Really interesting read from MLive here: http://www.mlive.com/wolverines/index.ssf/2014/04/michigan_jon_horford_t...
Really interesting read from MLive here: http://www.mlive.com/wolverines/index.ssf/2014/04/michigan_jon_horford_t...
If it's because he knows McGary's decision, then clearly Mitch will return to school for at least one more season. Still though...Mitch can't play the entire game, so Jon would still get a good amount of playing time. I can't imagine Jon's believing that he is a starter. He is a very good backup. It's going to be tough losing his experience.
he clearly states it is NOT because of McGary's decision. why even make the comment in this thread if you didn't read the article
I did read it, but just because he says that, doesn't mean it's true. We have all lied before.
kills people, murders people, steals from you, steals from me, whatever
Even so, my impression is he's telling the truth. To me, Horford didn't really seem into it when he was playing towards the end of the season, which is probably why his playing time became increasingly more limited down the stretch. I think he really felt it wasn't a good fit, especially having seen so teammates pass through over the years and him lingering as the only veteran with a bunch of new young guys and an entirely different vibe, and was leaving regardless of McGary's decision. I'm guessing he felt a little left behind in the world and needed something that felt fresh at this point.
Also, McGary may have made a decision at the time he spoke to Horford, but I'd assume it's something he'll be mulling over and could change his mind about until he makes an official announcement. Still, I can't imagine he'd leave to a be picked in the 30s if he feels like he can play at the same level after the injury and have a big year. NBA teams pretty much have to invest a good amount of PT over multiple seasons for top 15 picks, whereas they typically won't have a role set aside for later picks (those guys typically have to wait for injuries to happen to the pegged ahead of them during the season to get a chance).
word, and I don't know why we wouldn't, it's all because of the system.
in the next few paragraphs the quotes from Horford talk about it being a good system IF the Big player gets a lot of minutes. Then following that he states he wasn't given sufficient minutes to get the experience to apply what he was learning in a game experience. So either he is just skewing the truth a bit so that it doesn't label Beilien's system as "bad for big men", or in reality he is upset about not getting playing time up to now, and doesn't think it will change in the future despite the fact that he has the most experience.
I think that he's not confident he would be given the majority of minutes, whatever the situation is with Mitch and the other recruited 5's and 4's, and with his degree complete, this is the perfect time to make a change. To me the biggest factor is that he has his degree and can go anywhere without waiting out a year.
It does make me wonder what happened with Beilein's attempt at putting in to "bigs" at the same time. Did the coach just not think it would work? That seems to have been something they were trying to do to make Glenn happy, so Glenn could go to the 3.
I don't really expect a clear answer, I wouldn't give one either. This is a good message of "I learned great things at Michigan, thus I'm as good as anybody on that team, but I want the prime minutes for my last year. Everyone wishes me well." doesn't leave Michigan in a bad way, and puts it out there for what he's looking for and what he could do for a school looking for his talent.
I wonder if we're missing part of the issue here--he talks about minutes, which it is true he had trouble getting. But Beilein's system doesn't exactly feed post guys for low block iso plays, either, and that appears to have been one of is strengths. He just never had time to show it. If he really thinks that's a strength that he wants to explore, I understand this choice a lot better.
Because Mitch or not, Michigan is not going to spend a lot of time pounding the ball to the block and clearing out.
system is not prohibitive of anything. True, he does not typically recruit bigs that rely on post isos because his system does not run through the block, but Mitch and Jordan have shown that you can get what you want in the offense if you are patient and stay within yourself. The ball finds the most effective scorers in any offense. I like Horford but I don't think he has shown anything really that tells me that he would be an efficient post option even if he got 15 touches per game.
I think this is simpler than it is being made to look. I think Mitch is coming back and he is going to be the centerpeice. I expect that Horford will transfer to a lower D1 type of school where he can star for a year. And good for him. I just had not seen any indication that Horford was unhappy with his role. It is a surprise to me. Guess it shouldn't be.
5% of plays where we feed it into the post and let the center go at it. That's the system
I think Mitch and JMo move a lot better too (or anticipate a lot better) than Jon. I couldn't really characterize what Jon's game is from an offensive persepective. Not a low block post up power game type player. Seemed like a lot of face up mid-range jumpers when he got the ball.
That doesn't mean it isn't a good system for a different type of center. Beilein's system requires the center to be mobile--preferrably on offense and certainly on defense. Mitch fits that model--as did under-sized Morgan. They can play off of the high pick and run the pick-and-role. Mitch catching the ball at the foul line creates numerous options for him. These are not Jon's best skills. Similarly, the defense relies on hedges, switches and angles. Jon just isn't very quick and, as a result, the defense struggled when he played.
That said, Jon does have skills---skills that I believe can translate in a different system. On offense, he does have a solid (albeit mechanical) jumper that he didn't get much of a chance to show. He has a couple of post moves that might be effective in iso. He improved his vision under Beilein and will likely pass decently out of the post. On defense, he will be better both in a zone and in one-on-one situations in the post. And, Jon is smart--that will count for something as well.
My initial reaction was one of mild surprise--but after reading his explanation, I think it makes alot of sense for him.
I've said it before and I'llsay it again. If I were a Big I would not come to Michigan to play center. Mitch would have his man seeled and the Michigan wings would never throw it down low(I could see at times that Mitch would even look frustrated) and I don't think it was them not making the right basketball play but how the offense runs or taught.
If you want to be a great low post player coming to Michigan wouldn't be the right choice. Now I love John B and what his offense does but for back to the basket big men.. Its not a good fit.
Mitch did have position at times, but beilein talked about this during the season. He said guys needed to be comfortable on the block for them to work the ball through them. He indicated Mitch wasn't there yet. I think beilein would certainly work the ball through the post if he had the option. He may not recruit it, but he would use it. There were times they isolated Nik on the block when they were guarding him with small quick's.
