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Marquette Basketball Four Factors: vs Stetson

Y'know, this really wasn't that bad overall. That second half was just the worst, though.

No game specific pictures for this one, but this feels appropriate.
No game specific pictures for this one, but this feels appropriate.
Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

If you're not familiar with the Four Factors as featured on KenPom.com, the concept is very simple: There are four main parts of a basketball game that contribute to a team's success. They are:

  • effective field goal percentage, or FG% with a bonus for made three pointers
  • turnover rate, or the % of possessions that end in a turnover
  • offensive rebound rate, or the % of possible offensive rebounds that the team grabbed
  • and free throw rate, or the ratio of free throws attempted to field goals attempted expressed as a percentage

We'll look at the numbers for Marquette and their opponent in both categories for each game. The opponent number doubles as Marquette's defensive numbers, since it's what they're allowing. Along side each of the individual game numbers, you'll see two numbers after that. The first one is the season long average for the Golden Eagles, and the next is where they rank across the country on KenPom.com.

Effective Field Goal Percentage (eFG%)

Marquette: 53.6% (This Season: 51.1%, #111)
Stetson: 41.0% (This Season: 45.3%, #25)

So If I show you this, you might get the impression that Marquette played well on both ends of the court.  That's not the case.  Let's do a simple table to explain a little further as to what the hell happened here.

Team Game eFG% 1st Half eFG% 2nd Half eFG%
Marquette 53.6% 71.2% 37.9%
Stetson 41.0% 25.8% 56.7%

So what we have here is a failure to communicate is a game where the final result ended up better than usual on both sides, but when you look at the pieces, I think you have say that this sucked.  That first half was amazing on both ends, but the second half is an absolute nightmare, both from a perspective of a reversal of fortune and as an isolated analysis.

Here's how impressive Marquette's overall performance was: Henry Ellenson went 3 for 12.  As you might expect, he as 1 for 8 in the second half in a microcosm of how this game went for Marquette.  I could go on and on about guys who were good in one half and bad in another half, but it's not really worth going on and on and on and on and on about it.

Turnover Rate (TO%)

Marquette: 22.7% (This Season: 20.5%, #295)
Stetson: 21.2% (This Season: 20.1%, #71)

Yet another 20%+ performance, and against a sub-250 KenPom team.  Hooray.  As you're probably guessing, Marquette kicked the ball away at a better than 25% clip in the second half.  As was the case with Marquette's shooting in this game, the biggest issue for the Golden Eagles was Henry Ellenson.  The freshman big man had six turnovers, with three of them coming as offensive fouls.  It's been a while since Ellenson was making mistakes that badly.  I get that fouls happen, but Ellenson has mostly had his offensive fouls under control since the first few games of the season.  I can't even point at anyone else for sharing the responsibility for this, as no one else had more than two turnovers.

The defense was great, though.  Derick Newton and Brian Pegg, two of Stetson's highest usage rate players, each had four turnovers.  That's the kind of focus on disrupting the other team's best players that you like to see.  There was a first half/second half split here, too, as Stetson turned it over 24% of the time in the first half, but just 19% in the second.  Again, for the full 40, a good performance by Marquette, but the lapses are lethal.

Offensive Rebounding Rate (OR%)

Marquette: 45.2% (This Season: 29.0%, #200)
Stetson: 36.6% (This Season: 31.2%, #228)

Finally, something that Marquette did well, did much better than usual, AND did a good job with in both halves.  50% of their misses in the first half, 42% of their misses in the second half.  That's an outstanding job of maximizing your offensive potential.  Three guys are essentially entirely responsible for Marquette's performance here: Henry Ellenson (5 OR), Luke Fischer (4), and Jajuan Johnson (4).  I say essentially, because Haanif Cheatham had one, and that's it for the rest of the team.

Now, the defensive rebounding was kind of garbage.  MU's already a questionable defensive rebounding team, and here they were even worse than usual.  To make things even worse, Stetson basically played no one over the height of 6'7", as the 6'9" Drew Romich played just four minutes.  Marquette's running two 7-footers out there (I'm rounding up for effect here, work with me), and still got pounded on the defensive boards.  Memo to Luke Fischer: Please do not finish a game with zero defensive rebounds again, thank you.  Memo to Haanif Cheatham: Thank you for your eight defensive rebounds.

Free Throw Rate (FTR)

Marquette: 38.2% (This Season: 39.4%, #114)
Stetson: 21.3% (This Season: 25.4%, #8)

This was fine.  There was another massive second half flux, as MU had a first half FTR of 62% and a second half performance of just 17.2%, but FTR ultimately doesn't have that much of an impact on the game, so I'm not going to worry about it that much.  There were way too many other bad things happening in the second half to worry about Marquette not getting to the line all that much.