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Wes' Ways to Win: MU at Rutgers

I generally despise sports commentators. From the NFL Network’s Trent Dilfer to the Chicago Bulls’ Bill Winnington, most “color commentators” are washed-up benchriders who were cursed with more mouth than athletic talent. However, my recent blogging has caused me to adopt one of my least favorite ESPN commentator moments: the “keys to the game.”

I apologize in advance.

24 hours before tipoff, I will isolate three keys for a Warriors victory, specific to the team they’re playing. I bring you Wes’ Ways to Win: and you can stop laughing at my title now.

1. Offensive Motion- Rutgers new coach Mike Rice has a unique defensive philosophy, instructing his players to switch on every screen. Although switching on screens creates a smaller shooting window, which should hamper DJO, it gives MU a higher probability of creating favorable mismatches. For example, Dwight Buycks dribbles through a pick set by Jimmy Butler. The Rice defense would then have those two defenders switch men immediately, giving Jimmy a PG size defender, and an easy route to the basket. Buzz should make sure that players are in constant movement, creating confusion and miscommunication from the Scarlet Knights.

2. DJO- Rutgers played No. 8 Villanova very tough in their Big East Opener, even taking a 4 point lead into the second half. However, the Wildcats broke free when Corey Stokes hit big three-pointers off passes from the post. Tonight, DJO must do his best Stokes impression, as the Knights collapsing defense will create opportunities for open shots from the outside. Johnson-Odom, who seems to be creeping out of his early shooting slump, provided big shots in wins versus Mississippi Valley State and West Virginia. Even more importantly, DJO must not fall in love with the jumpshot. If defenders respect his driving abilities, his shot will open up, and the pump fake will become a greater weapon.

3. Foul Shots- No explanation needed: The game will be close. We HAVE to make them.


Prediction: Defensive struggle, but Jimmy Butler and Jae Crowder create mismatches for the Knights. MU Wins 67-62

Go Warriors.

Feedback/Suggestions are greatly appreciated

Facebook: Wesley Herndon
Twitter: @wild_wesley
Email: astead.herndon@marquette.edu

1 comment:

  1. Nicely written Mr. Astead,
    Additional point, with Rutgers switching screens, this also allows the screeners to 'slip' screens. Meaning they don't really set them. This confuses the defense and can create space for the sceener either going to the basket, or to fade out for an open jumpshot. Butler and Crowder should be able to utilize this. And it was something that Buzz failed to adapt to in the Wisconsin game.

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