In the midst of the Maui Invitational final and consolation games, the Preseason NIT semifinal was held. An improving Boston College team faced one of the best young teams in the country- Purdue. These "baby Boilermakers" as they were termed last year are a top 10 team because of their tremendous chemistry. They return virtually everyone from a year ago. BC returns their major cogs, (namely Rice) and bring in UVM transfer Joe Trapani and talented freshman Reggie Jackson. This tightly contested contest yielded several noteworthy performances.
E'Twaun Moore-This combo guard was outstanding in this contest. At 6'3 and with nice court vision, Moore is an NBA point guard. He has a very complete all around game. He can shoot from distance or from the midrange. And, he controls the tempo and is able to run plays. Moore found Hummel on several occasions after beating his man off the dribble. He is the consummate slasher who is able to get inside virtually at will. E'Twaun accomplishes this by using stop and go moves to freeze his man, before he him off the dribble. Moore is also a solid rebounder for his size- he has a natural knack on the glass.
Robbie Hummel- Hummel is a tremendous shooter who can pull up from midrange, or step out and kill you from beyond the arc. He is a tremendous decision maker and rarely forces his shot. He is a team leader who is a hard worker on defense, even though his lateral footspeed needs improvement. He relies on his height to shoot over defenders and employs his length to block shots.
Tyrese Rice- Rice played poorly in the first half, being met with traps on virtually every attempt he made to attack the basket. He was able to distribute the ball to his teammates and showed some nice point guard instincts. Rice is a bit short and thus will have to overcome some hurdles in order to make it in the league. However, his ball handling ability is tremendous- he oftentimes splits defenders. He has NBA range on his three and is a capable shooter with a defender in his face. Defensively, Rice is a liability at the next level. He has the quickness to keep up with his man, but he is overmatched against bigger, stronger guards.
Joe Trapani- This UVM transfer is a versatile player. He can hit from the outside, but also bangs on the boards. He is able to attack the hoop, although he is not particularly explosive. He is capable of shooting over his defender, and is scrappy on the glass. Trapani is not a noteworthy defender and his lateral movement could use some work. He does not have a clear NBA position because he is not quick enough to man a guard position, and he does not have the girth to play inside. Thereby, he may have an uphill battle trying to make it in the league.
Rakim Sanders- Sanders is a bulky guard who can shoot from the outside. He is able to muscle is opponents in the post and finish around the hoop. He is explosive off the dribble, but his midrange game is a bit inconsistent. On the defensive end of the floor, Sanders has quick hands and is able to lockdown weaker opponents.
Reggie Jackson- This freshman is a capable slasher who demonstrated some quickness off the dribble. He can shoot the ball from distance as well, but did not really take many attempts. His defensive positioning could use some work, and Purdue's guards were a challenge for him.