Oakland Preview: Is this a rivalry or not?

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Oakland Preview: Is this a rivalry or not?

Postby Commissioner » Thu Jan 30, 2020 10:27 pm

Oakland

When: 7:00 p.m., Friday, January 31, 2020
Where: Historic Calihan Hall
TV: ESPN 3, WADL-38
Radio: AM 910

So, is this a rivalry or not? Since OU entered the league in the fall of 2013, they've beaten the Titans 11 of 13, including 6 in a row. Think about this: if we win this week, and then keep beating OU, we won't even the series (since 2013 anyway) until late in the 2024 season. I've written elsewhere that the series was, at least for a few years, closer than the ultimate W/L tally suggested. But as I've also been noting elsewhere, this ain't horse shoes, and close doesn't count. If this is going to be a real rivalry, we need to win now and then.

There's no reason why the Titans shouldn't win on Friday. The game is at Calihan. The Titans have been playing better of late, and OU is, frankly reeling.

Oakland enters this game having lost 4 in a row, 7 of 8, and 11 of 13 (unfortunately, one of those two wins was over the Titans). Oakland started the season plausibly well, and was 5-4, with no distinguishing wins or losses, after beating Western Michigan in Kalamazoo in early December. They lost their next game by 3 at Bowling Green--no shame in that--but then the roof fell in. They were hammered at Michigan State; lost soundly at Syracuse, and then lost at home to a very average Fairfield team. They rebounded to beat our Titans at home, but have lost that 7 of 8 since. Did things bottom out last week-end, when the Grizzlies were slaughtered at home by 30 points by UIC, and then lost to IUPUI? Let's hope the Titans respond and drive them lower.

Oakland had expected a lot more out of this season. Even after the off-season transfers of Braden Norris and Jaevin Cumberland, they were expected to be in the top half of the league. Their front line looked to be the best in the conference with Xavier Hill-Mais, a returning all-conference player; Brad Brechting, who averaged almost 17 points and over 10 rebounds over the last 11 games of the 2019 season; and promising juco Daniel Oladapo, who won the league Player of the Week recognition in the opening week of this season.

OU's problem is no secret--lack of guard play, and especially weakness at point guard. Braden Norris, last year's surprise star at the point, became the surprise spring transfer, and Greg Kampe hasn't found an adequate replacement. Some were hoping it would be freshman C.J. Gettelfinger, but Gettelfinger was nowhere near ready. He hasn't played 10 minutes in a game since the Michigan State loss, and didn't play at all last weekend. The rumor is that he will transfer after the season. The point job initially fell to Kevin Kangu, a juco transfer. Kangu has done OK--he averages almost 4 assists per game, makes an occasional three, doesn't turn it over too much. But he not's a standout in any area and hasn't been able to really make OU click. Tray Maddox got a shot, but while he's a good player, he's really not a point guard. Madison Monroe, a freshman, and Blake Lampman and Zach Goodline, a pair of freshman walk-ons, all got a shot.

For the last two weeks, Rashad Williams, the sophomore transfer from Cleveland State, has gotten his turn. Williams, you may recall, sought a waiver of the mandatory transfer redshirt year, which was finally granted in mid-January. At that point, with half the season gone, I'm a bit surprised that Kampe didn't opt to redshirt Williams. But apparently he felt that this season could still be salvaged (or maybe that if you redshirt them, they'll just leave for year 5 anyway). Williams is a good player, but coming in in mid-January is difficult. Others have been playing real games for more than two months, and are in mid-season form, while the new guy may find his timing a bit off, or his reactions a bit slow. Anyway, Williams has shot under 30%, with 13 turnovers and just 8 assists, and OU is 0-4 with Williams.

The bottom line is that OU has one of the most inefficient offenses in the country, #288 according to Ken Pom. Historically, OU played efficient offense behind a series of quality point guards (from 2007 through 2016 OU was in the top 100 in offensive efficiency every year). But this year the personnel simply doesn't fit Kampe's style. Other traditional OU strengths--three point shooting and free throw shooting--just aren't there, either (OU is shooting 29% from three and 68% from the line). The members of Oakland's vaunted front line have often seemed merely to be in one another's way. Recently, Kampe has tried to spread the floor and give the bigs room to operate by pulling Oladapo out of the starting lineup, but the team is just 1-5 since the change.

