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Georgia Tech vs. Notre Dame Part Two: The Advanced Preview

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Georgia Tech covered the spread in their last bout with the Irish, however it still ended in a hard fought 83-76 double overtime loss. Will things be different this time around?

Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports
Georgia Tech (9-6) Notre Dame (15-2)
Total Power Rating 18.9 26.1
Offensive Power Rating 17.4 27.0
Defensive Power Rating 20.4 25.2
RPI .5831 .5686
Effective FG% 45.3% 61.3%
Effective FG% Defense 48.1% 45.4%
Offensive Efficiency 104.7 121.2
Defensive Efficiency 100.8 90.7
Rating Differential +3.9 +30.5
Defensive Rebound % 75.0% 70.3%
Offensive Rebound % 40.7% 29.8%
Turnover Ratio 16.3% 19.1%
Opponent Turnover Ratio 17.3% 16.0%
Foul Line % 21.4% 24.7%
Opponent Foul Line % 26.0% 15.7%
Average Pace 74.3 77.2

Using these advanced stats, we get a clearer picture of just how this game will play out. The total power rating is a statistic designed by me that adds in the four factors (eFG%, OffReb%, TO%, FL%) for offense and the inverse (eFG%D, DefReb%, OppTO%, OppFL%) for defense; RPI- a true measure for strength of schedule and the rating differential. If any of the other categories seem confusing, I’ve attached an Basketball Stat Glossary here.

Alas, college football season is officially over. We'll have to wait seven months before we can see America's beautiful game be played again at the intercollegiate level. For now, we'll have to settle for college basketball which for Georgia Tech fans hasn't nearly been as fun as football season. Unfortunately, what little fun their was has worn off as the Yellow Jackets are still winless in conference and the schedule isn't getting any easier.

Georgia Tech is about to play a very good Notre Dame team for the second time in of two weeks. Last time Vegas said Notre Dame was favored by 12 points, but Georgia Tech played well above their ability to take the game into double overtime. The Irish went cold from three-point range and Tech was able to guard the boards well enough to prevent any extra Irish possessions. In the end, Notre Dame had the better players and won the game. So who wins this time around?

Notre Dame Overview

Notre Dame is fresh off their first conference loss of the season to Virginia, which was their first loss since November 23rd. After Duke's double-digit loss to Miami last night in Cameron Indoor, the Wahoo's may be the best team in the conference if not the whole country. So it's not a huge knock on the Irish's resume for them to lose by eight points to the No.2 team in the country.

Notre Dame is still a fantastic offensive team. Nothing about their formula has changed since they last played Tech. The Irish will shoot a high percentage, take and make a majority of their three's and play smart defense. In non-advanced stats, the Irish are the number one shooting team (53.5%) and the number nine three point shooting team (40.7%). It adds up to make an effective shooting percentage of 61.3 percent, which you'd be hard pressed to find anyone better.

Two things are understated about Notre Dame: one is they do a good job staying out of foul trouble. Only 15.7 percent of opponents possessions end in a trip to the foul line which saves the Irish's defense a big chunk of points given up. On the inverse, Notre Dame has a turnover percentage of 19.1 percent. Almost one out of every five Irish possessions end in a turnover. Anytime you can take the ball out of a hot shooting teams hands the better, which will be something Georgia Tech will have to key on to win this game.

*Note: It was reported today Notre Dame will be playing without 6'10'' Forward Zach Auguste, who had the team's best PER at 23.8. This could be huge for a strong rebounding team like Georgia Tech and could swing the vegas line even smaller.

Georgia Tech Overview

To give any of you just now tuning in an idea of how this basketball season is going, Georgia Tech is poised for their second 0-4 ACC start in three years. The seat could be rapidly heating up for head coach Brian Gregory if something doesn't change soon, because Georgia Tech has talent but it doesn't appear it's being used properly. We'll start with the biggest problem this season: three point shooting.

Georgia Tech takes an average of 16.6 three point attempts per game, so roughly 28.1 percent of their shots taken per game are from deep. When you only make 24.1 percent of those shots, you are essentially making a quarter of one quarter of your total shots per game. When you add up those numbers, the efficiency is just mind-numbingly bad. I've been saying it all season and I'll keep saying it: Brian Gregory, for the love of God, PLEASE lay off the three pointers.

The main reason Tech was able to keep it so close the first time around was because of what they do best: offensive rebounding. Georgia Tech grabbed 19 of their own missed shots to Notre Dames four. Those 19 extra possessions gave Georgia Tech an edge to push this game into two overtimes, even though they shot a 46.4 effective field goal percentage. If the Jackets can just lay off the three's and keep everything inside, Georgia Tech could be a lot more competitive in games.

The Starting Five PER

Georgia Tech Notre Dame
G: Travis Jorgenson - 5.1 G: Jerian Grant - 21.2
G: Chris Bolden - 7.1 G: Travis Vasturia - 11.5
F: Marcus Georges-Hunt - 14.4 G: Demetrius Jackson - 19.6
F: Charles Mitchell - 15.9 F: Pat Connaughton - 20.3
C: Demarco Cox - 14.0 F: Martinas Geben - 6.9
Team Average: 11.1 Team Average: 17.7

The Prediction

As just reported by ESPN today, not having Auguste is going to be a big deal for Notre Dame. Auguste is a huge part of the pick and roll offense and is second on the team in scoring with 14.3 ppg. This will also make life easier for Demarco Cox and Charles Mitchell on the inside, not having to score against a six foot ten frame. To put it metrics terms, without Auguste on the floor Notre Dame's defensive efficiency goes from 90.7 to 117.4 (!!). Auguste is still a huge loss, but they still have great players like Grant, Jackson and Connaughton. The Auguste suspension may not be enough to give Tech the win, but I think it makes the score closer at:

Line: Notre Dame (-4.5) via sportsbook.ag

Final: Notre Dame 69, Georgia Tech 65