Maverick Maniac's Musings

January 10, 2013

2012-13 Omaha Men’s Basketball – Game 19 Preview – IUPUI

Filed under: Men's Basketball,Omaha Mavericks,Previews — Jon Green @ 10:00 am

Omaha Men's Basketball Preview IUPUI - 1-9-13

Live Stats
Live Video ($8)
Live Audio (IUPUI call)

Omaha has now followed up the home win over Kansas City with two games where their opponents dropped 90+ on them. Defense has been a problem all year for the Mavericks with only three teams this year scoring less than 0.99 points per possession against Omaha. Those problems cropped up last week as Oakland scored 1.15 ppp and Fort Wayne was at 1.30 ppp. Omaha shot over 50% from the field in both games and lost anyways. In fact Omaha has shot over 50% three times this year and lost all three. Omaha now comes back home and where they have won three out of their five games and looks to get back on track against IUPUI. This is potentially a winnable game for Omaha and every win this year for Omaha is going to be cherished as they have only four wins with 13 games left.

IUPUI
IUPUI has had some success at the Division 1 level with 10 straight seasons at .500 or better from 2001-2011. I even remember hearing the name IUPUI when they went to the NCAA Tournament back in 2003 (losing 95-64 to Kentucky). Things have been moving downhill though as of late as IUPUI lost 11 games in 2009-10, 14 in 2010-11, 18 in 2011-12, and already 13 this season. Part of that has been some injuries that have knocked five players out at different times (Cortell Busby, Ian Chiles, Marcellus Barksdale, Mitchell Patton, and P.J. Hubert). Ian Chiles was picked to the preseason Summit League 2nd Team but has only played in four games and probably won’t return. Chiles averaged 10.3 points in the games he played. Mitchell Patton averages 13.1 points but has missed fives games and only started in 11. IUPUI doesn’t list him as a probable starter for tomorrow night.

So what does IUPUI do well? How about hitting 3’s? The Jaguars shoot 37.3% form three and four players have hit 20+ 3’s. For comparison, Omaha has two players who have hit 20+ and one of those is sitting on 20 exactly (Justin Simmons). IUPUI does a good job with the ball as they are nearly even in assist/turnover ratio. IUPUI struggles in many of the same areas as Omaha, this being a matchup of the two worst rebounding teams in the Summit League. IUPUI also isn’t great on defense (1.114 ppp), so this is a game where Omaha can put some points up. Of course Omaha is even worse on defense and IUPUI is better than Omaha on offense… so even a good offensive game by Omaha will by no means lead to an easy win.

John Hart is the leading scorer for IUPUI and at 14.2 ppg is 6th in the Summit. They depend on Donovan Gibbs for rebounds (6.1 rpg) and on Greg Rice for assists (3.3 apg). They have four players who hit at least one three per game and shoot 38% or better from 3 (John Hart – 38.8%, P.J. Hubert – 40%, Jordan Shanklin – 43.8%, and Greg Rice – 46.3%). They aren’t a great rebounding team and get 54% of their rebounds from the trio of Mitchell Patton, Donovan Gibbs, and Lyonell Gaines.

Todd Howard is in his 2nd year at IUPUI after taking over when old head coach Ron Hunter left to take over Georgia State. Howard hasn’t been able to keep IUPUI at the level they had been at so far, but it’s still very early and injuries like they’ve had this year can dramatically alter seasons.

In their last game against Western Illinois the Jaguars went to Macomb and took the Leathernecks to OT after a Lyonell Gaines layup with three seconds left in regulation. Western Illinois is on a ten game winning streak now, so there’s some reason to believe after they took them to OT. John Hart led the way with 14 points, Sean Esposito added 11 and Greg Rice had 10. IUPUI used only seven players in the game, depth becoming an issue for them when injuries mount. The Jaguars shot 47% from 3 and limited themselves to just 8 turnovers on 64 possessions but it wasn’t enough to overcome just 32% shooting from inside the arc, 42% (5-12) shooting from the FT line, and being out rebounded by 5.

Wins, ranked by RPI – realtimerpi.com
234 – @ Ball St. (77-68)
265 – Utah Valley (67-54)
289 – IPFW (88-74)
292 – (Neutral) Bowling Green (80-66)
N/A – Indiana East – 87-54
N/A – Indiana Northwest – 65-59

Losses, ranked by RPI – realtimerpi.com
3 – @ Michigan (54-91)
18 – @ Butler (55-87)
28 – Indiana St. (61-75)
64 – @ Maryland (63-81)
106 – @ West. Kentucky (57-77)
112 – @ Valparaiso (69-89)
147 – Oakland (62-84)
155 – Bradley (72-79)
169 – @ Western Ill. (53-57)
202 – @ South Dakota (68-88)
243 – @ Kansas City (65-79)
275 – (Neutral) North Texas (66-80)
296 – (Neutral) Lamar (82-86)

The first thing we notice is that IUPUI just hasn’t beaten any real good teams at all, their best win was a nine point win at Ball State. They have played a lot of good teams and haven’t lost a ton of games to bad teams, though neutral losses to North Texas and Lamar are not strong marks. They’ve already been on the road for three road Summit Games and that loss at Kansas City is another head scratcher (though that came on November 29th, a totally different era practically).

