VCU looks very good, Shaka Smart is an amazing coach and I really enjoy VCUs style of play. We will need a better peformance out of Burke than tonight in order to defeat them. I think he is up to the task, but it should be a good battle. Go Blue.
VCU and Turnovers - How to Beat the Rams
with the way we were able to beat a good team tonight without trey making a field goal for the first 27ish minutes of the game, I feel more confident in our next game then I did before today. I think Trey got a little bit too caught up in his match up against Wolters and didn't run the offense as much as he should have. That being said, VCU is still a good team and shouldn't be taken lightly, but I still feel good about how we're playing as a team right now, especially McGary.
We will need Burke againt VCU far more than we did against SDSU. We have lots of guys who can create offense in the half court, but Burke's ability to take the ball up the floor against the VCU press will be extremely valuable.
keep it going than that Burke racks up points. Other than 2-12 shooting he had a decent game (7 assists and 2 TOs). We're not going to win if we have to rely on that stupid high ball screen crap they always run. But if GR3 and THJ get hot look out.
Trey's #1 job is to beat VCU's press.
That might lead to a lot of easy baskets for GR3 & THJ.
VCU plays pesky & small. I think a three-guard lineup of Spike & Trey could push the ball to THJ & GR3 and cause all sorts of problems for VCU (e.g. alley-oops). Or open threes for Stauskus in place of either THJ or GR3.
We play them Saturday, not tomorrow.
Thanks fixed it
(Who thought it was a good idea to start Syracuse-Montana at 11 then have what felt like a 45 minute halftime?)
Oh, wait. It was 55-17 a couple minutes into the second half.
Games not over yet.
Its like 82-40, let's move on
what to do is not turn the ball over which we hardly do.
VCUs loss to Missouri bodes well. They are a very guard oriented team that is too say the least defensively challenged. Basically a worse version of us.
Saw my Temple Owls handle VCU a couple weeks ago in Philly.
VCU will struggle with Michigan's athleticism and outside shooting. Book it.
Don't get the flu
In many ways, the diamond press plays right into Michigan's biggest strengths. No doubt it will be a big challenge, but I like the matchup.
My biggest fear is how the freshman can handle the pressue.
the last time we played a pressing team like this was Clemson who smart use to coach with. We only had 13 turnovers that game with cj lee and david merritt running the point so i feel comfortable with trey burke
We played Arkansas in 11'/12' and this year. They were super pesky both years. Last year we looked like a deer in headlights... this year they hung around and made a tough game of it. I worry that VCU is a lot stronger than Arkansas. Should be a doozy tomorrow!
I think the VCU/ Akron game says as much about Akron as it does about VCU. Akron looks pretty bad, apparently due to injuries and illness. They didn't have anyone to handle the ball against VCU. Ball handling is not an issue for us.
On numerous occasions, they actually had a SF trying to singlehandedly beat the press.
no one could stop him yet Michigan was a shot away from not getting upset. Got to give credit to Ohio for beating Michigan and making it to the Sweet 16.
Akron's starting point guard got the boot not to long ago. One of their other players injured his back in practice yesterday and couldn't play and they had 2 guys in the hospital overnight with the flu who didn't play. Akron had 4 players out. This game tells you almost nothing about Akron or VCU.
Akrons starting PG was arrested for selling dope as I recall. Tough to beat a press without a point guard.
JB needs to study the St. Louis film a lot.
Thanks for the info.
It al starts with defense. According to St. Louis Billikens coach, Jim Crews, 2-0 vs VCU this season, the way to beat VCU: "get stops". VCU can't press if they don't make shots.
Michigan has played well against this type of team in the recent past. M beat Arkansas this year, narrow loss on road to Ark. last season. M also beat Memphis pretty good last season, and destroyed Tennessee 2 years ago.