I specifically remember horford having the ball on the block on more than one occasion with a smaller man on him and not even shooting. He lacked confidence; game experience certainly could have helped. A manager told a friend of mine Horford is a beast in practice. A lot of run may have helped, but to me there were just too many times he looked uncomfortable on the court.
While he does talk about how the system is a "paradise for guards," he also talks about how he thinks he could've had success if he was given more opportunities. It's tough to argue with him there. One of Morgan's main scoring plays were wide open dunks off of ball screens. Horford can no doubt perform some of those same plays in this system (and he did throughout the season when he played), I just don't think he has quite the same speed and overall skill that Morgan has. I can't really blame Horford for wanting to transfer. Best of luck to him.
Agreed. Can't blame him for transferring, but I also agree that he didn't/doesn't have a comparable skill-set to Morgan or McGary. He never really showed us that he was the guy that was going to get you 10+ pts per game with his back to the basket. He struggled with offensive/defensive post position as well.
I hope he goes somewhere where he can get a ton of touches, and has a great season.
I'm probably piggy backing on some earlier comments, but the "bad system for big guys" piece of this seems to be a red herring. That's what he leads with, but then goes on to discuss at length the lack of opportunity he was provided and how big guys CAN flourish in Beilein's offense. This all came down to minutes it seems, and although Jon says this has nothing to do with Mcgary's decision, he would've been given a lot of minutes next year if mcgary was in the nba. It may just be my optimism but I'll read between the lines and say that's a good sign.
Lots of interesting stuff there. Must have been hard to stick around for 4 years when your family is telling you to transfer. Good for him for sticking around. I agree he probably needed more minutes to get into a groove and gain confidence. I'm glad the coaches treated him with respect with this decision. I don't know what this means regarding Mitch but my gut says he's coming back.
Maybe he thinks Donnal will be absorbing some post minutes as well.
Based on the hype we've been hearing, I think it's gonna be tough to keep donnal off the court. Certainly with horford's departure.
Donford replacing Morford wouldn't be too appealing if he was looking for scoring minutes and to assert himself as an NBA talent.
To be honest, I don't know enough to know whether Jon is an NBA guy or not. But the reason I'm (selfishly) sad about Horford leaving is not because I bemoan the loss of his offense; it is because we need his defensive size and experience.
The article goes a long way to helping to understand the decision. I wish him all the best and success in whatever he does.
With no disrespect to Jon Horford in the least - he's not an NBA player, plain and simple. He's tall, but not elite tall. There are plenty of 6'10" guys that come out every year. He's a good but not great finished, shot blocker, and rebounder. He's not much of a shooter at all. I am upset he's leaving because I think he can be a solid to quite good college player next fall, but an NBA player he is not.
He already knows what Mitch is going to do. This has to be a good sign.
If you actually read the article, he explicitly states that what Mitch is going to do has no bearing on his decision.
Sure he says that, but apply some common sense. How would it sound if he said "I am transferring because I fear competition"? Whether or not he knows may or not be true, but to say it doesn't factor in his decision is nonsense.
Agreed. You see this a lot in recruiting. Michigan takes a big recruit at position X, and the other guys who play that same position say that doesn't affect their decision, but then it does. Which is fine, because no one is going to admit that. But it's a factor.
Apparently he says that MM's decision has no bearing on his. Could be troubling, but then it could just mean that he knows he's not stabbing his teammates in the back and that freed him to decide based on other factors.
Also, if he said that MM's decision DID have an effect, it's a dead giveaway, so he has to deny regardless.
I think he ends up at Central Michigan. Close to home and a chance to dominate the MAC.
I thought McGary was the most likely to stay out of all three of the sophmores. I really want to know what GRIII is doing.
I think if GRIII believes he will get the vast majority of his minutes at the 3 and not the 4, he'll be back.
Regarding Horford, I'll always be rooting for that kid. Can't blame him for his decision nor the way he has conducted himself. An untimely exit that went as well as these things can.
Pissed that he was benched at the end of last year...
...he should've talked to J-Mo before making his decision, but whatever. Best of luck.
If I were in his shoes, I think I'd feel a ton of pressure to make it to the NBA given what the rest of my family has done. That's a tough spot to be in. I feel for the kid.
...especially when for 4 years they're telling you that your coach isn't using you correctly and you're a better player.
I understand and I wish him the best. I think the minutes and the offense argument are a little bogus, but that's just me.
I think GRIII has to sacrifice his game more than Horford does/would. But hopefully he gets a shot to play somewhere and play his game like he wants to. Maybe a school like UCF, Donnie Jones coaches his brother at Florida I believe and they're a growing program.
I don't have any problem with Jon deciding to do what's best for him, but the family putting pressure on him for four years and finally getting him to transfer when he was going to start at center and be Captain. It just feels like they wanted a win and may not actually be considering what was best for him. This article frustrates the heck out of me.
I am still thankful for everything Jon did for the program and glad he graduated. Best of luck to him wherever he goes.
one bit for it. It's hard seeing his older brother, Al, having a lot of success in the NBA with multiple All-Star appearances. It's obvious that he has NBA aspirations that he's looking out for himself.
Why are you pissed that he was benched? JMo was playing out of his mind and deserved 30+ min per game. Horford rarely produced at JMo's level when in the game and often was a mess. Him trying to block a bunch of shots he had no shot at against UK is a big reason we lost that game.
His reference to not getting enough post touches explains why he would put up a shot every time he was fed the ball down low. I can't remember one pass when he was backing down a defender.
I remember a few where he tried and threw up a brick or got stripped. It may sound like sour grapes, but in the limited opportunities he was given, Horford didn't look all that amazing.
I understand he has to look out for his future in the NBA and transfer in is probably the best move. I just think it's kind of selfish for him to rip on the coaches for not giving him time. Hal his career was injuries and Michigan never yanked his scholarship or anything. They had faith in Jon and built him up. He was given all the same opportunities as Mitch and Morgan and he just didn't take advantage of the opportunities as much.
