There were a lot of people, myself included, who didn't know if Butler would be able to win a single game in the loaded field of the Battle 4 Atlantis in the Bahamas this past Thanksgiving week. Everyone could not have been more wrong. The Bulldogs went 2-1 in the tournament, beating #5 North Carolina and Big East foe Georgetown, and taking a loss to Oklahoma.
Alex Barlow: A+
I can say, with 100% certainty, that Butler would not have knocked off the Tar Heels without Alex Barlow. Barlow tied for the team lead with 17 points, along with five rebounds, three assists, and three steals. He also helped neutralize All-American guard Marcus Paige (18 points, but only 5-17 from the field). Barlow stepped into the role that Kellen Dunham played in the last Butler upset of the Tar Heels. Barlow struggled against Oklahoma a bit, as did everyone on the Bulldogs, but he got right back to form against Georgetown, scoring 11 points in the victory.
Kelan Martin: A-
There was one Bulldog who arguably played as large of a role in the win against North Carolina as Alex Barlow. That man was freshman Kelan Martin. Martin had 17 points, as well, in just 17 minutes of play. He was bad against Oklahoma (there's a theme here), but improved against Oklahoma. For a freshman to perform like he did against a top 5 ranked team will undoubtedly do wonders for his confidence going forth this season.
Roosevelt Jones: B-
This is the last favorable grade a Bulldog player is going to get in this progress report, which might not be entirely fair because they did win two games, but these three guys played the biggest roles. Jones nearly had a triple-double in the North Carolina game (12 points, eight rebounds, six assists), but was also 3-11 from the field. The Oklahoma game was terrible for him, with only four points. In the Georgetown game he was average, but Georgetown's frontcourt did a good job diminishing his impact
Kameron Woods: C
Outside of his 13 rebound performance in the game against North Carolina, Woods was just kind of.... there. He didn't do anything against Oklahoma, and had five points and seven rebounds against the Hoyas. As we've said time and time again here, Woods needs to get it going offensively. He's been very good defensively, but the Bulldogs offense would open up even more if he could get it going.
Andrew Chrabascz: C
Butler's other big man did about what you expect from his at this point in the three games. He scored from 7-9 points each game. The issue, though, is his rebounding. He had six against the Tar Heels, but then only had a combined five in the next two games. That could also be due to Kameron Woods grabbing rebounds at such a ferocious rate, however.
Kellen Dunham: D-
Kellen Dunham had a terrible week. Very terrible. In the North Carolina game he was 3-17, missed nine threes (1-10), and turned the ball over four times. In the Oklahoma game, he was Butler's leading scorer with 17 points, but it took him 16 shots to get there. Then, finally, against Georgetown, he improved a bit. He was 5-10 for 16 points. Shooters go into cold spells, and that's all that happened here for Dunham. It's not something to be concerned about, so long as other players are able to step up as they were for the Bulldogs.