"Northwestern fans can be both heartened and disheartened by the loss to Minnesota just like how nineteenth-century resurrectionists were heartened when they pried a heart from a freshly-buried corpse and then disheartened it when they sold it to a disreputable anatomist."
NOT THAT OHIO
(Click the image to view full size)
I have never attempted to hide the fact that I'm just not much of a basketball fan.
Never played it, never watched it, and certainly never followed UM's teams in any
way. But many of you do, and these are the stories that the fan base is buzzing
about these days... and with good reason. Michigan Basketball has had a
great season and is certainly deserving of the spotlight.
So this weekend I found myself-- for the first time in my life, mind you-- doing
an online search to discover who Michigan drew in the tournament brackets. And
as we've all seen, the matchup itself is its own punchline. So much so that I even
considered discarding the topic and going somewhere else. But that'd be unfair for
all of the Bball fans, and probably the fan base as a whole-- our little illustrated
family was designed to be representative of all Michigan fans, not just, well, me.
In the end, as it always does and probably should, it came back to the
characters. It's been fun getting to know the archetypes of each individual
Blockham, and getting inside their heads pretty much writes the story
each time. Today, the frustration of the blue hair won out.
Look Thursday for another Men's Bball Tourney strip, where I'll get
inside the head of another Blockham who has good reason
to be enthusiastic of his team's chances this March.
THE BLOCKHAMS™ runs (typically) every Tuesday here at MGoBlog, and at least
every Thursday on its official home page. Also, don't forget to check out our newest
feature, Friday Roughs, a spontaneous low-end comic based on trending
Michigan events, available on Twitter and Facebook every Friday.
Thanks to all that helped build the coaching database. Now it's time to move on to recruits. I have uploaded all available recruiting sites databases back to 2002 in an effort to connect them to team rosters. Of 16,865 recruits, I have connected most of them to players in the databse. However there are about 2500 players still unconnected. Some of them were academic or legal casualties, some of them were transfers. Most of them are offensive lineman that never showed up on the play by play in the first place.
For those who consider themselves recruiting and or Google ninjas, I can use your help. I have listed the players, school they signed with and year they signed for all the missing entries. Whatever info you can help fill in would be a great help. There are more instructions in the spreadsheet and feel free and contact me with any questions you might have. My email is in the instructions. Thanks again for everyone's help.
Notre Dame Picture Pages
Watching the highlights I was very surprised by how the scoring played out for us. I could not see anything televised because of my location, but it was very strange to see an entire series of lucky bounces and soft goals.
In the preview I noted that there are two Summerhayes, he's either almost unbeatable or incredibly bad. This weekend he was terrible, getting beat to the glove, letting in bad angle shots and having awful positioning.
Our first goal is set up in transition after a nice stick from Treais keeps the puck in the zone. It's set up with Di Giuseppe in the middle, Treais trailing and Glendening going to the net. Good things happen when you get the puck on net.
This has been an issue for the Wolverines all season long, the transition game suffers because they just don't shoot, they try to make the extra pass and the window closes.
It should have been an easy save for Summerhays, but he lets it get by him. Michigan gets a lucky roll and the puck bounces off the inside part of the post and back into the crease.
Because of the position of the defenders in the previous frame they have taken themselves out of the play, and Glendening can punch in the rebound for our first goal.
Our game winning goal starts with Lynch and Rohrkemper fighting along the side boards. The Irish have left Bennett, Brown and Merrill on the left side of the ice by themselves.
I've watched replay over and over again, but I can not figure out how the puck gets out to Bennett. As you can see the Irish are scrambling to get back into position but Bennett has already made his decision on where he is going with the puck.
Bennett slings it across the ice to Brown, who does a great job of bringing the puck in on his backhand and getting his hips turned for the shot.
Notice how Summerhays is playing back in the crease, if he moves up a little bit he may be able to take the angle away from Browns wrister, but Brown sends it past the glove for the game winner.
We start here with Di Giuseppe fighting down the side boards for the loose puck, Michigan is changing lines which leaves him by himself.
Phil comes away with the puck and Wohlberg curls around. The defender is only in position to make a play on PDG, who hits David for the one timer.