I think Beilein, with his young team, would much rather play a team like VCU, as opposed to a grind it out, milk every possession, half court oriented defense, Wisconsin like team
To one bad shot and get the rebounds
It's not just about Burke. How comfortable is everyone else rushing/handling/passing the ball up the court under pressure of VCU's press and the 10 second clock? Burke is going to need some help. Very interested to see how prepared this team will be for this press.
What a great breakdown. Luke Winn might be the best basketball analyst out there. He can really explain how teams attack and why things happen. It's either him or Zach Lowe for Grantland, who writes about the NBA.
From that tape, it looks like the three keys are:
1. whomever has the ball has to keep their head up (not so concerned about Burke, but worried about everyone else) because that trap is coming from somewhere and if you don't have good vision with your head up, it'll be trouble.
2. Don't abandon the ballhandler in the backcourt if you think it's a man press, because they're still bringing the trap
3. Don't let them force you into the half-court corner on the offensive end, push the ball to the middle of the court.
To expand on Mr. Berenson's chart, if VCU's opponent commits 15 or more turnovers, VCU wins. If the opponent commits 14 or fewer turnovers, VCU loses. This is excepting their last game against St. Louis.
Michigan has only committed more than 14 turnovers twice - at MSU and at PSU. So if VCU mugs the shit out of Michigan and nothing is called, or they start chucking no-look arm-punt threes with a hand in their faces that subsequently hit nothing but net, then we should all worry. Otherwise, I feel okay about the chances. Anything can happen, but I like our guys.
They didn't seem to do anything special on D. Akron was just lost with all their scrubs on the court. If Burke plays his average game we should be in good shape
I think Burke will be fine handling the press.
My two biggest concerns are:
1) if VCU forces the ball out of Burke's hands, how do THJ, LeVert, Stauskas and GRIII handle the pressure. Timmy is known to be careless with the ball at times and the other 3 are freshman.
2) How tired does Burke get if he has to constantly break the press by himself. Stamina could be a big issue late in the game.This is what teams like VCU thrive on. They dont necesarily force turnovers all game long, but they wear you down to where you are physically tired and thus more mistake prone in the second half. Saginaw High is a team that does this to perfection at the high school level.
who then get the ball to Burke cutting upcourt who then leads a 3 on 1 alley oop to THJ/GR3 or a wide open three to Stauskus.
But let's be honest; VCU's turnovers are largely created by their fierce press, and UM hasn't face much like it. Not sure saying "UM doesn't turn the ball over much in its halfcourt offense" is the same as "UM won't turn it over against a nonstop press."
WIth that; VCU's got a lot to worry about WHEN UM breaks its press.
Good point, but being a good ballhandler period should certainly mean you're more likely to perform better even against a nonstop press. Yes, VCU does it better than anyone, but it's not like Michigan hasn't broken a press this year.
Trey Burke is going to cut through them like a hot knife through butter. As always, the outcome of the game will come down to whether Michigan makes their outside shots. VCU gives up a lot of easy buckets, and if we are the offensive juggernaut that we think we are, we ought to be fully capable of taking advantage of that. Michigan matches up extremely well with VCU.
another key is how well UM finishes near the rim. If UM is breaking down the press, they're going to get a decent amount of shots near the rim. They need to convert those easy chances. Over the course of the year all most everyone but Burke seemed to have stretches where they have trouble finishing near the rim.
I imagine Bacari will mention something about going out and having a Rams Horn dinner in the pregame locker room speech.
Bacari's metaphorical magic land.
I'm hoping we don't have another Loyola Maramount on our hands, based on what I saw tonight. VCU got to bump with the body and Daniels couldn't miss from deep. That 1990 track meet was painful.
I like our chances given our ball handling capabilities. And with any luck, they used up some mojo tonight.
GRIII should have a huge game. The pace and spacing will suit him.
versus UNLV, which the superior athletes of UNLV won 131-101.
They did clobber butler.
HOLD ON TO THE DAMN BALL!
Trey should stay and return punts.
