Getting It Done With Defense

Written by Kyle Porter

Photo Attribution: US Presswire

Oklahoma State’s perfunctory performance in Puerto Rico and subsequent rise to the #20 spot in the most recent AP Top 25 poll was punctuated by a hark to yesteryear, the return of the defense.

Travis Ford has traditionally been known for his offensive teams (fill. in. joke. here.) but with his coaching seat teetering from “getting warm” to “it’s on fire” he called on his stud freshman to lead the way on the defensive end.

Consider this, of the top thirty teams in Ken Pom’s rankings, OSU has the biggest discrepancy between offensive and defensive efficiency.

That tells me their success can be sustainable (offense takes nights off, defense doesn’t etc.) throughout the season even with an average to above average offense.

Let’s take a look at the full list sorted by offensive efficiency minus defensive efficiency.

[table id=59 /]

Offensive efficiency: points scored per 100 possessions (adjusted by quality of opponent).
Defensive efficiency: points allowed per 100 possessions (adjusted by quality of opponent).

Again, this isn’t about who’s the most efficient on offense or defense (several teams are better than OSU in both categories) but rather which squad is relying more heavily on one or the other (and doing it with a pretty good deal of success).

OSU, Texas, Cincinnati, and Bama have all been pretty decent offensive teams so far (offensive efficiency ranking from 49-55) but they’ve been SPECTACULAR on defense.

Kentucky, Wisconsin, Indiana and Florida, on the other hand, are more complete teams than the Cowboys. They both rely equally on both on great offense and great defense to dominate opponents.

And contrary to OSU, Creighton and Baylor rely almost solely on offense to get the job done. That’s pretty easy when you’re a team like Baylor and have so many weapons on O. But beware come conference time because those Tuesday road trips to Stillwater are going to get long and the points might be hard to come by.

  • Scott

    is that pic from last year? Smart is wearing glasses on top of his head on the sideline

  • Homecoming and Hoops.

    • Nolo

      Ha I’m standing up in the plaid shirt in the background.

  • (insert Ford joke here lol)

    *&%$ OSU HOOPS (unless they win of course, I’ll write something meaningful about them then but if they lose, I’m only gonna trash Ford)

    lol pls

    some of you “fans” are pathetic
    I bet there will actually be people at the game Sunday now
    pisses me off

    • Haha, you clealry didn’t read this blog last basketball season. I recapped every game and wrote constantly throughout the week. Might I direct you to the archives section?

      • (insert Ford joke here lol)

        I read the blog last season and fell in love with the blog last season.
        my beef is that this year you put hoops on the back burner as if no one cares about it (until now)
        I even remember a specific remark you made in your footnotes along the lines of, “who really cares about hoops anyways?”
        I think your hoops preview speaks volumes on your commitment to covering OSU basketball.
        when you look at the most overrated teams in the Big 12 saying, “OSU is worse off than you might think” has nothing to do with the season ahead, you took the results and made it seem as if they were a definite.
        your #OSURank pieces that ultimately resulted in 1 piece of writing, I can tell you spent a lot of time on those.
        your [insert Ford joke here] and referring to OSU hoops as screwed without JPO is negative and contributes nothing to your writing or the readers appreciation for OSU basketball.

        • Fair enough. I probably didn’t put the time I should have into my basketball preview. I’m sorry my commitment level isn’t up to your standards.

    • Sam

      wow tell us how you really feel.

      dont have a stroke over bandwagon fans.

      why would you be pissed off people are going to the games

  • Madsenpoke

    Why exactly would this piss you off? It is no secret that success generates interest. You sound like the moody little hipster that stops listening to a band because they got some radio play. Winning is good for the program. Winning on national television against a top ten team is exceptional for our program. I genuinely hope that GIA is sold out on Sunday, and I would hope if you are really an OSU fan you hope the same. Your remarks are ignorant and annoying. I think Kyle is pretty balanced on his coverage of OSU basketball and if you don’t, there is no reason you have to read it. Give me a break.

    • my real point

      It’s the fact that the basketball program really has not been as bad as everyone claims it has been, yet everyone abandoned it. Everyone calls for Fords head when he is the 3rd winningest head coach in OSU history. OSU hoops went from a well respected program that could easily fill up GIA to a decent program (a terrible program according to the majority of OSU fans) with very little fan support. For example in 2009 Indiana averaged 13,933 in attendance and went 6-25. I guarantee you our average attendance last season was nowhere close to that. My point is that if people were really fans of OSU hoops they would show support through the good and the bad. We also defeated number 2 Missouri last year yet no OSU fan cared because we were 10-10. I do want GIA to be full again, that would be great. But it should have never become empty in the first place. Don’t become a fan once a program starts winning and don’t abandoned a program because they’re not doing as well as they have in the past. I am simply trying in the harshest manner, to make fans realize how wrong they have treated the basketball program.

      • Embrace the bandwagon fans. It’s worked for us wonderfully in football.

      • Attendance goes down when teams don’t win. Everywhere, every sport. It’s just how it is. I’m sure that average for Indiana is similar to the Miami Hurricanes reporting tens of thousands of people at their games this year when there’s really 1,000. This topic has been discussed too many times to go on.

        Your point isn’t valid. This site has always supported basketball. Don’t expect many basketball posts from April to October and don’t expect as many football posts from January through July.

      • Cody

        Sure attendance has been crappy as of late but also look at what’s been happening outside of Stillwater in those years, there has been a recession and the Thunder have come to town. Oklahomans can’t afford Thunder tix, OSU football tix, and OSU basketball tix and the thunder have been great as of late and quite frankly more fun to watch in recent years. Indiana’s football team was just as bad as the basketball team that year and Indiana has the Pacers….need I say more?

  • Poke99

    The culture and tradition of OSU baskeball has always been defense. Fans demand that effort, that is what makes OSU what it is. The best part of that defense are steals and rebounding lead perfectly to transition baskeball. It is up to the staff to make sure the rest of the team understand and play it.

    I am happy with the first few games, but I wonder when Big 12 play starts and we are in the grind, can we establish a half court offense that has a inside presence to keep other teams honest. Smart and Nash will have down nights, who else is going to step up in the interior? Hopefully with Cobbins back, Jurick giving valuable minutes, and additional role play in the front court, we will not be as one dimensional on offense as what we have seen in the past few years.

  • Scott

    New rankings out – NC State several spots ahead of OSU. How does that work?

  • Jeff

    I agree with your point about sustainability. This isn’t last year where we jack 25 threes a game and lose if we can’t hit 10. The way we are defending without fouling is really causing problems. Smart and Markel deny the ball like crazy. Smart, brown, forte, and gardener are all playing excellent on ball defense. The 2004 teams success stemmed from being excellent on defense. Every game you could count on a 5 minute (give or take) stretch where the other team wasn’t going to score. This was usually paired with a T.A. run through. The point is it wins games. On offense our continued ability to get other teams in foul trouble and score easy points at the line will be huge. LB is really doing well with this.Getting easy points at the line every game has been pretty successful for the Thunder. The best thing I saw over the weekend was when NC State went zone we actually had a point guard get us transitioned to our zone offense in a timely fashion. Like most things version 2.0 of LobStilly is better.

  • Jadecy

    Reading this post a bit late…it lost some of its “impact” following Texas’ loss to Chaminade. LOL…is that a Seminary School?

    • Haha, I laughed at “is that a seminary school”