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Offensive analysis: Seton Hall vs. Fairleigh Dickinson - a collective train wreck

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Sterling Gibbs was strangely absent from Seton Hall's first-half offense.
Sterling Gibbs was strangely absent from Seton Hall's first-half offense.
Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sport

In an attempt to figure out what exactly went wrong during Seton Hall's historically bad 58-54 defeat at the hands of Fairleigh Dickinson on Sunday, lets take a possession-by-possession look at Seton Hall's offense.

A few notes first:

- I didn't number every individual possession. Example: offensive rebounds that resulted in put-backs are grouped into the same possession.

- This is my first try at something like this, so its a work-in-progress. All of the pictures are taken from FOX Sports' TV feed (no infringement intended). Captions for each individual picture (if there is one) are located below the picture.

- For the possessions not pictured, I "logged" a play-by-play of what each Seton Hall possession contained. The time stamps for the possession are rough and were generally meant to indicate when Seton Hall brought the ball across the timeline and/or began an offensive set. They aren't taken from the official play-by-play.

- This is long. Like 2700-words long. So don't attempt to continue unless you have a few spare minutes.

First Half:

Possession #1 - 20:00 - Quick lob to Mobley (FDU opened in zone), Geramipoor fouls on the rebound attempt.

#2 - 18:55 - Edwin isolation, made fade away from near corner. No play ran.

#3 - 18:10 - Quick Edwin 3-attempt on the wing from Gibbs, basically a transition three.

#4 - 17:30 - Edwin runs pick-and-roll with Geramipoor, gets blocked on mid-range attempt.

#5 - 17:10 - Seton Hall runs same exact pick, is covered well so the ball is brought out. Then Mobley screens for Gibbs at same elbow later in clock, Gibbs get blocked in lane with :01 on shot clock. FOX didn't get to show the inbound pass, but looked like a no-attempt with just 1-tick on the clock.

#6 - 16:15 - Geramipoor easily isolated on block after sealing defender, Mobley puts in missed hook-shot.

#7 - 15:20 - First pressure from FDU is beaten sloppily, Geramipoor slams home dish right under basket in transition.

#8 - 14:40 - Gibbs throws pass into stands after beating pressure, subbed out for Maayan at ensuing under-16 TO.


Until the under-16 TO when Gibbs is subbed out, he has barely been used in Seton Hall's offense and his lone dribble penetration attempt was blocked. Most of Seton Hall's offense has been short and simple with Fuquan Edwin heavily involved. Turnovers haven't really mounted yet, just poor offense.

#9 - 13:45 - FDU keeps up pressure, forces a Tom Maayan turnover after under-16 TO.


First, Jaren Sina picks up his dribble in the back court, wasting a portion of the 10 seconds needed to cross the timeline. Only Stephane Manga (center court) and Tom Maayan are supporting him.


After Sina passes to Maayan to relieve his dribble, Tom dribbles straight into a trap along the sideline at half court and gets stripped, resulting in an uncontested FDU basket.

#10 - 13:10 - Play ran for Gene Teague after breaking pressure, results in easy bucket.


From the paint, Stephane Manga calls for Brian Oliver to start his motion which draws three defenders away from Teague.


Teague is left wide open simply from Oliver purposefully running along the baseline, Maayan finds him for the short lay-in.

#11 - 12:25 - Maayan turns the ball over again by dribbling into a trap along the sideline.


#12 - 11:40 - Some motion offense ran, Maayan passes to Edwin along baseline, who hits mid-range jumper on Malachi Nix. Individual effort.

#13 - 11:15 - Teague sets screen for Maayan, who is fouled.

#14 - 11:00 - After the inbound play, Maayan dribble-drives and passes to a covered Stephane Manga, who throws the ball away thanks to an acrobatic Sidney Sanders steal.


Maayan drives and lays it off to Manga.


Manga has a split-second window to feed Teague under the basket, but misses it.


