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Old 01-15-2020, 02:22 PM
SLUFLYER SLUFLYER is offline
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SLU Thoughts, Comments and Observations

With ~48 hours to chatter before Friday nights’ game at Chaifetz Arena against the Billikens, I thought I’d get some information and thoughts out on the table, as presumably the only Billiken season ticket holder on UDPride. Welcome to what I call my super bowl every year. CAN'T WAIT!!!!

• This game scares me mostly for one main reason – they’ve had 6 days to prepare for us

• But after I got done typing all of this breakdown/analysis, I feel pretty good. LOTS of things need to happen/not happen for SLU to win this game. But, that’s why they play the games.

• The Arena will be raucous

• I expect to see several factions and waves of UD fans throughout the Arena

• SLU really needs this game to get any kind of credibility and consideration for an at-large berth

• SLU will ugly up this game, which they should if they expect to have any chance at all. Just before the season, Travis told me he planned to play more up tempo and run much more. Then the season started and the team’s identity has unfolded differently. SLU is scoring more than they have of years past, but not exactly an up tempo, efficient offense. If they have any plans of playing up tempo with the Flyers, it will be a mistake of gargantuan proportions.

• Travis is in a very precarious situation with the Flyers. If he sends all of his guys to the offensive glass, which has typically been SLU’s best offense, he’s at tremendous risk of inviting the Flyers to run. I think he’ll have to send French and Goodwin to the offensive glass and probably have Collins and Jacobs retreat as soon as the shot goes up. SLU’s had some teams in years past, I think it was Majerus, maybe Crews, but one year they literally didn’t send a single guy to the offensive glass in an effort to slow us down.

• This is a Men vs Boys game, regardless if it’s in their house. They have too much youth, sans Goodwin and French, and we’re simply too skilled to allow them to stay in the game. We must impose our will.

• SLU is a very poor shooting team, not just free throws, and they got worse when they lost Jimmerson just before conference play.

• SLU is one of the worst (2nd to last) free throw shooting teams in the nation, just ahead of powerhouse Army. They’d BE last if Chris Mooney hadn’t decided to start fouling SLU’s only decent free throw shooters, intentionally, with 3+ minutes to play last weekend.

• Hasaan French shoots the most free throws on the team and shoots them the worst at 33%.

• Jordan Goodwin shoots the second most and shoots the second worst at 53.8%. This remains a head scratcher to me, as he shot 69% as a frosh and then dipped to 51% last year.

• The free throw shooting for French and Goodwin has been so poor, that Travis has had to put both of them on the bench in key situations late in games because he doesn’t trust them on the line. This has lead to their best players not being on the floor for situations outside of avoiding getting fouled and has hurt them. If Travis has to burn a couple of timeouts to thwart impending runs, then he’ll be hard pressed to control those situations late in the game.

• Goodwin is flat out a junkyard dog. One of the most underrated guards in the league and arguably the best rebounding guard in the NATION at 10.5/game. He gets the majority of his points within 10 feet of the basket, with majority of those coming on offensive stickbacks. He’s an average shooter at best (31%3P), but he’s only made 12 on the season. If you isolate him, SLU has no chance of winning this game. We’ll need a dedicated and disciplined defender on Goodwin. My money says a mix of Mikesell, Landers and maybe Chatman (concerned Goodwin would have his way with Chatman around the basket).

• French is a beast of a man at 6’7”/245. Decent left handed touch around the rim and runs the floor well. He’s a deplorable free throw shooter and if you have the depth to do so, you can choose to foul him rather than give up an easy two or high percentage shot if he catches it within 5 feet of the rim and has a good angle. When/if SLU is in the one and one and French catches it, you have the liberty to put him on the line and foul him “intentionally”. Most of the time it’s been as good as a turnover. I’m not suggesting this tactic, but know that it’s there depending on how the game unfolds. I see Obi and Jordy on French, with some Mikesell and Landers probably.

