After playing the two teams in the Summit League with the best defensive field goal percentage, the Mavs will now have to play Oral Roberts, who has the 4th best defensive field goal percentage (Western Illinois is 3rd). Then they have to play wildcard IUPUI.
The Mavs came close to North Dakota State and not so close to South Dakota State last week. They know they need to move on, but now they have a road test against, historically, one of the best teams in the Summit League. The coaches and players know and feel that they were a couple plays away from starting out conference play at 3-0, and Mike Rostampour is just pissed, and the senior leader should be. Nothing comes easy in any conference and after starting league play at 1-3, now is the time to make those plays that would have put the Mavs at 3-1 now. It is not the time to press the panic button. NO BODY PANIC! Actually, I’m not really sure if there is a panic button. Other than possible CBI and CIT seedings and births, there is not really much of a difference if the the Mavs finish this year in the Summit between placing 2nd and 9th in the standings. If the Mavs win the regular season, they do get some hardware, but it is not like they are going to get a participation medal for coming in 9th in the conference. Mom, this is literally a medal for sucking. But morally, we want to prove ourselves, that we know we belong here. We’re not quite at the point of trading away all of the assets and tanking for the draft. I am sorry, I am a Celtics fan, so I am bitter about some NBA things at the moment…
Okay, I am going to throw something at you here. The Mavs are going to have to go deep into the bench in this game. Why would the Mavs have to go deep into the bench on a team that has the worst field goal percentage in the entire Summit League? The Golden Eagles get to the line more than any other team in the Summit League, they shoot nearly 26 free throws a game. They have the second worst three point field goal percentage in the league at 32.5%, so they are a team that needs to get to the basket, and with two of the best wings in the Summit League, they get to the basket. Mike Rostampour will pick up a foul in this game, maybe even two, or maybe even five… So the Mavs may have to get Daniel Meyer, Rylan Murry, and Randy Reed on the court more than they usually get out there. In case you are curious, when the Mavs win Murry shoots 57% from the field, 55% from downtown and in their losses he shoots 35% from the field and 25% from long range. So he might actually be a little more of an X-Factor than you might think. Just saying.
RPI wise, Oral Roberts had the best win of the season against Tulsa to open up their season. Maybe similar to the Mavs, they realize this was a long time ago, and now that they are 8-8, they have something to prove themselves. Maybe the Mavs should not run the typical Mavs pace in this one. The Golden Eagles average 65 points per game (not including their win over Haskell). When Oral Roberts gets above 65 points they are 7-1. Maybe UNO does not need to slow down the pace, but clearly, they need to play strong defense for all 40 minutes.
Obviously the Mavs need to shoot better coming off their two worst shooting performances of the season. Oral Roberts may be in the top half of the league as far as defensive field goal percentage goes, but they have had a few poor shooting nights themselves so far, so here is an incredibly generic thing to say. The Mavs need to play better on offense and defense. That’s simple. Well we are done here.
Here are some other random Mav numbers for you (not counting Iowa Wesleyan):
- The Mavs are 5-1 when they hit more threes than their opponent, only loss to North Dakota State
- The Mavs are 1-6 when they hit less threes than their opponent, only win to South Dakota
- The Mavs are 0-3 when they hit the same amount of threes than their opponent
Hey, remember how Oral Roberts has the 2nd worst three point field goal percentage in the League? They have also made the 2nd least amount of threes in the Summit League. But again, they get to the line, A LOT.
- The Mavs are 0-4 when 40% or more of their field goals taken are three point field goals
So it’s not exactly like they should just start jacking up threes, especially after a 1 of 16 performance, but they need to hit the open shots that they found against South Dakota State but could not convert on. Seriously, how generic sports talk can this get?
With the talent they have, I am not even sure if they could beat Kentucky right now. Crap, I am thinking about the Celtics again.
The Mavs do need to contain the wings for Oral Roberts. Obi Emegano in his last five games has averaged 23 points, 3.8 rebounds, 1.8 assists, 3.6 steals, and he has shot 50% (36-72) from the field. He has also made 10 threes overall in the last 5 games after going 9 games in a row without a three. Korey Billbury in the last five games has averaged 17 points, 9.4 rebounds, 2.4 assists, 1.6 steals, and shot 39% from the field. Billburry also made a total of 9 threes in the last 5 games, after only hitting a total of 5 in the Golden Eagles’ first 11 games.
This game is a homecoming for Tim Smallwood, a Tulsa native, so maybe he will play better. Is that dumb to think that? Seems like guys play better in situations like that, or on their birthday. Seriously, you should see my career averages on my birthdays. I was a quadruple 2 guy my whole life, 2 points, 2 rebounds, 2 assists, and 2 steals per game. On my birthday, I averaged about 14 points and 5 rebounds a game. Not to brag, okay I am bragging, but in intramurals at UNO, I had to guard a guy that had played at Midland University and he was about 5 inches taller than me, but I had 17 points with 5 threes that game. It was literally my birthday.
Lost 72-66 to North Dakota State in Fargo.
Won 66-57 at Western Illinois
Seriously everyone was sleeping on the IUPUI Jaguars before the start of the season, and many still are trying to wipe the morning fog out of their eyes. They lost 6 in a row at one point, but now have gone on a win a game, lose a game pattern for their last 7 games. If they continue the pattern, they would lose to South Dakota State and win at UNO. That is how stats work, right? They are 2-1 in the Summit with a wins over preseason league favorites IPFW and Denver, so this should have caught the attention of people…who pay attention. They also took that team I was just talking about, Oral Roberts, to overtime.
