Check that - Whisky is Saturday
Northwestern 67, Michigan 52
Michigan 11-11 (4-6 Big Ten)
Yes, it's come to the point in the season where I've run out of pithy, depressing titles to put on basketball posts. "Northwestern 67, Michigan 52" describes it more succinctly than some lame 2-word phrase probably could. I wanted this basketball team to be good, and as an optimist, I am among the last to give up hope. I am constantly looking for evidence that the football team will improve from year to year, evidence that the basketball team is better than their record shows, some sign that good times are coming.
However, it comes to a point where the optimism just runs out. Dylan from UMHoops probably sums it up best in his game recap:
The last month or so has been littered with games where Michigan reminds you how good they could have been. In this one, Michigan reminded us how bad they really are.
So, through all the smoke and mirrors of false hope, we now have a pretty good idea what this basketball team is: a bad one. How that happened over the course of one off-season while only losing two walkons and a Canadian is beyond me, but it happened.
At the end of the first half against Northwestern, the team had looked mediocre, but not yet bad. The second half was a carbon-copy of the previous time the Wolverines faced the Wildcats: the defense didn't show up to play, the offense couldn't get a good look (though at least this time it wasn't due to a load of turnovers), and the Wolverines' stars disappeared. Michigan went from down just 5 points at the break, to down by 21 with under 5 minutes to go, and the 15-point margin only looks marginally better.
It comes to a point where there's no explanation besides a complete lack of heart and leadership. It's not like DeShawn Sims and Manny Harris don't want to win. But wanting to win isn't enough. That desire has to turn into effort and smart play (including shot selection - ugh) for victories to go up on the board.
- DeShawn Sims's tweet summed up his game: "I Didn't put in work today. Gotta do better than 4pts with a Lost. Amnesia though Badgers nexts." Hopefully, he can indeed put this game behind him and come out with a fire against Wisconsin.
- Many Harris and... Darius Morris(?!?) were the only Wolverines in double figures, both with 11 points. When Morris gets time to work on his shot in the offseason, he could develop into one hell of a basketball player.
- As noted above, turnovers weren't a serious problem in this game, as the team only committed nine (four of those came from Manny Harris). However, they were jacking up some awful shots. Some of it was freaking out in the face of defensive pressure, but some of it was just mental weakness, and not staying disciplined in picking when to shoot.
- If I had asked you before the game, would you have guessed Stu Douglass would be the team's #3 rebounder? Didn't think so.
- On that note, where was Zack Novak? After he gave up that awful foul at the beginning of the game (on what was an inexcusable missed over-and-back call), he didn't do a whole lot in the game. Part of it may be looking back after a couple days with only a scoreboard to look at, but it didn't seem like he achieved his usual GRIT ratings.
Michigan tries to avenge a road loss to Wisconsin Saturday at 4PM in Crisler Arena. We've moved beyond the point of "must-wins" for the sake of the NCAA tournament, and have moved along to being eligible for the NIT (gulp). The 1984-85 team, which earned a #1 seed in the NCAA tournament, will be honored at halftime.
Whoops, thanks for the fix.
1. Buy a fresh case of beer. Hopefully you won't need it all.
2. Open a beer before the game and have a 6-pack in a cooler by the couch.
3. Everytime Michigan jacks up a 3 with less than 10 seconds off the shot clock, take a drink.
4. At the end of the game you will either be sober and happy that they won or pig-drunk and not able to care.
NIT nothing...Big ten Tournament winner, NCAA tourney here we come. The team is actually capable of it IMHO. Do i think it will...i'll say hell yea but put a cup on in preparation for one final blow to the balls.
The fact is the team plays hard and they are good people. Every reason to keep supporting them. The fact is this team does not have the right pieces to be a consistently competitive team this year. I truly believe the team will be better next year (with or without Manny). Then you can support the team and the year they are having.
So, I have noticed that the timing of the analysis of the basketball team's games has slacked off recently. It took two days to post this analysis of the NW game, whereas it took 4 hours to post the analysis of the UCONN game. Now, I don't blame anyone. I don't want to talk about that NW game ever again. But I have now determined that you don't even need to watch the basketball team anymore, or even read any words of the mgoblog analysis, to determine how the basketball team did in the game in question or how the team is doing over the entire season so far. All you need to do is watch and see how long it takes to post the game analysis. If it is posted right away, then we won and the team has momentum/the record is pretty good. If it takes a while to post, then we lost. If it takes a long while to post, then we lost and the season is going down the tubes.
You may say, well, you just picked the two most extreme games of the year, our best and our worst. But the MSU quality team effort that resulted in a heart-breaking loss took almost a day to post...about where it should be if this theory works. And games earlier in the year were posted pretty expediently, even when we lost. May I propose the the a new mgblog math formula that can tell you how the basketball team did in the game in question.
For this equation: Michigan basketball game result=M
Time it took for MGoBlog postgame analysis to be posted=T
Constant=k=Effort Zach Novak puts into each game=110%=1.1
(the higher M is, the more likely it is that we won...if it is a certain amount, you know we won)
So, M is inversely proportional to T. I was gonna do a second equation for how you tell how the season is going as a whole. But I haven't taken math in a while. So, I couldn't figure out how to make it work with this first equation, so that you can fit the took together by substituting in and out of each equation. All I had was S (Michigan basketball season's success)=k/T as well...and obviously that's the same equation, so it doesn't work. Maybe a math guy can help me out.
Oh, and yes I know this is stupid and pointless. That's why I posted it on mgoblog, where stupid and pointless shit prosper and thrive. What can I say, I was bored this afternoon.
And of course, this is all moot anyway...true Michigan fans like me will watch the basketball team even when they are 0-30 going into the last game of the season against a hapless Penn St team.
There was a point in this game where I asked Novak via the TV what exactly it was he was doing for us in this game, as I noticed a particular lack of grit. I believe he then hit a 3. Later, he got a rebound and actually hit the resulting layup. The kid won't stop.
Just wish he could hit more shots. Like, the rest of the team, too.
I'll keep watching. It's gonna kill me, but I'll keep watching.
I saw someone else mentioned this, but why is everyone writing off this team? If they get hot and win the Big Ten Tourney, they're in. Sure, they've played horrific for most of the year, but you never know what will happen when a team gets hot. It's not like they don't have the talent to win it.
So they 84/85 team will be in the House? Who's bringing the party favors? The Judge or the Tarp?
I like this team a lot. Their offense, at least twice a game, clicks on all cylinders and its a sight to behold. Perhaps what our offense would look like with some legit three-point shooters.
Michigan just could not keep up with their hot shooting.
I look at a kid like Shurna, a sophomore 6/8 forward leading the team in scoring, and think that could be Metrics. Metrics is a much higher guru approved kid. It's not even close. Shurna scored 7 a game last year. Metrics can come in, shoot the trey and probably be one of our leading scorers next year.
Also: Northwestern was replacing their top two scores from a year ago, who tallied about the same percentage of points as Sims and Manny does for UM this year. And, yet, they will spend February making a run at a tourney bid.
Just something to think about.
It has really been depressing watching the team this year. I have hope for next year though, hopefully they can play up to the talent they have next year.
Remember, however depressed you may feel about michigan sports, at least they didn't suck for the four years you were there