• Jimmy Bell Jr. is a 6”10” 270 pound man who has lost ~40 pounds the last 8 months. He’s kind of turned the corner the last few games and had some nice games. His footwork remains a work in progress, as it’s slow and awkward. Really good matchup for Jordy in a game like this.

• Javonte Perkins is a slender 6’6” Junior averaging ~11 points/game. He shoots the three ball at a paltry 23% but he shoots it like he’s at 40%. He takes more than any other player on the team. I see Mikesell and Ibi on Perkins most often.

• Yuri Collins is a firecracker who can breakdown his defender and get into the paint at most anytime. But he’s not a scorer or finisher and he’s almost always looking to pass. Play the pass unless he has a decent lane all the way to the basket. Averages ~5 points and ~5/6 assists per game. I see a lot of Chatman and probably some Cohill.

• Demarius Jacobs is a 6’2” sophomore and probably SLU’s best 3 point option at 35%. Averages 7.5 points/game I see Crutcher matched up with him and teaching the underclassman a few things.

• Tay Weaver 5’10” grad transfer (I think) from EKU. Only other legit 3-point threat at 36%. Averages 3.5 points in ~14min/game.

• Terrence Hargrove Jr. is a 6’4” frosh who gets ~10/11 minutes per game. Averages ~6 points, but has only eclipsed that 3 times. He had 27 against DII Maryville in a game French didn’t play. He does a lot of dirty work and is a scrappy, emotional player. Mikesell, Landers and Ibi will match with him, although Matos could too.

• Fred Thatch Jr. hasn’t played in like 10 games, since they beat Boston College. He was getting like 20 min/game the first 4 or 5 games, scored double figures twice. But he’s gotten some illness that’s had him in street clothes most recently. My best sources (former players and some announcers) really haven’t been able describe it or share an official diagnosis. It’s unlikely we see him, but if suits up and plays he could be a significant contributor. He was in their regular rotation last year.

Last edited by SLUFLYER; 01-15-2020 at 02:34 PM..
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  #2  
Old 01-15-2020, 02:48 PM
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Great positives (with some negatives thrown in to make it less biased). May be we win and then again may be ST L loses ...

Play the game and see how the men vs boys plays out.
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Old 01-15-2020, 03:05 PM
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Personally I’m glad we are playing SLU right after VCU as they have similar ‘backs of the baseball card.’ qualities.

Very physical, defensive minded. They love to throw any old shot up and then crash the boards. While they don’t tend to pressure constantly, they are very physical in the half court. They play a much slower tempo and are equally challenged offensively.

Since we just won against a better team - but at home — playing against a lot of these same qualities, I think we will be more ready for the punch in the mouth than we were last night. If the main 5 aren’t spent physically and mentally, I like our chances but am worried about this game a lot.
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Old 01-15-2020, 03:06 PM
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I think we will see a LaSalle style defense with Obi being pushed and shoved until the refs take them out of it. If we shoot the three decently, we will win in a walk.
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Old 01-15-2020, 03:23 PM
SLUFLYER SLUFLYER is offline
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Other facts (to make us feel better):

SLU is 127th in Offensive Efficiency vs Dayton #2

SLU averages 72ppg vs Dayton's 83ppg

Only once has Dayton scored below SLU's 72-point average and only twice have we scored below 78 points. And not once less than 71 points.

SLU has scored in the 60's EIGHT times and in the 50's ONCE.

SLU's effective FG% defensively is 46th in the nation at 45.3% Dayton is 115 at 47.5%
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  #6  
Old 01-15-2020, 03:48 PM
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How times have changed!
Remember a few years back when we went into a game thinking with a few breaks and a friendly bounce or two we could pull out a win?
Now, if we get a few bad breaks or bounces, we could lose this game!
Seriously, Flyers are good and it'll take more then a bad bounce to beat them!
Enjoy!
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Old 01-15-2020, 04:10 PM
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I feel like there is no way SLU can score enough points to win this game. They would have to hold us in the 60's minimum to have a chance and even on our worst night I have trouble seeing that happening. But as others have said that's why they play the games and crazier things have happened.
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Old 01-15-2020, 04:27 PM
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Stay close to even on the boards and we win. Probably comfortably.

