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Thoughts from NU's exhibition win against Robert Morris

Loretta gave his thoughts about Northwestern's 51 point win against Robert Morris, but I thought I'd give some of my own considering I was one of the few students actually in attendance. I announced the game (which was streamed online) so I probably have a different perspective than Loretta, who actually paid money to watch this game on a computer.

Onto the bullet points (less informative than Loretta and less funny than Rodger!)...

  • Let me lead with the disclaimer that most of these points probably mean nothing. Northwestern won by 51 without JerShon Cobb, Alex Marcotullio, and Drew Crawford. Nick Fruendt was the team's leading scorer with 17. If I have to type those words again this year, this team will have some issues.
  • Both freshmen guards looked good. Dave Sobolewski (pronounced So-buh-LEW-ski) and Tre Demps combined for 28 points (5-8 from three). Sobo only got two assists, but his passing was much better than what I expected for a freshman learning the Princeton Offense. He hit guys in stride on backdoor cuts. Demps was every bit the combo guard he was advertised as. He wore a brace on his left shoulder (remember he opted not to get surgery after tearing a ligament over the summer), but it didn't seem to affect him. 
  • Before the game, I heard that Luka was supposed to be in the best shape of his life. He has reportedly lost 15-20 pounds and has apparently looked great in practice. Other than the shaved head (which looks kinda creepy to be honest), I didn't see a huge difference. He made a couple nice moves in the post, but he still refuses (or can't) to go to his left. Even when he was on the left block and the defender was giving him the baseline, he went to his right and forced a bad shot.
  • There were two little kids in #44 Northwestern jerseys participating in a game of knockout at halftime. They didn't make it to the end of the game. #coblejokes
  • I would agree with Loretta that Reggie Hearn could play a handful of minutes during the regular season. He scored 15 to go along with 6 boards and 4 assists. He actually played the point for a couple of minutes and had a couple nice dribble-drives. I don't want to see Reggie lead the team in minutes again, but he could provide some depth to an NU squad sorely in need of some.
  • I would actually disagree with Loretta on Mike Turner. The freshman from Chicago definitely isn't your prototypical "big man" but I thought he played well in his 18 minutes. He had 5 rebounds, 3 of which were offensive (the only NU player to have an offensive board, in fact; more on that later). He's pretty athletic, which is a sight for sore eyes (or eyes that have watched Luka Mirkovic and Davide Curletti play center for a year and change). He's not going to be all that effective backing down against Big Ten centers, but I think he gives NU a viable option at forward.
  • I got to say the words "Davide Curletti throws it down" on air. Not sure what percentage of NU dunks that is going to make up this season. 
  • I also got to perfect my Robert Morris missed three call. The Eagles were 2-32 from deep (thee-pointers made up half of their shots from the field). It wasn't stifling defense by NU, if you were hoping for an explanation. On the other hand, the 'Cats were 11-16 from deep and shot over 62 percent from the field. Those numbers are silly.
  • Number that isn't a laughing matter: 17. That's the number of offensive boards Northwestern gave up to an NAIA team. Rebounding has been an issue for awhile, and it doesn't look like that's going to change. NU was in man for almost all of the game, so there wasn't an excuse for not being able to box out. RMU outshot NU by 13 as a result. That's not going to fly in the Big Ten.
  • John Shurna looked like John Shurna. He only played in the first half, scoring 12 points on 4-6 shooting. Moving on.
  • Sophomore walk-on James Montgomery III played 8 minutes in this one, scoring two points and also blocking a pair of shots. This isn't really news, except that I went to middle school with the kid (Palms Middle School represent) and it's pretty cool to see him play D-I basketball. In sixth or seventh grade, I almost beat him in a game of two-on-two.
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