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In UB Victories, Opposing Key Contributors Falter

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Amber Searls-USA TODAY Sports

This may seem like a pretty obvious observation from the season so far, but I hadn't really looked at concrete statistics for this. I just had anecdotal evidence from watching this UB team do an above average job of shutting down opposing key players, and this usually ended up in a victory for the Bulls.

So with one more game until the mid-way point of conference play, this rule has held steadfast up until this point.

UB is 5-0 when holding a top scoring performer under their season average

UB is 0-3 when allowing a top scoring performer to at least achieve their season average

5 WINS:

Team Top Performer Points Scored Avg. Points Scored
Kent 10 16
CMU 12 16.1
N/A 16.8
Miami OH 13 14.9
Ball St 3 11.6
9 11.1
Toledo 15 19.6
15 18

3 LOSSES:

Team Top Performer Points Scored Avg. Points Scored
Akron 14 12.3
EMU James Thompson 13 15.6
14 14
WMU 27 17.4
20 18.4

So, you may be thinking to yourself: "Well that kind of makes sense... It's their best player, and when they don't play as well as their median scoring game, I would expect their team to have a higher probability of losing."

- And that's true. I just found it interesting that this rule has been consistent up until now regardless of other variables such as opposing team record and whether UB was at home or on the road.

The main takeaway from an individual contribution standpoint for me is the containinment of opposing bigs. Jimmy Hall, Franko House, Nathan Boothe, even Isaiah Johnson roughly speaking, have been defended considerably well given our players in the front court. Ikenna Smart may not have much offensive production power yet, but he has done a fine job of neutralizing opposing offensive prowess down low. David Kadiri has also done a nice job when Smart gets into foul trouble. Also recognition is deserved to the help defense, which has done a nice job creating chaos and uncertainty when the ball is moved into the paint.

Credit Nate Oats with creating solid game plans for stopping key contributors in all positions of the court. Obviously, there is still some work to be done, but it has been shown that UB can hang with the best in the MAC.

Anything jump out to you from this topic that I didn't mention? Feel free to leave them in the comments.