They had 19 offensive rebounds against us last year at their place.

Nineteen.

Can't let that happen again.
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Old 01-15-2020, 04:40 PM
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I'm not feeling as confident about this game as it seems others are. They are super physical from what I've seen, and French has been a load against us in past years. I would feel better if Chatman was playing better and if Mikesell was hitting his open looks from deep. Going to be a test with a fired-up crowd in front of a national audience on a Friday night - need to bring our A-game.
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Old 01-15-2020, 04:43 PM
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We struggle against physical post teams, and Hasan French seemed to push us around like little kids last year. (at least that's how my memory remembers it). Refs always seem to always be looking in a different direction too.
1. The UD / SLU games are always ugly and never is a "normal" game
2. Low scoring
3. Physical
4. Unpredictable (ie: the worst shooter has a career night)

I hope we pack some defense, rebounding, and plenty of 5 hour energy drinks. We come out flat or tired and it would not be a good evening.
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Old 01-15-2020, 05:01 PM
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Keys to the game:

1) Rebounding
2) Rebounding
3) Limit Turnovers
4) Keep Obi out of foul trouble
5) Rebounding
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Old 01-15-2020, 05:18 PM
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Per Kenpom:
Beating the 90th-ranked team on the road is about as difficult as beating the 50th-best team on a neutral floor, which is roughly as difficult as beating the 20th-best team on one’s home floor.


So, playing Kenpom #87 SLU at SLU is the equivalent of playing #17 at home. So, this will be the 2nd toughest game of the year behind playing #2 Kansas on a neutral court.
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Old 01-15-2020, 05:23 PM
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We need 10 hard fouls on French from various folks, primarily Jordy. Get him ****ed off.
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Old 01-15-2020, 05:42 PM
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In my opinion SLU and SLUs style matches up better against us than any other team on the schedule. French is a man-child and caused us fits last year. Goodwin as well. They abused our guards and bigs on the glass both near the glass and on long rebounds.

Obi has struggled against big, strong, burly interior players. So have the Flyers. The two most imposing frontcourts on UD's schedule resulted in losses in both games. Oftentimes the Bills' best offense is a missed shot on a missed shot so they can convert the third shot attempt on a possession. They are going to muscle Obi away from the block and make him take those kind of fading Js in the paint that he missed each time he took them in the VCU game -- which is not his first option or strength.

We have Jordy this year, but Jordy is still finding his footwork. Trey is undersized vs French and the Foreign Legion. From my chair, the way to combat SLU's physicality advantage and avoid a repeat of last year's bloodbath is to not get in a halfcourt game with them. We must RUN RUN RUN RUN RUN RUN.

Look at the VCU game. When did UD hit on all cylinders and look their best? When we got a defensive stop in the run of play and pushed hard in transition. Thats when we went on a 22-0 run. When VCU was scoring and we were forced in inbound the ball against their pressure, then score in the halfcourt, we turned the ball over and did not nearly as good looks at the basket. It will be even more pronounced in a halfcourt setting because I believe SLUs halfcourt D is far superior -- but they are just are even MORE susceptible to being fried in transition because they send so many people to the offensive glass. If Dayton effectively rebound on the defensive end, I think pushing the ball is our only real game plan to get out of this one with a win.

Just looking at the two teams, I would favor SLU slightly in this one because they are playing at home. As someone else said, metric wise it might be the second most difficult matchup on the schedule thus far. And as bad a SLU shoots from the field and from the foul line, you can rest assured they will likely shoot 10% better (or more) in both areas just because of the "teams play their best against Dayton" variable.

SLU will really want this victory and I suspect it will be their biggest and most vocal crowd of the season. No question if both teams play their best, Dayton wins by double digits because our best is much better. But SLU doesnt allow you to play your best and I dont think we're going to shoot 50%+ against that kind of physicality.