I don't know...I really liked Jon but this interview runs me the wrong way and makes him seem selfish in my opinion.
Leaving was the best choice and I wish him luck. I just hope this is the only statement he makes on the matter.
Not sure this article cleared up anything. Sure does seem like our coaches are there to help their student athletes.
I don't like how Jon is handling this.
Horford has no business spouting out "I know what Mitch is going to do, he already told me." It smacks of an uncouthness I didn't think Jon possessed. He just sounds really angry and bitter - and you don't typically serve yourself well by doing a lot of talking when you're upset.
And then the real truth: "Transferring is something that my family has been trying to persuade me to do for four years"
I disagree. Although it's unfortunate that his handlers were pushing him one way, they'd been doing it for FOUR years. Him transferring as a post-grad says more about Horford's desire to be a good teammate and get his degree than it does him giving in to external pressure.
And as for McGary; he was probably explicitly asked that question. He answered it without giving any indication of his direction. What's Mitch gonna do? You tell me based on Horford's comments or decision.
The correct way to answer it is to not answer it at all and deflect... the same manner in which Nik Stauskas deflected similar questions in his radio interviews the last week or so.
For all the talk of Jon's zen-masterism, it's not on display here, the guy is clearly upset a lot right now.
He's a pretty open guy. Why should he deflect? The truth isn't going to hurt anybody.
I think you missed my point. It's not that he can't be open about he wants more minutes for himself, he shouldn't be dragging Mitch / Mitch's decision into his answers.
Now reporters come to Mitch and say, hey Mitch your teammates say you've made up your mind, what is it? Or worse yet, ESPN pens an article "SOURCE CLOSE TO MICHIGAN SAYS MCGARY TO BE ASTRONAUT"
Jon said he knows Mitch's decision, but it had no bearing on his decision. That's pretty close to a non-answer. Sure, he probably should've said he doesn't know, but I think you're nit-picking here. He said a lot of things in the graceful and pointed manner we're accustomed to, and "slipped up" on one thing (and he didn't even give away the important information).
To say he's bitter based on that statement is jumping from point A directly to point D. I wish Jon nothing but the best. I hope he finds what he's looking for.
Mistersuits is right, fellas
Agreed. Not sure why all the negs.
All he was saying is that it doesn't matter what Mitch was/is going to do. He was transfering, he thinks he knows what Mitch is planning to do, and they're completely unrelated. Maybe Mitch is going pro and he was going to have trouble getting minutes behind Donnal. Maybe Mitch is staying and he was going to have trouble getting minutes behind Mitch. Maybe he was going to start, but wasn't going to get the touches in the paint that he felt would show him off to NBA scouts.
Mitch's decision might be "if the draft advisory council tells me I'm likely in the first round, I'm going pro, and if not, I'm staying." That's knowing what Mitch is planning to do, and is in essence a decision, even though the results of that decision won't be known until after he hears back from the Advisory Council.
Chill out about "uncouthness."
If Mitch's decision has no bearing, why not answer "Whatever Mitch decides has/had no bearing on my decision."
He could still effectively make his point without saying he knows Mitch's decision.
Not saying he is lying about anything, but I also felt quite a few of his quotes sounded bitter. Particularly the one about finding a coach who will play him through his mistakes.
I don't know Jon Horford and its awesome that he stayed, but it kind of sounds like he wants his next coach to look out for Jon Horford instead of the team.
It does sound to me like he's mad at Beilein for not giving him 20 mpg down the stretch. It was obvious to everyone on this board that Morgan proved himself the superior player, especially on defense. What did he expect Beilein to do? That said I appreciate his four years here and wish him the best of luck next year and with his life's work.
Not intended exclusively for you, but I think we're nitpicking his comments a little too much. I don't think Horford realized how much the blogosphere would dissect that sentence when he said it. He probably thought it was a neutral truth that answered the question and left the meat to his friend and teammate.
If I am ever interviewed, I'm totally hiring a focus group beforehand. Too much analysis on the word choice of Horford, Hoke, etc.. etc..
Yeah, the comment about Mitch I thought was kind of unnecessary but not that big of a deal. Some of the other ones about playing time rubbed me the wrong way I guess.
Seemed to me when he played well he got minutes and touches. When he didn't play well, Beilein couldn't just leave him in to gain experience.
Good luck to Horford. I'm all for him trying to find playing time.
However, I also feel that the team with or without Horford wouldn't look or perform much different.
...he was playing like shit at the end of the year.
He wasn't complaining last year when he was starting over Mitch AND McGary. Or the bigging of this year when he and J-Mo were playing 20 minutes a game each.
What did everyone call them? "Morford?"
So clearly he was getting the time when he was playing well. His game went south, it happens, and unfortunately it was when we couldn't afford to wait for him to get it back...just like J-Mo last year.
Maybe if he struggled in the beginning of the year like Walton or in the middle of the year like Stauskas we could've stuck with him. Not during tournament time. Lose and you're done. You don't have time to "work things out" while getting blown out @ Iowa like we did for Nik.
I have no doubt he worked his ass off, Dan Dakich RAVES about how he always puts in the extra work.
If he does that for a summer, in this offense which is a DREAM for ONE post player (not two)...he could've been playing many minutes AND significant minutes.
I think he could've started next to McGary, but even if he didn't...McGary can't play ALL the minutes. He would've gotten his 16-17 minutes a game that he's referring to. Easily.
Yep. Played poorly most of the year, yet his dad thinks he's the second coming of Al Horford. That's just objectively off-base and very unhelpful for the kid. He's a servicable player but as much as me, and any UM fan, wishes otherwise, he's not NBA material.
