Clemson 1 UpDown | Syracusefan.com

Clemson 1 UpDown

SWC75

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The Upside

- In the first half, this looked like another embarrassing blow-out but the team fought back to tie it up with 3:37 left. Unfortunately, that was as far as we could go but considering the Tigers just beat UNC and we’ve lost about half our roster, it was an impressive comeback.

- Chris Bell could have been expected to duplicate his incredible performance vs. Louisville and he didn’t do much in the first half but I liked what I saw int eh second half. He’s learned to avoid defenders to set up his shot and he had a look of determination on his face to bring this team back into the game. The old Chris Bell who would get down on himself if things were going poorly has been replaced by a Chris Bell who has realized how good he can be and how much difference he can make for this team.

- If only JJ Starling had played the first half the way he played the second: 7 for 9 for the field and 16 points.

- Maliq Brown was…Maliq Brown. 9 points, 8 rebounds and 4 steals. We would have done better than that except in our current situation, he’s got to avoid fouling out because of the void behind him.

15-9 (6-7) with 7+ to go…

LET’S GO ORANGE!


Net Points

This year I’m going to make things a bit easier on myself and just list the net points in each game after the Upside. Once a month I’ll do a deeper dive into the numbers rather than doing a “Net Points, etc.” post after every game. ‘Net’ points are the positives (points, rebounds, assists, steals and blocks) minus the negatives, (missed field goals and free throws, turnovers and fouls committed).

Maliq Brown game: 14NP in 36 minutes; season: 337NP in 649 minutes = 20.8NP/40m
Quadir Copeland game: 11NP in 28 minutes; season: 227NP in 526 minutes = 17.3NP/40m
JJ Starling game: 10NP in 36 minutes; season: 229NP in 830 minutes = 11.0NP/40m
Chris Bell game: 9NP in 17 minutes; season: 156NP in 574 minutes = 10.9NP/40m
Judah Mintz game: 6NP in 40 minutes; season: 323NP in 796 minutes = 16.2NP/40m
Justin Taylor game: 4NP in 19 minutes; season: 133NP in 564 minutes = 9.4NP/40m
Mounir Hima game: -1NP in 4 minutes; season: 8NP in 32 minutes = 10.0NP/40m



Did not play:
Peter Carey game: 0NP in 0 minutes; season: 0NP in 61 minutes = 0.0NP/40m
Kyle Cuffe game: 0NP in 0 minutes; season: 27NP in 231 minutes = 4.7NP/40m

Hurt:
Chance Westry game: 0NP in 0 minutes; season: 0NP in 0 minutes = 0.0NP/40m

Out for the season:
Naheem McLeod game: 0NP in 0 minutes; season: 108NP in 202 minutes = 21.4NP/40m

Red Shirting:
William Patterson game: 0NP in 0 minutes; season: 0NP in 0 minutes = 0.0NP/40m

Thrown off team:
Benny Williams game: 0NP in 0 minutes; season: 99NP in 307 minutes = 12.9NP/40m




Brent Axe:


The Downside

- This team will be remembered for coming up short. We’ve had a lot of games where we played well enough to win but not for 40 minutes and that’s how long games last. We lost this one in the first half, going 6 minutes and 17 seconds between scores an falling behind from 12-13 to 12-27. When you have to come back from that deficit, it can take such an effort that when you finally catch the other team, (as we did at 60-60 with 3:37 left), that when you catch up, you may have exhausted your energy and fall behind again with little time and energy to make another comeback. That’s exactly what happened here as the Tigers scored the next 7 points to set up back to where we were with 11:47 left. We never got within 6 and lost by 9.

- While the team showed some guts to make that comeback, they were aided by Clemson’s 21 turnovers, some of what were attributable to our aggressive defense, (we had 14 steals) but some of which were not. The Tigers were very careless with the ball and that kept us in the game. Don’t expect UNC to be so generous.

- Our shooting during that 6:17 in the first half was extremely concerning. JJ Starling, Chris Bell and Justin Taylor were 0 for 11 but the numbers don’t tell the story. Those shots were so far off it looked like the fans during those contests they run during time-outs. There were airballs, clanks, unintentional bank shots. It was really ugly. Taylor long ago disappeared down the whirlpool but in the second half Starling and Bell suddenly found the basket and scored 16 points apiece. If they could shoot like that, why couldn’t they do it in the first half.