If we rebound and protect the ball, we've got a solid shot at the valuable road W. But if its even a modest repeat from last year at Chaifetz, then warm up the bus now.

Were I Ant Grant, I would be showing replays of that game the next two days and showing them how they stole our manhood. Challenge the team to get tougher and show the league we're not just the best team -- we're the toughest too.
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Old 01-15-2020, 08:09 PM
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Originally Posted by ud2 View Post
Per Kenpom:
Beating the 90th-ranked team on the road is about as difficult as beating the 50th-best team on a neutral floor, which is roughly as difficult as beating the 20th-best team on one’s home floor.


So, playing Kenpom #87 SLU at SLU is the equivalent of playing #17 at home. So, this will be the 2nd toughest game of the year behind playing #2 Kansas on a neutral court.
Not sure I follow you here . . . we played Colorado (#24 KenPom) and St. Mary's (#38 KenPom) on neutral courts. So both of those games would be "tougher" than St. Louis based on the information you presented.
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Old 01-15-2020, 11:23 PM
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Originally Posted by ud2 View Post
Per Kenpom:
Beating the 90th-ranked team on the road is about as difficult as beating the 50th-best team on a neutral floor, which is roughly as difficult as beating the 20th-best team on one’s home floor.


So, playing Kenpom #87 SLU at SLU is the equivalent of playing #17 at home. So, this will be the 2nd toughest game of the year behind playing #2 Kansas on a neutral court.
Say what? Need the quadratic equation to figure this one out.
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Old Yesterday, 09:50 AM
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Just looking at the two teams, I would favor SLU slightly in this one because they are playing at home. As someone else said, metric wise it might be the second most difficult matchup on the schedule thus far. And as bad a SLU shoots from the field and from the foul line, you can rest assured they will likely shoot 10% better (or more) in both areas just because of the "teams play their best against Dayton" variable.

Well if you really favor SLU in this game, you should be very happy as a wagerer- you’ll get a few points. I wouldn’t bet the house.
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Old Yesterday, 10:04 AM
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Originally Posted by Jeff View Post
Say what? Need the quadratic equation to figure this one out.
Or a GED. Move along...

St Louis always seem to take us out of our game regardless of the analytics.
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Old Yesterday, 10:17 AM
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Originally Posted by Jeff View Post
Say what? Need the quadratic equation to figure this one out.
I'm on my 2nd chalk board,
and taking my shoes off on this one...)
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Old Yesterday, 01:51 PM
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Can talk numbers and analytics all day long. I think we will killed on the boards. This is their calling card. And several guys will risk losing their man cards. I actually fear for some's psyche.

Disclaimer : I made comment to wife during first half of VCU game that it was like we were watching some psuedo-BG lead team... so there is some doubt/baggage in my watching.

But I actually have a overall good feeling. Won't be pretty. And some guys may need a new man card down the road. But think this group has enough skill and grit to squeeze out a victory.
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Old Yesterday, 02:50 PM
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Man I am putting money on SLU to win the NCAA Tournament this year, I bet I can get good odds and it sounds like they could be a prohibitive favorite to win it.
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Old Yesterday, 03:22 PM
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If there's a Dr. Jeckyll and Mr. Hyde team, it's the Billikens. In their last 4 games they got killed by Duquesne on the road, came home and went into OT against UMass and beat George Washington at home by 5 points. Then went on the road and beat up Richmond.

They've beaten Kansas St on the road and lost by 6 to Auburn at home.

But just like other teams we played this season, they've seen nothing like our offense and they will not be able to score enough points to take us down.
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Old Yesterday, 04:03 PM
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Originally Posted by CT Flyer View Post
Man I am putting money on SLU to win the NCAA Tournament this year, I bet I can get good odds and it sounds like they could be a prohibitive favorite to win it.
I don't think anybody is saying they're world beaters, but they match up with us as well as anybody. This will also probably be the one game they get up for and actually hit their free throws and shoot better than usual.
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Old Yesterday, 04:26 PM
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Originally Posted by Smitty10 View Post
If there's a Dr. Jeckyll and Mr. Hyde team, it's the Billikens. In their last 4 games they got killed by Duquesne on the road, came home and went into OT against UMass and beat George Washington at home by 5 points. Then went on the road and beat up Richmond.

