Friday Figures: TCU’s Efficient Offense, Mitch Lightfoot & Kerwin Roach’s Big Year

Posted by Chris Stone on February 9th, 2018

Friday Figures is back this week with a look at TCU’s successful offense, Kansas’ new starting lineup and Kerwin Roach’s impressive season.

  • Jamie Dixon has TCU’s offense humming. The best offense in the Big 12 doesn’t reside in Lawrence, Kansas or Norman, Oklahoma. Instead, it sits squarely in Fort Worth, Texas, where Jamie Dixon has already brought his history of offensive excellence to bear. The Horned Frogs lead the league with an offensive efficiency of 112.5, two points clear of the Jayhawks. Central to TCU’s success is a commitment to moving the ball to find better shots, and as a result, the Horned Frogs have assisted on 63.9 percent of their made field goals this season (10th nationally, per KenPom). It’s also probably part of the reason the team has been able to weather the loss of sophomore point guard Jaylen Fisher.

Mitch Lightfoot is Kansas’ newest starter. (Image credit: Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)

  • The Big 12’s unlikely block rate leader. Ask anyone to name the Big 12’s best rim-protectors this season and you’ll get the expected answers. There’s Texas’ Mohamed Bamba and his 7’9″ wingspan or Sagaba Konate, West Virginia’s dunk eating center. Oklahoma’s Khadeem Lattin or Baylor’s Jo Acuil might even get a shout-out. Yet none of them leads the Big 12 in block rate during conference play. Rather, that honor belongs to Kansas’ newly minted starter, Mitch Lightfoot, who edges out Bamba by one-tenth of a percentage point. Obviously Lightfoot hasn’t played as many minutes as anyone else on this list, but his block rate is an interesting jumping-off point for discussing his value to the Jayhawks. The former 3-star recruit has developed into a decent rotation piece in Bill Self’s lineup, but the numbers suggest that Kansas needs Lagerald Vick to bust out of his slump and back into the starting lineup for the team to be at its best. According to data from Hoop Lens, the Jayhawks are 14 points per 100 possessions better with Lightfoot on the bench this season. The sophomore might be a great answer to a silly trivia question, but he’s probably not the piece to help Kansas make a legitimate run this March.

  • Kerwin Roach is somewhat quietly having an All-Big 12 season. Between the league’s quartet of elite point guards and Bamba, the All-Big 12 first team is likely set in stone. But there are still 10 slots that need filling on the second and third teams, so here’s a quick pitch for the Longhorns’ junior guard. Roach is averaging 13.0 points, 4.0 rebounds and 3.1 assists per contest during conference play this season. Only three other Big 12 players — Jevon Carter, Kenrich Williams and Trae Youngcan match those combined benchmarks. He is the team’s only above-average three-point shooter at 36.4 percent and the Texas offense is anemic when he’s on the bench, scoring 13 points per 100 possessions fewer in those situations, per Hoop Lens. At 0.92 points per possession, the non-Roach units are the equivalent of the nation’s 337th ranked offense. Ouch.
Chris Stone (135 Posts)

Chris Stone is a contributor to the Big 12 microsite. You can find him on Twitter @cstonehoops.


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