Efficiency and lineups: last year versus this year

Natty

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Feb 12, 2009
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Was gonna post this in the stats thread, but I think it might've gotten lost in there and is a very important note, IMO...so it's getting it's own thread.

One huge difference between this season and last is that dudes who are statistically excelling are playing whereas last year it's like the ship went down with the captains, if you will. We clearly went experience over talent/efficiency and we payed the price for it last year.

Two of my favorite all-around stats are PER (player efficiency rating) and overall box +/-. They just do the best job, when combined, of telling you "when these dudes play, your team is better".

2020-21 minutes total minutes played rank (PER rank) [+/- rank]
1. Bones (2) [3]
2. Ace (6) [5]
3. Vince (4) [4]
4. Corey (7) [6]
5. Tre (3) [2]
6. Hason (1) [1]
7. KeShawn (10) [8]
8. Jamir (8)[9]
9. Levi (9)[10]
10. MBJ (5)[7]
11. Josh (11)[11]
12. BMB (12)[12]
13. Arnold (13)[13]

Last year inefficient years from Evans, Vann and Simms really just hurt us. I also think Simms at the 4 was just a bad position for him (was 4th on the year in minutes played and dominated the PF spot, but was 11th on the team in PER and 7th in +/-....but also having your PF rank 11th in true shooting %, 8th in rebound % and 12th in blocks % is just asking for trouble if you're the coaching staff making that decision...and it's trouble we got). I understand why coach rolled with that group though because Evans and Vann in particular had had strong seasons the previous year and Evans had been just a superstar his first three seasons. But Vann, Simms, Evans and Curry were all top half in minutes played but bottom half in efficiency stats. That is how you lose games and lose games we did. This year our most efficient players are largely playing the most amount of minutes (except MBJ keeps proving good things happen when he's on the floor and likely needs to carve out a slightly larger role despite his freshman status...but that's actually what he's done these last three games, playing 13, a career-high 17 and then 14 minutes).

I will say what I've enjoyed seeing is the numbers I predicted match up to exactly what they are doing. I have a couple of coaches in the field that I speak to and I have told them, "if _____ plays a lot, we will have a tougher time. If this _____ & ______ play more, we will be way more efficient" and that's exactly what is happening.

Obviously with the freshmen their numbers will change because they are so new and have so much to learn (plus just don't have a history of DI stats), so much to get comfortable with, so I do think in there case it's a bit of a combo of eye test, early numbers and type level AAU numbers, seeing how those translate (kinda like seeing Vince hit his AAU efficiency, which was incredible, now that he's finally healthy).

Anyway, I just hope we keep trusting the numbers this year. We're playing a suuuuuper deep bench and the team seems to be having fun. Still, I think there are two key lineup things to monitor as we move forward that could change things. To me the key is just trusting the numbers over experience. If we make the same mistake we made last season we can prob expect similar results, but so far, we're doing a nice job of avoiding that.
 

duncanlamb

Top Member
Apr 22, 2009
17,650
20,721
Was gonna post this in the stats thread, but I think it might've gotten lost in there and is a very important note, IMO...so it's getting it's own thread.

One huge difference between this season and last is that dudes who are statistically excelling are playing whereas last year it's like the ship went down with the captains, if you will. We clearly went experience over talent/efficiency and we payed the price for it last year.

Two of my favorite all-around stats are PER (player efficiency rating) and overall box +/-. They just do the best job, when combined, of telling you "when these dudes play, your team is better".

2020-21 minutes total minutes played rank (PER rank) [+/- rank]
1. Bones (2) [3]
2. Ace (6) [5]
3. Vince (4) [4]
4. Corey (7) [6]
5. Tre (3) [2]
6. Hason (1) [1]
7. KeShawn (10) [8]
8. Jamir (8)[9]
9. Levi (9)[10]
10. MBJ (5)[7]
11. Josh (11)[11]
12. BMB (12)[12]
13. Arnold (13)[13]

Last year inefficient years from Evans, Vann and Simms really just hurt us. I also think Simms at the 4 was just a bad position for him (was 4th on the year in minutes played and dominated the PF spot, but was 11th on the team in PER and 7th in +/-....but also having your PF rank 11th in true shooting %, 8th in rebound % and 12th in blocks % is just asking for trouble if you're the coaching staff making that decision...and it's trouble we got). I understand why coach rolled with that group though because Evans and Vann in particular had had strong seasons the previous year and Evans had been just a superstar his first three seasons. But Vann, Simms, Evans and Curry were all top half in minutes played but bottom half in efficiency stats. That is how you lose games and lose games we did. This year our most efficient players are largely playing the most amount of minutes (except MBJ keeps proving good things happen when he's on the floor and likely needs to carve out a slightly larger role despite his freshman status...but that's actually what he's done these last three games, playing 13, a career-high 17 and then 14 minutes).

