Date: Monday, 2/15/21
Tip-Off Time: 5:00 pm PT
TV: Pac-12 Networks
Radio: KJR 950 AM/KVI 570
Location: Pullman, Washington
Betting line: Washington +7
Washington State Cougars 2020-21 Statistics:
Record: 12-9 (5-9)
Points For per Game: 68.4 ppg (227th)
Points Against per Game: 67.6 ppg (97th)
Adjusted Offensive Efficiency: 101.0 (204th)
Adjusted Defensive Efficiency: 93.8 (37th)
Strength of Schedule: 91st
Washington State Key Players:
G- Isaac Bonton, Sr. 6’3, 190: 18.4 ppg, 4.2 rpg, 4.2 apg, 39.1% FG, 32.1% 3pt, 67.0% FT
In the first game against UW Bonton had 25 points, 7 rebounds, 4 assists, and 5 turnovers.
G- Noah Williams, So. 6’5, 187: 12.5 ppg, 3.1 rpg, 2.1 apg, 42.5% FG, 41.0% 3pt, 79.7% FT
In the first game against UW Williams had 21 points, 6 rebounds, 2 assists, and 3 steals.
F- Andrej Jakimovski, Fr. 6’8, 215: 5.6 ppg, 4.5 rpg, 1.2 apg, 31.0% FG, 30.9% 3pt, 56.3% FT
In the first game against UW Jakimovski had 0 points, 0 rebounds, and 2 turnovers.
C- Efe Abogidi, Fr. 6’10, 225: 8.9 ppg, 7.4 rpg, 1.4 bpg, 47.6 FG, 31.0% 3pt, 83.1% FT
In the first game against UW Abogidi had 13 points, 13 rebounds, and 3 turnovers.
G- Ryan Rapp, Sr. 6’5, 189: 3.9 ppg, 2.8 rpg, 2.3 apg, 33.9% FG, 27.3% 3pt, 63.2% FT
In the first game against UW Rapp had 0 points, 0 rebounds, and 2 turnovers.
F- Dishon Jackson, Fr. 6’10, 235: 3.9 ppg, 2.8 rpg, 2.3 apg, 33.9% FG, 27.3% 3pt, 63.2% FT
In the first game against UW Jackson had 11 points, 3 rebounds, and 2 steals.
Washington State 2020-21 Shot Chart
Shot Chart for Washington State from 1st Game Against Washington
When these two teams first squared off the Huskies were coming off a 2-game home sweep of the Mountain schools and appeared to finally be putting things together. They were viewed as dead even at KenPom: 137th and 138th. Then of course the actual game happened and the Cougars cruised to an easy double digit point win. Since then Washington has lost 4 more in a row with all but Saturday’s game against UCLA coming by double digits. Meanwhile Wazzu has split those same 4 opponents with wins over UCLA and Oregon and the loss at Oregon State happening by just 2 points. Now the Cougars hold a 60 place advantage in the KenPom rankings. What a difference 3 weeks makes.
I’ve chronicled it before but the Huskies have been throttled any time they take on a team that is in the top-20 of the average team height rankings. The Cougars are 12th in that regard and they used that to their advantage. The shot chart above from that first game shows that Washington was eviscerated in the paint. Washington State could do anything they wanted inside and the Huskies were powerless to stop them. That absolutely has to change. Priority number one needs to be fortifying the interior defense and if the Cougars get a couple open looks from behind the arc then make them prove they can consistently knock them down before changing up the plan.
Cougar freshman Efe Agobidi was the primary culprit for Washington’s struggles with his 13 rebounds in 33 minutes. The Cougars got an offensive rebound on 48% of their misses. It’s completely impossible to win a game when your opponents have that many bites at the apple. It’s not exactly a secret that Washington needs to do a better job rebounding on the defensive glass but it will continue to be the primary factor for losses if it continues to happen at that level.
On the offensive end the Huskies have to be more careful with the ball. Noah Williams and Isaac Bonton absolutely know how Washington likes to pass it along the perimeter and were constantly jumping those passing lanes for steals and fast break layups/dunks. Hop has to preach that there can’t be any lazy passes. The Huskies forced 18 Cougar turnovers in the first game but had 19 of their own. That can’t happen to pull off the win in Pullman.
This is the 3rd game in 5 days for both teams. There are going to be some tired legs which may mean that jump shots aren’t falling. Considering the way the first game went that has to be considered an edge for the Cougars. It won’t take the best effort we’ve seen all year from Washington to get the upset but it will take something pretty close to it. Once the Huskies actually get over the hump over the road I’ll think it’s possible.
Washington Huskies- 62, Washington State Cougars- 74
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