Thanks to a suggestion by RiVAHokie, I'm taking this opportunity to do a quick follow-up on a post I made in the February about the drop in scoring output from the 2010-11 season (70.3ppg) to the 2011-12 season (65.1ppg). The TL;DR of that post is that team scoring was down, and that the contributions of the leading scorers were down.
I updated that spreadsheet with the end-of-season stats for 2011-12 and added a line for the 2012-13 stats.
What a difference a season makes.
NOTE: Cells in the Final Four team area that highlighted in green are maximums, and cells highlighted in yellow are minimums.
First off, a quick review of the 2011-12 stats:
- 65.1 points per game was the lowest in the Greenberg era
- 15.6ppg by Erick Green was the lowest from our leading scoring since 2005-06
- 10.9ppg by Dorenzo Hudson was the lowest from our 2nd leading scorer since 2003-04
- Our top 2 scorers contributed 40.7% of the total team scoring, and our top 4 scorers contributed to 66.4% of the total team scoring - both lows under Greenberg
I won't go over the 2012-13 stats as they compare to last season, as the numbers speak for themselves. Our top 4 scorers this season are close to averaging more points per game than the entire 2011-12 squad!
So, what does the stark contrast to last season mean? Here are the only conclusions I can draw:
- Scoring trended down at the end of the Greenberg era, and our offense is leaps & bounds better this season.
- We have a big-time playmaker this season. Erick Green has started this season absolutely red-hot.
Yes, you can file both of those under No shit, Sherlock, but our top guys are making huge contributions this year compared to last year. When I looked at the 2012-13 numbers compared to the previous 9 seasons, I had a Keanu Reeves Woah moment. That said, there's not much else to talk about other than James Johnson is not Seth Greenberg. His offensive philosophy is drastically different, so it's a little unfair to compare the offensive statistics from 7 games to the stats from 9 seasons - even though I did just that.
The real question is: Will we keep winning?
That I don't know. I have not raised my expectations for this season, which were pretty low. In the grand scheme of things, this team hasn't accomplished much. It has beat 5 crappy teams, 1 decent team, and 1 good team. Only one of those wins came outside of the cozy confines of Cassell. The road game at West Virginia this Saturday will provide another solid benchmark for the Hokies. WVU may be 2-3, but they have played a tougher schedule, and road wins against good opponents are tough to come by.
And even though we're getting more contribution from the bench than I expected, we're by no means a deep team. Who knows how we'll respond to the grind of the ACC season. Three day turnarounds aren't bad when you're going from East Tennessee State to Rhode Island to VMI; they're a little different when you're going from Duke to Florida State to @Miami.
So, don't let the excitement of our newly found offense raise your expectations for the season - just enjoy the ride.
PS: Here's a copy of the spreadsheet.