OU won the December meeting mainly on the defensive end. The Titans outrebounded that big OU front line, but shot a meagre 27% from the field, and couldn't get anything in the paint--46 of their 66 shots came from outside the arc, and the Titans were just 6-20 from inside the line. It took Detroit more than 6 minutes just to score, and they never made it back from that 0-14 opening deficit. Detroit stayed in it, to the extent it did, with free throw shooting (21 of 24, including 12-12 by AD) and rebounding (Brandon had 18). Hill-Mais had 19 points and 10 rebounds, for OU, and Lampman made 4 of 9 from three. Oakland has played very physical defense against the Titans in recent years, particularly hounding Antoine Davis. This game literally could depend on how the refs call it--if they call it tight, Detroit's foul shooting will come into play even as the Titans will have more room to operate and spring Davis for open looks. If they "let 'em play," Detroit could again have trouble in the paint.

We know that Kampe gets his team up for this game. But at this point, the Titans are playing much better ball than OU, and we'll be playing at home. If this is a real rivalry, the Titans need to win it.

Probable Oakland Starters
PG: Rashad Williams, 6-2 Soph., (13.5 ppg, 2.0 apg, 28.9% 3PtFG)
SG: Blake Lampman, 6-1 Fr., (6.9 ppg, 35.5% 3PtFG)
G/SF: Tray Maddox, 6-5 Soph., (9.0 ppg, 2.8 rpg, 33.7% 3PtFG)
PF: Xavier Hill-Mais, 6-7 Sr., (15.7 ppg, 7.6 rpg)
C: Brad Brechting, 6-11 Sr. (10.0 ppg, 6.5 rpg)

Key Reserves
PG: Kevin Kangu, 6-4 Jr., (6.0 ppg, 3.7 apg, 24.1% 3PtFG)
PG: Madison Monroe, 6-3 Fr. (2.6 ppg)
G: Kenny Pittman, 6-3 Soph. (1.3 ppg)
PF: Daniel Oladapo, 6-7 Soph., (8.5 ppg, 5.6 rpg)
F: Jackie Harris, 6-6 Fr. (1.8 ppg)
Last edited by Commissioner on Fri Jan 31, 2020 5:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Oakland Preview: Is this a rivalry or not?

Postby UDDRUMMER » Fri Jan 31, 2020 8:47 am

Thanks Commish, great preview!!

With the turnover of horizon league teams our previous rivals....they gone (Butler, Valpo, Loyola). The league has changed and it is what it is. For now this is the only "rivalry" type game on our schedule.

With Oakland's inexperienced guard play, I would like to see our guys apply press to create turnovers. It's always a physical contest, offense has to get going early and stay strong throughout the course of the game.
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Re: Oakland Preview: Is this a rivalry or not?

Postby titanmac » Fri Jan 31, 2020 12:36 pm

need to eliminate the cold spells. going 5 minutes stretches without a bucket doesn't do much for the w/l record. need to play steady and consistently. if the three's aren't falling pound it inside.
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Re: Oakland Preview: Is this a rivalry or not?

Postby Dick Vitale » Fri Jan 31, 2020 10:28 pm

Apparently, its not a rivalry.
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Re: Oakland Preview: Is this a rivalry or not?

Postby NC Titan » Sat Feb 01, 2020 12:16 am

Dick Vitale wrote:Apparently, its not a rivalry.


Agree.

We could win every game for the rest of the schedule and two losses against Oakland mean this is still a bad season.
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Re: Oakland Preview: Is this a rivalry or not?

Postby titanmac » Sat Feb 01, 2020 1:34 am

liked the grittiness against a stronger tougher team. we got beat up on the boards which hasn't happened all that much this year. sophomores. wait'l next year!

ps. i still love watching miller. once he got into it he was makin brechting look like a kid in the alley. had him
fouled out with 8 minutes to play with an over the back. ref let it go even tho it was right in front of him. lotta bad calls this game. not an excuse.
In Greek mythology, the Titans were greater even than the gods. They ruled their universe with absolute power! Well that basketball court out there tonight, that's our universe. Let's rule it like Titans! (with apologies to coach boon)
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Re: Oakland Preview: Is this a rivalry or not?

Postby JDetroitTitan » Sat Feb 01, 2020 3:16 am

titanmac wrote:liked the grittiness against a stronger tougher team. we got beat up on the boards which hasn't happened all that much this year. sophomores. wait'l next year!

ps. i still love watching miller. once he got into it he was makin brechting look like a kid in the alley. had him
fouled out with 8 minutes to play with an over the back. ref let it go even tho it was right in front of him. lotta bad calls this game. not an excuse.


I am not sure on this but do ref have to review a Tech? I did not see once a review. Also why so many T on both sides. I don’t think they needed to call some many. But like you said not an excuses.
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Re: Oakland Preview: Is this a rivalry or not?

