Pregame: Illinois vs Northwestern, Saturday, January 18th, 4:00pm CT, BTN

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#51
MSU should have more road games in the tail end of the season. Who would have thought we would be in second place now. Keep it up.
 
#52
Just North of the Southern border!
Columns: Team / Home / Away
* means first (and in some cases only) game
** means the second game
( n ) n is the sequence in which we play the other teams

I like our chances.
# We start with the bottom dweller at home, two successive middle of the pack away games (NW, @MI, @MI)
# Followed by two lower bracket teams (MN, @IA)
# Then, IF this ranking holds by then, two top rung team, but at home (MSU, MD)
# Then comes the killer IMO, two rugged teams away, with two days rest in between (@RU, @PSU) (no idea who scheduled these games)
# round out bottom dweller, with one exception (NB, @NW, IN, @OSU, IA)

Not saying any of them are easy, but I like the distribution and sequence (Assuming the rakings stay about the same)

Current ranking (1/12/2020)

1578891863683.png
 
#53
We SHOULD win this game pretty easily and I'm fairly confident we will. But it still feels like a slight trap game. Northwestern has played much better the last 2 games, nearly winning at IU and beating Nebraska at home. Our team can't take them lightly.
 
#55
Michigan
it still feels like a slight trap game
+1

This team hasn't handled success well, so if past patterns hold, we'll be flat. NW playing better just makes it that much more dangerous. I hope the guys have a chance to celebrate their success, but see that they're a long way from the prize. It's pretty exciting to see them fight and win games where they had problems with before. If you look at how poorly we've shot the 3 in some games, it's all the more impressive.

Props to AG! Really makes this team more dangerous the way he's been playing.
 
#56
We need to handle Northwestern like we should 1st. Then the schedule gets nasty for the next 8 games (if we go 4-4 then great). Finish up with with winning 3 or 4 of the last 5 should put us at 20-21 wins. Good enough for bye in B10 tourney, and ticket to the dance (10-11 seed). Great turn around year, and exciting to watch.
 

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#57
W
We need to handle Northwestern like we should 1st. Then the schedule gets nasty for the next 8 games (if we go 4-4 then great). Finish up with with winning 3 or 4 of the last 5 should put us at 20-21 wins. Good enough for bye in B10 tourney, and ticket to the dance (10-11 seed). Great turn around year, and exciting to watch.
Why should we be satisfied with 4-4? Do we not want to win the BIG title! We are one game behind MSU for first place and play them at home. Looks like goal is mediocrity. We have talent to compete with anyone. Not saying the sky is falling if we don’t but we have two guys that were all BIG as freshman and one that is now sure to be. Need to raise the std back to Lou days.
 
#58
New York
We need to handle Northwestern like we should 1st. Then the schedule gets nasty for the next 8 games (if we go 4-4 then great). Finish up with with winning 3 or 4 of the last 5 should put us at 20-21 wins. Good enough for bye in B10 tourney, and ticket to the dance (10-11 seed). Great turn around year, and exciting to watch.
That would put us at 13-7 or 12-8 in conference, which IMO is higher than a 10 or 11 seed, more like a 7 seed.

those upcoming 8 games after NW are a gauntlet. 4 wins would be awesome. Barttorvik has us as dogs in 6 of those games, and one of the two games where we’re favored is actually at home against Maryland (arguably the second best team in conference but who knows at this point). torvik has us finishing 19-12 (11-9) and an 8 seed in the tourney. that looks reasonable to me and IMO would be a great result to this season.

The computers project a crazy logjam in conference standings, with 10 teams in the 9 to 11 win range. One or two wins could be huge in terms of conference standings and probably NCAA seeding as well.
 
#59
New York
W

Why should we be satisfied with 4-4? Do we not want to win the BIG title! We are one game behind MSU for first place and play them at home. Looks like goal is mediocrity. We have talent to compete with anyone. Not saying the sky is falling if we don’t but we have two guys that were all BIG as freshman and one that is now sure to be. Need to raise the std back to Lou days.
Agree with the sentiment and that would be incredible. But I’d be more than OK with us finishing the conference above 500 and making the tourney this year and continuing to progress next year. My hopes are that we get to competing for conference championship in the next couple years, but if it’s this year that would be amazing.
 
#60
Orange Krush Class of 2013
Stanford, CA
Huge game from a tournament perspective. This one, and Nebraska at home, are our only two quadrant 3 games left on the season (Neb. could actually become a Q4 depending on the rest of their season).

