But, as we all know, things don’t always pan out the way we think they will.
But, in this case, it looks like it did. It’s exactly as we thought.
The mass departure of the above players left the Comets with a severe lack of talent. Only Junior Alvino Ashley (a transfer from Lansing Community College) has stepped up to play like a bona fide starter. Senior Jaren Edsall is playing well enough to contribute as a starter, but he’s being counted on to be a major factor (and he’s just not that).
Here’s a look at the Olivet Comets (as described by Player Efficiency Rating).
The bottom four players in italics (Adam Ruhle, Matt Smith, Ray Johnson, and Paul Koviak) haven't played enough to include them with the regular rotation. They're all averaging fewer than three minutes per team game.
Here's a reminder of PER's rule of thumbs:
|7-13||Off The Bench|
So OC currently has one guy playing very well. One guy hanging in there in a starting role, three or four guys that are performing like off-the-bench type role player, and then four or so players that are getting into the game, but not contributing anything of real substance. The average PER of their starters is 11.3; that's easily the worst in the league right now. They're struggling for sure, and that 1-7 record isn't likely to improve any time soon.
Here's a full look at the PER of the Calvin players.
|40||Nate Van Eck||7.8|
The situation is obviously a lot brighter for Calvin than it is for Olivet. Calvin has eight guys playing at a level that could justify a starting position in the MIAA. The only senior on the list is Brian Haverdink, who has found himself back in the role-player position, so I'm of the mindset that the near future is still bright for Calvin, even if the current record isn't where we want it to be. Jordan Brink, who should be able to re-join the team next season, put up a 19.2 PER as a freshman last year.
But my optimism isn't just for next year. These Knights will continue to develop as this season progresses, and I think we'll be looking at a much better team come February. Of those top eight guys, half were JV/garbage time players only a season ago, and a fifth (Matt DeBoer) was only a role player (he didn't appear in any of the three MIAA tournament games).
The MIAA Top 20
Here's a look at the top 20 players in the league as rated by PER*.
*Data is through games of Thursday, December 15.
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