Postby ptctitan » Sat Feb 01, 2020 9:16 am

I think this officiating crew thought this game was about them and not the players. I had no sense throughout the game what constituted a block, a charge, a flop or whatever. It seemed like this crew wanted to use the game to make a statement about themselves and their view of certain rules. I thought they made a bad game even worse.

However, the failure of Brandon and Moore to play well was the difference. Normally, they play 34-40 minutes per game. Both played only 20 minutes. Moore was 0 for the game. Brandon was in foul trouble 3 minutes into the game. He sat out 15 minutes in the first half. Had one of them been able to play well for over 30 minutes, we could have offset the ridiculous foul imbalance and the 11 point free throw disparity awarded OU. To see both of them revert to their former poor way of playing in this game was the most disappointing aspect of last night.
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Re: Oakland Preview: Is this a rivalry or not?

Postby dennycrane » Sat Feb 01, 2020 1:00 pm

This game was about Oakland having a serviceable big and the bulky Mais and Chris Brandon's foul trouble is very much related to having to battle them. No. 4 Oladipo is effective on the boards as well. It isn't that Chris didn't play well; he was in early foul trouble and couldn't stay in the lineup. Kampe also had an effective game plan, as he usually does. There are always a few bad calls but they didn't decide this game.
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Re: Oakland Preview: Is this a rivalry or not?

Postby ptctitan » Sat Feb 01, 2020 1:49 pm

dennycrane wrote:This game was about Oakland having a serviceable big and the bulky Mais and Chris Brandon's foul trouble is very much related to having to battle them. No. 4 Oladipo is effective on the boards as well. It isn't that Chris didn't play well; he was in early foul trouble and couldn't stay in the lineup. Kampe also had an effective game plan, as he usually does. There are always a few bad calls but they didn't decide this game.


Not blaming the ref's. Just noting the foul discrepancy and their collective judgment about what is a block, charge, etc compared to every other HL crew that has officiated our games. I've never seen more than 1 flop called in any college game this year. Their collective judgment on how to call a game, while "technically" OK, was far different than any other crew I've seen in any league this season. It made the game even more unpleasant to watch because the play kept getting stopped every 30 seconds by a whistle.
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Re: Oakland Preview: Is this a rivalry or not?

Postby titanmac » Sun Feb 02, 2020 2:07 pm

i have rarely seen a well called game in the hl. :lol: :lol: :lol:
In Greek mythology, the Titans were greater even than the gods. They ruled their universe with absolute power! Well that basketball court out there tonight, that's our universe. Let's rule it like Titans! (with apologies to coach boon)
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Re: Oakland Preview: Is this a rivalry or not?

Postby titandave » Sun Feb 02, 2020 11:54 pm

dennycrane wrote:This game was about Oakland having a serviceable big and the bulky Mais and Chris Brandon's foul trouble is very much related to having to battle them. No. 4 Oladipo is effective on the boards as well. It isn't that Chris didn't play well; he was in early foul trouble and couldn't stay in the lineup. Kampe also had an effective game plan, as he usually does. There are always a few bad calls but they didn't decide this game.


Totally agree, we're in dire need of a big who is effective at both ends of the floor. Hope springs eternal; Boe develops into that type of player.
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Re: Oakland Preview: Is this a rivalry or not?

Postby JDetroitTitan » Mon Feb 03, 2020 12:19 pm

We needed to keep feeding Miller. OU can not develop a Big man. The last time we won we could of mirror that game. We let Hogan go to work in the post (an undersized big man) and he eat up OU.

We could of done the same thing with Miller. Brad had four fouls and couldn't even come close to being able to guard miller clean. From my view it was laughable how bad defensively Brad (trying not to commit foul) was guarding Miller. Yes Brad was fouling Miller all day off the ball to stop us from passing the ball down low and the ref weren't calling it (and yes it appeared Miller was cramping up in his legs and who know how long he could handle the work load). But you needed to keep going there until Kampe adjusted his defense.

Willy is a good player force to play a position he doesn't have good fundamentals too. This is the biggest problem on this team. We needed some guys that can play the 5 spot but we only have one that truly can. Willy doesn't know how to use his length to his advantage down low and plays kind of soft. Has no foot work or post moves when down low (don't know if it is a confident thing or he doesn't have it because he is trying to learn a new position). He also was doing a good job of boxing out at times. This is a big disadvantage against OU who in my eyes have always had just big guys that aren't good at playing the position. Brad is just a tall guy that can't play defense (with out fouling) and isn't that big of an offensive threat when he has a body on him down low (that is big enough) . Hill-Mais just a big guy not fast and doesn't have a light touch on the ball to score. Off there bench with Oladapo would crunch up his body when underneath the basket to score which tells me he doesn't know how to use his size and length.