Sidney Sanders (under the basket) reads the play perfectly and makes an acrobatic leap to steal Manga's skip pass to Edwin at the top of the arc.

#15 - 10:30 - Teague drops post-to-post pass from Mobley, but Edwin scoops up the loose ball and scores a lay-up. No offense run.

#16 - 9:45 - Edwin beats pressure on fast break, scores again. FDU calls a momentum-stopping timeout. With score at 18-14 FDU.

#17 - 8:55 - Edwin tries to take defender off of dribble at top of arc, stripped.

#18 - 8:30 - With Sterling Gibbs back in the game, Seton Hall runs their first dribble penetration play with Gibbs that actually works. It was also just the second time Gibbs found the lane in the half.


Gibbs turns the corner on his defender at the top of the arc.


An FDU defender cheats towards the lane, leaving Brian Oliver a few more feet open. Gibbs finds him and he knocks down the 3-pointer.

#19 - 7:45 - Gibbs is fouled on the fast break, and this time the under-8 media timeout cools Seton Hall off.

#20 - 7:30 - A quick inside out play between Brian Oliver and Brandon Mobley, who is stationed on the foul line, results in a decent look from Oliver, who misses. No offense run.

#21 - 6:50 - Gibbs takes a very quick 3-attempt from straight away off of a Mobley screen. No offense run.

#22 - 6:15 - Edwin drives from corner and dishes to Geramipoor under the basket, who scores.

#23 - 5:45 - Quick 3-attempt in transition.

#24 - 4:50 - Edwin pitches the ball to Mobley on the wing, who is left open, but misses.


At this point, any momentum that Seton Hall gained through transition points was squashed by timeouts and head-scratching offense following the under-8 timeout.

#25 - 4:25 - Seton Hall runs a nice play for Maayan to find Teague on the block.


Mobley sets a screen to give Maayan room to operate while Teague spins off of his defender on the opposite block.


Maayan finds Teague, who is fouled on his attempt and makes 1-of-2 from the line. A solid play ran to balance the offense.

#26 - 3:45 - Brandon Mobley misses open jumper from free throw line in transition. The FDU defense can be attributed with forcing a quick shot.

#27 - 2:40 - No offense run, Maayan dribbles under basket and takes impossible attempt. Timeout, Gibbs is subbed out.


After no motion from the offense, Maayan attempts to dribble to the paint, but finds no options to pass to.


Such an impossible attempt is essentially a turnover.

#28 - 2:00 - Teague is isolated in great position, FDU doesn't prevent Sina entry pass. Edwin scores offensive board off miss.


#29 - 1:00 - Maayan drives through the space in the zone and turns it over after passing at Gene Teague's feet.



#30 - :40 - Jaren Sina called for offensive foul off the ball.


For the most part, Seton Hall was very successful when they actually ran plays. The hardest part was getting to that point. FDU's pressure and zone caused offensive rhythm problems along with a tangible stat in turnovers. Seton Hall had 9 at the half. Fairleigh Dickinson's slow-paced offense also disrupted Seton Hall on the offensive end and a few key timeouts slowed Pirate momentum.

Seton Hall's offense was centered around and ran through Fuquan Edwin, Tom Maayan, and then Sterling Gibbs. The argument in support of Tom Maayan seeing so much time in the first half would be Sidney Sanders' effectiveness on offense.

"If they start driving and get to the offensive glass, then we're in trouble." - Greg Herenda at half time.

Second Half:

#1 - 20:00 - Gibbs drives to free throw line, zone collapses, he finds an open Edwin in corner for a made-3.



#2 - 19:20 - Gibbs tries to penetrate off Geramipoor screen, kicks back out to Edwin at top of arc. Gibbs then attempts a floater from the free throw line off of another Geramipoor screen. Mobley slams home the put-back.

#3 - 18:35 - Leading 27-26 after a wide-open missed 3-ball from FDU, Gibbs lays the ball off to Karlis on the wing in transition, who misses an open 3-pointer.

