Jan 24 / Rob

JMU Blown Out by Hofstra in the Convo

The Dukes played hosts to Hofstra on Thursday evening. It was a match-up feating the CAA’s top team, and a JMU team that will need to do work to avoid playing in a Pillow Fight Friday game in the CAA tourney. Maybe we’re insane, but we actually thought there was a chance JMU would win this one. Not because of any sort of advantage the Dukes had, but more due to the fact that it seemed like one of those things they due to tease us. We were wrong. Very wrong. Hofstra won going way by the score of 85 to 68. It could have been worse.

Justin Wright-Foreman lead the way for the Pride/Dutchmen, with 23 points despite taking only 11 field goals. He’s good. Eli Pemberton chipped in 20. Overall, Hofstra shot 52% from the field and 45% from long range. Good shooting for sure. Less than stellar defense from the Dukes too though. Stuckey Mosley paced the Dukes with 19 points and was one of four Dukes in double-figures. Here are three quick numbers that stood out from the game.

0

That’s the number of minutes played by senior forward Develle Phillips. Look, we know he’s not Luka Doncic, but he’s a scrappy player who can be an X factor some nights. He’s got the type of game that could have disrupted an efficient, high scoring team like Hofstra. He can rebound, finish put backs, and play aggressive defense. If nothing else, he’d give JMU 5 more fouls to give. And shooting free throws was about the only thing Hofstra didn’t do well tonight. Phillips wasn’t going to win this game on his own, or any game for that matter. But he could have at least made himself a nuisance (in a good way) and completely ruined Hofstra’s flow. We have no clue what goes on behind the scenes, but nothing he’s done on the court merits him being glued to the bench. He’s inconsistent. That makes him just like every one of his teammates.

1.214

That’s Hofstra’s points per possession for the game. Wowzers. That’s really good. For the sake of comparison, Gonzaga is the most efficient team in the country and the Zags average 1.209 points per possession. Hofstra was 5th at 1.148 heading into the game, so they’re no slouches, But still, the JMU defense wasn’t even much of a speed bump this game. Hofstra scored in the half court game, scored off turnovers, and scored on second chance buckets. The Dukes were lucky Hofstra had an uncharacteristically off night from the line, or the final score would have been much worse. The Pride made only 69% of their attempts from the line. That’s a good thing, because they were able to get to the line with ease, attempting 29 free throws on just 54 FG attempts. That’s what happens when a team attacks the basket. On the other hand, when a team sits back and settles for shots, they rarely get to the stripe. Just like JMU did with 15 free throws on 59 FGs. Ugh.

14

That’s the number of games in a row Hofstra had won coming into this contest. The streak is now 15 (because math). Hofstra is a good team. Perhaps a very good team. That’s not an excuse for the Dukes. JMU could have, and should have been able to be more competitive. But this game was a shining example of how far JMU has to go to catch up to the real contenders in the CAA. JMU has more talent on this squad, than many past JMU teams. But Hofstra had better players, playing a better team game. The Dukes can’t count on shooting lights out like they did against CofC if they really want to beat the top CAA teams. There’s work to do. A lot of it.

One Comment

leave a comment
  1. Mike in Ohio / Jan 25 2019

    To show how far down JMU basketball has gone in fan interest, I totally forgot they had payed last night until this morning and I usually tune in via MAdizone or WSVA for nearly every game. Just not much interest as the team does not seem to have much of an “identity” where one connects with them and the coach cannot seem to articulate what he is trying to get the team to accomplish. As you pointed out, Hofstra is good and they obviously were very efficient on offense but JMU’s defense seems very porous. Not just this game but all season. Another disappointing year for basketball.

Leave a Comment