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Syracuse-St. Bonaventure Preview

Syracuse students agree: Demetris Nichols > The Bonnies.

Mike Jones: Welcome to the Doghouse.

Jones' freshman campaign has not gone as expected for the young South Carolinian. Averaging just 12.5% of Syracuse's available game minutes, Jones has found a seat deep in the Orange rotation. While many attribute Jones' residency in the infamous Boeheim Doghouse to his rumored practice demeanor, the simple fact remains that Jones is performing horribly on the court.

To wit, Jones has only generated a 37.0 effective field goal percentage. While not superficially concerning, the fact that Jones is attempting 25.7% of the Orange's offensive shots when he is on the floor is absolutely destroying Syracuse's efficiency. Not surprisingly, Jones ranks fourth on the team in possession percentage (the statistic measures the percentage of offensive possessions that end with a recordable activity (turnover, missed field goal, etc.)).

Moreover, at 6'8", 210 pounds, Jones is getting destroyed on the defensive glass. Corralling just 4.3% of the defensive rebounds available when he is on the floor, Jones is simply get outworked and outplayed. Thus, it is not surprising to see Boeheim having Jones on such a short leash.

Anyway, this essay is about Syracuse's tilt against St. Bonaventure, not an unfettered attack against Mike Jones. As always, for an exhaustive explanation of Pomeroy's methodology and statistical theory, this link may be a useful resource.

When Syracuse is on Defense
St. Bonaventure Offense
Four FactorsValueNt'l Rank
Eff. FG %46.4255
T/O %21.6119
Off. Reb. %32.1219
FT Rate24.3167

Syracuse Defense
Four FactorsValueNt'l Rank
Eff. FG %43.520
T/O %22.3168
Off. Reb. %36.5247
FT Rate24.713

While St. Bonaventure may not be the worst offensive team on Syracuse's 2006-2007 schedule (that honor is earmarked for St. Francis (NY)), the Bonnies are not going to be scorching the nets anytime soon.

The St. Bonaventure attack pretty much turns on the fortunes of 6'10" senior forward Paul Williams. Williams is one of two Bonnies with an effective field goal percentage north of 50.0% and has developed into a pretty effective Windex Man (Williams is 28th in the nation in offensive rebound percentage and 245th in defensive rebound percentage).

Outside of Williams, however, St. Bonaventure does not pose a particularly intimidating individual player. Unless, of course, you consider a starting guard that shoots 28.6% from two-point territory and takes 28.7% of the team's offensive shots an offensive force.


From a team perspective, the Bonnies attack is nothing spectacular. Employing a tempered pace (68.0 possessions per game), the St. Bonaventure offensive strategy is structured to attempt shots from inside the arc. The only problem is that the Bonnies are a terrible shooting club, connecting on only 44.1% of attempted two-point baskets. What has resulted is an offensive efficiency value in the bottom 200 and just 65.4 points per game.

Given the above analysis, Syracuse's defensive success is going to turn more on St. Bonaventure's offensive ineptitude than the Orange's defensive might. Despite the fact that Syracuse is amongst the top 50 in defensive efficiency, the Bonnies are likely to engage in enough masonry that Syracuse's defensive strength will be rendered moot.

The one area of concern for Syracuse should be its ability to force turnovers and grab defensive rebounds. The Orange has struggled in both statistical areas this season. Saturday's contest should provide a simple remedy to these deficiencies and allow the Orange to prime itself for its first Big East Conference clash against Pittsburgh.

When Syracuse is on Offense

Syracuse Offense
Four FactorsValueNt'l Rank
Eff. FG %53.469
T/O %21.9135
Off. Reb. %37.077
FT Rate36.27

St. Bonaventure Defense
Four FactorsValueNt'l Rank
Eff. FG %52.3246
T/O %22.1182
Off. Reb. %39.1301
FT Rate29.061

Unfortunately, the analysis here is similar to that above. The real key to the Syracuse Offense-St. Bonaventure Defense clash is the Bonnies' complete incompetence.

Going through an exhaustive analysis of St. Bonaventure's woes is an exercise in futility. The real point of emphasis is the Bonnies' adjusted defensive efficiency -- 114.8 (328th in the country). As this statistic pretty much accumulates and illustrates all of the Bonnies' woes, little is left to extrapolate.

In short, this may be the perfect game for Mike Jones and Andy Rautins to find a groove and contribute. And if these guys can't contribute against St. Bonaventure's pitiful defense, these two guys are going to have a long season.

1 Responses to “Syracuse-St. Bonaventure Preview”

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