- We started out the year with a 7-4 guy, a 7-2 guy, a 7-0 guy, a 6-11 guy and three 6-8 guys. We’re down to two 6-8 guys, one of whom doesn’t rebound because he wasn’t asked to in high school and the 6-11 who is hurt and can’t do anything. We’re like the sort of teams we normally play in November and December who have no big men. We’re getting pounded on the boards: 27-37 vs. BC, 23-36 vs. Wake, 21-40 vs. Louisville and 24-41 vs. Clemson. We either need to have huge disparity in turnovers, such as 8-21 today or hit a huge percentage of our shots to compete in these games.

- Judah Mintz has been a consistently productive player for us and he does get a lot more assists than people realize but if he’s not getting the calls, (he was 1 for 2 from the line today), we are likely to lose the game. I agree with a post-game caller that he’s not as good at putting the ball in the basket when defenders are between him and the basket as Starling or Copeland are and that becomes obvious when the refs aren’t sending him to the line.

- Justin Taylor works hard to contribute to the team when he’s in there, grabbing rebounds and defending aggressively, (he had four steals in this game). But that’s not what he was recruited here to do. This was:
2022 Syracuse Commit Justin Taylor's Senior Season Highlights

- If you are going to boo Joe Girard, you should boo JJ Starling, too. Both young men exercised their rights to change schools. It’s worked out fine for Joe, who is now playing the role for the Tigers he should have had from the beginning with us: a shooting guard who can pick his spots to make plays and then close out games at the foul line. He had 22 ‘net points’ tonight, a lot more than any of our players did. He was then very gracious in his post-game comments.
 
Good recap! A few things...

- I wouldn't be terrible surprised if JT got his mojo back at some point, but maybe not this year. I would love to see him be able to get an easy bucket early in the game to get more confidence going. That's what got Buddy going in some games. Having him start games right now makes things very difficult on us with his current scoring production.

- If Mintz isn't getting the calls, he's a different player. When he's going to the line multiple times a game, he (and us as a team) are difficult to beat. The problem is that this depends largely on the refs, which he can't control.

- Maliq picking up two quick fouls hurt us. He just couldn't play as aggressively.

- Great to see the team fight back. Yeah, we came up short this time, but maybe next time we can get the W. Good for the team to know they can get back into it when down, rather than folding like we've done several times before.

- I admit, I pretty much gave up on Bell a few games ago. However, with him shooting nearly 40% and contributing more in other ways as well, he could really be a positive for us the remainder of the year and next. He finished the game with 3 rebounds, 2 blocks, and 1 assist. I'd still like to see him do more, but at least he's not relying solely on shooting the ball in recent games.
 
Good recap! A few things...

- I wouldn't be terrible surprised if JT got his mojo back at some point, but maybe not this year. I would love to see him be able to get an easy bucket early in the game to get more confidence going. That's what got Buddy going in some games. Having him start games right now makes things very difficult on us with his current scoring production.

- If Mintz isn't getting the calls, he's a different player. When he's going to the line multiple times a game, he (and us as a team) are difficult to beat. The problem is that this depends largely on the refs, which he can't control.

- Maliq picking up two quick fouls hurt us. He just couldn't play as aggressively.

- Great to see the team fight back. Yeah, we came up short this time, but maybe next time we can get the W. Good for the team to know they can get back into it when down, rather than folding like we've done several times before.

- I admit, I pretty much gave up on Bell a few games ago. However, with him shooting nearly 40% and contributing more in other ways as well, he could really be a positive for us the remainder of the year and next. He finished the game with 3 rebounds, 2 blocks, and 1 assist. I'd still like to see him do more, but at least he's not relying solely on shooting the ball in recent games.

Taylor got a lay-up 33 seconds into the Louisville game to make it 2-0 and never attempted another shot despite playing 24 minutes in a 94-92 game in which 115 more shots were attempted by the two teams.
 
Mintz needs to drive to the basket or throw a mid range jumper. If he continues attempting 3 balls we are sure to lose this game.
 

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