So far we only have one Q3 loss (Miami), and they could potentially move up to Q2. Keeping the right half of our team sheet as clean as possible will be huge in a crowded B1G — Purdue, Iowa, and Rutgers all have a single Q3 loss, while Penn State and Minnesota could pick one up, and Iowa could pick up a 2nd as they and MN both lost to DePaul.

Obviously we can't say for sure this far out what will matter in the selection room, but if I'm trying to differentiate between the last few bubble teams, and they've all played mostly the same quality opponents, with similar records, those little red boxes in the right columns are most assuredly going to stand out.

1578932387825.png

(team sheets at http://warrennolan.com/basketball/2020/net-nitty-team#)
 
#61
Orange Krush Class of 2013
Stanford, CA
Glad the guys have a week off before this one, too, because as others have pointed out, this is the start of a meat grinder with no more than 4 days between any of the next 9 games. Of the 9, seven will be Q1.

Put another way, here are KenPom win odds for the next 9 games in order of chance of winning. Anyone care to guess (without looking at KP rankings) which games are which?

85%
65%
51%
46%
40%
39%
33%
32%
31%
 
#62
Glad the guys have a week off before this one, too, because as others have pointed out, this is the start of a meat grinder with no more than 4 days between any of the next 9 games. Of the 9, seven will be Q1.

Put another way, here are KenPom win odds for the next 9 games in order of chance of winning. Anyone care to guess (without looking at KP rankings) which games are which?

85% - NU
65% - Maryland
51% - Minny
46% - MSU
40% - @ Iowa
39% - @ Purdue
33% - @ Rutgers
32% - @ PSU
31% - @ Michigan
My stab attempt is bolded.
 
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#63
Orange Krush Class of 2013
Stanford, CA
The computers project a crazy logjam in conference standings, with 10 teams in the 9 to 11 win range. One or two wins could be huge in terms of conference standings and probably NCAA seeding as well.
I really need to get my standings projector running again, as this is the perfect season for it. I would love to know how likely the 10-team pileup really is — I'm sure it's the most probable scenario, but how probable is it, really? 10% chance? 50%? So far I haven't seen anyone publishing that kind of distributional outcome analysis.
 
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#65
Glad the guys have a week off before this one, too, because as others have pointed out, this is the start of a meat grinder with no more than 4 days between any of the next 9 games. Of the 9, seven will be Q1.

Put another way, here are KenPom win odds for the next 9 games in order of chance of winning. Anyone care to guess (without looking at KP rankings) which games are which?

85% - NU
65% - Minny
51% - Maryland
46% - @ Iowa
40% - @ Purdue
39% - MSU
33% - @ Rutgers
32% - @ PSU
31% - @ Michigan
Inline above...
 
#66
Glad the guys have a week off before this one, too, because as others have pointed out, this is the start of a meat grinder with no more than 4 days between any of the next 9 games. Of the 9, seven will be Q1.

Put another way, here are KenPom win odds for the next 9 games in order of chance of winning. Anyone care to guess (without looking at KP rankings) which games are which?

85%- NW
65% - Minnesota
51% - Maryland
46% - @ Penn St
40% - Michigan St
39% - @ Iowa
33% - @Rutgers
32% - @ Purdue
31% - @ Michigan
 
#67
Glad the guys have a week off before this one, too, because as others have pointed out, this is the start of a meat grinder with no more than 4 days between any of the next 9 games. Of the 9, seven will be Q1.

Put another way, here are KenPom win odds for the next 9 games in order of chance of winning. Anyone care to guess (without looking at KP rankings) which games are which?

100%- NW
100% - Minnesota
100% - Maryland
100% - @ Penn St
100% - Michigan St
100% - @ Iowa
97% - @Rutgers
100% - @ Purdue
100% - @ Michigan
Let's go!!
 
#68
+1

This team hasn't handled success well, so if past patterns hold, we'll be flat. NW playing better just makes it that much more dangerous. I hope the guys have a chance to celebrate their success, but see that they're a long way from the prize. It's pretty exciting to see them fight and win games where they had problems with before. If you look at how poorly we've shot the 3 in some games, it's all the more impressive.

Props to AG! Really makes this team more dangerous the way he's been playing.
Bash Purdue at home, then go on the road to a terribly tough venue and win in comeback fashion over Wisconsin and then follow that up with a gritty home win over a very good Rutgers team. Seems like they've handled success of late.

