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Four Factor Review: Bearcats 69 MTSU 51

Last night was the first night where the Cincinnati Bearcats had a complete performance. The defense was as good as we have come to expect it to be, and the offense showed extended periods of competence for the first time all year. That's what allowed the Bearcats to put the Blue Raiders away early, something UC couldn't do in any of their first four games.

Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports
Effective Field Goal % Turnover Rate Offensive Rebound Rate Free Throw Rate
Cincinnati 64.8 19.2 45.5 40.9
Middle Tennessee State 43.9 15.4 33.3 34.7

Three Observations

-- Gary Clark was not hot out of the gate. He looked lost and tentative in the preseason and the first few games of the year. So much so that there were some wondering why Clark was getting starts when Quadri Moore played so well. Now we know why. Clark has been great this week averaging 10 and 7 while shooting north of 60 percent from the field. For the first time in his college career MTSU was devoting a double team to Gary. It rattled him at first, but by the end of the game he was handling things like a veteran. When he got the ball in the post he would hold the ball for a second anticipating the double, only starting to back his man down when he knew it wasn't coming. He is going to be a huge problem for teams to solve the rest of the year.

-- Deshaun Morman was given a chance to make an impact last night when Shaq Thomas picked up an injury that limited him to eight minutes. Morman responded having the best offensive outing of his very young career scoring 9 points on 42.9 percent shooting. But its not the offense that has me excited about Morman, its his defense. He is an absolute pitbull defensively. His 2 steals don't give a proper indication of the havoc he caused the Blue Raiders with his ball pressure, he was just terrorizing them.

-- Octavius Ellis was quiet for the first time of the year on the offensive end. He only got three shots from the field and three from the free throw line totaling three points. But he still made his presence felt by grabbing 9 rebounds, three of them offensive, and dishing out a couple of assists. It was not a good game by the standard he set this year, but he was still impact.