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Mailbag: Reader offers fresh take on Andrew Rohde playing time discussion

Chris Graham
uva andrew rohde
Photo: Mike Ingalls/AFP

Just wanted to add my two cents to the Andrew Rohde conversation.  I think he is going to end up being a good player for the ‘Hoos.  Agree that he should not be getting 30 minutes a game, but 20 or so is OK.

He is better than what he has shown offensively, I believe. He can drive to the basket, and he has a decent outside shot. He seems scared to drive at this point. When he is open, he usually converts at a good percentage. Strange thing I have noticed is he ends up taking at least one or two shots that he has to hoist up to beat the shot clock. It is not him dribbling around, but the ball ends up in his hands, and he has to launch one, so his shooting percentage is not as good as it could be.

He is a solid defender, and his size creates problems for those he guards. He does not get blocks or steals, etc., but he fits the system and makes everyone else effective. He is a solid ball-handler and an excellent passer, probably the best making the pocket pass to our bigs on the team. He has some sloppy plays that affect his stats.

I like Dante Harris, but do not love his shot selection; he is better driving to the rim and either shooting it or passing. Do not feel that Harris, for as quick as he is, is a great defender, and he does not have size. Taine Murray has played really well and hope he continues to get minutes.

If UVA can get the best version of Rohde (confident), they are much better because we can rotate guys in and keep everyone fresh.

– Russell

uva andrew rohde
Photo: Mike Ingalls/AFP

Andrew Rohde gets the start because Tony Bennett likes having two ball-handlers on the floor, though TB has getting away from that of late.

Last night, for instance, Rohde, Reece Beekman and Dante Harris played a total of 57 minutes.

If Tony was going strict “always have two ball-handlers on the floor,” that would have added up to 80.

There was a lot of garbage time last night. Looking back at the Clemson game, those three got a total of 62 minutes.

The NC State game: 72 (of what would have been a possible 90 minutes, because of the OT.)

On the shooting side of things, actually … Rohde, according to the Synergy Sports data I just looked at, is 11-of-39 (28.2 percent) on unguarded jumpers.

Taine Murray, who I’m advocating to get more of Rohde’s minutes, is 47.1 percent on unguarded jumpers, and is 9-of-13 (69.2 percent) on shots at the rim.

I’ve noticed that Jake Groves is getting more minutes at the third guard spot, which can only work against certain (bigger) lineups.

Groves, on open jumpers, shoots 50 percent, and on contested jumpers, is a tick better – 51.5 percent.

Rohde’s defense rating, per Synergy, is “very good,” at 0.780 points per possession.

Murray is “good,” per Synergy, allowing 0.829 PPP.

The D numbers for Groves (“average”) are probably skewed because he logged so many minutes defending the five spot.

Season-long, he’s giving up 0.924 PPP.

In the past seven games (since he’s been playing more three and four defensively, with Jordan Minor and Blake Buchanan taking practically all of the minutes at the five), he’s giving up 0.846 PPP.

Interesting observation about late-shot clock shots, so I looked that up.

A site called Hoop-Math actually tracks that.

(There’s a stat for everything.)

Isaac McKneely leads the team in FGA with five or less seconds left on the shot clock, with 50. iMac is 21-of-50 (42.0 percent) on those shots, 11-of-21 from three.

Beekman is second in FGA in those situations, with 47. He’s shooting 16-of-47 (34.0 percent) on those.

Next on the list: Groves, who is 11-of-28 (39.3 percent), and 7-of-15 from three.

Then: Rohde. He’s 6-of-26 (23.1 percent), and 3-of-19 from three.

I’m not suggesting (like some are) that Rohde is banished to garbage time.

But giving him starter’s minutes needs to be a thing of the past, until he does more with them.

Great email here. You made me think!

– Chris

Chris Graham

Chris Graham

Chris Graham is the founder and editor of Augusta Free Press. A 1994 alum of the University of Virginia, Chris is the author and co-author of seven books, including Poverty of Imagination, a memoir published in 2019, and Team of Destiny: Inside Virginia Basketball’s Run to the 2019 National Championship, and The Worst Wrestling Pay-Per-View Ever, published in 2018. For his commentaries on news, sports and politics, go to his YouTube page, or subscribe to his Street Knowledge podcast. Email Chris at [email protected].