Men’s basketball looks solid in win over Franklin College: Beyond the Box Score

Senior guards Jahmyl Telfort and Posh Alexander combined for nine steals on the night. Photo by Delaney Hudson.


Butler men’s basketball took a dominant 91-54 victory over Franklin College on Nov. 1 to conclude their exhibition games for the season. The Dawgs got off to a bit of a slow start, but they cleaned it up at the end of the first half to take an 18 point lead. 

This game was a good opportunity for Butler to straighten up on both sides of the ball. Especially for a team with so many new pieces, finding comradery on the offense can be a struggle. Although senior Jalen Thomas was out, Butler proved that the majority of their starters can play together and they will be an offensive threat during the regular season. 

Improved defense 

The Dawgs started out slow defending the ball. Franklin was shooting nearly 50% from the field and 35% from three in the first half. Butler began picking up aggressiveness with the help of senior guard Posh Alexander’s four first-half steals. The 2021 Big East Defensive Player of the Year continues to prove he can take the ball away from the opposing team. Senior guard Jahmyl Telfort also added four steals to his statsheet. 

“Defense is important,” Telfort said. “It’s something we pride ourselves on. It’s going to happen in the Big East; we might not make shots. It might be a tough game, [and] you have to win with your defense. I think we did really well.” 

The Bulldogs carried this energy and aggressiveness into the second half. They held the Grizzlies to 32% from the field and 13% from three. 

Transition offense 

With the success of the defense, came offensive opportunities. Alexander was again a key part of this, as he turned his takeaways into chances for other guys — completing four assists on the night. Sophomore guard Landon Moore came off the bench and immediately set up his teammates to take some good looks. Although not all of these shots fell, the Dawgs saw what they were capable of doing on the floor. 

The success continued in the second half. The Dawgs started off early with a 12-0 scoring run. Telfort added eight of his 16 points and sophomore forward Connor Turnbull came off the bench to score eight of his 12. 

Although improvements were shown, head coach Thad Matta said that he is still looking to solidify this offense in the next few practices before their first regular season game. 

Matta also credited junior guard Pierre Brooks who had another all-around effort. He scored 15 points on the night, added seven total rebounds and went 4-4 from the free throw line. 

“When [Brooks] is being aggressive, that opens up a lot of things for other guys and that’s how this team has to play,” Matta said. “It’s not going to be one guy on a given night. It has to be everyone doing their jobs.”

The line was a place of struggle for Butler against Ohio Northern as they shot about 60%. They completely turned this around, shooting nearly 88% on these given opportunities. When the Dawgs get into tougher competition, making their free throws will be crucial. 

The next one will count, as the Bulldogs will face off against Eastern Michigan on Nov. 6 at Hinkle Fieldhouse for their first regular season game. 


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