He had plenty of time over 4 years both in practice and in games to become a good, big time player. But he wasn't able to accomplish it. Transferring somewhere else will not by itself make him NBA material. Right now, he just doesn't have the skill set to make it in the NBA. He isn't aggressive enough in the paint and has no jump shot from any range. However, I still wish him luck and am grateful he contributed a lot to the team for the last 4 years.
Game just went to shit in the last few regular season games and continues through most of the tourney run.
Can't wait to get Mitch and McGary back next year. Those two should be a force down low.
If he had the skills to be a legit scoring threat as a big man Beilein would have got him the ball. Hell, they ran the offense through Mitch against Syracuse. That said, besta luck, Jon, and thanks for the hard work and memories.
And was a bit lucky, as Mitch didn't even pick up the footwork until after the last practice before that game when they went back out there and it finally clicked. Against a 2-3 you're going to have someone in that hole in the defense, that wasn't standard operating procedure.
Though in the end I agree with your point, if you're skilled enough at scoring Beilein will get you the ball. I just don't think Mitch's overall skill at that point last year was the main reason he got the ball. Against man-to-man teams, the game still ran through the guards, as it did this year, because that's where the most skill was.
talk about possible destinations or good fits for Jon? Seems like he (and his family) are looking for an offense that features low post more, I gather?
I don't know enough about what programs may have room next year and run something more along the lines he's looking for.
Anyway, always seemed like a great kid. Wish him success.
I don't know if it's possible to have a better exit than that, from Jon's perspective or Michigan's. He was completely transparent about the reasons he was leaving -- now we all know. He cited the offense, but said that a traditional big could definitely be successful given the opportunity. He said that he was when he had the minutes. He said that the coaches developed his talent, and he's ready to show it where the coaches trust him (I read: where competition for the 1 'true post' spot is a little thinner). He praises the coaches, his teammates, and the university. The coaches look extra classy in the whole ordeal. Horford is following his heart (and unfortunately, his handlers advice for 4 years(!). I admire his patience if that is the truth).
I expected to think it might knick our ability to recruit given his "fit" comments, but honestly I don't believe it will. We'll use one "true" post, and there's room for that -- McGary, Doyle, Zimmerman, Stone, whoever. The other big will always be a "stretch" guy. Hopefully bigger than what we've had in Novak and GRIII, but Donnal and DJ Wilson are the ideal fits there. There's nothing damning about the 4 in this offense.
I guess what I'm saying in many words is that Horford is leaving with extreme grace. Injuries and JMo ultimately put a cap on what he could personally accomplish at UofM (and to some extend fit), but he'll leave with a lot of memories, TEAM success, and a degree. Very happy for Jon Horford and can't wait to still what he can do elsewhere. I can see him landing at Big East or AAC school for sure.
...but wasn't J-Mo pretty successful this year in this offense?
If we beat L'ville McGary is tournament MVP in this offense - he was putting up numbers bigs across the country would KILL for.
I don't think TWO traditional bigs can be successful on the floor at the same time (for an entire season)...but one sure can. And even if Mitch comes back. Horford could easily get 17-20 minutes a game in this offense and perform quite well.
Hell JON HORFORD was performing exceptionally well in this offense. Remember MORFORD?
Every single game people would put up their combined stats vs. McGary and they were better. Horford was playing OUTSTANDING basketball.
So he cited his reasons, but I just disagree with them. I don't disagree with the transfer, do what's best for you. But I don't think his reasoning is valid because there is factual information to dispute it...and HE was part of that information until his game struggled at the end of the year.
Read my comments (and the article) again. He did say that JMo was successful and Mitch was too. He just said he didn't have the opportunity to build his own confidence because there weren't enough minutes available for HIM in our current landscape. Although he cited fit, he didn't damn it. You can do it, he said he did it when he got extended minutes. It's just an issue of Horford being the type of guy that thrives off PT to "warm up." I have no issue with that, it's usually true for most guys (see JMo 13-14, 12-13 vs. late 11-12, McGary in tourney). My only rebuttal would be that he staggered his own minutes by picking up cheap fouls.
On a different note; feels like we're all forgetting about Max Beifeldt. Sure, he's six foot seven or eight and stocky...but he looks a lot like Jordan Morgan. I don't think that Morgan's trajectory would be much different than Max's if he wasn't thrust into the fire as an underclassman with creative guards.
Max has had his moments as a rebounder and defender. Like Jon is implying, players tend to grow more when their responsibility grow. I wouldn't be surprised to see Max become an effective rotation player, JMo-lite, moving forward. My only complaint of him is that he needs to stop chucking threes.
And not nearly the post player of Morgan.
Much better outside shooter, but we don't need anymore of that.
Morgan at Max B's "age" showed flashes of what he brought this year, but he also missed a million layups and had hands of stone.
I'm not sure Max B has ever even dunked in a game since he's been at Michigan.
"What was limited was my opportunity to have experiences crucial to players to gain the confidence and the feel that they need to have success on the highest level."
Horford is very introspective, and introspective people need opportunities to gain confidence a lot of the time. It doesn't just happen, it doesn't happen from other things or because it happened to other people (J. Mo), they need tangible things because they over think everything, dwell on things, and feed off of truths (for a lack of non-stereotypical verbiage). I really think Horford needed to find confidence, and he wasn't finding it at Michigan in the past and I don't think he felt he was going to if he stuck around.
"introspective people need opportunities to gain confidence a lot of the time."
I totally agree. Of course, that also correlates with the reality that VERY few introspective people are capable of being high level competitive athletes.
this is pretty surprising stuff. putting the tea leaves aside, horford is basically saying that he thinks a big man can't succeed in beilein's offense. now i don't think that's true, but it also isn't a good thing to say to the press. certainly would hurt recruting.
also surprising is that his family has been pressing him to transfer for years. sounds to me like it's a family full of basketball skill that can't accept that this particular family member isn't as skilled as the others.
horford also is basically saying that he has to play enough minutes on the court to make mistakes and be left out there to learn from those mistakes instead of getting pulled, which he often was (often for foul trouble, which won't change no matter where he plays). i don't buy what he's selling. the time to learn is practice. coach is putting the players out there who won't make mistakes and if the coach feels that those players can overcome those mistakes more quickly than horford or during practice instead of a game time then those players deserve time instead of horford. i can't imagine that he'll find a coach who approaches things differently at any other school.