They've beaten Kansas St on the road and lost by 6 to Auburn at home.

But just like other teams we played this season, they've seen nothing like our offense and they will not be able to score enough points to take us down.
SLU has let their bottom feeders hang around dangerously close. They were embarrassed by Seton Hall at Chaifetz Arena and quite intimidated by their size. FWIW, Seton Hall is LEGIT. Once they're completely healthy, I see SH as a #2 seed and strong Final Four threat.

SLU beat KState at "neutral" site Kansas City. And KState is not a good basketball team.

SLU wasn't exactly in a threatening position against Auburn either. After an early SLU lead, Auburn took control with about 6:00 in the first half. Their lead was anywhere from 5 to 10/11 points for the majority of the rest of the game. SLU did cut it to 3 at the 10:00 minute for about a minute, but Auburn quickly added some further separation. I watched this game in its entirety and I never really felt SLU was in it once it got to halftime, regardless of cutting it to one possession at one point.

While they've played somewhat up to some competition in some portions of their games and more often down to lesser competition, I haven't felt this is a jeckyl and hyde team. To be honest, they are who they are. A below average shooting/offensive team who works hard, very blue collar for success, who has a smart coach that needs to rely often on tactical approaches and quality strategy to find an advantage.

Other than their 17-28 3PT shooting performance against Tulane, SLU's been pretty much the same team all year. Just my $.02 having watched them all season.
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Old Yesterday, 10:00 PM
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Originally Posted by maddog07 View Post
Just looking at the two teams, I would favor SLU slightly in this one because they are playing at home. As someone else said, metric wise it might be the second most difficult matchup on the schedule thus far. And as bad a SLU shoots from the field and from the foul line, you can rest assured they will likely shoot 10% better (or more) in both areas just because of the "teams play their best against Dayton" variable.

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No way Jose! Every game to date has been “biggest game of the year” for our opponents. Time for revenge for the 3 point bank shot to send the game into OT. (Was there for that one).

Barring a freak injury, we win. Imo’s Pizza for every one!
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Old Yesterday, 10:45 PM
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I think the two things you can normally count on in a Travis Ford-coached SLU team will be on full display tomorrow night, specifically:
-Defense and rebounding that are among the best in the country; and
-An offense that is the exact opposite of that.

I’ve said to a few friends that watching SLU on offense is akin to watching yourself get a root canal, sans Novocain. You know it’s going to hurt, and you can watch it as it happens. I just want to get out of there with a W and no injuries.
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Old Yesterday, 11:18 PM
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Originally Posted by SLUFLYER View Post
...Goodwin is flat out a junkyard dog. One of the most underrated guards in the league and arguably the best rebounding guard in the NATION at 10.5/game. He gets the majority of his points within 10 feet of the basket, with majority of those coming on offensive stickbacks. He’s an average shooter at best (31%3P), but he’s only made 12 on the season. If you isolate him, SLU has no chance of winning this game. We’ll need a dedicated and disciplined defender on Goodwin. My money says a mix of Mikesell, Landers and maybe Chatman (concerned Goodwin would have his way with Chatman around the basket...
I’m thinking we might see Matos and/or Cohill on Goodwin, if only in 3-4 minute stints. They’re both solid perimeter defenders, and Matos has a good combination of size and speed to be able to force Goodwin out of his game, if only a little bit. As long as Matos is in CAG’s good graces, of course.

Also, Mikesell and/or Landers might be needed for a shift or 2 of defense on French. I know he’s far more massive than either of them, and probably too quick for Jordy. We shall see soon enough.
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