Monday, February 12, 2007

Williams who? A simple illustration

I wish things ended differently with Sean Williams, but it is clear the team has moved on and filled the Williams void well. The most obvious example is the work Tyrelle Blair is doing on defense. While he’ll never be as acrobatic and is unlikely to have a double digit shot blocking night, Blair has become nearly as productive as Williams. Just look. When Williams wasn’t blocking in the teens he was just as likely to have 2 or 3…exactly what Blair is doing now.

Two other things surprised me when looking this stuff up. Our overall defense has not been impacted by the Williams departure.

Look at this

StatBefore SW SuspensionSince
Pts per game73.669.3
Shooting Pct.419.448

So, as you can see, we are allowing fewer points and opponents have barely increased their percentage against us. Keep in mind that we have also taken on the heart of the ACC lineup during this stretch.

Hats off to Blair and the rest of the team for rallying back and playing some great basketball the past three weeks.


MattyR08 said...

I agree with the overall analysis, but I wouldn't say 2.9% is "barely" an increase in fg%.

ATL_eagle said...

Considering the first number included the likes of Yale, Northeastern, etc. And the .448 only includes one non-ACC team, it is still impressive.

b said...

Nice work. I agree, they've filled the void, and I suspect it's got at least something to do with not taking SW's abilities for granted. Other guys can't count on him to swat everything now and play a little tighter and are more likely to take contact. Just a thought, but either way, got to like how they've responded.

flutie22phelan20 said...

Bill, awesome work. This is a fun team, and you are doing a great job highlighting out the finer points.

I think the ppg are down because we have dramatically slowed the pace of the no breaks, no full court press, etc. That said, the team defense is better than I could have ever expected.

ATL_eagle said...

Yeah, these are all raw numbers. They can all be manipulated. But my point is the defense has not stumbled. One thing it has done is make us less diverse. We have pressed since Williams left.

Slemp said...

I think a lot of this has to do with the entire team rallying on the defensive end.

It was clear at the beginning of the season, with Williams in the lineup, that we were a lot scrappier on D, looking to get on the highlight reels with swats under the basket, or steals on the perimeter. The team failed at that time to box out or play solid perimeter defense (both of these things contributed to our early demise).

Now the team seems to be more focused on the fundamentals, stepping into the lane for support, cutting off the baseline on drives, and putting a hand in the face of shooters. The Eagles no longer can rely purely on athleticism, and they are forced to get into position.

I also think that Sean Williams departure, and this trend toward more fundamental basketball, has translated into Tyrese Rice's success as a point guard. With Sean in the lineup, there was a tendancy for all the guys to "wow" one another and the fans with spectacular (not necessarily the smartest play). With Sean out of the lineup, Rice has dished far more assists, turned the ball over much less, shown an inclination to manage the game, and improved his shot selection.

Boston College no longer flaunts its players as acrobats, but the basketball team is on its way to a great season. Big week this week. Thanks Bill...

ki03 said...

i think sean williams presence goes far beyond what can be show on paper, he disrupted shots and players thought twice against going in the paint. i was happy to see blair block shots in the fsu game but he doesnt have the presence that sean williams had yet. i hope to see blair mature very quickly so we can shut down dukies soft front line and contribute in the tournament. i enjoy reading your column keep up the good work.

Jerry Gene said...

Nice post! Can’t wait for the next one. Keep stuff like this coming.

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