Deep 3 with T.O.: Tigers attack the rim against the Eagles

Deep 3 with T.O.: Tigers attack the rim against the Eagles

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Clemson trounced Boston College at the Conte Forum Saturday night by a score of 82-64, led by the sterling play of freshman guard Al-Amir Dawes.

Terrence Oglesby delivers his keys to the game:

Offensive Variation

Sure Clemson hit their 3’s, but their ability to get to the rim and finish tonight was excellent. Boston College lacks rim protection and the Tigers knew that before the game started. Clemson continued to attack and capitalize when the Eagles tried to overplay the passing lanes. The Tigers finished a whopping 19/22 from two and 31/45 overall. They also had 5 players in double figures. Just a testament to how versatile the Tiger attack was tonight.

Ball Movement

The Tigers had 20 assists on 31 made field goals. When teams share the ball like the Brownell boys did today you have no choice but to be successful. Clemson played very well together and the ball popped around the perimeter quickly. Boston College focuses mostly on stopping dribble penetration with help. The Tigers didn’t over dribble and put pressure on the rim with cutting off the ball and making sharp passes. An absolute offensive clinic tonight.

The Growth of Al-Amir Dawes

Brad Brownell got a jewel in Dawes. There is no more waiting for Dawes to figure it out. He’s got it. One of the hardest things for a freshman to figure out coming to college is that you can’t always score off the dribble. Dawes continued to move without the ball to open spots around the perimeter for open 3’s. He was able to shoot at a high clip because he was constantly moving his feet and repositioning himself off the ball. His learning curve was expedited by the injury to Trapp and Nick Honor not getting his waiver approved for immediate eligibility. While there were times early in the season where I’m sure Coach Brownell was frustrated, now is when he gets the reward.

Defensive Scout Execution

I can’t remember a shot that was taken by Boston College that wasn’t contested in some way shape or form. Clemson’s alertness was fantastic and it seemed as if they knew the Eagle plays better than they did. While Clemson would move the ball and figure ways to get open shots, BC was stuck shooting contested fadeaways at the end of the shot clock on multiple occasions. As they were in the 2 previous contests, defensive rotations were excellent and the activity off the ball was tremendous.

Teaching Points

Turnovers by the Tigers prevented this game from being about 40 points. Clemson had 18 and that is going to be way too many against a Georgia Tech team coming up that is known for quick and active hands. Jose Alvarado for Tech had a game with 9 steals earlier in the season and he is good enough to convert on the other end. If Clemson is to maintain this momentum they are going to have to cut down on giving up the rock.

Offensive Rebounding

This is the second game in a row that Clemson has given up double-figure offensive rebound games to the opponent. Yes, the Tigers are undersized, but they have shown that they can gang rebound when needed. Tech’s front line is much bigger and more athletic than BC’s was tonight.

Simply put, Clemson is playing as good basketball as anyone in the country right now. They’ve shown the ability to not just hit the outside shot, but also put pressure on the rim in spite of their lack of size in the frontcourt. Defensively, they are playing at a tremendously high level and it just seems like they have found their rhythm on all fronts. Clemson has a tough one on Tuesday at Georgia Tech. Tech features two of the most talented guards in the league and the Tigers will have to bring their A-game.

Overall, tremendous performance as Clemson just continues to gain momentum heading into March.

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