There is not much size to the Jaguars, nor is there much experience, and their best players are currently sitting out due to transfer rules. They do not make many threes, they have made the least amount of total threes in the conference, and they have the worst three point field goal percentage in the league. They are just a little better than UNO at free throw percentage at 70% to UNO’s 69% but they do not get to the line nearly as much, UNO shoots 27 free throws a game, while IUPUI shoots 18 per game. They average the second least amount of rebounds per game, after Denver who they defeated, but IUPUI has picked up more rebounds as of late. The Jaguars also average the most turnovers in the league, so UNO who averages the most steals in the conference should be licking their chops. Is licking chops still a saying? What are chops?
None of their wins have been a beat down. Of their 6 wins, the biggest amount of points they won by was 6 points to South Alabama. One thing I have noticed about the Jaguars as compared to other Summit League teams, they have not played an opponent that was not division one. So that whole thought process of In Order to Get Better You Have to Play the Best Competition might be coming together for IUPUI, as they are finally starting to pick up some wins.
One thing I notice while looking at all 6 of their wins, a low amount of threes taken. Their three point attempts on wins, 10.6 attempts per game. Their three point attempts on losses, 17.2. Clearly, with the poor percentage and total number of made three point field goals, it is an area they struggle in, so they desperately need to get to the basket. The Mavs need to keep them on the outside, just let them take threes.
UNO has yet to lose to IUPUI as Summit League opponents, and if the Jaguars pick up a win against the Mavericks this year, given how bad their roster is, I may just lose it. They defeated IUPUI by 28 and 22 points last season. CJ Carter has averaged 15.6 points, 4 assists, 2.3 steals, and has shot 19-30 in 3 career games against IUPUI. In his sophomore season, Marcus Tyus averaged 15 points, 3.5 rebounds, and shot 12-22 against the Jaguars. Mike Rostmapour has 18 and 9 in his first meeting against IUPUI and 9 and 8 in his second match up with IUPUI, and he also shot 9-13 on those two games. Devin Patterson averaged 11.5 points, 4.5 rebounds, 5 assists, 2.5 steals, and shot 9-18 versus IUPUI last season.
For real, why do they think tanking for the draft is a good idea? Has it ever worked out for them before? Drafting players is not their thing, draft day trades is their specialty! Aw crap, sorry, the Celtics, they are getting to me.
A suggestion from a guy that has no business giving suggestions to a college athletics program:
Bring Marcus Tyus off the bench.
Okay, I hate the idea of it too. I think Marcus Tyus has been the Mavs most efficient player this season, and has been huge. It is nothing personal against Marcus Tyus, in fact, I hope this is a compliment. Really, it should not matter to a player if you start the game or come off the bench, as long as you are on the court at the end, or your team has won. This team does need a high energy guard off the bench, and Marcus Tyus is definitely a high energy player who can bring a spark off the bench.
You can not really put Patterson on the bench because of his ball handling ability, and for his control of the offense. No one wants to put Carter on the bench, who has started all but three games in his career, and is the teams’ top scorer. So unfortunately, Tyus is the nomination.
The 2013-2014 season, the best season for the Mavs so far in division one, Marcus Tyus came off the bench for half of the season. With injuries to Justin Simmons, Tyus got the nod to start, and he played great, there is no question of that. Last season, UNO was 8-8 with Tyus coming off the bench and 7-7 with Tyus starting, so it’s not like any of this makes sense with that in mind. Four of the losses that he came off the bench though: @ Iowa by 8, @ UNLV by 3, @ IPFW by 4, vs. IPFW by 1.
Whether Jake White gets back into the starting line up or not, the Mavs will have either he or Tre’Shawn Thurman coming off the bench in the post for a key role, but the Mavs do not really have a guard to come off the bench that has produced enough for that second wave of energy and activity. If Justin Simmons was starting last season, Tyus and Phillips were both coming off the bench. If Simmons was hurt and Tyus was starting, Phillips was still providing some energy off the bench. Matt Hagerbaumer was always providing defensive energy in the post off the bench. Reed and Smallwood have not produced as advertised, Rylan Murry has slipped in the last month, and walk on/great guy Kyler Erickson has been the guy to step up off the bench. I am not sure who to start between Reed, Smallwood, and Murry. Reed or Murry would provide more height, and the Mavs could start the game contesting the shots other teams’ 6’4″ – 6’6″ wings a little better, then BAM, Marcus Tyus off the bench for 8 quick points. I am not saying this is a big time solution to anything, it is just a thought.
Some milestone notes:
- Marcus Tyus is 11 points away from 700 career points
- Mike Rostampour is 18 rebounds away from having the 2nd most rebounds since transition
- Matt Hagerbaumer – 401
- John Karhoff – 384
- Mike Rostampour – 366
- Marcus Tyus is 4 steals away from having the 3rd most steals since transition
- CJ Carter – 128
- Devin Patterson – 90
- Caleb Steffensmeier – 73
- Marcus Tyus – 69
- Justin Simmons – 69
- Tre’Shawn Thurman is 22 points away from having the 2nd most points in a season by a freshman since transition
- CJ Carter – 303
- Marcus Tyus – 185
- Tre’Shawn Thurman – 163
- Tre’Shawn Thurman is 3 rebounds away from having the most in a season by a freshman since transition
- CJ Carter – 105
- Tre’Shawn Thurman – 102