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First game in a while on the men's basketball front -- St. Louis

ryebreadryebread Posts: 3,298PFN Referee

It looks like NC State has picked up a game Thursday night against St. Louis. Who knows if the game even gets played, much less whether it will be televised?

St. Louis is coached by former Oklahoma State head man Travis Ford. If you remember Ford's Oklahoma State teams, it is mostly for the beatdown that freshman Marcus Smart put on Gott's top 6 preseason squad. That was the game where our good friend Dan Dakich started trolling NC State and our fans bit in defense of Gott. Looks like Dakich got the last laugh on that one. Good times.

Otherwise, Ford's career has been remarkedly average relative to inputs (OSU had $$$). Is it good that OSU made the tournament 5 out of 8 years, or is it bad that they only won a tournament game once (and got upset as a 5 seed?). If you recall, Ford's last year at OSU, they finished with an overall losing record and were 3-15 in conference.

Ford's wearing the "builder" hat at St. Louis. They've gone from 6 to 9 to 10 to 12 wins in the A10 in the four years he has coached there.

The Billikens enter the game at 4-0 with a good win over Will Wade's L$U program and three blow outs against cream puffs. They've got a top 20 offense and a top 35 defense nationally in efficiency. If this were the case at the end of the year, it'd be the type of squad that you'd look for as one of your sleepers. Right now, it's a little early.

There are four things that jump off the stat sheet when you look at St. Louis:

  • Shooting 46.4% as a team from three, which is 5th nationally.
  • Corral 37% of their misses (lots of second chances) which is in the top 25 nationally.
  • They force a lot of turnovers -- 8th nationally.
  • Despite a really efficient offense and the turnovers forced, they are below average in tempo. This isn't a team necessarily trying to get out on the break as much as you'd expect given a smaller line up.

St. Louis is led by 4 players who all play over 60% of the team's minutes:

  • Perkins: 6 ft 6 senior combo guard who is averaging 19.8 ppg, has a 6:1 assist to turnover ratio and is making 58% of his three pointers, 62% of his two pointers and hasn't missed a free throw.
  • Goodwin: 6 ft 3 senior "guard" who is the highest rated recruit on the roster (graded out about like Hayes in high school). He averages a rather inefficient 13.3 ppg while shooting mostly twos. He brings defense though as he's grabbing 3 steals a game and is clearing out the boards (10 per game). He's your Torin Dorn.
  • Jimerson: 6 ft 5 sophomore wing. He is averaging 15 ppg while shooting 46% from three and 79% from two. He's not a rebounding or threat to force steals.
  • Collins: 6 ft sophomore point guard who scores 5.5 ppg, but is a setup man. He's averaging 7.3 assists to 0.8 turnovers per game. He also forces 2 steals a game.

NC State has a clear advantage inside. St. Louis only has 3 players on the roster that are 6 ft 7 or taller, and none of the big men are on the floor more than about 15 minutes a game.

This is your classic small ball team with senior guards who take care of the basketball, shoot the three, force turnovers while making clutch FTs at the line. It's a tough match up for the Pack if St. Louis gets hot from the perimeter or NC State fouls a lot, particularly given NC State's layoff.

Poll time
  1. Who wins?18 votes
    1. NC State Wolfpack
    2. St. Louis Billikins
  2. How minute minutes will Bates be able to stay on the court?18 votes
    1. < 10
    2. 10-20
    3. 20-30
    4. 30-40
  3. How many players will State be without due to COVID19 protocol?18 votes
    1. 1
    2. 2
    3. 3
    4. 4
    5. 5
    6. 6 or more


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