Basketball Scouting Report: Columbia

Army has not yet entered the lighter section of its December schedule, the pre-Christmas lull before conference play. A steady stream of games means that the Black Knights must stay physically ready to handle the rigors of early-season basketball. This team will try to find its legs against the Columbia Lions.


Army and Columbia played this past January, with the Lions winning at Army, 64-52. Columbia most notably played top-ranked Michigan State very close earlier this season, showing the Black Knights that they will have their hands full on Wednesday night against the Lions.

Despite a roster that features zero seniors and a starting five that is rather young, Columbia has shown it can be tough. As the winner in three of its last five games, Columbia enters this matchup on an upswing.

Starting Lineup

Center – Cory Osetkowski –
Junior, 6-11, 258; 2013-14: 6.9 points per game, 4.5 rebounds per game, 1.6 assists per game

Osetkowski is a big man who does step out beyond the paint on select occasions. This is evidenced by the fact that he has taken five three-point shots this early in the season, making three of them. He's second on the team in rebounds and averages almost a block per game.

Forward – Luke Petrasek – Freshman, 6-10, 205; 2013-14: 7.5 ppg, 3.4 rpg

Petrasek has struggled this season with his shot, and he has also faced problems in terms of protecting the ball, as shown by his 0.3 assist-to-turnover/TO ratio. He is the least efficient player in the starting five for Columbia.

Guard – Maodo Lo – Sophomore, 6-3, 180; 2013-14: 12.5 ppg, 4.4 rpg, 1.1 apg

Lo leads the Lions in scoring and has been a marksman from long distance, connecting on nearly 60 percent of his three-point attempts despite shooting only four per game. He's a player Army can't give space to.

Guard – Isaac Cohen – Sophomore, 6-4, 210; 2013-14: 5.6 ppg, 5.2 rpg, 3 apg

Cohen has been the team's best rebounder, and while he doesn't fill up the scoreboard with baskets, he provides plenty of balance to Columbia's attack.

Guard – Grant Mullins – Sophomore, 6-3, 175;2013-14: 11.4 ppg, 3.2 rpg, 1.4 apg

Mullins is an aggressive offensive player who makes his impact on a game in a variety of areas. When Lo isn't controlling the offense, there's a good chance the offense will run through Mullins.

Keys to the Game

1) Win the tempo battle.
These teams are separated by nearly 10 possessions per 40 minutes, a rather large difference over the course of a game. Columbia doesn't have the depth of weapons Army does, so if the Black Knights can speed up the game, such a development would favor them.

2) Limit the three-point differential in this game. Columbia shoots the three well and defends it fairly well, too. Army struggles to shoot the three and has had problems defending it. Columbia doesn't have to match Army possession for possession if it dominates that statistic. Top Stories