I think he said that bigs can have success in Beilein's system, there is just very limited opportunities for them to do so. So they have to perform at a high level right away, because there is only one big on the floor at a time (meaning pretty much only two bigs will play in a game, and the hot hand will get the majority of minutes, a la Morgan this year, Mitch last year). I think there is truth in that. Horford is saying that he needs an opportunity to fail and still be trusted to get minutes, which won't happen at this point in his career in Beilein's system probably, though I think he'd get more of that opportunity next year if he stayed.
That said, as I said elsewhere, I think this is a confidence thing.
I think even beyond the amount of touches and scoring chances the bigs get, Horford wants the chance to actually post-up and have an opportunity to hang on to the ball and make a play (or fail trying). That just wasn't/isn't going to happen here, because of both the system and the surrounding talent. Having Trey/THJ/Nik/GRIII/Walton/Irvin etc. stand around while Horford gains confidence and goes through his growing pains as a post player would have been bad for business.
He seems to think that is his ticket to an NBA shot. Hopefully he gets an opportunity to do that, though I don't know of many schools (especially not ones that are winning many games) that would take a one year guy without much prior pedigree and give him that shot. Maybe a rebuilding program like USC (who sees their top two C's graduate and has a very young team otherwise)?
but has he watched the NBA lately? That isn't exactly how most NBA teams play ball these days either. The days of dumping the ball into your center and watching him back a guy down for 5 seconds ended a while ago.
Horford cited Trey Burke, Tim Hardaway Jr., Nik Stauskas, Glenn Robinson III and Mitch McGary as all having gone through "phases like that." "You have to go through that in order to reach the level that they're at now," Horford said. "They're all NBA players."
This leads me to believe Stauskas, GRIII and McGary are all gone, given Horford's comment that he knows McGary's decision.
Possibly, but even if they stayed they could be considered "NBA players". I would hope Horford wouldn't spoil it for those kids.
He just recognizes those three as having NBA futures, whether they all leave this year or not.
On the one hand he's bashing and on the other loving the coaches. Between his injuries and inconsistent play I am not sure what he thinks he deserves on a team with Michigan's recent success. Regardless, bashing the program for bigs is a shitty thing to do on his way out.
He seems...a little bitter. Or maybe that's just Horford. Kind of crappy his family has been urging to leave for so long. Granted, in Beilein's system, there's less emphasis on big men minutes, but I have to think that if Horford's play was up, he would have earned more minutes; maybe make more two big men line-ups. But frankly taking a guard off the floor for Horford, based on what we've seen, would seem foolish. Morgan really elevated his game this year, and I was hoping Horford would stick around and do the same this year. Oh, well. Beat of luck and success to him elsewhere.
"They just felt that it's a system that's difficult for big men to have success, especially when compared to the guards,"
That's a quote from Jon about why his family wants him to transfer. Did they not notice that Mitch may have been a 1st round pick last season and how well he played in last year's NCAA Tournament? Also, did they not notice JMo develop into a really solid basketball player?
Also, he wants more minutes and like others have said, with JMo gone and Mitch maybe leaving (and even if Mich comes back, he may gett injored and needs a backup anyway) he would get those minutes and be the featured big guy. His departure makes no sense.
Mitch cited Beilein's success and development of bigs as a reason he came to UM. I think his family is just doing the typical family thing where they think their kids are best on the team. We all see that on all levels of play.
Is a game for guards. We hear it every march. NBA bigs are almost always drafted on potential. Horford, for all his skills, lacks that crazy high ceiling so it doesn't much matter what he does in college, to some degree anyway. Look at Joel Embiid. He is going to be a top 3 pick based on what he may be some day, not what he is now. I love anyone who puts on a Michigan jersey in any sport but Jon may be overestimating what he is capable of. I will root for him no matter where he goes but I find his reasoning strange.
Our system gives bigs a chance for easy buckets and guys like mcgary even a chance to run. It's not an offense that runs through the post but if your name was Myles turner or Stephen Zimmerman coach b is smart enough to make it so. See how offense shifted from wing over to point when Burke became, well, Trey Burke. Not cool these type of statements are being made on way out the for and happy program gave the player a nice send off without commentary that would hurt him. Class.
Given his fouls per 40 minutes, was it even realistic to think he could play 30 minutes a contest?
Horford mentions "minutes", "playing time", and opportunity. He also mentions having a coach that will still give him minutes even if he makes a mistake.
And he supposedly knows Mitch's decision.
I find it impossible to not interpret this as a sign that Mitch is staying. Horford says that Mitch's decision had no bearing on his. For a guy who wants minutes and opportunity, I find this to be unfathomable. I can't swallow it. (But I guess that if Mitch is really leaving, then Jon is telling the truth).
If I'm wrong, then Horford has made the absolute dumbest decision of his lifetime. He is leaving behind "opportunity" and "minutes" galore. He would be leaving behind an opportunity to be the only attractive option at his position, on a team with excellent guard play that can constantly generate layups and uncontested dunks. He will have to go to a new coach, probably play with less talent around him, and learn a new system and develop chemistry with new players.
I couldn't leave that article without thinking McGary is staying. Horford says a big can have success in the system, the coaches developed his skill, loves M and his teammates. He sat with the coaches, they laid out how it's going to be and he left. He left because he wants minutes.
Though it's possible the coaches told him "you don't have the skillset needed to be a feature in this offense, and we don't see that next year either (but you're very valuable to the team, and you'll be critical on D, and you will get touches just not featured, etc.)". That could be independent of Mitch.
