Skull Session: Ohio State's Shot Selection Visualized, Chris Holtmann's an Offensive Genius, and Georgia and Alabama Are (Allegedly) Cheating on the Recruiting Trail

By Kevin Harrish on March 8, 2021 at 4:59 am
We're a little disheartened in today's skull session.

It may be a Monday following a fourth-straight Ohio State loss, but at least your local Arby's store is open and eager to serve you!

Word of the Day: Dawdle.

 FUN WITH CHARTS. I'm a sucker for some good data visualization, so when some hero charts out the shooting frequency and efficiency of every Ohio State player for every shot location, I'm like a kid in a candy store.

If you need help knowing what the hell you're looking at, the size of each ring portion is the shot frequency by the percentage of shots taken (blue is three-pointers, orange is layups/dunks/shots at the rim, and green is midrange two-pointers). Dark colors are above average efficiency, light colors are below average.

Justin Ahrens is exactly what you'd expect it to be.

Based solely on this data, my unsolicited advice to Chris Holtmann is that Kyle Young and E.J. Liddell never leave the court and for more Zed Key minutes. I'll take my consulting fee out of your Final Four bonus, thank you.

 THE OTHER OFFENSIVE MASTERMIND. Well, well, well, it looks like Ryan Day ain't the only offensive guru in Columbus these days, cause Chris Holtmann is out here cooking opposing defenses with some off-ball misdirection in the post.

Peep Zed Key in the second clip, and E.J. Liddell in clips three and four.

That's truly beautiful to watch.

My only piece of constructive feedback is that maybe we should try running one of those plays in the last four minutes instead of the ones where everyone just dribbles around with no movement for 20 seconds before Duane Washington hucks up a contested three late in the shot clock.

Too soon?

 WHAT? NO WAY! I know this is going to come as a complete shock to all of you, but it looks like Georgia and Alabama are allegedly (this word was inserted at my lawyer's request) swinging bags of cash to secure the talents of the nation's top teens.

Do I believe pretty much every word of that without even blinking? Absolutely. Do I think Georgia and Alabama are the only schools doing that? Absolutely not. But I do know that Georgia is especially egregious.

I can't tell you how many times I've seen some out-of-state kid with absolutely no previous connection Georgia trend towards another school for months with the Bulldogs seemingly not even in the conversation only to suddenly commit to Georgia – sometimes even before stepping foot on campus. It could not be more obvious, and anyone who follows recruiting even a little bit could tell you. It ain't exactly a secret.

Does my beloved alma mater do this, too? I genuinely don't know. At the very least, they aren't doing it in broad daylight and daring anybody to say something like Kirby's been doing in Athens for years. So they're either clean or much better at hiding it.

 WORLD'S FASTEST DEFENSIVE TACKLE. A few years back, when I was watching 6-foot-6, 260-pound Zach Harrison burn kids downfield as a tight end and anchor his high school team's 4x100 relay, I thought I'd never see a freakier high school athlete.

I mean, it's been well over four years since I first saw it and I still cannot get over this photo.

But I was wrong. I've found a freakier high school athlete, and he might be joining Harrison on the Ohio State defensive line in a couple of months.

Also, he can do this:

That's a 6-foot-5, 277-pound defensive lineman looking more agile and nimble than your average high school wide receiver. Best of luck to whoever has to block him for the next three years.

 SONG OF THE DAY. "Cigarette Daydreams" by Cage The Elephant.

 NOT STICKING TO SPORTS. A pair of London pet detectives set out to prove a string of dead cats was the work of a serial killer... The race to patent psychedelics is just getting started... There's no real reason to eat three meals a day... I asked an AI to tell me how beautiful I am... The real reason why gas pumps sometimes run slow...

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