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Some Quick Stats On UNC's Three Point Shooters

Shot selection.

Via stat guru Adrian Atkins(@Freeportkid) on Twitter.

PJ Hairston is shooting 30.9% on 3-pointers in the 1st 10 seconds of the shot clock, and 38.5% on 3-pointers in seconds 11-35

As a comparison, Barnes shoots 47.1% on 3s in the 1st 10 seconds and 38.9% in seconds 11-35. Bullock is at 38.3% (1-10) and 41.2% (11-35).

Harrison Barnes has been a good three point shooter whenever he decides to take a shot but clearly above average in transition or very early in the half court set. Shooting 37% is good, shooting 47% is really good which says getting him the ball early for a quick shot is a good idea. Reggie Bullock is consistent across the entire shot clock but slightly better after 10 seconds. P.J. Hairston's shooting is really interesting. Early in the shot clock, Hairston is at 30% from three. after ten seconds or after a few passes in the half court set, Hairston is a 8% better.

I think this speaks to a couple of things. The first is if UNC cannot get a three in transition from Barnes then it should make a concerted effort to go inside first or have either Kendall Marshall and Dexter Strickland create some open looks using penetration. Secondly, some of how this plays out has a lot to do with what personnel is on the floor and how that impacts the offensive flow. If Hairston is out there with Tyler Zeller, John Henson and either Strickland or Marshall, he is a secondary offensive option and in theory should get the ball at a favorable segment of the shot clock. If Hairston is out there without Big Three then he probably feels pressure to shoot the ball and create offense. That leads to impatience and forced shots. It also means he is not  looking to drive the ball or create offense other ways as attested to by his team low 13.9% of FGs being unassisted.

The bottom line on these stats is it really comes down to shot selection. Yes, part of the perfect storm of crapitude at FSU had something to do with the top three perimeter shooters all being in a slump at the same time. Being in a shooting slump sometimes causes players to try to hard, take bad shots or shoot, shoot, shoot to break out of it. Since that was the case, I think it really screwed up the offensive flow. Against Miami it didn't matter because Marshall and Strickland picked up the slack. Against FSU, a really solid defensive team, there was no means of compensating for it. The more the game spun out of control, the more desperate and impatient the shooting became.

Shooters are streaky. Wayne Ellington had his big slump early in 2009 and broke out of it in spectacular fashion with seven threes vs Miami. Danny Green had a horrible shooting stretch late that season but did get it together once UNC got deeper into the NCAA Tournament. Last season, Barnes and Bullock both had stretches of shooting well and shooting badly. My expectation is one, if not all three, will snap out of for a stretch which will permit UNC to get a nice roll going through ACC play. It will probably ease off at some point but hopefully swing back the right direction come March.