Home rims are a wonderful thing. St Mary's took full advantage of their home rims vs BYU Thursday night.
I was on a plane during the game last night but thanks to the magic of BYUtv replays I was able to watch the beating myself this evening. Here are some thoughts on that game and on remaining games on the schedule:
- BYU has a largely young/inexperienced guard line and it really showed last night. Carlino, Winder, and Harrison are all freshmen. Cusick and Zystra are juniors but had not logged many minutes at this level before this season. As SMC showed, WCC teams will take advantage of that.
- Composure was in short supply for BYU on Thursday. Transition D was weak, defense against in-bounds passes was lackadaisical, defending threes was spotty at best. Hopefully the BYU coaching staff can train the team up well enough to not lose their heads in future away games.
- Brandon Davies is starting to produce on a more consistent basis. That is a great sign for BYU.
- Noah Hartsock is the best player on this BYU team. BYU probably should get him the ball even more.
- Several BYU players have troubles finishing at the rim. Abouo may lead BYU all time in missed dunks; Davies loves trying 5 foot jumpers but only hits about 25% of them, and Winder has lately been much better at getting to the rim than finishing at the rim. Hopefully the guys will figure that out. As they say in golf: Drive for show, putt for dough.
- BYU will lose most games where they give up 90+ points. In fact BYU will lose most games where they give up 75+ points. The defensive rotations and intensity need to be much better if BYU wants to win the WCC.
- Carlino was trying to do too much early on Thursday. He needs to improve his shot selection and assist-to-turnover ratio if BYU is to become a legitimate top 25 team. Thankfully he seems to be improving quickly.
- The refs in Moraga were charge-happy. Rewarding blatant flops is a bad idea on all sorts of levels.
- Damarcus Harrison is coming along... but slowly. With any luck he will find his groove and confidence this season some time.
- Ken Pomeroy has BYU favored in all of its remaining games except @Virginia Tech and @Gonzaga. (SMC was favored on Thursday). Let's hope KenPom is right...