21.Nov.2014 Oral Roberts Write Up
JackBeav did nice work here.
Oral Roberts is good as a team. But they’re small. They play with four guards most of the time and try to force the pace. Because of their size, they will play a match-up zone for most of the game. If you see them in man, expect it to drop into zone. They’re led by Billbury and Emegano. Billbury isn’t a threat from the floor. Emegano is. They have one kid who takes nothing but treys, Webber, but he doesn’t make a lot. And they have another who is a pretty decent scorer, Word. They aren’t awesome in face-up D, but they help well. And they will gather at the rim and use their athleticism to block shots on dribble drives. They will do a nice job preventing post entry most of the time. But once it’s in the post they are pretty weak. Because of that they have a tendency to collapse with the ball. They’re set up to defend dribble entry and motion offenses. They are not set up well to defend high post swings or high-low games.
Contain Emegano and keep both him and Billbury off the glass and off the line, and make some perimeter shots. That’s about all you have to do to shut them down. Easier said than done depending on how the refs call the game. And by “contain” I mean don’t be scared if he gets his points. But there will be times he needs to be shut out in order for us to control the pace.
Billbury and Emegano get a ton of ticky-tack calls. But the team does not box out well on the defensive end… probably because they play a zone where they’re chasing the ball the whole time. They have one plodding big in Owens. He’s a big boy with decent hands and terrible feet. But he can eat up space. the other “bigs” will be Henderson, Conley and Wilson. All of them are a physical 6’5-6″ at about 230 pounds by the looks of them. They like to push above the waist a lot when clearing the blocks. While Conley has the best hands and feet of any of them and the better ability to score, all three have five fouls to give. And they will give them if we challenge them in the post or dribble entry.
I’m not a fan of Coach Sutton’s playing on the refs’ instead of playing the game. He’ll play hack-the-bigs and cry for his guards to get to the line. It’s a gameplan I guess.
It will be important for us to play inside out tonight. We don’t have to score inside, but we need to establish a presence, make their defense collapse and kick it out. It will also be important to gather their post fouls early while our bigs don’t have to shoot free throws after every cross check. Their defense will sag until we can show we can hit the trey. And when we do, their guards will go all matador, another reason all their bigs are hack machines.
While I don’t like their style, they do play well with each other and work the system well. What I described above would be easy pickings for a good team. Beating them is a matter of playing well. But I see a tendency for us to get hurried and impatient early in the second half, both in transition and in the half court. The adjustments are there. But it’s almost as if our guys see how the game opens up for them, and they get too excited. It’s almost always at about the 13 minute mark before we settle down and start working again.