Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Short UMass preview

UMass heads to the Heights tonight. It should be another test for the young Eagles. A win would be a solid boost to the resume and probably the last chance to add a decent non-conference win to the record (we'll be major underdogs to Kansas). UMass comes in at 6-2. They had a very good win at Syracuse and lost games to IUPUI and Northern Iowa on the road.

UMass is a very productive offense and so so defensively. They'll shoot a lot of 3s and get some easy baskets close. The key for BC is to get defensive rebounds and try to get our offense humming with the close, cutting baskets.

The game is on ESPN U for those of you who have the channel.


Big Jack Krack said...

Go Eagles!

Barros aboard

The Celtics' basketball operations department has added a new face - and a familiar one at that: Dana Barros. The former Xaverian/Boston College/Celtic guard has been named director of player development.

"I don't know if it's official yet," said executive director of basketball operations/general manager Danny Ainge, "but his job will be player development."

R.C. said...

I don't mean to do your job for you, Bill, but I'm too pissed off about tonight's loss that I can't wait for your next post. As such, here are my likes and dislikes from the UMass game:


1. Tyrese taking control -
He scored 16 points in the final 10 minutes with the game on the line, only missing 2 shots (1 of which was the 3 at the end).
2. Tyrelle Blair's intensity - He took a couple of shots under the basket and a near-elbow to the nose, getting in the offenders' faces every time. Unfortunately, he got pulled (wisely) within seconds of the elbowing incident, and Al didn't bring him back for most of the second half.
3. Open-court shooting - I can't remember missing any wide-open perimeter shots, maybe with one or two exceptions from Tyler Roche.


1. Defensive rebounding -
UMass pulled down 12 offensive rebounds in the first half, while BC grabbed 15 defensive rebounds. Minutemen were literally flying to the hoop untouched and scoring on uncontested second- and third-chance lay-ups. Things improved dramatically in the second half, but the first half was absolutely pathetic.
2. Biko Paris' passing - 4 turnovers in 27 minutes is unacceptable for a point guard, particularly given that most of them came on inbounds passes or passes at or behind half-court. He beat defenders off the dribble relatively well, but the passing needs to improve.
3. Shamari Spears' hands - I know everyone gives him a hard time for it, but tonight was agonizing to watch.
4. The press-break - When we attacked it with quick passes and a few dribbles, we got easy 3-on-2's (not that we capitalized), but it forced so many turnovers and disrupted our offensive flow dramatically.
5. Help-side defense - 2/3rds of their points came on lay-ups from 6'0" guards who blew past Tyrese and Biko to find a wide-open lane. We haven't jumped a back-door cut this year, but to have a team from the A-10 run a lay-up drill on us is humiliating.
6. The referees - Probably the biggest storyline of the game, behind giving up 83 points on sub-45% shooting. Now, I don't like to complain about the refs, but I was literally left incredulous after just about each one of their calls. No words that I could write would come anywhere near doing this blatant illustration of sheer incompetence. I am so damn tired of BC being taken out of games by referees in any sport--I'm not stupid enough to submit myself to a conspiracy theory, but the incessantly one-sided calls that I have seen BC be subjected to in my four years are enough to give me an aneurysm.
7. Al Skinner's clock- and player-management - It's no secret that Al hates to waste time-outs to regroup when the other team goes on a run. I have my quarrels with this, but I can justify his philosophy if it gives us extra time-outs should we need them late in the game. We have never needed one more than after an offensive rebound with 10 seconds left gave us the chance to hit a 3 to tie. Instead, Al stood quietly on the sideline and watched as Tyrese dribbled up the sideline and forced an off-balance shot next to two defenders. Calling time from in front of half-court with 7 seconds gives them time to run a set play, and even if it didn't work, we had another time-out to burn! I'll defend Al in most cases, but this was utterly and completely inexcusable.
8. Tyrese trying to do too much - I liked him taking over, as mentioned above, but I hated him trying to be a one-man show. He was getting double- and triple-teamed well above the top of the key on almost every possession, and instead of working the offense into what should have been an easy 4-on-3, he tried to beat the defense off the dribble to make a highlight reel play every time down. As good as he is, this team suffers dearly when he tries to do too much.

Tonight's game was without a doubt the worst I have seen in Conte Forum. We're a relatively flashy team compared to the Eagles of yore, but tonight showed that we are a sub-par team at best when our fundamentals break down the way they did tonight.