2022 Charleston Classic Preview

2022 Charleston Classic Preview

Colorado State

2022 Charleston Classic Preview


2022 Charleston Classic Preview

The Colorado State Rams compete in a star-studded tournament.

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How Far could Colorado State go?

Charleston, SC- The 2022 Charleston Classic tips off at TD Arena this Thursday, November 17th, and continues on through November 20th as one of the first multiple team events of the year. The college basketball schedule blesses us with what we all so desperately desire: daytime hoops.

The field is an even mix of both Power Five and mid-major impact teams.

This event will most likely not play out based on ranking. Count on some key upsets in Charleston this week.

Let’s take a look at the tournament teams.


Colorado State Rams

The Rams may be 3-0 on the season, but things were a shaky — to say the least — at the start. Colorado State needed a last-second shot to win 65-63 over Gardner-Webb. It followed that up by edging out SE Louisiana 80-69, but still failed to cover the spread. I’d like to point out that I think those two teams (Gardner-Webb, SE Louisiana) are two of the most underrated in college basketball right now, but nevertheless, the Rams seemed much more consistent against Weber State last time out. Through three games, the Rams have been shooting well and they’re playing solid defense, but they’re far from perfect. The good news is most of their issues seem to be due to a lack of experience and youth. Colorado State has struggled with turnovers, and while it’s been great at getting defensive rebounds, it’s one of the worst on the offensive glass.


Penn State Nittany Lions

The Nittany Lions are one of the most experienced teams in all of college basketball, which could play a factor against both Furman and the rest of the field in this tournament. Penn State made quick work of its first two opponents in Winthrop and Loyola MD, but things weren’t as easy the last time out against Butler. The Nittany Lions came away with the win in the end, but struggled to score early on and had issues with turnovers and fouls. Thankfully, Jalen Pickett (second triple-double in program history) was there to keep their undefeated record intact.


Old Dominion Monarchs

Three games into the season and I’m still not sure how I feel about this Monarchs team. They’ve posted two wins, one against a D-II program and the other against one of the bottom-50 teams in the country in Maryland Eastern Shore. They came up short in their first challenge against Drexel on the road despite making a late push. The Monarchs lost that game despite scoring more points in the paint, leading the Dragons in offensive rebounds and not giving up a single field goal in the last five minutes of the game. Old Dominion simply can’t score. It’s one of the worst when it comes to effective field goal percentage and it rarely even attempt 3s.


Virginia Tech Hokies

On paper, the Hokies look like one of the best offensive teams in all of college basketball. Does that have to do with their first three games coming against teams ranked 275th or worse via KenPom? Absolutely. However, there is something to be said about the amount of shots Virginia Tech is taking and how well it’s moving the ball. The Hokies have taken more than 50 field goal attempts in every game, while also recording 15 or more assists as a team in each matchup. They do still, however, continue to be one of the slowest-paced teams in college basketball. And while I do expect those attempts to go down, it’s something to take note of against a Monarchs team that struggles to score period.


Davidson Wildcats

The Wildcats have yet to lose a game — they’re taking a ton of shots and making most of them. Led by one of the best scorers in the A-10 in Foster Loyer, Davidson doesn’t seem to have missed a beat under new head coach Matt McKillop, a longtime assistant and the son of former head coach Bob McKillop. But the Wildcats aren’t winning games by as much as they should be. The Wildcats’ defense has been concerning — to say the least. Against Wright State, they gave up 97 points and needed two overtimes to come away with the win. Following that, VMI — which ranks outside the top 250 at both ends of the court — kept it close against Davidson nearly the whole way before falling just short.


Furman Paladins

The Paladins took care of business against Belmont, but their matchup against Penn State will be a much bigger challenge. While they are just over 200 miles away from their home court and may have a decent crowd of supporters, nothing is quite the same as being home. Furman’s offense looked impressive against the Bruins, as it hit 58.3% from the floor and was better than 40% from beyond the arc. However, the Paladins struggled with turnovers, giving up 16 that led to 15 points for Belmont. Their defense struggled as well, but seemed to improve in the second half, allowing them to pull away from the Bruins.


South Carolina Gamecocks

Most of the preseason confidence in Columbia disappeared after the Gamecocks struggled against South Carolina State in their first game. But as quickly as it left, the optimism came right back following their comeback win over Clemson. South Carolina is not an offensively stout team — and it’s not going to be this season. The Gamecocks rely heavily on their defense. Unfortunately, that defense has struggled on the perimeter, something they’ll need to improve upon against the Rams, who have been shooting lights out from deep so far this season.


Charleston Cougars

Charleston plays at a top-10 tempo in the country, and it could become No. 1 when its all said and done. The Cougars play selfless basketball, with nine different players averaging more than six points per game. They have proven they can keep up with the best, giving North Carolina all it could handle in their second game of the season. The only issue: they’re a completely different team at the other end of the court. Charleston can only win games as long as its shots are falling, since the defense has been abysmal. The Cougars’ one bright spot on that end of the floor is their ability to steal the ball and create turnovers.

Pick to win

Virginia Tech


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