What would they tell him though? Bielfeldt an Doyle won't get his minutes. It's the Donnal and Horford show if he stays.
His family has been trying to convince him to transfer for four years? I guess I can't understand why. Other than two supreme tourney efforts by McGary and Morgan, Horford has had ample opportunity to earn the bulk of the minutes.
It may even be for reasons other than basketball. Ann Arbor ain't for everyone. It wasn't for me.
That's just un-merican.
Didn't he say he was coming back like two weeks ago?
Also remember at the beginning of the year, when asked about who he was going to go to in late shot clock situations coach said Horford. They clearly had big plans for him coming into the year, including the 2-big lineups, that never transpired.
I watched both of Horford's 3-pointer attempts this year and I also watched Beilein coach up the most efficient offense in KenPom recorded history despite losing McGary.
It ends up very unfortunate for Horford, but you can't really second guess Beilein's decisions.
If Mitch comes back Horford's departure really won't matter. Last week Mitch said he wasn't "ready to compete on that next level" yet. That may be referencing his injury(in which case he wasn't ready to compete at THIS level) but it makes me think we might be alright here.
Jordan Morgan is just a better, more productive player. Mitch McGary is just a better, more productive freak athlete of a human. The rest of the analysis is kind of irrelevant. It's not Beilein's system that didn't give you opportunities, you just weren't more productive than your competition at that position.
With that said, I wish Jon the best. Really wanted him to come in and take all of Morgan's minutes from this past season.
"The one thing I'm truly lacking, and I can admit it, is experience. From a skills development standpoint, the coaches have done an excellent job preparing me."
I don't get the sense that there are necessarily any ill feelings, as a few hinted at, but what he says here sort of steers me in the direction of what Space Coyote brought up - it's a confidence thing in the case of Horford. It reads to me like he wants a different role somewhere so he has a better picture of what does / doesn't do well, or at least a picture which is to his satisfaction.
I don't doubt that, like we would expect, Beilein has done an excellent job of skill and player development, but Beilein's system seems to be one where the Horfords of the world are only going to have so large a role (and I agree with others - Morgan was better in that role) and I think Jon gets that, if I am interpreting him correctly. All the same, he will leave Ann Arbor with a degree from Michigan, instruction from one of the best coaches out there and an opportunity to get the experience that he wants and to build the confidence that he seems to desire.
I hope he goes somewhere with good programs in European languages. That's the best preparation for his basketball future. At least this dispells the notion, founded on some pseudo-intellictual article he wrote for Huff. post and fans natural tendency to hold their team's players in high regard, that he transfered because he wanted to go to some grad program better than Michigan.
If McGary's decided he's coming back, why hasn't he said so? A player who has decided to declare for the draft might wnat to line up an agent, but if he's coming back to school why not just make the announcement? The optimist in me says he's trying to work on GRIII to make it a package deal, kind of like last year. The pessemist in me says all 3 are gone, which as noted above, Horford might have implied with his quote about them all being NBA players.
He doesn't seem to want to address his lack of talent as a reason for his lack of success and is making ridiculous excuses. He acts like he's going to transfer to Kansas and take Joel Embiid's minutes.
to agree. If he rebounded really well, defended really well or executed the pick and roll really well I think he would have seen more minutes. I get needing some minutes to gain confidence but you get minutes by doing something well, something to offset maybe a weaker part of your game.
All of this makes me love Morgan more. He returned without hanging his head when he looked to be out of the rotation conversation. Whatever his limitations h did all of that after having been an all conference defender and being a big part of some team success.
Sorry I don't buy the "the offense doesn't run through the post" idea. Coach B has shown willingness to change offense for skill set. With Burke we went crazy PG oriented out ot necessisty. With Burke gone we went back to a more wing/guard oriented look. When Mitch was playing well we went pick and roll a ton. So a skilled true freshman center was getting plenty of looks and touches once he bloomed.
Neither Morgan or Horford were gifted offensively - they are not guys you run your offense through. In limited times a skilled big man was available (Mitch) the offense morphed even within the season. Morford were not Jarnell Stokes (not to mention Randle!) who is a 6'7 Corliss Williamson type - if we had a Jarnell Stokes type I am sure more offense woud have come through the post.
If Ricky Doyle is a gifted offensive player and Mitch comes back I think we'll see this "he loves guards wings only" idea refuted. Frankly there are only so many post players in NCAA ball who you run an offense through and plays for. It is up to the kids to develop their post play in practice and on their own to change the offense to their favor.
It sounds like the family really thought Horford was the next Al, and were shocked he was not. Telling your kid to transfer for 4 years basically tells me they were unhappy with his progress the entire time and had a very high opinion of him. (inflated) I give credit to Horford for sticking it through 4 years with that sort of advice in his ear constantly.
Beliens system allows a GOOD Big man to flourish..with all the attention drawn to the guards how many dunks and pic n rolls did u see this tournament and for that matter all year long. Horford has to admit that maybe hes not all that talented..I hate the way he hurt recruiting on the way out the door. but if hes unhappy by all means leave..I wish him well just think its a what about ME? mentality...its not about any one two or three players its allllllll about MICHIGAN...and winning FOR MICHIGAN
Horford is a serviceable big. In Beilein's system a big must be mobile and/or a good shooter. These are not attributes of Horford. Best wishes.
while Horford was here, Beilein had guys named Trey Burke and Nik Stauskas (among others). Now let's see, should we run the offense through them, or though Jon Horford? Hmmmmmm.........
Probably as interested was Mitch already made up his mind before the draft advisory results came back. I am not sure which way that makes him lean but interesting.
"I'm not at liberty to speak about it now, but I already know what Mitch is going to do. Mitch has already told me. (His decision), though, wasn't a factor in my decision."
