For more than 12 minutes to open the game, Missouri looked like they weren’t really all that interested in being at Mizzou Arena on a Wednesday night the day before Thanksgiving. Maybe you can call it the Jackson State hangover. Maybe everyone’s thoughts were on turkey day. Whatever the reason, the Missouri Tigers stunk it up for 12 minutes and 15 seconds.
Let’s just talk for a moment about South Carolina State. They’re 349th in KenPom, and while they play fast they’re not particularly good at anything. They’re 28th in steals and 48th in offensive rebounding, but they’re 324th in effective field goal percentage and 322nd in turnover rate. So they don’t shoot it well nor do they take care of the ball. And yet with 7 minutes and 45 seconds to play in the 1st half they finished a dunk to take a 29-13 lead. It was like watching the last minute of the Jackson State game over and over and over.
The capping point for me might have been watching Dennis Gates go after the referee for not calling a foul after calling a timeout following that dunk. The problem wasn’t the officials, it was the lack of effort by the Tigers. A sluggish, and yes, pathetic, performance to open the game after losing the previous game to an inferior opponent just a few nights before. I’m not sure what changed, but things went from dire to a lot better pretty quickly. They got a couple stops, made a couple shots, and then things stabilized in a big way.
An 8-0 run, a 10-0 run, then in the second half a 22-0 run. All told Mizzou went from down 16 to up 22 with about 16 minutes of game time. So the only question is why did it take getting down 16?
In the end, Mizzou nearly did what they were supposed to. They looked more like the team we expected to see this season. They played with pace and attacked the rim. They got the ball into good spots for catch and shoots. Statistically there’s not a whole lot you should derive from beating a team like South Carolina State. So I likely won’t spend a whole lot of time here. Mizzou was bigger and better and the only real takeaway is that it took too long for this to kick in.
Your Trifecta: Sean East, Noah Carter, Anthony Robinson II
On the season: Sean East 13, Nick Honor 7, Noah Carter 7, Caleb Grill 3, Tamar Bates 3, Anthony Robinson II 1, Jesus Carralero Martin 1, Aidan Shaw 1
It was pretty clear that once Gates found something that worked he stuck with it. Sean East, after being -17 against Jackson State, returned a +34 for his floor time. At the end of the first half Gates rode with East, Connor Vanover, Aidan Shaw, Curt Lewis, and Nick Honor. The lineup worked so well they all started the second half together, without the same level of success. Once the output from that lineup dried up a bit, Gates used East with Anthony Robinson, Noah Carter, Tamar Bates, and Jordan Butler to juice the score. That’s 9 different players with only Sean East as the link between the two.
It’s clear who didn’t work. John Tonje was minus 11 in just 7 minutes, and Caleb Grill was minus 12 in 6 minutes. Two of the biggest additions this past offseason and neither has made any real impact. Tonje looks a bit like he’s stuck in the mud and Grill looks like he’s pressing too much. I’m not sure how Gates is going to handle these two going forward but it seems pretty clear to me they both need less time on the floor. Nothing is permanent, but you can’t have the kind of negative impact both are having on the floor as things move into a more difficult stage of the schedule.
Matt Harris deep-dived into the lineup already, so I’m not sure much needs to be rehashed here. But there seem to be some things that work, and some things that really don’t. I feel like we need to see a bit less of Nick Honor and Sean East on the floor together. More Aidan Shaw and Tamar Bates. And yes, more Ant. And more pace.
There are still a few too many turnovers, and I think the half court offense is too hit and miss. But at least you’re talking about all these things after a disappointing 23 point win and not what happened on Sunday.
There’s one more buy game, and I have to think Gates might explore another starting lineup look that focuses more on opening energy and less on experience and preseason expectations.
True Shooting Percentage (TS%): Quite simply, this calculates a player’s shooting percentage while taking into account 2FG%, 3FG%, and FT%. The formula is Total Points / 2 * (FGA + (0.475+FTA)). The 0.475 is a Free Throw modifier. KenPomeroy and other College Basketball sites typically use 0.475, while the NBA typically uses 0.44. That’s basically what TS% is. A measure of scoring efficiency based on the number of points scored over the number of possessions in which they attempted to score, more here.
Effective Field Goal Percentage (eFG%): This is similar to TS%, but takes 3-point shooting more into account. The formula is FGM + (0.5 * 3PM) / FGA
So think of TS% as scoring efficiency, and eFG% as shooting efficiency, more here.
Expected Offensive Rebounds: Measured based upon the average rebounds a college basketball team gets on both the defensive and offensive end. This takes the overall number of missed shots (or shots available to be rebounded) and divides them by the number of offensive rebounds and compares them with the statistical average.
AdjGS: A take-off of the Game Score metric (definition here) accepted by a lot of basketball stat nerds. It takes points, assists, rebounds (offensive & defensive), steals, blocks, turnovers and fouls into account to determine an individual’s “score” for a given game. 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.
%Min: This is easy, it’s the percentage of minutes a player played which were available to them. That would be 40 minutes, or 45 if the game goes to overtime.
Usage%: This “estimates the % of team possessions a player consumes while on the floor” (via sports-reference.com/cbb). The usage of those possessions is determined via a formula using field goal and free throw attempts, offensive rebounds, assists and turnovers. The higher the number, the more prevalent a player is (good or bad) in a team’s offensive outcome.
Offensive Rating (ORtg): Similar to Adjusted game score, but this looks at how many points per possession a player would score if they were averaged over 100 possessions. This combined with Usage Rate gives you a sense of impact on the floor.
IndPoss: This is approximates how many possessions an individual is responsible for within the teams calculated possessions.
ShotRate%: This is the percentage of teams shots a player takes while on the floor.
AstRate%: Attempts to estimate the number of assists a player has on teammates made field goals when he is on the floor. The formula is basically AST / (((MinutesPlayed / (Team MP / 5)) * Team FGM) - FGM).
TORate%: Attempts to estimate the number of turnovers a player commits in their individual possessions. The formula is simple: TO / IndPoss
Floor%: Via sports-reference.com/cbb: Floor % answers the question, “When a Player uses a possession, what is the probability that his team scores at least 1 point?”. The higher the Floor%, the more frequently the team probably scores when the given player is involved.
Touches/Possession : Using field goal attempts, free throw attempts, assists and turnovers, touches attempt to estimate, “the number of times a player touched the ball in an attacking position on the floor.” Take the estimated touches and divide it by the estimated number of possessions for which a player was on the court, and you get a rough idea of how many times a player touched the ball in a given possession. For point guards, you’ll see the number in the 3-4 range. For shooting guards and wings, 2-3. For an offensively limited center, 1.30. You get the idea. Anyway, using the Touches figure, we can estimate the percentage of time a player “in an attacking position” passes, shoots, turns the ball over, or gets fouled.
In attempting to update Study Hall, I’m moving away from Touches/Possession and moving into the Rates a little more. This is a little experimental so if there’s something you’d like to see let me know and I’ll see if there’s an easy visual way to present it.