Let's thank and say nice things about the basketball team and staff before the season ends in 4 weeks. While there were certainly moments of disappointment for Michigan fans at Crisler and in cyberspace, our disappointments must pale when compared to those of the players and staff. Or at least it should be so, if we put our participation in proper perspective. We were one rimmed out tip and one half-court throw from going 27-4 and a #1 seed. Instead we will have to be content with a 25-6 mark and a #3 seed. The Horror!
While we are far from assured of a better record next year--you can't lose a Trey Burke without it hurting big time--Michigan basketball has clearly returned to an elite level. I, for one, am thrilled to again be invested enough to be disappointed in the kind of losses we had this year.
(Slight Mod Edit - unfortunate typo corrected. No "h" in Crisler. LSA)
I cringed at Crisler in the last minute of the game as GRIII, Hardaway, and Trey headed to the line while players and fans alike waved their arms to quiet the crowd.
I pulled this paper from the MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference. For those unaware, it is an annual conference now sponsored and covered by ESPN that celebrates the nerds of sports. Panelists explain the ways data is helping us understand performance better than ever. This research paper (though based on NBA data) documents disparaties in home/road performance in two variables: offensive rebounding and free throw shooting.
As expected, offensive rebounding improves in a home environment which makes sense due to the effort and energy required. However, free throw shooting in pressure scenarios is worse at home than on the road. The worst environment to shoot a free throw is in a quiet, nervous home arena, yet road environments cause no significant effect, positive or negative, to free throw shooting.
My plea is for Crisler Center fans to greet Michigan FT shooters with a steady buzz of solid, maybe not defeaning applause in support of our players. It's tough when the building goes mostly silent and 13,000 fans expect you to make every shot.
Disclaimer: This is no excuse for our gut-wrenching loss yesterday, just my thoughts on how we can give our team the best home court advantage possible.
Product of Michigan visit this weekend, JR PF Ricky Doyle (Bishop Verot) is now a Wolverine.
A bit of an under-the-radar recruit since he didn't play AAU ball, but according to ESPN had offers from tOSU, Miami (YTM), Purdue, and Notre Dame. Has been sidelined for a decent portion of the season due to ankle injury, IIRC.
Didn't think it was possible to ever go up in rankings after losing, but I guess the voters had a heart. Glad we went up from #7 to #6, after that heartbreaking defeat yesterday. Hopefully next week, we have a Big Ten Tournament Championship in the bag. GO BLUE!!
Lunardi has us as a #3 seed in a region facing #14 seed Montanta and possible match-ups with #6 VCU, #2 Miami (FL), and #1 Gonzaga.
Too bad Lunardi is terrible at seeds and match-ups, b/c if that's the draw, we're going to the Final Four.
According to the Free Press the douche is forced to humble himself. Personally I am sick of his phony tough guy macho act and think he is a Harbaugh swagger jacker. I have lost all respect for this guy so naturally this pleases me. Link: http://www.freep.com/article/20130311/SPORTS06/130311035/tom-crean-jeff-meyer-video-indiana-basketball-michigan