Breaking Down the Georgia-LSU Game

The Georgia-LSU game has been recapped, but in this Film Room edition you will get to see the Good, Bad and Ugly from last night’s game.

Georgia-LSU went from an ugly game to a fast paced game to a blowout to an unexpected thriller.  LSU decimated Georgia’s depth last night with help from Georgia’s man-to-man defense, beneficial calls and a shameful Georgia half court offense in the first half.  For the stats and descriptive breakdown of the game, please check out the abbreviated recap from last night.

First Half Offense

This possession was a set that featured a glorified weave and screen pattern that set up Kenny Gaines to shoot a challenged three point attempt.  There was no effort to attack the basket at all.  J.J. Frazier’s left handed, but he can dribble with his right hand and there was a clear baseline driving lane that he can attack if Houston Kessler screened from the other side or set a back screen.

A pair of downscreens did not exactly work to free up anyone.  Eventually, the set is clearly snuffed out and there was not much going on in it.  It was run in a lethargic fashion and interestingly Ogbeide was able to draw a defender up as a passer on the perimeter.  Regardless, it was an ugly possession that would end in a heroic effort.

This is a half court set that did work and it gave Mike Edwards an opportunity to work his way into the low post from a Charles Mann pass in the high post.  The design was actually not too bad as Edwards served as a screener and freed up Mann to receive a pass.  It ultimately had the same sort of effect as a screen and roll. Edwards worked his way down into good position against Ben Simmons and got the bucket right by the restricted arc.

If it looks like Craig Victor was giving Yante Maten an embrace, your eyes are not fooling you.  Yes, there was a foul as Victor cannot give Maten a “hug” like that.   The action is 4-out 1-in within this set and it features J.J. Frazier having to make a tough dribble in retreat from the wing to swing the action the other way.  The mistakes and flaws in the set are easy to point out:

  1. The screen on Charles Mann’s cut to the basket was completely whiffed by Derek Ogbeide.
  2. Even if the screen worked, the pass to get it to Mann would have been extremely difficult and it may not have been in time.
  3. Charles Mann possibly took the wrong route to the basket, which may explain for Ogbeide’s issues with the screen.  No matter the explanation, it was poorly executed and defended rather easily.
  4. Kenny Paul Geno’s cross screen was snuffed out, he would have been freed up by the cross screen to catch a pass and make a shot attempt in the restricted arc.
  5. The cross screen action was completely snuffed out because Ben Simmons sagged down with Derek Ogbeide at the top of the key.

The sudden stop by J.J. Frazier at the Free Throw Line followed by a lag pass to Yante Maten in this likely 4-out 1-in look did not have everyone on the same page.

The screen and roll at the beginning of the set was aborted and then J.J. Frazier pulled out and called for a new set.  The action that resulted was in the interest of creating a triangle and two-man game on the other side.   The problem was that the triangle screen was executed and Charles Mann felt that the pass to an open Kenny Paul Geno was too difficult to execute.  Was it really?  The amount of spacing could certainly be considered a concern, but Geno was able to take quick pass in the direction of the basket and if there was contact this officiating crew was going to call it.


The video quality kept going in and out with WatchESPN (by the way all these videos are courtesy of the “Worldwide Leader in Sports”) so please bear with it.  Ben Simmons is the same height and weight as Mike Edwards, but he’s a more muscular and skilled basketball player.  There’s a difference between a freshman that will be the #1 pick in the 2016 NBA Draft and a freshman with a lot of upside.  Simmons appears to jab his elbow and arm into Mike Edwards after establishing excellent position in the post to start the half court possession.  Simmons ended up getting the call because Edwards made too much contact with his arm and his body in the act.  Edwards’ mistake was not looking to deny him the basketball in the first place rather than letting him get into post position right in front of him.  Edwards could have put both hands in air and tried to see whether Simmons would go too far and get called for an offensive foul.  Arguably, this one could have went either way, but Edwards ceded too much position.

When does the foul take place?  Is the objection over how Edwards’ lower body is positioned or where Edwards’ other arm is?  These are the sort of calls that seem too subjective and in this Pat Adams called the foul upon Craig Victor’s theatrics.  Victor is leaning on Edwards in this play.  It’s a damned if you do, damned if you don’t situation.  It’s better to just leave this one as a no call.

Why was the foul drawn?  Ben Simmons saw Georgia’s posts completely out of position and did what Charles Mann is known to do.  Sometimes, Mann gets the call and sometimes he does not.  Simmons caught Yante Maten completely out of position when driving and while it is opportunistic, it is not enjoyable basketball for anyone.  Then there’s always the matter of Simmons driving and appearing to bury the shoulder to draw the initial contact that is completely missed.

Yes, WatchESPN’s quality is bad, but this is ridiculous.  Where is the shove??

Mike Edwards is called with a foul in the low block on Ben Simmons.  His physicality with Simmons prior to the call was far more than the actual call.  Was Edwards dinged for a forearm?  It’s a weak and questionable foul to call.

It took too long for Mark Fox to realize that everything was going to be called and just being in the way of a driving Ben Simmons without being stationary is going to draw a foul.  The burden of proof on the Georgia defenders was overwhelming and Fox should have tried to exploit this on the other end more often.  It looks ridiculous on its face, but it is a call that Charles Mann could have easily had all night.

An egregious non-foul as Ben Simmons clearly fouls J.J. Frazier in the act of shooting a three point shot.

A questionable ticky-tack call that helped determine the course of this game as Yante Maten committed his fifth foul on a rebound off a missed Charles Mann Free Throw.

Brainfarts Galore

Georgia’s version of the Chris Webber incident is above.

The Final Possession

Fans ask the following questions:

  1.  Why didn’t J.J. Frazier get the ball?  Response:  Tim Quarterman did a good job of denying him the ball.  With so few seconds left in the game a risky pass to an already covered J.J. Frazier by a longer and taller Quarterman  was not the right move.
  2. Why did Charles Mann look to pass?  Mann could have attacked the basket in full force and even could have done it with his euro step.  However, the risk of being fouled and not having it called on the road was too great.  E’Torrion Wilridge was wide open in the corner and Mann thought that he would release a shot.
  3. Why wasn’t Kenny Gaines involved?  Keith Hornsby had him blanketed.  Mann had three options:  1) Take it himself.  2)  Pitch it back to Kenny Paul Geno, who may not have been ready.  3)  E’Torrion Wilridge wide open in the corner.

E’Torrion Wilridge has made the corner three this season with confidence.  His decision to pump fake and try to take an easier shot is likely a product of him not receiving minutes and confidence from his coach.  It is easier to attempt a corner three when the stakes are lower.  Ben Simmons was not much of a threat to block the shot and if Simmons had a miraculous block, the ball was likely going out of bounds to Georgia with around four seconds left.