Tip-off: Thurs., 7pm @ Leavey
Line: Torvik- Broncos -13.5, 87% win prob; ESPN- 87% win prob, no line yet.
The Toreros are 11-14 on the season, 4-7 in the WCC, coming off the upset win over LMU. They had a decent win over USF early in league play; other two league wins are over Pepperdine.
Top Players / Stats:
- 6-7, 230lb forward Marcellus Earlington (17.5pts, 6.8rebs, 38% from 3)
- 6-7 forward Eric Williams Jr. (14.5pts, 9.5rebs, 37% from 3)
- 6-4 guard Jase Townsend (15.4pts, 2.7 assists, 37% from 3)
- 6-3 guard Seikou Sisoho Jawara (11.3pts, 3 assists, 38% from 3)
USD is a bit like Pacific and Portland, have had a revolving door of lineups, injuries, etc. Stanford transfer forward Jaiden Delaire has missed half the season, returned for a game but missed the LMU game and was apparently in a walking boot so don’t expect him to play. Eric Williams also missed the LMU game with an injury, not sure his status. Given all that, hard to stay who will start and what their rotation will look like.
Earlington is wide bodied and can score at all levels and presents a bit of a match-up challenge. Williams has been a beast on the glass at both ends. Broncos will need to block out those two and play with the physicality we saw @ USF.
3pt D will be something to keep an eye on again. USD doesn’t rely heavily on 3’s and they don’t have any lights out shooters but the 4 guys listed above are all capable.
Looking at advance analytics, USD is terrible on defense, last in the WCC and ranked ~350ish in the nation. Their eFG% is near the bottom in the country, they don’t have much rim protection and they are below average defensive rebounding team. Much like the USF game, this is one where our bigger front court and good sized wings have an edge, we need to take advantage of it attacking the rim and glass.
I want to see the Broncos play with the aggression and energy we saw vs. USF and take care of the little boring things (limit our TO’s, make FT’s, etc.). And hopefully Sendek has now seen enough of what Tilly and Tongue can do that we see both of them get solid minutes. Tongue in particular may be well suited to guard Earlington.
Prediction: Broncos 86-74 in a high scoring affair.