Monday, December 19, 2016

MAAC Monday: Possessions per game and PPP for/against, stat leaders, power rankings

King Rice and Monmouth are owners of MAAC's best efficiency margin with one more week before resumption of league play. (Photo by Vincent Simone/NYC Buckets)

The first stat breakdown of MAAC Monday focuses on possessions and points per possession, highlighting the tempo of each Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference team both for and against. From there, we segue into stat leaders and bring down the curtain in our usual fashion with the latest set of power rankings. As always, any statistics reflected here were gleaned from the individual stat pages of each school's website.

Possessions per game, from highest to lowest:
1) Manhattan (76.73)
2) Fairfield (74.44)
3) Quinnipiac (74.4)
4) Canisius (73.58)
5) Monmouth (73.55)
6) Rider (72.91)
7) Niagara (71.83)
8) Siena (71.82)
9) Iona (71.5)
10) Marist (70.91)
11) Saint Peter's (66.6)

Analysis: Manhattan, which prides itself on pushing the ball up the floor at the same breakneck pace that their defense is known for when trying to turn opposing teams over, tops the league in possessions through the first month of the season, and the explanation for that is twofold. Not only are the Jaspers a deeper unit than they were at this point a year ago, which enables Steve Masiello to rotate more personnel in and out to; in essence, extend games, they are also maximizing their trips down the floor by getting to the free throw line with their physical style of play. Fairfield, last year's leader in possessions thanks to a commitment to sharing the ball and playing uptempo, remains right near the top as Sydney Johnson and the Stags have adjusted well to life without Marcus Gilbert. The big surprise, though, is Quinnipiac. The Bobcats have traditionally played at a slower tempo through their first several years in the MAAC, but Tom Moore has seen a schedule filled with strong high and mid-major teams push his team to new heights in games. Whether or not that trend continues as MAAC play resumes in two weeks remains to be seen, but regardless, it is a step in the right direction for a team picked tenth in the preseason poll and somewhat underrated considering the emergence of freshmen Mikey Dixon and Peter Kiss.

On the other end of the spectrum, Iona is somewhat behind their usual possession count, and that can be explained with the Gaels' defense; something that never gets enough credit in the shadow of their powerful offensive attack, coming to the forefront through most of the first month of the season. Just as surprising as Quinnipiac is Saint Peter's status as the distant trailer, a full four possessions behind tenth-place Marist. John Dunne's offense has gone for 80 or more points in each of the Peacocks' four wins this year, but the same grind-it-out mentality still remains on the defensive end of the floor, where the Jersey City program has not shied away from its roots.

Points per possession, from highest to lowest:
1) Iona (1.076)
2) Monmouth (1.073)
3) Canisius (1.067)
4) Niagara (1.04)
5) Siena (1.03)
6) Quinnipiac (1.02)
7) Fairfield (0.994)
8) Saint Peter's (0.986)
9) Rider (0.985)
10) Marist (0.982)
11) Manhattan (0.94)

Analysis: Iona, Monmouth and Canisius were among the top three in offensive efficiency last season, so to see each one lead the pack is par for the course. The first name behind them, however, throws the casual fan for a loop. Niagara may still be coming together, but Chris Casey has gotten his Purple Eagles to score the basketball more than any other point in his tenure. Seven of Niagara's twelve games have seen the 70-point plateau eclipsed, two of which accounted for 90 or more points. As far as Manhattan being significantly behind the rest of the field, that figure is still slightly inflated by the 88-possession game against West Virginia most notable for the Jaspers' 46 percent turnover rate in a 108-61 loss to the nationally-ranked Mountaineers. If you throw that game out, Manhattan's points per possession total stands at 0.97, still last of eleven but much more symbolic of the staunch defense that has returned to Riverdale in recent weeks.

Points per possession against, from lowest to highest:
1) Rider (0.95)
2) Monmouth (0.98)
3) Fairfield (0.987)
4) Saint Peter's (1.00)
5) Iona (1.03)
6) Siena (1.05)
7) Quinnipiac (1.086)
8) Canisius (1.09)
9) Niagara (1.11)
10) Marist (1.15)
11) Manhattan (1.20)

Analysis: It continues to boggle the mind that Kevin Baggett never gets enough credit for the job he does year in and year out keeping Rider among the MAAC's best defenses. The Broncs gave up among the fewest points per possession last season, and are on pace to equal their stingy efforts again with the minuscule 0.95 figure they currently stand at through their 8-3 start. Monmouth was firmly in the top two of this category last year and is again, but Fairfield has become a silent force on defense to join the two New Jersey schools as the only teams in the league giving up less than a point per possession. Together, those three and Iona are the only MAAC teams with positive efficiency margins to date this season.

Next week's opening segment will open our profiling of the four factors, taking a look at offensive and defensive effective field goal percentages, a statistic that will highlight each team's propensity for taking and allowing the three-point shot.