Omaha vs. IUPUI

Team FG% 3FG% FT% O-PPP D-PPP TO Rt A/TO A/B% Def FG% Def 3FG% Opp TO Rt Reb% Off Reb% Def Reb% BPG
Omaha 44.6% 35.6% 65.8% 0.920 1.158 21.8 0.780 52.0% 48.9% 37.7% 17.0 45.7% 24.9% 60.7% 2.7
IUPUI 43.7% 37.3% 70.4% 0.952 1.114 19.3 0.992 52.0% 49.5% 37.9% 19.0 46.8% 26.5% 64.9% 2.1
Favors.. Omaha IUPUI IUPUI IUPUI IUPUI IUPUI IUPUI Tie Omaha Omaha IUPUI IUPUI IUPUI IUPUI Omaha

Green = 1,2, or 3 in the Summit League. Red = 7,8, or 9 in the Summit League.

Omaha is a better shooting team, as good at assisting on their FGs, and better defensively at FG% (hard to believe!). Omaha also grabs more blocks. IUPUI is better at everything else, although neither team has a fantastic statistical profile. Both teams rank in the bottom three of seven of the categories above including four of the five defensive categories and all three rebounding categories.

Starters
IUPUI
Guard – Greg Rice – 5-11 – Senior – Indianapolis, Indiana – Averaging 7.5 points and 3.2 assists.
Guard – Sean Esposito – 6-3 – Senior – Indianapolis, Indiana – Averaging 5.8 points and 2.6 rebounds.
Guard – John Hart – 6-1 – Senior – Beech Grove, Indiana – Averaging 14.2 points, 3.1 rebounds, and 2.2 assists.
Forward – Lyonell Gaines – 6-6 – Sophomore – Louisville, Kentucky – Averaging 6.5 points and 5.2 rebounds.
Forward – Donovan Gibbs – 6-7 –Junior – Louisville, Kentucky – Averaging 9.0 points and 6.1 rebounds.

Omaha
Point Guard – CJ Carter – 6-0 – Sophomore – Omaha, Nebraska – Averaging 7.4 points, 2.6 rebounds and 2.5 assists.
Guard – Alex Phillips – 6-3 – Junior – Smiths Station, Alabama – Averaging 8.6 points and 2.1 rebounds.
Guard – Justin Simmons – 6-3 – Junior – Milwaukee, Wisconsin – Averaging 14.0 points and 3.8 rebounds.
Forward – Alex Welhouse – 6-7 – Senior – Kaukauna, Wisconsin – Averaging 7.8 points and 4.8 rebounds.
Center – John Karhoff – 6-8 – Junior – Omaha, Nebraska – Averaging 11.6 points, 3.5 rebounds and 2.1 assists.

Three Things to Watch
1) Inside Opportunity – IUPUI has been beaten in the paint by an average of 34.0-23.1, and lost the battle in 14 of their 19 games including seven straight. They aren’t a great rebounding team either losing the rebound count by an average of 6.5 Sure these aren’t necessarily huge points of strength for Omaha, but they are opportunities. John Karhoff has shown his offensive ability in many games and Alex Welhouse has had some big games on the boards. Matt Hagerbaumer has had some good games off the bench and a couple dunks would be big tomorrow night.

2.) Omaha’s Shooting – Omaha has been red hot from the field lately shooting over 50% in both games last weekend and 48.3% against Kansas City. Big shooting nights like that can help make up for defensive stumbles, so if they can continue to knock down baskets they should be in decent shape to hang with IUPUI tomorrow.

3.) Marcus Tyus – Marcus has ben up and down this year but he’s been more up lately. He’s scored six or more in four of the last five games and scored 20 against Fort Wayne on 8-13 shooting including 2-4 from 3. Tyus is the main scoring weapon off the bench so if Omaha needs someone other than the starting 5 to pick up some points he’s the one they seem to rely on. His minutes are up too playing 27 in each of the last two games while Alex Phillips played only 20 and 17 and hasn’t scored in double figures in nine of the last 11. If CJ Carter can get back to the level he’s been at in the past before his back injury (and he seems to be on the way evidenced by 26 against Kansas City and more than 30 minutes a game in the last three games) the Mavericks will have a good stable of guards to light things up.

Prediction
With the way Omaha is shooting they might really have a chance. I wish Omaha could count on a good student crowd to come out and create a good atmosphere, but that seems unlikely even though school is back in session. The stats favor IUPUI but I have a good feeling about Omaha tomorrow night back at home. I’ll take the Mavericks 86-81.
Massey – IUPUI wins 80-77.
RealTimeRPI – Omaha wins 82-77.

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