Tag: Roscoe Smith

Roscoe Smith

Report: UNLV’s Roscoe Smith declares for the NBA draft

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After two inconsistent years spent at Connecticut, Roscoe Smith decided to transfer following his sophomore year, trekking to UNLV to continue his college career. Smith was eligible this past season, and after cementing a reputation as one of the nation’s best rebounders, Smith decided to leave Las Vegas and declare for the NBA draft.

Smith’s offense will need work at the next level, but as a forward who has shown dedication to grabbing each and every rebound that comes his way, Smith could be a valuable commodity. Smith’s offensive and defensive rebounding percentages both ranked with Ken Pomeroy’s top 60, and the junior was simply relentless on the glass. Teams will notice that skill and hustle, and while he continues to improve and develop his offense — his perimeter game is notably lacking, attempting just ten three-pointers last season — he could earn minutes (provided he makes a squad) because of his rebounding ability.

Even without Smith, coach Dave Rice isn’t lacking for frontcourt depth. It isn’t clear whether Khem Birch will return for the 2014-15 season, but Christian Wood will be joined by Dwayne Morgan and Goodluck Okonoboh in the paint, so the departure of Smith will actually open up some sorely needed minutes next fall.

UNLV’s Roscoe Smith to miss Wednesday’s game due to concussion suffered Saturday

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Saturday afternoon UNLV put forth one of its best performances of the season, shooting 61.8% from the field and 12-for-18 from beyond the arc in their 93-67 win at Air Force. Unfortunately for head coach Dave Rice that result came at a cost, as the school announced on Sunday evening that junior forward Roscoe Smith will miss Wednesday’s game against No. 13 San Diego State due to a concussion.

“Roscoe was evaluated today and was determined to have a concussion,” Rice said in the statement. “He will be evaluated on a day-to-day basis, but he will miss Wednesday’s game against San Diego State.”

Smith left the game for good after suffering the injury with 7:15 remaining in the second half. UNLV’s been dealing with health issues at Smith’s position recently, with freshman Christian Wood missing Saturday’s win due to flu-like symptoms.

With this being the case, how will the minutes be distributed on Wednesday night? Taylor Bern of the Las Vegas Sun offered the following:

In Smith’s absence, it’s likely Carlos Lopez-Sosa will get the starting spot for senior night. As long as he’s healthy, Wood will likely get the majority of the minutes at power forward against the Aztecs, who rank first in offense rebounding percentage during Mountain West games.

Smith’s currently averaging 11.0 points and 11.0 rebounds per game, leading the Mountain West in the latter, so this is clearly a critical personnel loss with the Aztecs visiting on Wednesday night. In conference play SDSU is rebounding 36.6% of its missed shots, and UNLV ranks seventh in the conference in defensive rebounding percentage (68.7%).

New Year’s Resolutions: UNLV Runnin’ Rebels

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Over the course of the holiday week, we at College Basketball Talk will be detailing what we believe will be the New Year’s Resolutions of some of the nation’s most talented, most disappointing, and thoroughly enigmatic teams. What can we say, we’re in a giving mood.

Who else made Resolutions? Click here to find out.

WHAT DOES UNLV PROMISE TO DO MORE OF?: Play efficiently on the offensive end.

    • Why it will happen:

Outside of their 19-turnover performance against Mississippi State, UNLV has done a good job of taking care of the basketball during their current five-game win streak. Dave Rice’s team has averaged at least 1.09 points/possession during the streak, and with four players averaging double figures (and a fifth, Jelan Kendrick, averaging 8.2 ppg) the Runnin’ Rebels have the talent to be a productive offensive team. Roscoe Smith, who’s also the nation’s leading rebounder, leads the way with an average of 12.8 points per game. Four players are currently averaging at least two assists per game, with Bryce Dejean-Jones leading the team with 3.2 apg.

    • Why it won’t happen:

Well in looking at that five-game streak you also have to address the level of competition, with Santa Clara and Mississippi State being the best teams UNLV has faced. In their losses UNLV averaged one point per possession just once, and that was their home loss to Arizona State. Against UCSB (0.97), Illinois (0.89) and Arizona (0.88) the Runnin’ Rebels scored less than one point per possession, although that close defeat at Arizona may have been a game in which the proverbial lightbulb went on for this group.


    • Why it will happen:

Interestingly enough junior forward Khem Birch has been UNLV’s best foul shooter amongst the regulars, knocking down 77.9% of his attempts on the season. But overall UNLV ranks 316th nationally in free throw percentage, and in the close games they’re likely to play in the Mountain West that could be the difference between winning a conference title and merely contending. They’ve got players capable of shooting a solid percentage from the charity stripe, which should lead to improvement in this area as the season wears on.

    • Why it won’t happen:

The two perimeter players with the highest number of attempts, Dejean-Jones (34 attempts) and Kendrick (30), are shooting just 61.8% and 53.3% from the foul line respectively. And amongst the guards in Dave Rice’s rotation Kevin Olekaibe’s been the best foul shooter, and he’s shooting just 63.6% from the charity stripe. When your guards have issues at the foul line it’s tough to make the strides needed when it comes to the team’s percentage, especially when considering how much they’ll be asked to handle the ball in late-game situations.