I will say what I've enjoyed seeing is the numbers I predicted match up to exactly what they are doing. I have a couple of coaches in the field that I speak to and I have told them, "if _____ plays a lot, we will have a tougher time. If this _____ & ______ play more, we will be way more efficient" and that's exactly what is happening.

Obviously with the freshmen their numbers will change because they are so new and have so much to learn (plus just don't have a history of DI stats), so much to get comfortable with, so I do think in there case it's a bit of a combo of eye test, early numbers and type level AAU numbers, seeing how those translate (kinda like seeing Vince hit his AAU efficiency, which was incredible, now that he's finally healthy).

Anyway, I just hope we keep trusting the numbers this year. We're playing a suuuuuper deep bench and the team seems to be having fun. Still, I think there are two key lineup things to monitor as we move forward that could change things. To me the key is just trusting the numbers over experience. If we make the same mistake we made last season we can prob expect similar results, but so far, we're doing a nice job of avoiding that.

Its all comes down to chemistry and roster's focus to playing team basketball on both ends of the floor.
 

DisplacedRam

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Insider
Mar 21, 2017
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It is definitely great to see the more efficient players getting the majority of run. I think we all agree last year goes way differently if we had shifted to that approach even late in the season, would have given us another couple W's at least.

One thing I will say about the list is I'm sure Curry's numbers get a huge boost if he is available to play three home games against lighter competition like the others have. I hope he can get back in action soon. I think he brings a lot to the table for us skill wise and in his knowledge of the system and what we are wanting to do here. Also, I just think he's a good dude ☺️
 
Apr 22, 2009
812
696
Was gonna post this in the stats thread, but I think it might've gotten lost in there and is a very important note, IMO...so it's getting it's own thread.

One huge difference between this season and last is that dudes who are statistically excelling are playing whereas last year it's like the ship went down with the captains, if you will. We clearly went experience over talent/efficiency and we payed the price for it last year.

Two of my favorite all-around stats are PER (player efficiency rating) and overall box +/-. They just do the best job, when combined, of telling you "when these dudes play, your team is better".

2020-21 minutes total minutes played rank (PER rank) [+/- rank]
1. Bones (2) [3]
2. Ace (6) [5]
3. Vince (4) [4]
4. Corey (7) [6]
5. Tre (3) [2]
6. Hason (1) [1]
7. KeShawn (10) [8]
8. Jamir (8)[9]
9. Levi (9)[10]
10. MBJ (5)[7]
11. Josh (11)[11]
12. BMB (12)[12]
13. Arnold (13)[13]

Last year inefficient years from Evans, Vann and Simms really just hurt us. I also think Simms at the 4 was just a bad position for him (was 4th on the year in minutes played and dominated the PF spot, but was 11th on the team in PER and 7th in +/-....but also having your PF rank 11th in true shooting %, 8th in rebound % and 12th in blocks % is just asking for trouble if you're the coaching staff making that decision...and it's trouble we got). I understand why coach rolled with that group though because Evans and Vann in particular had had strong seasons the previous year and Evans had been just a superstar his first three seasons. But Vann, Simms, Evans and Curry were all top half in minutes played but bottom half in efficiency stats. That is how you lose games and lose games we did. This year our most efficient players are largely playing the most amount of minutes (except MBJ keeps proving good things happen when he's on the floor and likely needs to carve out a slightly larger role despite his freshman status...but that's actually what he's done these last three games, playing 13, a career-high 17 and then 14 minutes).

I will say what I've enjoyed seeing is the numbers I predicted match up to exactly what they are doing. I have a couple of coaches in the field that I speak to and I have told them, "if _____ plays a lot, we will have a tougher time. If this _____ & ______ play more, we will be way more efficient" and that's exactly what is happening.

