Friday, January 20, 2006

Les Tigres

Clemson rolls into the AMC tommorow at noon, with a lot on the line for both teams. Clemson is coming off a loss in which they only scored 38 points at Miami, and GT is still licking the wounds from a beatdown in Winston-Salem. Clemson is 2-3 in the ACC, GT is 2-2 and both need this win to keep in the hunt for a middle of the pack ACC finish and a shot at the Big Dance. GT won both matchups last year, and has won the past 3 in Alexander Memorial, and the past 5 games overall in the series.

Interesting notes about Clemson (as normal, all stats from the excellent database at
  • Clemson is a horrid, horrid offensive team (#150 in the country) but has actually played very well on the defensive end (#28 in the country). This has the potential to be a really ugly game, with the #150 and #120 (GT) offensive teams in the country trading turnovers and bricks. I have no illusions about our struggling offense being able to put up huge numbers against Clemson, so it's going to be up to a combination of our defensive intensity and their struggling offense if GT is going to pull out a win.

  • Clemson is a strong team on the glass, especially on the offensive glass - both Akinbala and K.C Rivers are having strong rebounding seasons. To counter this, GT is an even stronger rebounding team and has a whopping 40% offensive rebounding percentage (#15 nationally) on the season. It could be a war under the hoop with a bunch of guys looking for boards, two physical teams and some ugly offense. Hide the women and children.

  • Frighteningly for Tiger fans, they are probably the worst shooting team in any major conference in the country. #326 in 3 point shooting and #331 in free throw shooting - out of 334 total teams. Ouch. GT is marginally better in both categories, coming in at #83 from 3 and an atrocious #277 from the free throw line. With as physical as this game should be, the two teams might combine to miss 30 free throws.

This game is at home, Clemson is really struggling right now and doesn't have anyone that can score on the level of Anthony Morrow or Lewis Clinch. As long as the Yellow Jackets don't turn the ball over at levels equivalent to the first half of the Wake game, this is a matchup that GT should win - but with this team, in this season, taking anything for granted is foolish.


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