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Previewing East Carolina

2007 Scouting Report / 2008 Scouting Report
2008 Schedule
2008 Roster

ECU Offense 06-07Four FactorsPercentNat'l RankeFG%45.0309Turnover Rate21.2167Off Reb Rate28.3303FTM/FGA19.6312ECU Offense 07-08Four FactorsPercentNat'l RankeFG%46.3266Turnover Rate23.4223Off Reb Rate31.3228FTM/FGA25.3141











Considering that the Pirates had a surprisingly good shooting day against us last season, I'll dispense with the snide remarks here. ECU doesn't look to have improved much offensively, but they've played a tough early slate, and in terms of adjusted offensive efficiency, they are markedly better than a year ago. Mind you, that doesn't mean they've been good, just that they've progressed from awful to average-ish.

Starters:

Darrell Jenkins (5-11, 175) -- After finishing third in the nation in assist rate a year ago, he's second in the early stages of 2008 at 49.4%. When he's on the court, then, he's assisting on one of every two baskets his teammates make. Jenkins is averaging 9.5 assists/40 min, which is particularly impressive since (1) his team is slow-paced, and (2) his teammates don't shoot so good.

Cory Farmer (6-3, 185) -- Doesn't really have much to offer except bricks: he shot 42.6% in '07 and sits at 41.5% this year. Just quit shooting twos, Cory:
 2FG% 3FG%
2007 35.7 34.5
2008 30.8 38.5

Sam Hinnant (6-4, 190) -- A three-point specialist, and not a good one to this point in his career.

Gabe Blair (6-8, 210) -- Leads the team in scoring and field goal attempts but is a terrible shooter. He's taking a bigger role in the offense this season, and he's seen his free throw rate jump considerably (he has already taken as many FTAs this year as he did all of 2007, despite playing about the same proportion of minutes), which would suggest he's being more aggressive. Best overall rebounder on the team.

John Fields (6-9, 200) -- I'm certain that I'm missing something here, what with the fact that I've never seen this ECU team play, but it's interesting that someone who has actually shot the ball well hasn't been encouraged to take a bigger role in an offense that has a distinct lack of reliable shooters. Part of it is youth, no doubt--he is only a sophomore.

As it is, he's been solid in the role he's assumed, making 61.3% of his field goal attempts (all of them twos) in 1+ seasons. His is a case of mixed signals, though, and this may well be the answer to my question: while that shooting percentage suggests he possesses good touch, his atrocious free throw shooting says otherwise. So it's probable that his game is raw at this point (his profile says as much), and perhaps he's simply a guy with a bad stroke who's been lucky from the field. Still, if you're East Carolina, it couldn't hurt to test his limits. He's not turnover prone, and had he played enough minutes to qualify in 2007, his free throw rate would have ranked fourth in the nation. He is also a fantastic offensive rebounder and shot blocker, so, not short on athleticism, this guy. Very nice building block for the Pirates, all told.

Bench:

Brock Young (5-11, 165), James Legan (6-3, 200), Jamar Abrams (6-6, 180), and Taylor Gagnon (6-6, 210) are the guys who've been getting 10+ minutes off the bench, though I'm sure we'll see a few more faces in addition to those four.

Brock Young = mini-QT. He sports a huge assist rate, but an even huger turnover rate. Add to that his limited role in the offense and you get a highly irregular usage/%shots split: 31.5% and 13.3%, respectively. There you can see an extreme example of how turnovers inflate usage.

Legan is not shy about shooting the basketball; Abrams and Gagnon won't be doing much of anything.

ECU Defense 06-07Four FactorsPercentNat'l RankeFG%50.4183Turnover Rate19.1271Off Reb Rate33.0148FTA/FGA44.2294ECU Defense 07-08Four FactorsPercentNat'l RankeFG%51.7225Turnover Rate22.4151Off Reb Rate38.3290FTA/FGA41.5251