Obviously with the freshmen their numbers will change because they are so new and have so much to learn (plus just don't have a history of DI stats), so much to get comfortable with, so I do think in there case it's a bit of a combo of eye test, early numbers and type level AAU numbers, seeing how those translate (kinda like seeing Vince hit his AAU efficiency, which was incredible, now that he's finally healthy).

Anyway, I just hope we keep trusting the numbers this year. We're playing a suuuuuper deep bench and the team seems to be having fun. Still, I think there are two key lineup things to monitor as we move forward that could change things. To me the key is just trusting the numbers over experience. If we make the same mistake we made last season we can prob expect similar results, but so far, we're doing a nice job of avoiding that.
This confirms what we all are seeing and know to be true!

Vince, Ace, Hyland, and Corey should be starting...why not Hason over Levi? Does he foul too much?

Also good to see 3 newcomers in that bunch...the roster turnover this year clearly was a good thing!
 

Natty

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Feb 12, 2009
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This confirms what we all are seeing and know to be true!

Vince, Ace, Hyland, and Corey should be starting...why not Hason over Levi? Does he foul too much?

Also good to see 3 newcomers in that bunch...the roster turnover this year clearly was a good thing!

Starting is highly overrated. Playing is what matters.

Over the last five games our most played lineup has been Ace, Bones, Vince, Corey and Hason, but you look at our minutes breakdown basically EVERYONE is getting burn. Levi starts but is averaging 12.4 minutes to Hason's 16 mpg off the bench (which would you prefer?). Also some guys do better and/or even PREFER coming off the bench as a way to burn off nerves. Don't know if that's the case with this group, but I've definitely seen it before. We've got 11 players averaging double-digit minutes, which is sort of insane for the schedule we've played. Also realistically fouls plays a role in that. Levi MIGHT play more if he weren't averaging a team-high 7.8 fouls per 40 minutes. Hason is at 5.7 and Tre is at 5.4. You can't play minutes if you're on the bench with foul trouble.
 

ISwamRam

Top Member
Apr 20, 2009
2,577
4,206
Starting is highly overrated. Playing is what matters.

Over the last five games our most played lineup has been Ace, Bones, Vince, Corey and Hason, but you look at our minutes breakdown basically EVERYONE is getting burn. Levi starts but is averaging 12.4 minutes to Hason's 16 mpg off the bench (which would you prefer?). Also some guys do better and/or even PREFER coming off the bench as a way to burn off nerves. Don't know if that's the case with this group, but I've definitely seen it before. We've got 11 players averaging double-digit minutes, which is sort of insane for the schedule we've played. Also realistically fouls plays a role in that. Levi MIGHT play more if he weren't averaging a team-high 7.8 fouls per 40 minutes. Hason is at 5.7 and Tre is at 5.4. You can't play minutes if you're on the bench with foul trouble.
Agreed... plus having 11 play big min's is a good mitigation strategy. Coach needs any one of these guys to be ready to step up at any time for any reason.
darn it's good to be a Ram fan
 
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VCU85

Top Member
Jan 26, 2016
4,118
6,555
Was gonna post this in the stats thread, but I think it might've gotten lost in there and is a very important note, IMO...so it's getting it's own thread.

One huge difference between this season and last is that dudes who are statistically excelling are playing whereas last year it's like the ship went down with the captains, if you will. We clearly went experience over talent/efficiency and we payed the price for it last year.

Two of my favorite all-around stats are PER (player efficiency rating) and overall box +/-. They just do the best job, when combined, of telling you "when these dudes play, your team is better".

2020-21 minutes total minutes played rank (PER rank) [+/- rank]
1. Bones (2) [3]
2. Ace (6) [5]
3. Vince (4) [4]
4. Corey (7) [6]
5. Tre (3) [2]
6. Hason (1) [1]
7. KeShawn (10) [8]
8. Jamir (8)[9]
9. Levi (9)[10]
10. MBJ (5)[7]
11. Josh (11)[11]
12. BMB (12)[12]
13. Arnold (13)[13]

