Posted: 3/9/2012 10:57:15 AM
YTD: 33-20 (62.3%)
Play: UMass / Temple Over 151
As a friend of mine often says, “dance with the girl who brought you” – and that’s exactly what I’ll be doing today. The Minutemen were very kind to our wallets early in the season as Vegas was slow to react to the ultra-fast tempo that Chaz Williams brought to Coach Kellogg’s dribble drive offense.
Today we get to back an over with a UMass team who is the 2nd fastest in the country with respect to adjusted tempo, has only played one game under 72 possessions in the L11, and has averaged 74.5 possessions through 16 A10 regular season conference games. Also noteworthy is the fact they are coming off a 77 possession, 175 point game in the opening round of the tournament vs Duquesne—so there was no slow down despite entering postseason play.
Now playing fast is one thing, you still need to put the ball in the basket (please see UC Irvine / Cal St Fullerton game yesterday). Well there’s no better opponent in the conference that is better suited than the Owls to do this. Temple is an above average paced team (#118, 67.1 poss. per game), but more importantly, the most offensively efficient team in the A10. Temple is ranked 14th in the country averaging 1.141 points per possession and should have no trouble at all maximizing their scoring chances with these additional opportunities. In their only match up this year, this proved to be the case – an OT game with 89 possessions that was tied at 80 at the end of regulation. And this was despite Temple only shooting 39.1% from the field that day. Now today, we only see a 1 point adjustment up from the posted total that day.
KenPom predicts 75 possessions in a game that all indicators point to being a track meet.
Good luck if you decide to make a play