Good three good games from the top 5 teams (Missed the Miami game and a few that I wished i could have watched).
Indiana vs Michigan State
Zeller faded in and out of effectiveness all night, started both halves strong but disappeared for stretches all night. Made shots from midrange which was nice to see and got transition buckets like usual, but wasn't really effective in the post.
Oladipo was everywhere defensively in the first half. 4 early deflections and a transition block. He scored on afew drives but still mostly straight line drives. Coughed it up 2-3 times when driving and wasn't a factor in the second half until around the 8 minute mark. Made a solid drive, steal & save to get a transition dunk, and a late tip in to help secure the win for Indiana.
Brandon Dawson was aggressive early with acouple nice drives, but spent the rest of the night missing quite a few layups.
Gray Harris was great all night except for his 3 pt shooting. Made shots around the basket on drives (or drew fouls) and got in the passing lanes well.
Valentine was great on the boards all night and pulled down 3-4 in traffic. Got going offensively in the second half creating for teammates some, and made 2-3 of his fgs plus all his fts. Contained Oladipo a few times in the second half, but gave up that easy tip in late one of the only times he didn't box out.
I'm moving on to the Adreian Payne fan club now. Made 3 3 pointers and rebounded well all night, but might have cost Michgan State the game with his early fould trouble. Love his mobility and how comfortably he can move defending switch outside. Felt like he stuck to his man too much sometimes when he could have helped prevent easy drives.
Florida vs Missouri
Game looked like a blowout early but, Laurence Bowers got the back in it quick by exploiting Florida's lack of size. Florida got the game back under control but then collapsed alittle in the last 6-7 minutes to let Missouri get the win.
Bowers did a good good of either attacking Prather in the post or facing up on Young/Murphy when given space. Wasn't one of the guys I was scouting so I can't say how he did defensively.
Other than his 2 late fouls and someone of the Bowers post ups, Casey Prather had a fantastic game (4th straight good game since hes had to step into Yeguete's role). Incredible acting defensively forcing turnovers on a few of the post ups against him and getting two blocks while defending in the post. Made a hook shot on a quick post feed, got a steal & transition dunk, and made a 17 ft jumper. Pulled down a lot of boards for a 6-5 guy as well. Sadly 2 quick fouls in the middle of the second half got him sent to the bench for the rest of the night.
I'm interested to see if with Yeguete returning in a week or so if Donovan will be able to find him minutes where he can defend on the perimeter. He definitely has the motor and athleticism but hasn't gotten the opportunity due to his lack of shooting ability
Scottie Wilbekin continues to interest me. Shut down Pressey for pretty much the whole night (didn't guard him on zone possesions and occasional transition mismatches but otherwise was the primary defender on him). Unless he got stone walled on a screen (happened 4-5 times) he usually did a great job of fighting over screens, cutting off Pressey's drives in isolation, forcing Pressey into the help on P&Rs, and keeping him from finding any clean looks until the middle of the second half (Pressey had 3 TOs & 0 fg attempts in the first). In my notes I have him with 3 steals/deflections but the box score says zero.
Offensively he need to improve his floater and get better making jumpers off the dribble, but his true role is really a shot creator. Created tons of looks for shooters off drives all night but many of them were missed. Definitely think he could fit as a pg in our small ball line ups and actually gets used in a similar way in post up plays like Felton and Kidd do for us. The fact that he is a 19 year old Junior also doesn't hurt his chance for improvement.
Other two guys I planned on writing about didn't really do much game. Alex Oriakhi was a non factor other than two early buckets and 3-4 boards.
Patric Young was great defensively in P&Rs, in post ups & a couple isos (other than giving Bowers too much space late). Set great screens all night and actually dives hard to the rim (didn't really position himself great to get passes rolling tho). Lackluster rebounding numbers as usually but the effort was there, he boxes out and fight for boards but he's just not great on the glass. The motor is there but the numbers aren't.