All the momentum is on Seton Hall's side after a quick 5-point spurt to start the second half and an Edwin pickpocket of Sanders at mid-court and subsequent Sanders foul.

#4 - 18:10 - With all the momentum, Gibbs takes a long 2-pointer off of a Geramipoor screen very early into the shot clock, which misses. Bad shot. Sanders then attacks Karlis and Gibbs in transition and gets the bucket.

#5 - 17:50 - After a full timeout, Brandon Mobley dribbles the ball off his foot, resulting in the first turnover of the half.

#6 - 17:25 - Geramipoor sets a screen for Gibbs, who finds Mobley for an open three after drawing attention -- it misses, but Geramipoor grabs the board.

#7 - 17:15 - After dribbling 15 seconds off the shot clock, Gibbs attempts a straight-away three following another Geramipoor screen, it misses. Geramipoor was whistled for a foul attempting to rebound.

#8 - 16:30 - Seton Hall nearly threw the ball away getting it up court, so Kevin Wilard called a 30-second timeout just prior to the under-16 media timeout.

On the ensuing play, Teague fumbles away an entry pass from Brandon Mobley early in the possession.


#9 - 16:10 - Pirates break FDU press successfully, but Teague mishandles an Edwin pass into the paint, Seton Hall retains possession after under-16.

#10 - 15:55 - Oliver sinks open 3-ball from the wing early in possession after zone collapses on Mobley at top of arc.


#11 - 15:40 - Teague scores bucket and gets fouled on a broken play. Maayan's initial pass to Teague was deflected in the air, but Maayan found Teague the second time.

#12 - 15:05 - Mobley takes defender off the dribble from top of foul line, draws a foul. Geramipoor draws a foul on resulting inbound pass, which puts FDU in the bonus, Geramipoor misses his first attempt.

#13 - 14:40 - Seton Hall runs some general motion offense, then Geramipoor sets a screen for Maayan at the top of the arc.

Maayan turns the ball over on his drive.


#14 - 13:55 - Maayan pushes the ball in transition and tosses it behind to a trailing Oliver, who misses a 3-attempt from straight away.

Despite all that has happened over the first 26 minutes, Seton Hall is trailing just 37-33 with 13:41 to play.

#15 - 13:40 - Teague's post-to-post pass is intercepted at the beginning of Seton Hall's possession.


#16 - 13:05 - Quickly in the possession, Maayan drives and finds an open Oliver for 3, who has a snack after his made basket.



#17 - 12:25 - Trailing 37-36, Seton Hall holds the ball for 20 seconds before FDU is called for a kicked ball. With the remaining 15 seconds of clock, Maayan is only able to hand the ball off to Mobley, who gives it back for a corner 3-attempt that missed. Poor possession.

#18 - 11:10 - Edwin takes a defender on from the free throw line, misses a tough shot. Brian Oliver air-balls the offensive rebound with a quick shot. Edwin grabs the air-ball, but misses the put-back.

#19 - 10:15 - Geramipoor sets a "screen" for Gibbs, who is fouled on his drive. His first trip to the foul line.



Seton Hall trails 43-38, Sidney Sanders exits game due to an injury from a Brian Oliver foul.

#20 - 9:30 - Another play is ran off of a Geramipoor screen.


This time Sina misses a tough shot that is well defended. All three Seton Hall guards make motion away from the basket, Brian Oliver and Sterling Gibbs are left often.


#21 - 8:50 - Jaren Sina nails an open 3-pointer after Seton Hall breaks FDU's pressure.

#22 - 8:15 - Aaron Geramipoor called for a moving screen on Seton Hall's first possession out of a Kevin Willard timeout prior to under-8 media timeout.

#23 - 7:20 - Seton Hall passes the ball around perimeter until Geramipoor sets a screen with :09 on the shot clock.


Maayan dribbles to his left an finds an open Brian Oliver with a nice pass for a made-3.