Once again Summerhays is playing extremely far back in the crease, if he is challenging higher he may have a play on the puck but Wohlberg gets it past him with ease.
This was a great goal that opened up the game for the Wolverines, it took me a couple views to see what actually happened because of the angle.
Treais gets the puck in the corner boards after a nice keep in and just throws it at the net. Di Giuseppe gets a stick on the puck and deflects it right through the open legs of Summerhays.
This is a low confidence goal given up by the Irish, it should have been routine for the netminder to get his pad down but when things aren't going right you don't get the breaks.
Another soft goal and lucky bounce for the good guys, Guptill crosses the line and meets with two Notre Dame defenders.
The Irish do a good job of knocking the puck away from Big Gup, but unfortunately for them it goes right to a trailing David Wohlbeg.
It's not the closest shot or the best angle, but Summerhays takes a big whiff and is left staring at an empty glove while the Wolverines send the Seniors out with a win in their last game at Yost Ice Arena.
Having done something similar last year, I just combined the Scout, Rivals, and 247 football recruit rankings into one. The purpose is to help sort through the confusion that comes from seeing three different rankings for each kid. I provide a little analysis below the rankings, but I’ll leave the rest to you.
What to know about how I did this:
I started with the Scout 300, Rivals 250, and 247’s top 247 and removed all of the prospects who were ranked by only one of them. Therefore, every prospect below appeared on at least two of those three lists. The reasons for this are that: (1) it keeps the rankings to a manageable size and (2) if only one site really likes a prospect, it might just be an outlier.
If a kid was ranked by two services but not the third, I imputed a ranking for the third service. To do this, I added 100 to the lowest ranking provided by that service. In other words, a kid who wasn’t ranked in Scout’s top 300 received a Scout ranking of 400; a kid who wasn’t ranked in Rivals’ top 250 received a Rivals ranking of 350; and a kid who wasn’t ranked in 247’s top 247 received a 247 rank of 347.
I took one more step before finding the average ranking for each prospect. I incorporated the median ranking across those three services. Therefore, a prospect’s mean ranking, which is the basis of these rankings, comes from an average of his real/imputed Scout ranking, Rivals ranking, 247 ranking, and the median of the three. I added the median to mitigate the effect that one outlier ranking would have on a prospect’s mean.
Okay, enough with that.
Edit: I just added position rankings. Note that I used the positions listed by Scout.
|5||Vernon Hargreaves III||CB-1||6||10||3||6||6.25|
|19||Derrick Griffin||WR-3||Texas A&M||30||19||22||22||23.25|
|20||Adam Breneman||TE-1||Penn State||22||22||29||22||23.75|
|25||Jalin Marshall||RB-4||Ohio State||34||41||8||34||29.25|
|29||Cameron Burrows||CB-3||Ohio State||74||7||30||30||35.25|
|47||Steven Elmer||OT-6||Notre Dame||99||49||44||49||60.25|
|50||Isaiah Golden||DT-7||Texas A&M||54||63||85||63||66.25|
|55||Eli Woodard||CB-5||Ohio State||90||28||83||83||71|
|75||Austin Golson||OT-8||Florida State||125||57||92||92||91.5|
|100||Holland Fisher||OLB-9||Virginia Tech||190||72||107||107||119|
|110||Ishmael Wilson||OT-10||Texas A&M||171||143||80||143||134.25|
|113||Christian Hackenberg||QB-11||Penn State||183||153||68||153||139.25|
|120||Billy Price||DT-14||Ohio State||111||130||205||130||144|
|122||Evan Lisle||OT-11||Ohio State||68||83||347||83||145.25|
|139||Garrett Sickels||DE-15||Penn State||271||50||169||169||164.75|
|141||Kohl Stewart||QB-14||Texas A&M||207||181||112||181||170.25|
|142||Jamar Gibson||WR-18||Texas A&M||112||350||109||112||170.75|
|168||Kerrick Huggins||DT-15||Texas A&M||133||154||347||154||197|
|175||Laquvionte Gonzalez||RB-25||Texas A&M||237||151||213||213||203.5|
