Saturday, January 8, 2011

Iowa vs Purdue Men's Basketball Preview

Iowa goes on the road for the first time in conference play this Sunday, taking on Purdue. This would be the third Top 25 team in a row that Iowa has faced. So like usual, if they were to somehow come away with a victory this would be a huge upset. But, can they keep it close? Let's hope so. Here is how they match up.

Like always, here is Iowa's offense:

Just like last time, 100 is NCAA average. Anything below is below average, and anything above is above average. Iowa shot above it's season average vs Ohio State, which bumped them up slightly to exactly average by NCAA standards in shooting. However, they didn't get to the free throw line as much as they had been, so they were knocked down just a notch below average in free throw rate. However, thanks to Basabe and Cole rebounding well vs Ohio State, Iowa's offensive rebounding went up. It is now 14% above NCAA average for the year. Iowa's offense looks pretty average, but their one strength is rebounding.

Purdue's offense:

Well, they definitely look like a Top 25 offense. Purdue's obvious strengths are limiting turnovers, as they turn the ball over 25% less than NCAA average, and Assists, sharing the ball 21% better than NCAA average. Iowa does rebound a little better than Purdue, but Purdue shoots better and gets to the free throw line a little more. Purdue's offense is above average in pretty much every category.

On to defense:

Despite Brommer's hacktastic ways (he did get jobbed on a reach in vs Ohio State though), Iowa is good at keeping other teams off of the free throw line. They did it vs Ohio State, only allowing them 9 free throw attempts all game. They are also 12% better than the average NCAA team at creating turnovers, and 16% better at limiting second chances from offensive rebounds. They have also held opponents to just under NCAA average in effective FG% this year. The only thing this defense has been worse than NCAA average at, has been limiting other teams assists. Otherwise, the defense is the strength of Fran McCaffery's team this year.

For Purdue:

Surprise! They are good at defense too. Purdue keeps other teams off of the free throw line at 26% better than NCAA average. They hold opponents to 13% worse effective FG% than the average NCAA team. They force 17% more turnovers, limit offensive rebounds 14%, and limit assists 2% better than NCAA average. So, they really don't have many weaknesses. Or any weaknesses at all.


I'm doing tendencies first this time because I have charts!
  • First, Iowa players shot tendencies:
  • Ignore Payne, as he has only played a handful of games this year. Gatens is obviously the "shooter" on Iowa's team, shooting more from three point land than inside the arc. Also, Zach McCabe is our only post player (if you want to call him that since he plays small forward too) that shoots from three point range. 
  • Now, Purdue's players:
  • Ryne Smith, D.J. Byrd, and John Hart are their "shooters." They all take more three's than two's, and all make them at a pretty good clip. Purdue's star big man Johnson, even occasionally steps out behind the three point line for a shot.
  • Iowa Players Scoring Breakdown:

Here is the breakdown of how Iowa's players have scored this year. Gatens gets a large percentage of his points from three point range. This comes as no shock to anybody who has watched Iowa this year. McCabe and May also get a lot of points from three pointers. The rest of the team is pretty solid in strictly two pointers.

  • Once again, Byrd, Hart, and Smith are a threat from three point range. E'Twaun Moore is pretty balanced in how he scores. JaJuan Johnson gets his points from two pointers and free throws. 
  • After looking at that, it should be no surprise that Purdue gets more of their points from three pointers than Iowa. Purdue takes 33.26% of their shots from three point range and 66.74% from two point range. 50.48% of their points have come from two pointers, 29.61% have come from three pointers, and 19.91% from free throws.
  • For Iowa, 29.87% of their points have come outside the three point arc, and 70.13% inside it. Their point breakdown goes: 55.08% two pointers, 25.03% three pointers, and 19.9% free throws.
Opposing Players to Watch:
  • One of Purdue's two star players is JaJuan Johnson. This 6'10" center is averaging 19.6 points per game. He has grabbed 8.7% of offensive rebounds and 19.2% defensive rebounds while he has been on the court this year. (Interestingly enough, Basabe and Cole's rebound rate's are higher, both grabbing 12% and 14% on offense and 20% on defense) Johnson is also Purdue's best shot blocker. He has swatted 7.3% of opponents shots this year.
  • The other star player is E'Twaun Moore. He too, averages 19 points per game. He is a long guard that can score from anywhere on the floor. He has a 55% effective FG%, and shoots 44.3% from three point range. He's also a good rebounder for a guard. He has grabbed 6.5% of offensive and 14% of defensive rebounds available while in the game this year.
  • Nobody else on Purdue's team averages double digits in points, like Ohio State did. But, Purdue shooter's Bird, Hart, and Smith can shoot from downtown. Bird shoots the lowest, at 36.2% from three point range. Hart shoots 45.7% and Smith shoots 49.1% from three point range.

Well, lets start with the positive. Iowa has been a better rebounding team than Purdue this year. And let's see... That is the positive. The negative is, that Purdue is really good at almost everything they do. Which means, they are better than Iowa at almost everything. Iowa did keep with Ohio State for pretty much the whole game. If Iowa can get a big game from a combination of Gatens, Basabe, Cartwright, or Cole (May too, if he plays) they could hang with Purdue. But, this game isn't at Carver, and Purdue is a hostile environment. So, as much as I want to predict Iowa hanging with Purdue after what they did against OSU, I can't. On the road, I feel that Purdue's combo of Johnson and Moore and their three point shooting will allow them to win by double figures. Once they get on a scoring run, as Iowa goes into one of their patented droughts, the crowd is going to be crazy and it'll be hard for Iowa to get back in the game. Not that it would be impossible for Iowa to do, but this team is young and the odds are against them. In a season of moral victories, losing to Purdue on the road by less than ten, would be a huge accomplishment.

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