I don't know if anyone else noticed but during the second half when TV was going to a commercial they had an up close shot of Novak being talked to by Beilein. During this shot I noticed Novak had a bandage above his right eye that blended in really well and once I saw it I kept rewinding my dvr to look at it closer and it was a bandage. I am wondering if he was on the other end of a Manny punch or intentional elbow during the practice.
Well, That Actually Could Have Gone Much Worse
Purdue 69 Michigan 59, Michigan 10-9 (3-4 Big Ten)
Even when I assumed Manny Harris would be hitting the court in West Lafayette with the rest of the Michigan team, I thought Purdue would pretty easily crack an 11.5-point spread. When word got out that he was suspended for the game, I was expecting a blood-letting. At times, it did look like that. But somehow, Michigan managed to scrape out some good possessions and keep the game close. There is no such thing as a moral victory, but this had to be about as close as it gets.
DeShawn Sims was just about all Michigan had working early, but Zack Novak chipped in to help out, finally beating his shooting bugaboo (4-7 from beyond the arc). Sims showed why he's such a great player, carrying the team on his back at a time when Purdue probably could have quintuple-teamed him with no risk of anyone else scoring.
Sadly, Michigan only plays the Boilermakers once this year, and it leaves with a taste of "what could have been?" had Manny participated. As it is, we saw the Michigan team we've known for most of the year: Not bad, but outside of the two stars (or one in this game), not good enough to win the big ones.
- Why, Manny, why? I'm also pretty interested in hearing how a practice can get chippy enough for a guy to get suspended for unsportsmanlike conduct. That was his first missed game in 85 career contests.
- There's no plausible reason that Matt Vogrich should pretty much ever get a rebound, but time and again he manages to do so. He had two defensive rebounds, and one offensive that the boxscore doesn't credit to him, for whatever reason.
- Even when he doesn't shoot well, it's safe to say that Zack Novak is the third most important player on the team. When Manny doesn't play and Novak is actually dropping bombs, his impact to the team is elevated even further.
- My eye for the intricacies of basketball is admittedly untrained, but it really seemed like Stu Douglass had a poor game defensively. There were times that his lack of effort really jumped out at me.
- Purdue is a ton more talented than Michigan at nearly every position (even Sims has competition with JaJuan Johnson), and without Manny, they managed to keep it close. That sucks for now, but does bode well when Beilein gets more of his own players.
- The Wolverines have been rebounding surprisingly well of late. They were only out-rebounded by Purdue by a margin of 4.
The Wolverines host in-state rival #6/7 Michigan State on Tuesday. On short rest, and potentially without Manny for a second consecutive contest, things could get ugly. It is a Maize Out, so pick up your gear today or tomorrow, or plan to show up early: the first 3,000 fans to Crisler will receive a maize t-shirt.
Tim, when can we hope to see improvement in the team's performance based on Beilein's players? Do any of our recruits for next year have the potential to come in and make major contributions to help fill the void with our top two players leaving for the NBA (assuming Manny leaves)? After watching the game yesterday, I'm afraid that it was a preview of what's to come. Is there hope in the near term, and who is bringing it? Please whip up a batch of kool-aid and start distributing ASAP!
Is what I noticed. The team did not give up and played tough throughout the game. Since the incident happened on Friday, the team had to adjust to the no Manny game on the fly...and finally seemed to. It is encouraging.
Does anybody know what Manny Harris did exactly to get suspended.
No doubt Novak is quite an important piece of the team, emotionally and when he hits 3s and overachieves defensively. But for a team that wants to be part of the NCAA, Novak being the 3rd most important player on the team is not good. I want Novak to be what he is, an important role player. He's just too streaky (right now) to be considered the 3rd most important player. I want consistent points from someone, damn it.
not to be contrary here, but this was not a close game, despite the final score...i'm very proud of our guys for sticking with it and actually making a run, but let's be serious here - this game was pretty much under control.
totally agree with the headline, though. it could have been much, much worse, and beilein will be able to use this game as an example of what they can accomplish even when they're shorthanded.
My memory of Jamal is a bit foggy. However, from what I recall, Jamal Crawford was better as a freshman than Manny is now. Seriously, Jamal has the same frame and a similar game, except he had better handles and a much smoother looking shot. Agree/Disagree?
If Jamal is any comparison, Manny needs some work before splitting for the NBA.
I think I was scratching my head when he declared. I don't think he liked school much. He had a ton more range than Manny.
He avg 20 min. his first three yrs in Stern's league. He's been getting 30+ every yr after.
Dude - Crawford declared because he was ruled ineligible in the NCAA after 12 games in his Freshman year, not because he "didn't like school".
Thanks for the knowledge. I'm better for it. - "Dude"
I had to mute the TV in the second half when the extended Bobby Knight jerk-off began. Sweet creamery Jesus, but that was agonizing.
Sims played at a level I've not seen from him. He was clearly the best player on the floor the first 6-8 minutes and looked like a viable player in the NBA next year.
Other than that, yes, a ton of scratching with heart and grit. But it never felt close.
EDIT: By 'good comments', I'm not referring to myself, rather the ones I read before posting...er, er.
from anybody on Harris' prospects for playing Tuesday? This team is a mindf#%k. Already very slim tourney chances now a near impossibility.
And I did not think they played well or kept it close. Purdue got to the rim at will, had a ton of open looks and dominated the game from start to finish.
Manny is a very good player, but there is some degree of experience on this team. Needed a better showing.
I think it is at least 50/50 that Manny returns at this point. If he doesn't, then next year will most likely be a rebuilding year. I like Hardaway and Smotrcyz because they are tall and athletic guys who can attack off the bounce. That's the biggest problem this team has right now. Manny is about the only guy that can attack off the bounce. When he gets the ball, helpside defenders collapse and clog the lane. If we could shoot it at a better clip than 30% we would be better suited to adjust to that, but at this point the team is in a season long shooting slump and outside of Manny nobody can attack off the dribble. Here is hoping Manny comes back!
It is "the team, the team, the team."
Lest you not forget in the future, whether back for a snior year (highly doubtful) or the NBA.
Watching this years team is painful because they are good players being asked to do too much. The team currently lacks height and athleticism. Assuming Manny goes pro, depending on player readiness and development, every position could be equal or better next year in these two areas. Center: Simms changes to Morgan, PF: Novak changes to Smotrycz, SF: Manny changes to Novak, Hardaway, and Vogrich, SG: LLP changes to LLP, Stu, and Vogrich PG: Stu changes to Morris. Overall an upgrade in height and athleticism at almost every position. This does not include potentially adding Zeigler. In addition, the bench will become more diverse as freshman continue to develop and new freshman come in.