Monday, March 17, 2008

Tennessee vs. American: Team Preview

A poster that goes by the username Pasadena Eagle has been kind enough to give us his insight on the AU Eagles. The following come from him, so let's thank him for the insight and time.

American University Quick Facts:
Location: Washington, D.C.
Year Founded: Incorporated by act of Congress 1893
Enrollment: 5500 (undergraduate); 4951 (graduate and law school)
Mascot: Eagle
Colors: Red, white, and blue
Athletic Conference: Patriot League
Head Coach: Jeff Jones (2000-present)
2007-2008 Record: 21-12 (10-4, 1st)

Season recap
American University is making their first ever appearance in the NCAA tournament by virtue of their 52-46 victory over Colgate University in the Patriot League Tournament final. The Eagles also won the Patriot League regular season title posting a 10-4 conference mark and possess an overall record of 21-12. The biggest season highlight for the team prior to their tournament championship was the 67-59 victory over Maryland in late December. This victory was the first over their local rival since the 1926-1927 season.

Team recap
As a team, the Eagles average 65.1 pts/game on offense and shoot 44.3% from the field. As a team the Eagles are shooting 40.9% from behind the arc, which is third best in all of Division 1. On defense, the Eagles are giving up 61.8 pts/game on 41.3 % shooting (35.1% 3-pt shooting).

On offense, the Eagles are led by junior Garrison Carr who is averaging 18.1 pts/game and is shooting over 45% from behind the arc. Carr also shoots a respectable 89% from the free throw line. For additional scoring, the Eagles turn to 5-9 point guard Derrick Mercer who is averaging 12.5 pts/game and shoots 44% from 3-pt range. For the majority of the season the starting five additionally consisted of juniors Travis Lay (6.0 pts/game), Bryce Simon (7.2 pts/game), and Cornelio Guibunda (2.6 pts/game). Throughout the season the Eagles have relied essentially on an 8-man rotation with Brian Gilmore (8.7 pts/game), Jordan Nichols (4.2 pts/game), and Frank Borden (2.7 pts/game) seeing significant minutes off the bench. A late season surprise for the Eagles has been the emergence of freshmen guard Nick Hendra, who saw extensive action in the Patriot League tournament due to the knee injury sustained by starter Bryce Simon.

Due to their lack of size (no starter over 6-9), the Eagles will typically play an aggressive man-to-man defense in order to utilize their quickness. Even with their lack of size, the Eagles still out rebounded their usually taller opponents by an average of +2.4/game. One of the problems with this year’s team has been turnovers. The Eagles are -1.5 in turnover margin throughout the year and average 13.6/game.


titanicvol said...

Nice rundown!! Thanks from a Vol fan for taking the time to put this together, and helping us to familiarize ourselves a bit with your school/ team.

thanks again,

bruno said...

Thanks and good luck next week , Go Vols

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