.1
Points Per Minute
1.58
1.82
Points Per Possession (PPP)
1.02
1.17
Points Per Shot (PPS)
1.20
1.26
2-PT FG% 48.2%
44.9%
3-PT FG% 41.3%
34.9%
FT% 67.0%
70.3%
True Shooting % 54.8%
57.0%




Hose Opp.
Assists/Gm 14.6
17.3
Steals/Gm 4.3
6.1
Turnovers/Gm 13.1
10.9
Ball Control Index (BCI)
(Assists + Steals) / TO
1.44
2.15




Hose Opp.
Expected Offensive Rebounds 10.6
11.1
Offensive Rebounds 8.3
11.8
Difference -2.3
+0.7

Presbyterian is good at, basically, two things: 1) passing to open guys for 3-pointers, and 2) making said 3-pointers.  They are decent at, basically, two things: 1) avoiding turnovers, and 2) not fouling.  They are a team that could give Mizzou problems if they are making their bombs (which, against Missouri, hasn't been tremendously difficult over the last couple of weeks), and if Missouri is missing theirs -- the stats (low fouls, poor rebounding, lots of 3-pointers attempted against them) suggest they play quite a bit of zone, perhaps to counter the fact that they have almost no size (or perhaps because of their own coach's preferences).

So basically, if Mizzou is getting open 3-pointers and missing them (not common this year, but not unheard of), and Presbyterian is bombing away, they can stick around a while.  Just ask Kansas State: the Blue Hose made 9-of-15 from 3-point range against them, while K-State shot 7-for-24, and a 14-point halftime lead for KSU slipped to just three points before the Wildcats rallied down the stretch.  If Mizzou is making their open looks and preventing Presbyterian from doing the same, this game will not be a problem.

Ken Pomeroy Stats

Presbyterian Offense vs MU Defense Ranks

Hose Offense MU Defense Advantage
Efficiency 240
67
MU big
Effective FG% 55
287
Hose big
Turnover % 141
12
MU big
Off. Reb. % 297
127
MU big
FTA/FGA 344
181
MU big
MU Offense vs Presbyterian Defense Ranks

MU Offense Hose Defense Advantage
Efficiency 24
320
MU big
Effective FG% 75
310
MU big
Turnover % 58
308
MU big
Off. Reb. % 71
282
MU big
FTA/FGA 232
11
Hose big

Where the Blue Hose are weakest

They are among the worst defenses in the country.  They don't foul, but they rank 327th in 2PT% defense and 200th in 3PT% defense.  They also don't turn you over -- they rank 332nd in Steal% defense.  They will give you an open look if you're patient. Or maybe even if you're not.  Also: they don't draw fouls (they're too busy shooting 3-pointers), and they don't rebound.  Like I said: they do one thing well, and if you prevent them from exploiting that one strength, they really won't be able to put up much of a fight.  (They lost by 41 to Vanderbilt.)

Where they are best

They are 21st in the country, making 41.3% of their 3-pointers.  They also rank 58th in assists per field goal made and, as you see above, 141st in Turnover% offense.  They play VERY slow, and I assume they will attempt to slow Mizzou to a crawl.  Like a lot of zone teams, they also don't foul a lot -- you're going to have to make shots from the field.  And chances are, you probably will.

Oh, and this is not even remotely a deep team.

Presbyterian's Season to Date

  • Wins (Team Rank is from KenPom.com)
    vs No. 130 Princeton, 69-67
    at No. 206 Eastern Kentucky, 67-66
    at No. 216 VMI, 92-78
  • Losses
    at No. 25 Kansas State, 67-76
    at No. 26 Vanderbilt, 47-88
    at No. 158 James Madison, 56-65
    vs No. 188 Bucknell, 47-71
    at No. 261 Liberty, 61-70

When the 3's are falling, this is an okay team.  When they're not, this is a terrible team.

Presbyterian Player Stats

Player AdjGS*/Gm GmSc/Min Line
Khalid Mutakabbir (6'4, 190, So.) 14.2 0.37 37.9 MPG, 12.5 PPG (59.0% FG, 68.0% 3PT), 3.1 RPG, 2.6 APG, 2.5 TOPG
Al'Lonzo Coleman (6'7, 230, Jr.) 12.0 0.42 28.9 MPG, 14.6 PPG (48.0% FG), 7.4 RPG, 3.0 APG, 1.4 SPG, 4.3 TOPG
Pierre Miller (5'10, 160, Jr.) 10.7 0.29 37.4 MPG, 9.1 PPG (42.9% FG), 4.5 APG, 2.8 RPG, 1.8 TOPG
Josh Johnson (6'3, 185, Jr.) 10.1 0.33 30.2 MPG, 9.3 PPG (35.7% 3PT), 2.7 RPG, 2.5 APG
Jake Troyll (6'9, 185, So.) 9.7 0.34 28.8 MPG, 10.8 PPG (43.4% FG), 4.6 RPG, 1.4 TOPG
Walt Allen (6'4, 220, Sr.) 5.1 0.24 21.1 MPG, 4.4 PPG (35.3% 3PT), 2.1 RPG, 1.4 APG
Ryan Hargrave (6'6, 215, So.) 3.2 0.26 12.3 MPG, 4.0 PPG (37.0% FG), 3.0 RPG
Joshua Clyburn (6'8, 215, Fr.) 0.5 0.06 8.6 MPG, 1.6 PPG, 1.8 RPG
Jay Reynolds (6'10, 245, So.) -0.3 -0.06 5.3 MPG, 0.3 PPG