|179||Tony Stevens||WR-25||Florida State||155||350||160||160||206.25|
|183||Jayron Kearse||OLB-14||Miami (Fl)||60||218||347||218||210.75|
|208||Devin Lauderdale||WR-30||Texas Tech||275||193||245||245||239.5|
|215||Fred Ross||WR-32||Oklahoma State||210||213||347||213||245.75|
|217||Alex Collins||RB-28||Miami (Fl)||252||147||347||252||249.5|
|235||Jon Reschke||OLB-20||Michigan State||239||350||222||239||262.5|
|239||D.J. Park||OT-20||South Carolina||219||350||247||247||265.75|
Michigan currently has commitments from:
#15 Shane Morris (#2 QB)
#36 Dymonte Thomas (#4 S)
#38 Kyle Bosch (#4 OT)
#53 Chris Fox (#1 OG)
#64 Patrick Kugler (#2 OG)
#97 Logan Tuley-Tillman (#9 OT)
#125 Michael McCray (#11 OLB)
#145 Wyatt Shallman (#1 FB)
#151 Jake Butt (#6 TE)
#186 David Dawson (#7 OG)
#187 Taco Charlton (#18 DE)
#221 Jourdan Lewis (#21 CB)
Gareon Conley and Jaron Dukes aren’t listed because they were only ranked by one service (Scout). Khalid Hill isn’t currently ranked by any of them.
Here are the programs with the most commitments from this group - along with Big Ten programs (& Notre Dame) with at least one commitment:
Michigan – 12
Texas – 10 (but very top-heavy)
Alabama – 8
Texas A&M – 7
Florida – 6
Georgia – 5
Ohio State – 5
Penn State – 3
Michigan State – 1
Notre Dame – 1
Let me know if anything seems wrong or strange.
It's a 3 or a 4. Here's how it breaks down.
Unless craziness happens, Baylor and Marquette have 3-seeds locked down. Here are the remaining teams competing for the last two slots. Stats according to CBS. In no particular order:
Remember UConn last year shot up all the way to a 3-seed with their Big East tournament run. Louisville, despite finishing the regular season slow, has the opportunity to do similar here. FSU, if they were to beat Duke and UNC on back to back nights, would have a case for themselves as well. Georgetown's numbers are very similar to Michigan's and both had rather ignominous conference tournament exits. At this point, it seems unlikely that either Indiana or Wisconsin would pass Michigan on the NCAA S-Curve, but crazier things have happened.
Tomorrow you are rooting for North Carolina to crush Florida State and eliminate one of the contenders. It'd be nice if Cincinnati won tonight, but it does not appear that is going to happen, so we're stuck with Louisville for the time being. In the most likely scenario it comes down to Georgetown vs Michigan for the last 3-seed, and we're splitting hairs at that point so it's guess work as to what the selection committee will decide.
Fortunately, there have been a lot of upsets in the mid-major conference tournaments and the overall competitiveness of the 13 and lower seeds has seen a significant drop in the last week.
Here are the teams that are likely to be 13 and 14 seeds (Michigan's likeliest opening round opponents, in no particular order):
|Long Beach St||13||38||122|
|New Mexico St||13||64||116|
|South Dakota St||13||45||184|
Long Beach St would be the worst draw here, and I'm hoping they move up in the S-Curve to a 12 seed or better. They beat Xavier and Pittsburgh and they lost by single digits in road games vs UNC, Kansas and Louisville (i.e. they can play with anyone).
South Dakota St's best wins come over Oral Roberts and Washington. Common opponents they split their season series with Oakland and lost to Minnesota by 16.
Colorado has a bunch of Pac-12 wins and not much else to speak of. They lost OOC to Wichita St, Colorado St, and Maryland. They are not a good team on paper but someone had to win the P12 Tournament!
New Mexico St managed to beat New Mexico on the road and that is it on their list of impressive games.
Belmont is another scary draw. Their wins this year aren't flashy but they took Duke to the wire, losing by 1 point at Cameron. They also lost on the road to Memphis.
Montana has an impressive win streak going but they have played the weakest schedule of this pack of teams. Their best win came over Long Beach St at home.
