One thing IU ranks high in? Creating turnovers.

  • 01/06/2009 10:38 pm in

Peering at Ken Pomeroy’s ratings, you will see very high numbers next to Indiana’s stats. This is because they rank near the bottom of Division I basketball in a lot of categories. Here’s a quick run through as of yesterday, keeping in mind there are 344 Division-I basketball teams.

Some select offensive stats:

  • Effective FG percentage: 46.9 percent (240th in the nation)
  • Turnover percentage: 28.2 percent (341st in the nation)
  • Offensive rebounding percentage: 32.9 percent (191st in the nation)
  • Adjusted offensive efficiency: 91.6 points per 100 possessions (290th in the nation)

And onwards to defense:

  • Effective field goal percentage: 51.6 percent (263rd in the nation)
  • Turnover percentage: 24.5 percent (33rd in the nation)
  • Offensive rebounding percentage: 35.0 percent (228th in the nation)

Notice anything that sticks out? (Hint: It’s in the title of this post and I’ve bolded it.) Yes, that’s right, you get the gold star: IU opponents are turning the ball over on 24.5 percent of their possessions, good for 33rd best in the nation. Out of all the Hoosiers’ stats, this is their outlier. (If you are unsure of what some of these stats are and would like them explained, peep this and this.)

I noticed this the other week, and have been trying to figure it out since.  Is it luck perhaps? Will conference play significantly alter this number, as IU plays better competition night in and night out? Maybe, but an entire non-conference schedule plus one conference game is a pretty good sample size. Does IU play lockdown defense? Not quite, though their letting up 96.8 points per 100 possessions on the adjusted defensive efficiency tip is good for an OK 98th in the nation.

If I had to take the educated albeit somewhat random guess, I’d venture to say some teams have, how do you say, “played down” to IU’s level. Wake Forest is averaging 16.4 turnovers a game, but against IU they had 24. Gonzaga is sixth — sixth! — in the nation at offensive turnover percentage, as they are turning the ball over to their opponents on 16.5 percent of their possessions. The Hoosiers had them give up two more than their season average.*

*Quick note here: I know I’m sort of breaking a KenPom rule here, as these two examples are turnovers on a per game basis, not per possession. But for the sake of my harebrained idea here, just go with it.

But even going past those two top-tier teams IU has faced, I feel like it’s a case of sloppy begetting sloppy. If the Hoosiers are playing a bit of rag-tag, all-over-the-place brand of basketball, it follows that their opponents are succumbing to it at some points as well.

If this seems totally ridiculous, let me know in the comments. Feel free to agree too, if you’d like.

Filed to:

  • Kelin Blab

    These numbers are a little bit scary when you sit a stare at them for a moment. I know they are freshmen but at what point do the numbers start to decrease. Just from watching I think it ihas been a little better with VJ at point guard….I think

  • That actually makes perfect sense, and it jibes with what mine eyes have seen all season. It also follows that teams can afford to be less careful with the ball against Indiana, and so they are — the games aren't tightly contested matchups but more similar, for top-tier teams, to some sort of JV scrimmage. Sloppy begets sloppy.

    Great work, R.

  • Hoosier_Hound

    I've said it before, and Iowa was a good example of this phenomenon, but in many games they've managed to make the other team play as shitty as they do. How this occurs and whether it will continue is beyond me. One thing is for certain though, it is horrific to watch.

  • Hoosier_Hound

    Ha. I just noticed the picture and it made me chuckle.

  • I noticed this about a month ago when looking at our TO's and the points they've cost us and found it strange.

  • bkust5

    It's from the charges IU gets from all their flops.

    And let's not discount this as a non-conference thing as IU's SOS heading into Big ten play was in the top 40

  • cooper

    What is the stat for Points off Turnovers? Creating turnovers is good but it really only matters if you are scoring off of those turnovers we are creating

  • cooper

    I take back the we…I have created no turnovers nor have I scored off any of them and hate when people use “we” that way….therefore I hate myself right now

  • Bryan

    The numbers on Pomeroy's site bear that out, actually. The turnover rate stat (% of a player's possessions result in turnovers) for Moore is 43.1%. VJ is at 26.9%, and Pomeroy says that point guards usually fall around 20 – 25%, due to the high number of possessions that they have the ball. I know VJ's overall playing time has been limited by injury, but it does seem like things are steadier when he's at the point.

    The only caveat is that according to another stat, assist rate (which tracks the number of assists made while a player is in the game), Moore grades much higher than anyone on the team, so do you trade off more turnovers in order to get better offensive movement during the non-turnover possessions, or do you take slightly better ball control with less offensive movement?

  • BobbyDigital

    hahahahaha. Well played. I am really having trouble picturing the teams who ranked lower than us in some of those categories. Eastern Washington Wesleyan A&M?

  • bkust5

    It’s the charge calls that IU gets from floppin all the time.

    And let’s not discount this as non-conference as IU’s SOS is in the top 40 heading into Big 10 play.

  • bkust5

    It's from the charges IU gets from all their flops.

    And let's not discount this as a non-conference thing as IU's SOS heading into Big ten play was in the top 40

  • cooper

    What is the stat for Points off Turnovers? Creating turnovers is good but it really only matters if you are scoring off of those turnovers we are creating

  • cooper

    I take back the we…I have created no turnovers nor have I scored off any of them and hate when people use “we” that way….therefore I hate myself right now

  • Bryan

    The numbers on Pomeroy's site bear that out, actually. The turnover rate stat (% of a player's possessions result in turnovers) for Moore is 43.1%. VJ is at 26.9%, and Pomeroy says that point guards usually fall around 20 – 25%, due to the high number of possessions that they have the ball. I know VJ's overall playing time has been limited by injury, but it does seem like things are steadier when he's at the point.

    The only caveat is that according to another stat, assist rate (which tracks the number of assists made while a player is in the game), Moore grades much higher than anyone on the team, so do you trade off more turnovers in order to get better offensive movement during the non-turnover possessions, or do you take slightly better ball control with less offensive movement?

  • BobbyDigital

    hahahahaha. Well played. I am really having trouble picturing the teams who ranked lower than us in some of those categories. Eastern Washington Wesleyan A&M?