Scoring Leaders
1) Tyler Nelson, Fairfield (20.2 PPG)
2) Jordan Washington, Iona (17.9)

3) Khallid Hart, Marist (17.8)
4) Kassius Robertson, Canisius (17.7)
5) Zavier Turner, Manhattan (17.1)
6) Matt Scott, Niagara (17.0)
7) Jermaine Crumpton, Canisius (16.7)
8) Justin Robinson, Monmouth (16.6)
9) Kahlil Dukes, Niagara (16.5)
10) Marquis Wright, Siena (16.3)

Rebounding Leaders
1) Amadou Sidibe, Fairfield (11.1 RPG)
2) Kahlil Thomas, Rider (9.8)
3) Brett Bisping, Siena (9.4)
4) Quadir Welton, Saint Peter's (8.0)
5) Norville Carey, Rider (7.5)
6) Zane Waterman, Manhattan (7.4)
7) Matt Scott, Niagara (6.9)
8) Jordan Washington, Iona (6.6)
9) Chris Brady, Monmouth (6.5)
10) Dominic Robb, Niagara (6.3)

Assist Leaders
1) Stevie Jordan, Rider (5.6)
2) Justin Robinson, Monmouth (5.1)
3) Marquis Wright, Siena (4.8)
4) Rickey McGill, Iona (4.8)
5) Jerome Segura, Fairfield (4.4)
6) Malik Johnson, Canisius (4.0)
7) Phil Winston, Quinnipiac (3.9)
8) Sam Cassell Jr., Iona (3.6)
9) Kahlil Dukes, Niagara (3.3)
T-10) Khallid Hart, Marist (3.2)
T-10) Zavier Turner, Manhattan (3.2)

Field Goal Percentage Leaders
1) Chris Brady, Monmouth (.627)
2) Jordan Washington, Iona (.615)
3) Amadou Sidibe, Fairfield (.596)
4) Kahlil Thomas, Rider (.550)
5) Jermaine Crumpton, Canisius (.534)
6) Chaise Daniels, Quinnipiac (.528)
7) Zane Waterman, Manhattan (.523)
T-8) Kiefer Douse, Canisius (.500)
T-8) Javion Ogunyemi, Siena (.500)
T-8) Dominic Robb, Niagara (.500)

Free Throw Percentage Leaders
1) Jon Severe, Iona (.955)
2) Kahlil Dukes, Niagara (.952)
3) Zavier Turner, Manhattan (.912)
4) Tyler Nelson, Fairfield (.880)
5) Mikey Dixon, Quinnipiac (.800)
6) Matt Scott, Niagara (.789)
7) Phil Valenti, Canisius (.788)
8) Justin Robinson, Monmouth (.784)
9) Kassius Robertson, Canisius (.775)
10) Chris Barton, Niagara (.759)

Three-Point Field Goal Percentage Leaders
1) Jermaine Crumpton, Canisius (.561)
2) Je'lon Hornbeak, Monmouth (.491)
3) EJ Crawford, Iona (.477)
4) Kassius Robertson, Canisius (.467)
5) Calvin Crawford, Manhattan (.462)
6) Zavier Turner, Manhattan (.453)
7) Jon Severe, Iona (.451)
8) Zane Waterman, Manhattan (.441)
9) Nick Griffin, Saint Peter's (.431)
10) Ryan Funk, Marist (.420)

Power Rankings
1) Monmouth (9-2, 2-0 MAAC)
Last Week:

Last Game: Tuesday 12/13 at Memphis (W 82-79)
Next Game: Tuesday 12/20 vs. Princeton, 7 p.m.

2) Iona (7-3, 1-1 MAAC)
Last Week:

Last Game: Wednesday 12/14 vs. NJIT (W 94-80)
Next Game: Wednesday 12/21 vs. UC Santa Barbara, 3:15 p.m. (South Point Holiday Hoops Classic)

3) Rider (8-3, 1-1 MAAC)
Last Week:

Last Game: Sunday 12/18 at North Carolina A&T (W 60-59)
Next Game: Thursday 12/22 at UMass, 7 p.m.

4) Fairfield (5-4, 1-1 MAAC)
Last Week:

Last Game: Sunday 12/18 at NC State (L 99-78)
Next Game: Wednesday 12/21 vs. Boston College, 6 p.m. (Birthday of Basketball Classic)

5) Canisius (7-5, 1-1 MAAC)
Last Week:

Last Game: Saturday 12/17 vs. Buffalo (W 94-87)
Next Game: Thursday 12/22 at St. Bonaventure, 7 p.m.

6) Siena (4-7, 1-1 MAAC)
Last Week:

Last Game: Saturday 12/17 vs. Bucknell (W 71-68)
Next Game: Thursday 12/22 at Hofstra, 7 p.m.

7) Saint Peter's (4-6, 1-1 MAAC)
Last Week:

Last Game: Sunday 12/18 vs. Elon (L 68-53)
Next Game: Friday 12/23 at St. Francis Brooklyn, 2 p.m.

8) Quinnipiac (4-6, 1-1 MAAC)
Last Week:

Last Game: Sunday 12/18 at Maine (W 85-75)
Next Game: Wednesday 12/21 vs. Drexel, 7 p.m.

9) Manhattan (3-8, 0-2 MAAC)
Last Week:

Last Game: Saturday 12/17 vs. Florida State (L 83-67)
Next Game: Tuesday 12/20 vs. St. Francis Brooklyn, 7 p.m.

10) Marist (4-7, 1-1 MAAC)
Last Week:

Last Game: Saturday 12/10 vs. Jacksonville (L 85-64)
Next Game: Tuesday 12/20 at Delaware, 7 p.m.

11) Niagara (3-9, 1-1 MAAC)
Last Week:

Last Game: Saturday 12/17 vs. St. Bonaventure (L 79-69)
Next Game: Wednesday 12/21 at LIU Brooklyn, 7 p.m.


  1. What's happened to Siena? A senior-laden team with a 4-7 record?So much promise,so little to show for it!

    1. Siena has not played with its Senior-Laden team at full capacity yet. They have also played the toughest OOC schedule in the MAAC. Add suspensions and injuries and it was a rough start. 1-1 in the MAAC is not anything to panic about. Looking forward to a competitive season