Ohio who nipped Akron for the MAC title, wouldn't it be fun to draw this team in the first round. What would we chant? Ohio (not THAT ohio) has no real impressive wins to speak of and didn't play a grueling schedule. Their best "win" was a 5 point loss at Louisville back at the start of the season.
Davidson's results read something like, boring boring boring, WTF-beat-Kansas, boring boring boring. They beat Kansas on the road by 6 back in December. Their other 4 games vs respectable tournament quality opponents were all losses.
Cackle With Knowing Glee: New Mexico St, South Dakota St, Colorado, Montana, or Ohio
Worry If: Belmont, Davidson, or Long Beach St (or whomever Long Beach Supplants from the 12-line).
Good night and see you after the selection show tomorrow.
TLDR: The three seed is currently a coin flip. We have a really good chance to have a team we should throttle in the opening round.
|#17 Notre Dame (19-16-3) at #4 Michigan (21-11-4)|
|3/9/12 7:35pm (Not Televised)|
|3/10/12 7:35pm (Comcast)|
|3/11/12 7:35pm (If Necessary)|
|Billy Maday||Right Wing||12-14-26||61||-3||28||17|
|Austin Wuthrich||Right Wing||7-10-17||60||+4||34||12|
|Bryan Rust||Right Wing||5-6-11||73||+1||16||16|
|Jeff Costello||Left Wing||5-6-11||52||-6||56||8|
|Michael Voran||Right Wing||5-4-9||68||-9||18||13|
Straight out of Compton Ice Arena, Notre Dame comes into the series with a much different offense then we have seen before. Led by 1st Team All-CCHA T.J. Tynan, the Irish pose almost zero threat to score out of a set offense, but run one of the most dangerous breakouts in the NCAA.
As you can see from the chart above they are very skilled at center, which can pose a major threat to our lower pairings. A third line who can run the breakout like this doesn't match up well against Clare-Serville.
The key here will be the discipline of our blueliners. Moffie and Merrill pinch more often on the offensive side, which is something we need to avoid here. The Irish love to skate, so we need to stay back and force them to run from a set.
Off a Missed shot by Di Giuseppe, Notre Dame gathers and turns on the jets.
The forward gets his defender to pinch early, notice the other blueliner is shading left. When the forward gathers the puck over the line he has the entire right side of the ice to work with.
This is what makes Notre Dames transition offense so good, everyone understands their role. One guy is going to the net, everyone else is finding an open space to sit in.
Look at how many options they have created for themselves.
On the defensive side the Fighting Irish are lacking a true shutdown pair. In fact they aren't very good at defense at all as the +/- would indicate. Some of this could be attributed to goalie play, but even with good numbers from Summerhays they still aren't getting the job done.
One thing they are good at is skating with the forwards on the break.
Here is another transition goal for the Irish, once again we have a forward crashing the net and the trailer setting up behind the play. Calabrese has intentionally held up because Michigan has lost him.
Calabrese does a great job of finding the open space behind the defenders and buries the shot.
This is a head scratcher for me. Looking at the numbers it's clear Mike Johnson is not the guy you want in net but for whatever reason he still gets ice time, chalk this one up to a coach being stubborn.
Steven Summerhays is the kind of goalie who can carry your team or let in a bunch soft goals to lose it. It all depends on the day because when he's hot he dives across the crease and catches the puck with the handle of his stick, when he's cold he gets beaten 5-hole and glove side with relative ease.
|Phil Di Giuseppe||10-12-22||99||+20||14||20|
Scoring has been dominated by the top line, we live and die by their scoring. Scorers 1-3 are on the top line, 4-6 are on the second line. Third line is good for a goal every once and a while and the fourth is never going to score.
It was very surprising and kind of a shock to see Jon Merrill get his pocket picked by Bowling Green for the game winner. This has become much more frequent than Michigan fans would like to see, I've seen Merrill cough the puck up and get turned around by forwards more this season than ever before. Hopefully he can get this problem resolved.
Keep being awesome, that is all.
Ill keep this short since I'm trying to get this up quick. Michigan wins in three games, we take game one and Notre Dame takes game two before we close it out Sunday night.