#24 - 6:40 - Down 45-44, Maayan attempts to penetrate and kick in transition but is called for a travel. Sidney Sanders checks back in.

#25 - 6:15 - Edwin nearly turned the ball over on a drive before it was deflected out of bounds. Brian Oliver has his pass to Jaren Sina intercepted for an easy two points in transition after the ball is inbounded.


#26 - 5:50 - Edwin scores and is fouled after a very quick pass from Maayan in transition.

#27 - 5:20 - Edwin takes three at beginning of Seton Hall possession, Mobley scores a put-back.

#28 - 4:45 - With Seton Hall leading 49-48 out of a timeout, Jaren Sina misses a difficult floater late in the shot clock after nothing materializes. Not much offense ran. Gibbs checks in for Maayan.


#29 - 4:15 - Gibbs drives on his own to the paint and hands the ball off to Mobley, who is fouled on his attempt at the under-4 timeout.

#30 - 3:25 - Mobley attempts to set a screen for Gibbs at the top of the arc, but Gibbs ignores it, drives to basket, and is fouled. He hits 1-of-1 to put Seton Hall up 51-50. Just his second trip to the line on the day.

#31 - 2:50 - Oliver sets a very light screen on Matt MacDonald, Gibbs dribbles to his right and then passes to Oliver for a contested 3-ball.


Trailing 52-51, Seton Hall gives up a second wide-open 3-pointer to Mathias Seilund on FDU's next possession. FDU 55-51.

#32 - 2:10 - Coming out of a Kevin Willard timeout, Gibbs peels off of another light Brian Oliver screen.


Gibbs takes his defender straight on and is blocked by Scooter Gillette when he is doubled in the paint.


#33 - 1:30 - Down 4, Seton Hall doesn't run a play, but Gibbs finds Jaren Sina for a made-3 after he is lost running through the middle of FDU's zone.


After a "tremendous block" that was "all ball" by Brandon Mobley, Seton Hall has the ball down 55-54 with :34.3 to play in the game and 27-seconds on the shot clock.

#34 - 34.3 - Jaren Sina beats his defender off the dribble and somehow connects with Mobley in the post.


Who is blocked on his game-winning attempt.


#35 - :20 - Down 3, still with plenty of time on the clock, Seton Hall runs nothing that resembles a play, clearly looking to tie the game with a 3-ball as all five players are lurking outside the arc. Gibbs' attempt misses and Xavier Harris is sent to the line to ice the game for FDU.


Standing at 5-foot-11 compared to Brandon Mobley's 6-foot-9 frame, Sidney Sanders skies for the rebound off of a missed free throw on the offensive block. His rebound and subsequent made free throw seals the game for Fairleigh Dickinson.

In the second half, Sterling Gibbs was a lot more involved in the offense, but not in the right ways. Its easy to pin blame on a quarterback, a pitcher, or a point guard, but everyone was at fault on Sunday. Tom Maayan turned the ball over too many times, Gibbs took poor shots in the second half, Gene Teague wasn't sure-handed in the paint. The list can continue, but doesn't have to right now.

Boiled down (because enough boiling was done above), Seton Hall was disrupted by Fairleigh Dickinson's defensive posture, but they also didn't take advantage of a FDU team that let Seton Hall hang in the game. Example: timeouts were wasted due to turnovers/mistakes early in ensuing possessions, The Pirates ran an incredible amount (in my opinion) of simple screen-and-rolls with Geramipoor and Maayan/Gibbs in the second half. I thought the team was most effective on a few of the plays ran to isolate Teague in the paint (#25 in first half, for example).

If Brian Oliver can continue his effective shooting (all but one of his FG attempts this season have been 3-pointers), he will be a dangerous decoy and/or weapon running along the baseline (#10 in first half).

Patrik Auda's absence from the offense can't be ignored either. Seton Hall has been quite poor over the last 2 games since Auda suffered an injury against Oklahoma.

FINAL: Fairleigh Dickinson - 58, Seton Hall - 54