Last year inefficient years from Evans, Vann and Simms really just hurt us. I also think Simms at the 4 was just a bad position for him (was 4th on the year in minutes played and dominated the PF spot, but was 11th on the team in PER and 7th in +/-....but also having your PF rank 11th in true shooting %, 8th in rebound % and 12th in blocks % is just asking for trouble if you're the coaching staff making that decision...and it's trouble we got). I understand why coach rolled with that group though because Evans and Vann in particular had had strong seasons the previous year and Evans had been just a superstar his first three seasons. But Vann, Simms, Evans and Curry were all top half in minutes played but bottom half in efficiency stats. That is how you lose games and lose games we did. This year our most efficient players are largely playing the most amount of minutes (except MBJ keeps proving good things happen when he's on the floor and likely needs to carve out a slightly larger role despite his freshman status...but that's actually what he's done these last three games, playing 13, a career-high 17 and then 14 minutes).

I will say what I've enjoyed seeing is the numbers I predicted match up to exactly what they are doing. I have a couple of coaches in the field that I speak to and I have told them, "if _____ plays a lot, we will have a tougher time. If this _____ & ______ play more, we will be way more efficient" and that's exactly what is happening.

Obviously with the freshmen their numbers will change because they are so new and have so much to learn (plus just don't have a history of DI stats), so much to get comfortable with, so I do think in there case it's a bit of a combo of eye test, early numbers and type level AAU numbers, seeing how those translate (kinda like seeing Vince hit his AAU efficiency, which was incredible, now that he's finally healthy).

Anyway, I just hope we keep trusting the numbers this year. We're playing a suuuuuper deep bench and the team seems to be having fun. Still, I think there are two key lineup things to monitor as we move forward that could change things. To me the key is just trusting the numbers over experience. If we make the same mistake we made last season we can prob expect similar results, but so far, we're doing a nice job of avoiding that.
I think Coach Rhodes, made deals with the guys he brought that they'd play significant minutes. I think he stuck with them as he knew he had to cobble a team together till he could get his players in there, more than just plug, and play type players. Or not, just a theory.
 
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GuardTheArc

Top Member
Dec 4, 2014
696
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Was gonna post this in the stats thread, but I think it might've gotten lost in there and is a very important note, IMO...so it's getting it's own thread.

One huge difference between this season and last is that dudes who are statistically excelling are playing whereas last year it's like the ship went down with the captains, if you will. We clearly went experience over talent/efficiency and we payed the price for it last year.

Two of my favorite all-around stats are PER (player efficiency rating) and overall box +/-. They just do the best job, when combined, of telling you "when these dudes play, your team is better".

2020-21 minutes total minutes played rank (PER rank) [+/- rank]
1. Bones (2) [3]
2. Ace (6) [5]
3. Vince (4) [4]
4. Corey (7) [6]
5. Tre (3) [2]
6. Hason (1) [1]
7. KeShawn (10) [8]
8. Jamir (8)[9]
9. Levi (9)[10]
10. MBJ (5)[7]
11. Josh (11)[11]
12. BMB (12)[12]
13. Arnold (13)[13]

Last year inefficient years from Evans, Vann and Simms really just hurt us. I also think Simms at the 4 was just a bad position for him (was 4th on the year in minutes played and dominated the PF spot, but was 11th on the team in PER and 7th in +/-....but also having your PF rank 11th in true shooting %, 8th in rebound % and 12th in blocks % is just asking for trouble if you're the coaching staff making that decision...and it's trouble we got). I understand why coach rolled with that group though because Evans and Vann in particular had had strong seasons the previous year and Evans had been just a superstar his first three seasons. But Vann, Simms, Evans and Curry were all top half in minutes played but bottom half in efficiency stats. That is how you lose games and lose games we did. This year our most efficient players are largely playing the most amount of minutes (except MBJ keeps proving good things happen when he's on the floor and likely needs to carve out a slightly larger role despite his freshman status...but that's actually what he's done these last three games, playing 13, a career-high 17 and then 14 minutes).

I will say what I've enjoyed seeing is the numbers I predicted match up to exactly what they are doing. I have a couple of coaches in the field that I speak to and I have told them, "if _____ plays a lot, we will have a tougher time. If this _____ & ______ play more, we will be way more efficient" and that's exactly what is happening.

