Wednesday, January 12, 2011

The Citadel Preview: The Point Is....

Let's face it- in SoCon basketball, it doesn't get much better than this at point guard. Cameron Wells and Keegan Bell are two of the four SoCon players on the Bob Cousy Award Watch List, along with Brendan McKillop (Davidson) and Mike Williams (Western Carolina). Wells and Bell are the two I would take out of those four players. So you could make a solid argument that these are the top two point guards in the conference.

Cameron Wells is as good as they come. He is averaging 15.1 points per game, best on the team. He leads the team with 4.2 assists per game. He also averaged 5.1 rebounds per game, good for third on the team. He shoots less than 30% from three point range, so he is not a great outside shooter. But he is a great player. Keegan Bell will have his hands full guarding Wells.

Zach Urbanus is the team's second leading scorer, averaging 10.8 points per game, and is also second in assists, with 3.0 per game. He shoots about 35% from three point range. So this backcourt is very difficult to contain for any team. This is a tough challenge for the Mocs defense.

Mike Groselle is 6'8 center, and only plays twenty minutes a game. He averages 10 points per game despite that small number of minutes. He also averages 5.7 rebounds per game, which is second on the team. He is shooting 56.1% from the field.

Bryan Streeter is leading the team in rebounding with 5.8 rebounds per game, while averaging just 6.3 points per game. Streeter is a very good offensive rebound, with nearly half of his rebounds coming on the offensive end.

Austin Dahn is the Bulldog other than Urbanus and Wells to average over 30 minutes per game. He has not gotten to double figures in six games, since the New Mexico game on December 19. He is averaging 9.7 points per game, which tells how well he played early in the year. He has really cooled off lately.

The Bulldogs have lost three conference games, a 15 point loss at home against Davidson, a 18 point loss at Wofford, and a 21 point loss at Furman. They won by 13 at home against Georgia Southern. They have won two D1 games this year, an eight point win over High Point on November 23, and a ten point win over South Carolina State on December 22.

The Citadel is shooting 29.3% from three point range, which is not good at all. They are shooting 67.3% from free throw range, while shooting 39.5% from the field. The Bulldogs have really struggled shooting. They are 313th in the country in field goal percentage. They are 317th in points per game, with 61.2 points per game. The Bulldogs are 89th in the country in rebounding, averaging 37.4 boards per game.

The Mocs can combat that with 41.1 rebounds per game- good for 13th in the country, which is a very positive statistic. They are 99th in the country in assists per game, with 14.4. They are not a good shooting team, being 284th in shooting, but they play so fast they are 124th in scoring despite that.

The key for the Mocs seems to be holding teams to under 70 points. They are 8-0 when holding teams under 70, while they are 0-8 when teams score more than 70. The Citadel is only averaging 61 points per game, so this may bode well. Then again, it may not, as teams like FIU, Austin Peay, Georgia State, and Jackson State have shot lights out from the field, while other teams have struggled.

--Rebound. These are two of the best rebounding teams in the SoCon. The team that wins the battle of the boards will have a huge edge.
--Pace. The Mocs are 34th in the country according to Adjusted Tempo on That means that they play at the fastest tempo in the whole conference. The Citadel are 308th in the country in Adjusted Tempo. That is the second slowest tempo in the conference (faster than only Samford). The team that does both of 1) getting the other team to play at their pace the most often and 2) suceeding while playing at the other team's tempo.
--Groselle vs. Jefferson/Saffore. These two have been awful over the last two games. They need to play much better, and Groselle is good enough to dominate them if they don't play better.
--Fouls. It's not a Saturday, so the refs may be better than they were Saturday, but the Mocs desperately need to not get in foul trouble.
--Cage, Burroughs, and Saffore. The Mocs desperately need these three to play well to provide them some depth. Burroughs did a very good job the other night before fouling night. If he can play like that again, and Cage can provide some depth, then they should produce.

--Celebrate 5-0 in the SoCon!
--Hope that the trip home isn't too much to play again 48 hours later against Samford at home.
--Try to keep my expectations under control.

--Hope that the trip home isn't too much to play again 48 hours later against Samford at home.
--Wonder if we are 4-0 because the North is weak.
--Sigh, take a deep breath, go to bed, and remember that tomorrow is another day.

--Wattad will score twenty plus points.
--Bell and Taylor will have good nights.
--Wells, Groselle and Streeter will have a good night.
--The Bulldogs will not shoot well, but may still get close to 70 points.
--Jefferson will play better. He almost has to.
--Mocs 69, The Citadel 63. The Mocs have won one game by more than six points, and that was against Appalachian State. This does not look like an exception. But The Citadel's offensive prowess is not quite good enough for them to be able to score. The Mocs will play a bad twenty minutes and a good twenty minutes, as has become typical. Their good twenty will be just enough to come away with the win.


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