Friday, December 4, 2009

Gophers try to Stop Skid with Brown

That post title is horrible.  I thought it would be pretty easy to weave "Brown" and "Skid" together into some kind of horrible pun, but it turns out I'm a total idiot. 

Anyway, the Gophers take on Brown tomorrow.  It's pretty difficult to do a good preview for a team like Brown, who I haven't seen play since back in the days of Jason Forte when they were on some channel one afternoon when I had nothing to do (aka The Good Old Days).  So I have to rely simply on results and stats rather than my own genius two eyes.  And in this case the results are U-G-L-Y.

The Bears are 4-5 with a collection of some of the least impressive wins in history.  None of their victories are over a team ranked better than 283rd by Ken Pomeroy's formula - St Francis (NY)-338th, Maine-283rd, Bryant-318th, and something called Philadelphia Sciences which isn't rated because I assume it's nowhere near a D-I program.  Their "best" loss is to Holy Cross in overtime, a team ranked 196th.  Needless to say, the results thus far have been less than stellar.

And the biggest problem here is that Brown is one of the worst defensive teams in the country - maybe ever.  They rank 326th in the country in defensive efficiency (that's out of 347).  They allow teams to shoot 50% from two (231st), give up a ton of offensive rebounds (215th), and never ever ever turn their opponent over (346th - yes, that's still out of 347).  That sounds like recipe to get the offense back on track, assuming nobody throws a ball at Westbrook's head.

Offensively, Brown is a decently ok team when they get a shot up (54th in effective FG%) but the problem is getting a shot up (they are 221st in turnovers, giving it up on 22% of their possessions) and getting second chances (319th in offensive rebounding).  Really, they have no chance.  The Gophers turn people over like it was their job, and Brown gives it up more than Rachel Uchitel 

As far as individual players go Brown has two guys to worry about, both with the whitest sounding names ever - Matt Mullery and Peter Sullivan.  Mullery is a 6-8 power forward who is essentially Travis Busch with five more inches (NOTE:  not talking weiner here).  He's tough and unathletic, but has managed to average 17 points and 5 rebounds per game.  Honestly, I expect him to give Ralph and Colt a bit of a tough afternoon.  I think he can mostly outsmart them.  But there's nobody else here who should give the Gophers even a few seconds of worry.

The second leading scorer is that Sully guy I mentioned before whose name would be perfect for a character in Good Will Hunting or the Departed.  He has averaged 14.4 points and 3.4 rebounds per game this year and is coming off a 28 point game against Holy Cross.  He has a nice inside/outside game, but at 6-5 and whiter than white, Damian Johnson will destroy him.  Like I would Kristen Stewart if given five minutes and a handful of roofies.

There really isn't much else here as far as I can tell.  Probable Voodoo practitioner Jean-Herbert Harris (no relation to Antoine Joubert or Bobby Hebert) scored 18 points on seven-for-seven shooting in their opener, but hasn't broke 3 points since.  Steve "MacGruber" Gruber is shooting 50% from three, but hasn't taken more than three in a game.  Matt Sullivan is probably the most likely third wheel, he shoots 42% from three and shoots them fairly often, but he's only hit double figures in scoring three times and hasn't scored more than 12 in a game.  I don't know, knowing the Gophers some jackass who I haven't mentioned who should be irrelevant will end up scoring 20.   I'm going to go ahead and predict Adrian Williams to have a big game.

Honestly though guys, this isn't really much of an opponent, as you probably gathered.  Should be a walk.

Gophers 90, Brown 65.

FUN FACT:   Hermoine goes to Brown.  No word on if she'll be at the game.

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