Horford to UCF to play for Al's old coach Donnie Jones.
Donnie knows Michigan as their best player Isaiah Sykes is from Detroit and was named after Isiah Thomas. UCF is about 2 hours from Gainesville I believe. UCF is the 2nd largest school in the country so they'll have no problem finding him a major.
Jones took Tom Herzog from MSU a few years back and he had a solid year.
UCF runs Horford's style of offense...and most importantly. UCF has plenty of PT to offer.
In my random prediction based off of nothing other than what I've put together...Horford to UCF. Book it.
I just dated Tom Herzog's cousin for a year and a half.
I am slightly more worried about the Mitch McGary comment than others seem to be. If Mitch has really made his decision, doesn't that suggest he is leaving? If he already decided to stay for another year, why wouldn't he have already said that? If he has already decided, but is keeping the decision quiet, that makes me nervous. (Then again, the Horford transfer does, to me, suggest Mitch is returning.)
Maybe he wants to announce he's returning with GRIII if possible but GRIII hasn't decided. That's just a thought. My hunch is that they're all gone (mostly b/c that's Sam Webb's hunch), but I wouldn't worry about the timing of the announcement.
...is that he's consistently more plugged into the football program than he is the basketball program. People here have said he's friends with Chris Singletary. I don't know whether that's true, but it might explain how he would be closer to the football team (assuming he doesn't have an equivalent friend in the basketball program).
Still think Mitch and GRIII are leaving. Sad to see Horford leave but if he thinks it is what is best for him then I wish him the best.
Of course it means he knows Mitch is staying. Horford wants minutes -- that's his main goal. If Mitch leaves, Horford is a starter. No way he leaves there. Obviously, once he learned Mitch was staying, Horford bolted -- especially since Donnal will eat up a lot of "big" minutes as well. This is a no-brainer. Players aren't that complicated. I can't believe some people think otherwise.
It seems very possible, though, that Horford thinks it doesn't matter if he gets more minutes at Michigan because he won't get the chance to play the way he wants to play, regardless of whether that's in 15 minutes or 30 minutes.
I dont think we can read anything in that article about Mitch. My reading is that Jon feels he took a chance the past 4 years regarding getting the playing time he believes he needs and deserves, and didnt get it. Going forward, he is not taking any more chances. Staying in a guard-oriented system is, to him, too much of a risk after the past 4 years. For Horford, its about managing risk, no matter if he is competing with Mitch or a totem pole. Staying in Belein's 'system' is too much of a risk for him. He sees himself having one more shot at the NBA, and he has to maximize his opportunity to get there.
I personally think Mitch is gone.
I respect Jon Horford a lot and wish the best for the kid, but I'd be surprised if he was a major contributor anywhere else next year. Whatever his reasons for leaving, he wasn't going to get more playing time than he would if he stayed with Michigan. The sad thing is that he could've had a Morganesque season next year by choosing to stay. Oh well, I hope it works out for him.
I guess he expects the consistent foul trouble and injuries to not affect playing time at all? what a bunch of BS.
Crap double post....first time for everything!
Hilarious read. Horford's family has finally convinced him that he deserves what he doesn't. They must think he's a better player than how he plays. If we could have the starting five with Morgan play the starting five with Horford, Horford's team would lose by 15 to 20. The team was that much worse with him on the floor. Both McGary and Morgan have developed and had huge impacts on the offense. And I wouldn't give Horford the ball in the post either because he didn't get high percentage shots.
But the article makes hi sound quite a bit like the ex who hacked Denard's twitter.
Fact is he may better off in another system, so his family is right in that regard. i just have a problem with him publicizing it...Itd be like a coach publicizing why Horford doesnt fit in our offense. Truth Cuts both ways.
Wish him luck. I'm not going to crap on a kid who gave 4 years to this school and did so with pride and respect.
No...but neither he indirectly, nor his family, should crap on the program either. And he did.
I'm sorry but Horford got plenty of chances. He was missing bunnies left and right and was subpar defensively. Think he's taking a cheap shot at Beilein. The system is fine, Horford just isn't very good.
you do realize JMO was missing bunnies and at times couldnt catch the ball but this year blossomed into what he was because he was on the floor not looking over his shoulder. I dont think he was taking a cheap shot at beilein. that system is very guard oriented. truth is truth. that is why we can land guards/wing forwards but have trouble landing a true center (McGary may be the only one)
Morgan has a completely different attitude though.
Back to the basket old school centers are getting more and more rare every year.
Hey everyone. I've been a long time reader, never really thought about posting anything until now. If you go back and watch the UK game you can clearly tell Horford was out of his league. He made marcus lee look like a superstar. He is to slow on his feet, he side to side movement was even slower. He never once boxed out Lee, if he had we would have won that game. Not knocking the kid at all, he just isnt on the same level as his dad or his bother. Good luck to him whereever he goes. THE FUTURE IS BRIGHT!
You watch the video...Those put backs all have one thing in common. #15 standing around not boxing out. I didn't want to say anything but that was the difference in the game. Wish the officials hadn't kept JMo on the bench.
Horford was completely out of his league against Kentucky. Now, considering he was our BACKUP center, playing against future NBA draft picks, there was nothing to be ashamed of. But for him to then act like he was getting some raw deal at Michigan because he wasn't playing more, c'mon. Kentucky abused him out there and made him look like the backup center that he currently is. Did I want him back next year? Absolutely. Did I want him to keep working to get better? Absolutely. But do I feel like he's gotten some raw deal because he's been behind J-Mo and McGary on the depth chart and isn't exactly a top option on offense? Absolutely not.
Ha! He's so full of it! Bottom line, forget what he said about coach B's system, it's great for bigs and better for guards. He feels slighted bc he knows mcgary is comin back and knows with Mitch and donnal, chances are that Jon doesn't play much. Thanks for ur services, but, understandably u want more minutes and are not gonna get it here! Also, I'm sure that if coach knows Mitch isn't comin back, he would've tried a little harder to keep horford around.