We all knew it would be VCU or us in the end.
no guarantee, but we are good (if not incredibly well-practiced) at beating the press, and there are not a whole lot of teams that can put a hurt on you in transition in very short order like we can. If Burke can get clear or a double-team, the ball is going to move quickly to the hoop or to the perimiter for a good look at a three.
than the VCU players.
Winner of Michigan - VCU will end up in the Final Four.
JB's teams have handled the press pretty well in the past (the few times I've seen them face it). He likes to pass his way out of it, quickly up the court. McGary is a great outlet passer so I look for him to a play role.
Interesting that they've lost every game where they forced fewer than 15 turnovers and won every game, save one, where they score more. Looks like we have a magic number.
In which parallel dimension was St. Joseph's ranked #10 on March 15?
I just don't get all the confidence against VCU... First, we haven't faced too many full court press this year. And when we did (like MSU early), we didn't do that hot. You do not break full court press with a single player. Trey is going to have to give it up and THJ and Stauskas is going to have to be careful with the ball. From what I have seen this year, that could get dicey. I still think we will win, but this is not going to be easy... AT ALL.
I agree. Even Penn State gave us fits with their press both games. And the absolute keys are the secondary ball handlers, particularly Stauskas who can play too flashy with the ball.
It makes me nervous thinking about Spike, THJ, or Caris bringing the ball up against their press but my main thought is that statistically we're one of VCU's matchup nightmares: an elite PG and lots of good 3-point shooters and dunkers
the only one of the bunch you mentioned I'm really worried about is LeVert. Spike has pretty decent handles, although he needs to be careful he doesn't get too aggressive and stuck or out of control. THJ's handles are much improved from last year. LeVert seems to think his ball handling is better than it is, and I was pretty disappointed in his performance last night. He is just a freshman and maybe he was over-excited about being in his first tourney game, so perhaps he'll calm down tomorrow.
On paper this game should be a easy win for M. Who has more NBA prospects? Michigan has at least five and a POY PG to handle the press.
Is that you spam?
Politics, religion, pornography, and/or excessive disrespect towards college athletes can [rightfully] earn one the banhammer...
But spam is A-OK
I'm more worried about us making our shots. We haven't had a game with everyone "on" since Jan. UM shooting effectively will decide the game.
thanks for the data.
Here is a plot of point differential (y-axis) vs. turnover margin (x-axis).
The x-axis shows the margin of turnovers (VCU's minus opponents); the y-axis shows point difference (VCU's minus opponents).
Thus, VCU's losses are anything below the zero line on the y-axis, wins above, and games where VCU wins the turnover battle are towards the right.
As you can see, if you keep the turnover differential down, you have a much better chance of winning; specifically, in 11 games with a TO margin of +4 or less, VCU was 5-6; in 24 games with a TO margin of +5 or more, VCU was 22-2.
Also plotted is the best fit line.
You don't beat a press (at least a good one) with just your PG. Too many people here saying Burke will handle the press.
Burke is going to be passing the ball before he gets past the FT (on OUR end). Its going to be up to our 2 and 3 and probably McGary to pass their way out of it.
THAT is what should make us nervous.
I'm sure Burke will come off a few curls and will be able to sneak up court but for the most part its going to take 2 or 3 passes to get it up court for a good look.
It's going to be on Spike, Stauskas, and THjr to avoid the TOs. Burke will be fine but we won't be brining it up much. Thank God GR3 got warm...he's going to have a lot of looks once we break the press. We need to fnish with DUNKS or 3s.
You could mix it up and inbound to the 2 or 3 and then use Burke on the wing, so he's the guy that brings it across halfcourt (or makes the pass that crosses halfcourt).
Your point is correct - it's a team effort to beat the press. We did decently against it when we played Arkansas in January.
Given McGary's size and passing ability, he could be really effective flashing to the middle of the diamond and then making the diagonal pass to the cutter on the opposite side. You get worried about him getting over-excited, but his passing from other parts of the court, particularly the outlets, has been stellar.
