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Thursday, March 17, 2005
 
Players To Watch - Albuquerque
Here's a handful of guys that stand out in a few statistical categories and might be worth watching. Study up and you'll be the know-it-all of your NCAA Tourny party today/tomorrow.
Um, you are taking the day off work, right?

I'm only including guys who played at least half of their team's minutes this season.

Offensive Efficiency (points per possession)
Player.........................................Off Rt..........%Poss
Mike Hall, GW...............................136.............15.9%
Derek Raivio, Gonzaga................130.............17.4%
Larry O'Bannon, L'ville.................129.............20.4%
Nate Robinson, Wash..................127.............22.7%
Chris Paul, Wake Forest..............127.............22.7%
Taquan Dean, L'ville.....................126.............22.3%
Nate Funk, Creighton...................125.............26.4%
Chevon Troutman, Pitt.................124.............23.6%
Bobby Jones, Wash ....................124.............18.8%
Tiras Wade, LA'Lfyt......................123..............23.9%
J.P. Batista, Gonzaga...................123.............22.8%
Adam Morrison, Gonzaga.............123.............24.7%
Ronald Ross, T. Tech...................122.............21.6%
Guillaume Yango, Pacific..............122.............23.0%
Eric Williams, Wake Forest..........120.............23.4%

Keep in mind that offensive efficiency becomes harder to maintain at higher levels of possession usage, so the numbers posted by Funk and Morrison are probably more impressive than those of Hall and Raivio. By the way, with a guy named Funk leading the way, how can you not pick Creighton in the first round?

Rebounds per 40 Minutes
Player................................................Reb/40
Ellis Myles, L'ville................................12.4
Ronny Turiaf, Gonzaga......................12.0
Luke Schenscher, G. Tech.................11.4
Chris Taft, Pitt.....................................11.1
Nana Mensah-Bonsu, GW..................10.8
Eric Williams, Wake Forest................10.8
Mike Hall, GW......................................10.7
Chevon Troutman, Pitt........................10.5
Guillaume Yango, Pacific....................10.4
Devonne Giles, T. Tech.......................10.1

I've expressed my preference for rebound % in the past, but I've only got so much time to work with. Reb/40 will do just fine.

Pass Rating
Player.................................................Pass Rt
Will Conroy, Wash..............................37.5%
Tyler McKinney, Creighton..................33.1%
Chris Paul, Wake Forest.....................31.5%
Chris Gaynor, Winthrop.......................27.9%
Jarmon Durisseau-Collins, W. Virg.....26.2%
Carl Elliott, GW....................................25.8%
Derek Raivio, Gonzaga........................24.6%
David Doubley, Pacific.........................23.3%
Carl Krauser, Pitt..................................22.9%
Jordan Farmar, UCLA...........................21.4%

My pass rating is similar to the one John Hollinger uses in his Pro Basketball Prospectus (Forecast?). It's basically a measure of points produced by assists per possession. I'm still working on it, but as long as it identifies Will Conroy and Chris Paul as good passers (sorry McKinney, haven't seen you play yet), it's a good start. Since it's rated "per possession," guys who never shoot can artificially inflate their rate, but I built in a small adjustment for that.

Steals per Defensive Possession
Player.............................................Stl%
Carl Elliott, GW..............................5.4%
Orien Greene, LA'Lfyt....................5.0%
Chris Gaynor, Winthrop.................4.5%
Johnny Mathies, Creighton............4.3%
Ronald Ross, T. Tech...................4.3%
Brian Hamilton, LA'Lfyt..................4.3%
Chris Paul, Wake Forest...............4.2%
Francisco Garcia, L'ville................3.6%
Mike Gansey, W. Virg....................3.4%
Joe Herber, W. Virg.......................3.4%

Blocks per 40 Minutes
Player..............................................Blk/40
Luke Schenscher, G. Tech................2.8
Devonne Giles, T. Tech.....................2.8
Nana Mensah-Bonsu, GW.................2.6
Chris Taft, Pitt....................................2.6
Ronny Turiaf, Gonzaga......................2.4
Anthony McHenry, G. Tech................2.0
Francisco Garcia, L'ville....................1.8
Eric Williams, Wake Forest...............1.5
Brian Hamilton, LA'Lfyt.......................1.5
Guillaume Yango, Pacific...................1.5

Three Point Rate
Player...............................................3pt Rt
Taquan Dean, L'ville..........................5.59
Justin Gray, Wake Forest.................3.85
Tre Simmons, Wash.........................3.78
Patrick Beilein, W. Virg......................3.55
Larry O'Bannon, L'ville......................3.47
Derek Raivio, Gonzaga.....................3.38
Torrell Martin, Winthrop.....................3.33
T.J. Thompson, GW..........................3.24
Nate Funk, Creighton.........................2.99
Tiras Wade, LA-Lfytt..........................2.73
Kellen Miliner, Creighton....................2.61
Taron Downey, Wake Forest............2.58

These are the guys you'll see making a lot of threes at a decent rate. The formula I used, as swiped from the indispensable (I'm starting to sound like a Wonk) Justin Kubatko of the equally indispensable Basketball-Reference.com -
(3's made X 3-pt%) / min

Free Throw Rate
Player..............................................FT Rt
Ronny Turiaf, Gonzaga..................12.70
Chris Paul, Wake Forest................11.94
James Shuler, Winthrop................11.64
Omar Williams, GW.......................11.08
Francisco Garcia, L'ville.................10.91
Carl Krauser, Pitt............................10.33
Chevon Troutman, Pitt.....................9.99
Martin Zeno, T. Tech........................9.95
Jarrett Jack, G. Tech........................9.89
Nate Robinson, Wash......................9.84

Same formula as the 3-point rate, and also from Mr. Kubatko. These are the guys who get to the line often and/or know how to take advantage of the freebies.
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