* AdjGS = a take-off of the Game Score metric (definition here) accepted by a lot of basketball stat nerds.  It redistributes a team's points based not only on points scored, but also by giving credit for assists, rebounds (offensive & defensive), steals, blocks, turnovers and fouls.  It is a stat intended to determine who had the biggest overall impact on the game itself, instead of just how many balls a player put through a basket.

  • Highest Usage%: Coleman (37%), Hargrave (24%), Troyli (23%).
  • Highest Floor%: Mutakabbir (45%), Miller (42%), Allen (41%).
  • Highest %Pass: Miller (71%), Allen (61%), Mutakabbir (56%).
  • Highest %Shoot: Troyli (67%), Hargrave (53%), Clyburn (42%).
  • Highest %Fouled: Troyli (18%), Coleman (13%), Clyburn (13%).
  • Highest %TO: Clyburn (25%), Coleman (11%), Troyli (10%).
  • This team will likely go as far as Khalid Mutakabbir takes them.  He's made 17 of 25 3-pointers on the season, and he's shown a decent amount of versatility.  But he's also a Marcus Denmon type -- he's not a high-usage player, just a high-efficiency team.  Have Denmon or Matt Pressey lock onto Mutakabbir and make somebody else beat you.
  • Al'Lonzo Coleman is their "center" at 6'7, 230.  He's a great rebounder for his size -- 11% on the offensive end (decent) and 22% on the defensive end (great).  He blocks out well and gets to the line more than any other Blue Hose.  (I have no idea what the singular version of Blue Hose is supposed to be.)  Oh yeah, and he dominates the ball.  His 37% usage rate is among the highest in the country, and he basically takes one of every three Presbyterian shots when he's on the court.
  • Pierre Miller is the distributor.  He's careful with the ball and shoots the ball alright ... but it doesn't appear that he's going to shoot it unless he has to.  His job is to find the open man, and he does it pretty well.
  • When Presbyterian threw a scare into K-State, they did it with balance.  Coleman had 15 points and Mutakabbir 13 (3-for-3 from long range), but they also got 14 from Josh Johnson and 12 from Jake Troyli, a 6'9 stick who does little beyond shoot.

Keys to the Game

  1. Good God, Guard the Perimeter.  Presbyterian is going to work the shot clock down to 0.01 seconds as much as possible, and once they've done so, they're quite possibly going to be driving and finding someone for a 3-pointer.  Stay disciplined, stay on your man, and don't let them have open looks.  Without a ton of 3-pointers, they cannot win this game.

  2. Stay Patient.  Mizzou fans have recurring nightmares about slow, zone-laden teams lulling them to sleep and offering them enticing shots from the outside.  Sometimes they make them, but as we saw against Western Illinois, sometimes they don't.  Mizzou should be able to drive at will against the slower Blue Hose; jumpers are sometimes fine, but drive, move the ball, and make sure that long jumpers are the best you can do.

  3. Get 'em, Ricardo.  Let's see ... their biggest guy is 6'7, 230.  They play a lot of zone and allow a lot of offensive rebounds.  This sounds like the perfect recipe for one of two things: 1) Mizzou trying to get the ball inside to Ricardo Ratliffe a lot, and 2) Ratliffe cleaning up on the offensive glass.  In the past, teams who convinced Mizzou to shoot jumper after jumper likely got away with it because Mizzou was not a good offensive rebounding team.  With Ratliffe roaming the interior now, they rank in the Top 75 in offensive rebounds.  It is a strength and, if Vanderbilt is any indication, this team is getting better and better at it.  Ratliffe could be the key to a Mizzou blowout, even if the outside shots aren't falling at a great rate.

Prediction

As I've said about 16 times now, this game will be dictated completely by outside shooting.  If Presbyterian is able to bleed the shot clock down, make some 3's, and make Mizzou impatient, they can slow this game to a 65-possession crawl and try to win a 68-66 style game.  On the other hand, if Mizzou is making their outside shots (or if Ratliffe and Laurence Bowers are able to clean up the misses) and get their press going, they could unleash hell.  Against the two best teams Presbyterian has faced, one game went one way (Kansas State), one went the other (Vanderbilt).  I'm an optimist.  Mizzou presses the Blue Hose into oblivion (they are the guillotine after the "FREEEEEDOMMM" cry), goes on a couple of 14-3 type runs, and wins 88-55.