Obviously with the freshmen their numbers will change because they are so new and have so much to learn (plus just don't have a history of DI stats), so much to get comfortable with, so I do think in there case it's a bit of a combo of eye test, early numbers and type level AAU numbers, seeing how those translate (kinda like seeing Vince hit his AAU efficiency, which was incredible, now that he's finally healthy).

Anyway, I just hope we keep trusting the numbers this year. We're playing a suuuuuper deep bench and the team seems to be having fun. Still, I think there are two key lineup things to monitor as we move forward that could change things. To me the key is just trusting the numbers over experience. If we make the same mistake we made last season we can prob expect similar results, but so far, we're doing a nice job of avoiding that.
Good analysis/summary above..........

Actually, to a lot of kids, starting does matter (a lot). Starting instills confidence, it indicates a level of importance to the team/program, it empowers you to do/try things on the court you might not if you're a sub, etc. Starting matters to fringe P6 guys (and their families) who "took a shot" at a lower level (A-10) school in order to play more (have a larger, more significant role). It also often satisfies "implied promises" made on the recruiting trail (a dirty little secret many don't want to discuss). With the advent of immediate transfer eligibility, it's more important now (than ever) to keep your core kids happy/engaged. For that reason alone (and, of course, for efficiency/effectiveness/continuity/retention purposes), I'd advocate the following (not just for this year but for the future):

Total = 200 minutes

Start* (+ approximate minutes) = 112 minutes

Hyland (26)
Clark (24)
Ward (22)
Watkins (20)
Brown-Jones (20)
*this group could theoretically start 2-3 yrs together if Bones sticks around

Rotation (+ approximate minutes) = 88 minutes
Williams (22)
Baldwin (22)
Douglas/Stockard (22 combined)
Curry/Banks (22 combined)

Sit = 0 minutes
BMB (primarily develop in practice/weight room for next yr)
McAllister (redshirt - injury)
Henderson (walk on)
 
Last edited:
Apr 22, 2009
812
696
Starting is highly overrated. Playing is what matters.

Over the last five games our most played lineup has been Ace, Bones, Vince, Corey and Hason, but you look at our minutes breakdown basically EVERYONE is getting burn. Levi starts but is averaging 12.4 minutes to Hason's 16 mpg off the bench (which would you prefer?). Also some guys do better and/or even PREFER coming off the bench as a way to burn off nerves. Don't know if that's the case with this group, but I've definitely seen it before. We've got 11 players averaging double-digit minutes, which is sort of insane for the schedule we've played. Also realistically fouls plays a role in that. Levi MIGHT play more if he weren't averaging a team-high 7.8 fouls per 40 minutes. Hason is at 5.7 and Tre is at 5.4. You can't play minutes if you're on the bench with foul trouble.
Great answer and that clears things up.

I love the 11 guys getting double digit minutes. Means we have depth and fatigue should not be as much of an issue in tight games.
 

duncanlamb

Top Member
Apr 22, 2009
17,650
20,721
Good analysis/summary above..........

Actually, to a lot of kids, starting does matter (a lot). Starting instills confidence, it indicates a level of importance to the team/program, it empowers you to do/try things on the court you might not if you're a sub, etc. Starting matters to fringe P6 guys (and their families) who "took a shot" at a lower level (A-10) school in order to play more (have a larger, more significant role). It also often satisfies "implied promises" made on the recruiting trail (a dirty little secret many don't want to discuss). With the advent of immediate transfer eligibility, it's more important now (than ever) to keep your core kids happy/engaged. For that reason alone (and, of course, for efficiency/effectiveness/continuity/retention purposes), I'd advocate the following (not just for this year but for the future):

Total = 200 minutes

Start* (+ approximate minutes): 112 minutes

Hyland (26)
Clark (24)
Ward (22)
Watkins (20)
Brown-Jones (20)
*this group could theoretically start 2-3 yrs together if Bones sticks around

Rotation (+ approximate minutes): 88 minutes
Williams (22)
Baldwin (22)
Douglas/Stockard (22 combined)
Curry/Banks (22 combined)

Sit:
BMB (primarily develop in practice/weight room for next yr)
McAllister (redshirt - injury)
Henderson (walk on)

Why are you replacing Baldwin with Clarke in the starting lineup?

Baldwin is a pass first pg who gets everyone else involved first, he already has an established chemistry with bones going back at least 5 yesars starting with the tressi gang.