Epke left and did pretty well. Not saying Jon will make an NBA roster but I'm certain he is thinking about Udoh.
Udoh and Smot were both Beilein bigs who left after a season who were more productive after they left.
Great in Defense. Jon is neither, Smot'd production at Maryland hasn't been anything to brag about. He's the same guy there as he was in A2.
Amaker brought Udoh, not JB. I don't blame Udoh for transferring at all, but I think he could have thrived in JB's offense, too.
It kinda rubs me the wrong way that his family have been telling him to transfer for FOUR years. Although I do think his departure and statement about McGary's decision mean McGary is coming back, it's possible Beilein told him he would be splitting time with Donnal and he just wants starter's minutes. If he was going to get that here I don't see why he'd transfer. McGary has shown it's possible to be an animal in Beilein's system.
Rubs me the wrong way, too. One, Horford shouldnt have disclosed the bit about his family telling him to transfer for four years. Plus, if his sister said that stuff then his thinking cannot be too far from it, otherwise he rightly wouldve debunked it. I was a big supporter of him but not after those comments.
they must have started the moment he got here. Strange.
I don't recall his offer sheet to be that large.
I always liked Jon and had high hopes for him at UM. I wish him well. He may find a better fit else where, but I doubt that he will find more minutes.
Horford has devoted four years to the team, and that's a credit to him, especially with the (what seems to me to be bad) advice coming from his family. Who knows though, maybe they're right and he will blossom into an NBA caliber player with enough playing time.
... But I'm bemused by the comments to the effect of "it's not the system, he's no good, he's making a mistake 'cause he'd get minutes here". If he's no good, why do you care if he transfers? If he's really not good enough for you, he should definitely go somewhere he can get starters minutes and get better.
And if he is good enough, you're basically casting aspersions on a guy because you don't like the reality in front of him. That would be a sad way to go through life.
Personally, I think he's likely to be a solid but not spectacular on ball defender who will be overmatched by bigger and stronger posts ... Of course, there aren't a lot of those. He probably has a low post move or two that he can use to be a solid option at the offensive end as well, but he wouldn't be better than the eighth option in A2 even if none of our Big Three come back. If he wants to develop and showcase that he should leave - simple as that. We'll miss him and hope he does well except against us.
if he stayed there was the hope he might do one thing consistently well in terms of rebounding and/or defense. Reading that he's frustrated over his lack of opportunities on the offensive end given his all around deficiencies leads to the criticisms.
I also still think all three are going to the NBA. Frankly, I was looking forward to having another 5th year senior center as a starter. Playing for Michigan next year with good odds of a B1G champ ring and a deep run in the tourney would be really good advertising for his basketball future. This hurts, and it's worse that he's saying that his lack of production is coach's fault. What a crock of slimy worm feces. This dude, as stated above, has Europe written all over him. He went to the National Championship game and Elite 8 and now he's leaving?? Have fun watching Michigan in the tourney next year from home, dude. I wish him luck but it's a Big mistake for him, his family and his career IMO.
He's good enough to play in Europe.
IMO, this season he was a momentum killer. Wasn't physical, no post moves and slow on defense. Not trying to attack him personally, but hopefully he can find a small college to perform at to his expectations against lesser opponents.
As some have said, Jon's decision to leave is selfish. It is completely selfish on Jon's part to leave Michigan. BUT, there is NOTHING WRONG WITH THAT. Jon stayed all 4 years in a system that wasn't ideal for him while being told all along by his family to transfer.
I do not fault Jon one bit for leaving. He committed to Michigan and stayed his 4 years. It isn't like he's leaving early, he graduates next month. He's honored his commitment. As Coach B said, "No harm, no foul". Coach B's response is simply perfect.
Good luck to Jon and best wishes.
He is self-interested, not selfish. If we lose the negative connotation in describing his motives, the discussion becomes less muddied.
...was almost sure to be defensive in nature. First, Beilein and his staff have often commented on JMo's ability to direct the defense and never spoke one word about Horford's ability to do the same. Second, the eye test on Horford defending a ball screen showed me how late and slow he was to recover to the big after flashing to the ball. And I don't think it's coincidence that UK rebounded over 60% of its misses in a game where JMo was in foul trouble. Third, it's reflected in the +/-: JMo avg. +/- per game was 6.4; Horford, 3.5.
I wish him well but his explanation seems bizarre to me. It's the lack of opportunity that caused him to not meet his expectations on the court? Not injuries? JMo was dead in the water last year, did Horford step up? I don't see how he thinks lack of opportunity is the problem.
My dad is pretty good friends w his Dad and Tito has been "league, league, league" with them since a young age. Knowing this and hearing how much Jon references his family basically pressuring him to leave, makes me think that's probably why Al didn't come here, we sucked and his family members are not big fans of Michigan hoop. Al having a decent NBA career has only lent their (IMO inaccurate) stance that he never should've come here, more credibility. You're not leaving because of what the future may hold, but because of the past? Ummm ok.
And I know we're probably all reading into what exactly he means about Mitch a bit too much, but it concerned me when he said "they're all NBA guys", and went on to include Mitch and GR. Then he went on a "what he's probably been hearing from his family since he got here" spiel about big men not being able to flourish in our offense (kinda agree). Does Mitch feel this way too? Word around the campus athlete scene (football stars) is that he's a goner. I sure hope not.
Yeah, everyone remember that viscous recruiting battle for Jon Horford? Private planes, limos, Range Rovers, hostesses, suitcases full of money. Honestly, Michigan did him a favor. He's barely Big 10 material and no other major programs wanted him. I'm sure his dad and brother wanted him to develop into an NBA player. Well, it turns out he's not a good enough athlete and it has nothing to do with the coaches or playing time over the last 4 years.