Tigers pounce on Catamounts, Cougars

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via Rex Brown

I didnt get to see CofC but did watch WCU, either one of these teams will win the SoCon and make the Tournament. Right now I feel like that will be WCU, just from how hard they play and considering how much better they played Clemson without one of their best players. Clemson started out sloppy at the beginning of each half but the Press wore them down in the 1st, and we built up our halftime lead. You could see their legs give out and their intensity fell off, but at halftime they came out energized again and our defense was a little slack. With both Bookers on the floor in the mid/late 2nd half we built up a huge lead with 19 unanswered points in a 7 minute span, when OP switched to Man/Man and shut down the passes to the corner.

"We got off to a rough start and didn't have as much focus, but we got in the fight, which was important," head coach OP said. "We got the pace going the way we wanted 10-12 minutes before the half."

  • Trevor Booker has come alive lately, finally being assertive in the post. He played less against CofC with 10 points in 23 minutes, but since the SC game I believe he's played much better overall. Last night he put up 31 points on 11/13 shooting with 7 rebounds. His passing in and out has improved by far lately, and its showing in his assist totals. His point total and rebounds are displayed below.
  • David Potter should be sitting on the bench. I don't know if he's trying too hard or what, but he should not be given the minutes he is. He was demoted from starter but still got the minutes because of his defense. The chart below shows his minutes per game and you can see his shooting percentage and point totals have dropped off considerably.
  • Of all the freshmen, Devin has really come on, particularly since SC. Over the last 4 games he's averaged over 13 minutes (compared to 7 the previous 3) and over 9 points per. Milton Jennings has continued to make slow progression, but needs some aggressiveness. Donte Hill scored 11 in 12 minutes against CofC. Johnson has started to throw up a few more shots.
  • I wonder what is Jerai Grant's problem...he plays great offensively one day, then disappears the next. Inside/out passing has improved since SC but Grant has only done something offensively against CofC in the last 4 games (12pts in 17min) and his rebounding, which should be better given his parentage, has disappeared. Tanner Smith should not be outrebounding Grant. Right now the tandem of the Bookers are playing better on the floor, but I suspect Grant will be getting closer to 25-30min against ACC competition.
  • Against WCU, the Tigers failed in offensive rebounding 14-10, but put up a whopping 10 blocks. We only won the rebounding battles when Western's Richie Gordon fouled out. Aside from the defense on Harouna Mutombo there wasn't much else to complain about from the Tigers. 
  • The CofC contest was clearly a battle for playing time between the younger guys with the bigger early lead, but we won the offensive rebounding 14-11, racked up 20 assists and forced 18 turnovers.
  • FT shooting is terrible. You shoot like that in 2 weeks, Duke stomps you.
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