Monday, May 10, 2010

Bearcats Breakdown: Dion Dixon

I sense your surprise. Why isn't the next logical person from Bearcats Breakdown Yancy Gates? I'll tell you why. It's because Saturday, I found out that my best friend Dion Dixon was on twitter. He's @DDixon3. He can't have any idea that this Cincinnati Bearcats blog shows him so much love, so I think all of you out there with twitter should tweet him and let him know. You should also follow the blog on twitter. That plug was shameful. What's not shameful was the performance of Dion Dixon this season. Let's take a look at how #3 performed in his sophomore year.


Dion Dixon averaged 4.8 points a game this season. That's 2.5 points lower than his freshman year average of 7.2. That can be racked up to the fact he played 6 less minutes per game this season. He was banged up a little, but also fell out of favor in the rotation. Last season, he didn't have a game where he didn't play 10 minutes, this year, he had 9, not including 2 that he missed. He was on the court 54% of UC possessions, to 36%. Dixon's use of possessions grew slightly. Dion's effectiveness didn't translate, as his offensive rating plummeted from 104.3 to 97.1. His effective FG% fell from 45 to 39, and his true shooting % from 48 to 45. A huge part of that was his horrible 3 point shooting. After being bad, 36-118, 30%, his freshman year, he was 14-65, 21% this season. Dixon was 54-154, 35% overall, and missing that many shots really killed the percentage. He was 76-204, 36% his freshman year. One thing that got much better was his foul shooting. Dixon shot 39-52, 75%, up from 66.7%. His free throw rate, the rate at which he got to the line, stayed the same. Dixon got nearly 50% of his points from inside the arch, an amazing number for a shooting guard.

Dixon had a few good offensive performances this season. He put up 15 on 6-11 shooting in 22 minutes against Lipscomb. He was the only offensive player to show up at UAB when he scored a team high 13. He had 13 two more times, in wins over Cal St Bakersfield and Texas Southern. Dixon came up big with 12 in the Vanderbilt win in Maui, and 12 in the loss to Marquette. Most of the time when Dion Dixon scored, UC won. The Texas Southern win featured his best shooting game, 5-7. He got to the line 6 times against Winthrop, making 5, his best of the season. His best 3 point shooting game would be the 3 of 4 against Marquette, but he was also 3 of 5 against CS Bakersfield. Dixon is probably remembered more for the shots he missed though. In double overtime of the Xavier game, Dixon bricked an open 3 that would have given UC the lead. In the first Louisville game, he squashed a UC rally by taking a horribly ill advised triple. Believe it or not, those were the only 2 threes he took in those games. The last one to come to mind, is the brick display he put on against Gonzaga, when he was 1-6 and seemed to be forcing shots all night.


Dion Dixon was not a great rebounder this season, averaging 2 a game. He averaged 0.8 offensive boards, 5.9% of UC's offensive rebounds, and 1.18 defensive boards, 8.4%. All of those are down a percentage from last year. Some of that has to do with minutes yes, but some of it has to do with Dixon not being tenacious going to the glass. Did you know in his freshman season, there were 6 games total where he had 0 offensive rebounds. This year, he had offensive rebounds in only 16 games. Most of those came in a 2 week span. He had 8 games last season with 0 defensive rebounds, and 11 this year. He had 8 games with 0 rebounds this season, and he had 0 games with 0 rebounds his freshman year. I'm sure some of this had to be because he played out on the wing more, but rebounds are about wanting the ball, and I don't think Dixon wanted it as much.

Dixon's best rebounding games game in Maui. He pulled down 10 rebounds against Vanderbilt, 7 defensive. That ties a career high, and is a career high. It seemed every one of his offensive rebounds were huge in that game. Dixon had 5 boards against Maryland, 4 offensive, a season high. Dion pulled down 5 in the victory over Notre Dame. He had 4 twice, against Weber State, and against Miami. Interesting to note all of those were UC victories. When Dion Dixon rebounded, UC won.


Dion Dixon had 36 assists this season, down from 44. He had 1.01 a game. But, the percent of Cincinnati assists he had was up to 13%. Mainly because Cincinnati was a horrible passing team. He had 4 assists against UConn and CS Baker, showing when Dion Dixon passed the ball, UC won.


Dixon had 16 steals this season, matching his output from his freshman year. He had 2 steals in games against UConn, Prairie View, Winthrop and Marquette. Dixon blocked 2 shots, against Vandy and UAB. Dixon turned the ball over 30 times, accounting for 17% of the UC turnovers. His assist to turnover ratio was 1.2. Dixon had a couple of games where it seemed all he did was turn the ball over, Providence, and Seton Hall.
Don't know how this slipped my mind, but Dion Dixon  had the most memorable UC turnover of the season. With the score tied, Dixon pulled a Charles Williams on a late inbound against West Virginia, setting the stage for Da'Sean Butler's ice cold three. Dixon shouldn't have been in the game in my book (book coming soon), and it really killed me that he committed the big gaff.

Dion Dixon didn't have the greatest of sophomore seasons. It could be seen as a slight regression, or it could be seen as him not improving. Either way, that's not great. Dixon fell victim to the log jam at guard. He couldn't get minutes over Cash, Vaughn or Lance, and once Ibrahima Thomas stepped in, Rashad Bishop played at the 3 giving UC a big line up. Jaquan Parker taking a big step at the end of the year also hurt Dixon. Like Larry Davis, Dixon's shooting stroke really hurt his production. Unlike Davis, Dixon wasn't a great shooter and he got worse. I believe that he will turn things around. I think his junior year is going to be the breakout one for Dion Dixon. I have to believe that though, because he's my best friend.

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