OU came in going at Brandon to get him in foul trouble. This would take force off the post. They know even though it appears they have Bigs they can be exploited. We needed to go at them like Milwaukee game. Feed down low use the wings to attack by driving one and using the other one to shoot the three. They would of had to adjust letting use play are A game by shooting the three. But when you have players looking confused/arguing on the court well you need to call a time out and get them refocus (my only issue with the coach during the game).

The last thing is that players need to play to win and not make highlight. Guy shooting threes fading away out of bounce. Guy(s) shoot from almost the logo at center court. I don't see anyone of these guys warming up shooting these types of shots one after another but in the game a see a half dozen of them. Three words "Catch and Shoot".(Davis, Brad, Willy, Moore...ect). That is how you practice it before the game and on your own time with the shooting machine that is why you guys are good at making those types of shots.
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Re: Oakland Preview: Is this a rivalry or not?

Postby ptctitan » Mon Feb 03, 2020 1:00 pm

We took a step backwards on Friday. OU remained a bad match-up against us in both size and front-line experience. But that game is over. Nothing can be changed about it.

What we can change is the future. We have bigger challenges ahead of us this weekend. Learn from our mistakes and just play better. Our guys have shown that they can play better and that they can bounce back from adversity. They will have to do it again this weekend.
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Re: Oakland Preview: Is this a rivalry or not?

Postby titandave » Mon Feb 03, 2020 2:18 pm

Regarding a post player for the 2020-21 season, I'm wondering if Austin Davis would be interested in UDM as a graduate transfer. This season, Austin is a role player at U of M and next season the Wolverines have several very highly rated C/PF players slated to enrolled.
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Re: Oakland Preview: Is this a rivalry or not?

Postby titanmac » Mon Feb 03, 2020 2:58 pm

agree with jd as concerns the brechting/miller matchup. i'm not sure where the breakdown was but after miller forced brechting's 4th with about 11 minutes to play i thought miller's finesse would get brechting out in minutes. the feeds stopped coming and the no call over miller's back didn't help. that was a pretty flagrant and perhaps critical no call, btw.
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Re: Oakland Preview: Is this a rivalry or not?

Postby ptctitan » Mon Feb 03, 2020 4:17 pm

Miller was recruited to play power forward alongside a post player. When we were unable land a true big for this season, Miller has been pressed into service as a 6'6" center against players as tall as Brechting when it was intended for him to play against players like Hill-Mais. For next season, obviously we need to land a taller guy for the middle. A player like Austin Davis would have to want to play here instead of making a lateral move to another team in a different power conference. Not all players are a good fit for Mike Davis' coaching style. Also, we need to upgrade our facilities for players even more if we want to have a reasonable chance to land players on fan-created wish lists. But, yes, a player like Austin Davis would likely help us in the HL.
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Re: Oakland Preview: Is this a rivalry or not?

Postby NC Titan » Mon Feb 03, 2020 11:27 pm

titandave wrote:Regarding a post player for the 2020-21 season, I'm wondering if Austin Davis would be interested in UDM as a graduate transfer. This season, Austin is a role player at U of M and next season the Wolverines have several very highly rated C/PF players slated to enrolled.


Does he have any tie to Detroit Mercy?
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Re: Oakland Preview: Is this a rivalry or not?

Postby JDetroitTitan » Tue Feb 04, 2020 11:47 am

titandave wrote:Regarding a post player for the 2020-21 season, I'm wondering if Austin Davis would be interested in UDM as a graduate transfer. This season, Austin is a role player at U of M and next season the Wolverines have several very highly rated C/PF players slated to enrolled.


I don't think we could get this type of player you would be better going to schoolcraft college and trying to poach Ngoucheme Mahmadou 7'1" and he has two more years left. This coach staff does a good job on developing players of what I have seen. (Will be a project)
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Re: Oakland Preview: Is this a rivalry or not?

Postby titandave » Tue Feb 04, 2020 3:31 pm

NC Titan wrote:
titandave wrote:Regarding a post player for the 2020-21 season, I'm wondering if Austin Davis would be interested in UDM as a graduate transfer. This season, Austin is a role player at U of M and next season the Wolverines have several very highly rated C/PF players slated to enrolled.


Does he have any tie to Detroit Mercy?


As I re-call, Coach McCallum and his staff displayed interest in Austin Davis when he was attending high school in Onsted, Michigan. However, no offer from UDM when he graduate HS in 2016.
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