Thursday, November 03, 2005

A Stone's throw and some rebounding woe

I saw this from the Winston-Salem Journal today, which provides an interesting look at what led up to NC State's go-ahead touchdown against Southern Mississippi:

Trailing 17-14, State drove to the Southern Miss 3-yard line with less than six minutes remaining. State faced third and goal, after running plays went for three and one yards the previous two plays.

Stone had one chance to make something happen, or else State would likely have to settle for a game-tying field-goal attempt.

Amato and Trestman made the decision to let it all ride on Stone's arm. They called a fake reverse with Clark sneaking out in the left flat, and Stone hit him in stride for the touchdown.

"We were back and forth and back and forth on what play to call," Amato said. "Marc was adamant about it, so I said, 'Just make sure that we have the ball after the play's over, either to kick an extra point or to kick a field goal.'

"Now, what kind of message do you think that could have sent to Marcus? I don't know. But it had to send a great message to know that my coaches are going to put these three yards in my right arm. And he took a three-step drop, and Brian Clark ran a great pattern, and he hit him right between the numbers."

Sounds like Amato was inclined to run the ball again (State ran the ball on 1st-and-goal and 2nd-and-goal), not that I necessarily blame him. Stone was better in the second half, but still had done little to earn anyone's trust.

In other news, as I was looking around the Tallahassee Democrat's website in search of articles about this weekend's football game, I ran into a piece about the FSU basketball team's efforts to improve its rebounding. Cited in the article are FSU's poor rebounding margin (-1.4) and their terrible record in games in which they were out-rebounded (5-13). The end of the article left me wondering if the Seminoles will be trying to improve the wrong area:

FSU's attempt to ratchet up its transition game hinges on the ability to snag defensive rebounds.

"We want to play getting up and down," Thornton said. "So the more we can rebound, the better it will fit our style."

Because although Florida State wasn't a very good rebounding team last season, defensive boards weren't the problem--offensive rebounds were. Check it out:

Defensive Rebound Rate (Def Rebs / (Def Rebs + Opp Off Rebs))

1) North Carolina (68.8%)
2) Wake Forest (68.4%)
3) Georgia Tech (67%)
4) Miami (66.8%)
5) Florida State (66.1%)
6) Maryland (66%)
7) Clemson (65.9%)
8) Virginia (65.8%)
9) NC State (64.4%)
10) Va Tech (63.3%)
11) Duke (63.3%)

Offensive Rebound Rate (Off Rebs / (Off Rebs + Opp Def Rebs))

1) Wake Forest (40.3%)
2) North Carolina (39.5%)
3) Miami (39.3%)
4) Clemson (37.8%)
5) Duke (37.3%)
6) Maryland (37.1%)
7) Georgia Tech (34.7%)
8) Virginia Tech (33.3%)
9) NC State (32.2%)
10) Virginia (31.7%)
11) Florida State (30.6%)

They were competent on the defensive glass but horrible (like, really bad) at grabbing offensive rebounds. Ken Pomeroy ranks all the teams in Offensive Rebound Rate (his numbers are a bit different from mine), and Florida State was 242nd in the country last year.

Lastly, Big Ten Wonk is back and in top form. Wonk's worth a regular visit even if you aren't a fan of a Big Televen school. Plus, you can find a lot more statisticky goodness there.