Previewing The Northeastern Huskies

Northeastern @ StatSheet
2012 Stats
2012 Roster
2012 Schedule

Huskies Offense 10-11
Four Factors Percent Nat'l Rank
eFG% 50.7 92
Turnover Rate 19.7 147
Off Reb Rate 30.4 243
FTA/FGA 35.9 228
Huskies Offense 11-12
Four Factors Percent Nat'l Rank
eFG% 45.7 261
Turnover Rate 27.5 341
Off Reb Rate 40.3 14
FTA/FGA 38.5 136


As we've seen this year, there are some teams that tend to profile about the same year after year, and then there are teams like Northeastern where seemingly everything changes. In many cases, that's not surprisingly the result of roster turnover, but in this one, it's a little less clear. The Huskies four of their top five minutes-getters, but they lost go-to guy Chaisson Allen, who used a lot of possessions and took excellent care of the ball.

Veteran guard Joel Smith has seen his turnover rate skyrocket this year, perhaps because he's been forced to handle more of Allen's duties. And relatively ball-secure big man Ryan Pierson has been pushed out of the rotation by a pair of turnover-prone freshmen.

It's a top-to-bottom problem for this team--everybody in the regular rotation is turning it over at least 21% of the time, which means there essentially is no refuge for the ball. Opponents are stealing the ball on 15.4% of Northeastern's offensive possessions, a figure that ranks in the nation's bottom five.

Fortunately for them, to do go strong to the offensive boards, perhaps fueled by the realization that a possession could be inexplicably discarded at any time and when they do get a shot up, their odds on that first try ain't so good.

No doubt they miss Allen, who was an outstanding jump shooter with a knack for getting to the free throw lane, but it's also the case that they simply haven't gotten what they expected to get from some of their veterans.

Possible Starters:

Jonathan Lee (6-2, 200) -- Case in point: junior guard Jonathan Lee, who was effective across the board in 2011: he hit 84.6% of his FTs, 51.6% of his twos, and 47.2% of his threes. No small sample size at work there, either. While he leads the team in scoring this year, make no mistake, the scoring's been a lot harder to come by for him; his effective field goal percentage is down from 57.7% to 48.5%, and the three-point accuracy has fallen way off. It's always tough to tell in cases like this one. Is he in a funk? Is his shot selection worse this year? Growing pains related to a different role?

Joel Smith (6-4, 180) -- Smith's tale is similar to Lee's: he made 51% of his twos and 42.5% of his 181 three-point attempts in 2011. This year, those percentages are 39.5% and 32.2%, and he's turning the ball over 27.4% of the time, up from 18.2% in 2011. And the questions are the same, because it's early and these latest numbers are not necessarily more reflective of his true talent level than his 2011 numbers. So what I'm saying is we can't sleep on Smith or Lee along the perimeter.

Kashief Edwards (6-5, 195) -- Hitting 43% of his twos but he's been good at drawing fouls and blocking shots. The latter two things have been true throughout his college career, while his shooting has fallen off over the last two seasons. Not much range here: he has 9 three-point attempts in 3+ seasons.

Quincy Ford (6-8, 212) -- Ford is the third high usage guy in the rotation along with Lee and Smith, and he's third in scoring behind those two. So far, he's a mixed bag. The turnovers (25%) are an issue for him as with everyone else on this team. He rebounds pretty well offensively, and he's blocking a decent number of shots. His shooting accuracy has a long way to go, though. He's not afraid to step outside, which is part of the problem to this point, as he's just 7-27 from beyond the arc.

Kauri Black (6-7, 220) -- Huge turnover rate, solid shot blocker, pretty good at drawing fouls.

Bench:

Reggie Spencer (6-7, 210), Alwayne Bigby (6-5, 210), Ryan Pierson (6-10, 235). Spencer--except the turnovers blah blah blah--has been very good; in fact he's the only guy shooting better than 50%. So good for you, guy. He's also been the team's best rebounder at both ends.

Alwayne ("Awww yeah, that's all Wayne, baby!" -- what I imagine he says after every basket he makes.) is another decent offensive rebounding threat, but a light usage guy when it comes to scoring, which is probably for the best.

Pierson has played sparingly after being a major part of Northeastern's rotation in 2011, and that figures because his turnover rate is better than the other seven players I've talked about here.

Huskies Defense 10-11
Four Factors Percent Nat'l Rank
eFG% 53.5 328
Turnover Rate 19.8 191
Off Reb Rate 36.3 318
FTA/FGA 42.9 265
Huskies Defense 11-12
Four Factors Percent Nat'l Rank
eFG% 47.7 142
Turnover Rate 23.3 76
Off Reb Rate 32.0 148
FTA/FGA 42.2 262

Well, at least they managed to extinguish that dumpster fire. Still outside of their turnover rate, it's hard to find much in the way of clear strengths at this point. Defensive rebounding is more of a collective effort since they don't have any one player with great numbers there, and their 2FG% defense still is not very good.

Pomeroy likes NC State by 13.

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