Totally agree on AG. I have said before that he is the key to this team. We need his 3 point shooting, rebounding and general energy.
 
#69
Glad the guys have a week off before this one, too, because as others have pointed out, this is the start of a meat grinder with no more than 4 days between any of the next 9 games. Of the 9, seven will be Q1.

Put another way, here are KenPom win odds for the next 9 games in order of chance of winning. Anyone care to guess (without looking at KP rankings) which games are which?

85% NW
65% Minn
51%. Maryland
46%. PU
40%. Iowa
39%. MSU
33% Michigan
32%. PSU
31%. Rutgers
My guess to results not KP
 
#70
I don't know anything about Northwestern's team this year, so I peeked at their stats. Some quick observations and facts, in case others are similarly under-informed:

Miller Kopp (6-7 F) seems to be their best player. He leads the team in minutes and ppg. He's shooting 41.7% from 3 with 30 makes. By comparison, our top 2 guys from 3 are Alan (39.7% on 25 makes) and Trent (32.5% on 27 makes).

They don't appear to be very deep. 8 players average double digit minutes, but 2 of those players are hurt:
  • Anthony Gaines (26.5 mpg) had season-ending shoulder surgery.
  • Boo Buie (21.6 mpg, and tied for 2nd leading scorer) hasn't played in 2020 due to a high ankle sprain. I'm not sure when he's due to return, but he's expected to be out against Iowa.
Other than Kopp, they don't seem like a 3-heavy team (listed in order of mpg) ...
  • 33.3% on 15 makes: Buie
  • 33.3% on 10 makes: Spencer
  • 12.5% on 01 makes: Young
  • 25.9% on 15 makes: Nance
  • 21.1% on 08 makes: Turner
  • 36.4% on 08 makes: Beran
 
#71
New York
NW is bad offensively (145th in Offensive Efficiency per KenPom) and very meh defensively (90th).
For some conference comparisons based on who we’ve played: Rutgers is 96 offense and 13 defense. Michigan is 20 and 41. Maryland 40 and 8. MSU 5 and 32. Purdue 58 and 7. So offensively they are significantly worse than Rutgers and much more significantly worse than everyone else. And defensively they don’t approach any of the B1G teams we’ve faced. would be good to see us maintain our focus during the bye week and blow them out of the water.
 
#72
Orange Krush Class of 2013
Stanford, CA
Here are the actual predictions from KP — since all these teams are so close, home court advantage plays a major role.

85% Northwestern
65% Minnesota
51% Maryland
46% MSU
40% @PSU
39% @Rutgers
33% @Michigan
32% @Iowa
31% @Purdue

Interesting to see the range of responses! I suspect I would have come up with something different than everyone else, too.
 
#74
Huge game from a tournament perspective. This one, and Nebraska at home, are our only two quadrant 3 games left on the season (Neb. could actually become a Q4 depending on the rest of their season).

So far we only have one Q3 loss (Miami), and they could potentially move up to Q2. Keeping the right half of our team sheet as clean as possible will be huge in a crowded B1G — Purdue, Iowa, and Rutgers all have a single Q3 loss, while Penn State and Minnesota could pick one up, and Iowa could pick up a 2nd as they and MN both lost to DePaul.

Obviously we can't say for sure this far out what will matter in the selection room, but if I'm trying to differentiate between the last few bubble teams, and they've all played mostly the same quality opponents, with similar records, those little red boxes in the right columns are most assuredly going to stand out.

View attachment 5456
(team sheets at http://warrennolan.com/basketball/2020/net-nitty-team#)
Purdue and Miami both so close to sliding up a Q. For a bubble team 1 Q3/Q4 loss combined coupled with 1 Q2 loss seems to pretty much be the limit. Anymore than that and history shows those teams mostly go to the NIT unless they're near .500 or better in Q1.
 
#75
Orange Krush Class of 2013
Stanford, CA
Purdue and Miami both so close to sliding up a Q. For a bubble team 1 Q3/Q4 loss combined coupled with 1 Q2 loss seems to pretty much be the limit. Anymore than that and history shows those teams mostly go to the NIT unless they're near .500 or better in Q1.
Big Miami fan over here the rest of this season. Purdue moving up or down, as I'm sure they will yet, will always come at the expense of some other B1G team. I guess we should probably root for them over teams we only play once, though.
 
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