I loved watching how active McGary was the entire game. With him down low and a better performance from Burke, Michigan will be in the sweet 16.
Anyone know the kenpom prediction for the game? Tried going to his site and I think I have to pay $20 to get it...
Brian and Dylan will both include it in their upcoming game previews.
Make sure 1/2 your team doesn't have the flu at tip off
One thing I noticed from the Akron game is how effective some shot fakes would be. VCU plays with surprising discipline but are prone to freaking out from time to time. Would be nice to pick up a couple of cheap fouls on them early, not to get them in foul trouble (going 12 deep after all) but to get some shooting fouls for Burke and Stauskas especially.
I desperately want Nik to learn to give a hard shot fake from the left corner and then just plow into whoever is leaping at him so he can get 3 free throws. Too often I see him sidestep someone who is closing out too aggressively.
When Albrecht's in, and I expect he'll see significant minutes to get another ball handler on the court, he has to remember not to overdribble, which is his tendency. Raftery even noted it during the game. It seems, from looking at the tape, that VCU really attacks any small guards they see dominanting the ball.
I don't see how UM keeps it under 15 TOs. Really.
I think the difference is UM will make them pay with just enough 3s to get the W (I hope).
I just don't see how Spike, THjr, and Stauskas won't have 12 TOs between them. Seriously. Not feeling good about that. Doesn't help that Spike and Burke are short and will have VERY long players on them.
McGary and the bigs are going to be huge. They are going to post up mid court as the safety value while Spike and Burke pass and cut to get the ball back. Frankly, I want Stauskas and THjr to touch the ball in the back court as little as possible.
I know when we break we will make them pay with the 3 ball though. There will be lots of open looks. Hopefully McGary and Horford crash the boards hard.
I think you may be selling our ballhandling abilities a little short. Remember, we have the lowest turnover average in the country. Burke obviously has been spectacular but it's not just his doing. Albrecht has only 10 turnovers all season (against 25 assists) and LeVert has just seven (vs. 22 assists). Stauskas, Robinson and Hardaway all have positive assist/turnover ratios on the year. If we really had a glaring weakness handling the ball, we'd have seen more teams try to press and trap us. Hardaway is the one guy (65 turnovers in 33 games) that is a little loose with the ball, but otherwise our perimeter guys have taken good care of it.
Their press is good, but it's a means to an end. The fact that they have 11 guys that get at least 7 minutes a game tells you what their strategy aims to do. They want to take a team's legs. The key to this game will be Beilein using a deep rotation and giving Hardaway, Burke, GRIII, and Stauskus longer blows than usual, especially in the 1st half. Spike needs to be able to bring the ball up against this press or Burke won't have much left at the end of the game.
Also, take the layups and dunks when you break the press, but don't get caught up in taking every open 3, they may fall early, but with tired legs eventually they won't fall as often and VCU lives off the fast break off from long rebounds. I want to see us run, but run smart, cannot get into a helter skelter game with these guys. The teams that beat them generally were able to slow it down some.
As a Butler Alum, I watched a lot of A10 games this year (particularly VCU, SLU, & Butler). VCU's havoc D is more an important part of their Offense.
They score well off the turnovers they generate in the press. They have good on the ball defenders, and while breaking down the full court press give opponents plenty of break opportunities, they are actually very good at rotating back and playing D in the half court.
A primariy weakness is they can struggle in their halfcourt offense. If a team doesn't turn the ball over and limits their fastbreaks, its almost a guaranteed loss for VCU if the opponent has anything resembling an efficient offense. SLU pretty much dominated VCU with solid D and efficient O.
I'll absolutely shocked if Burke and Co struggle with the pressure. The real challenge will be consistent O since lots of D rebounds gives VCU break opportunities. Also, the UM bigs will handle the ball more than usual, and do not underestimate VCU's ability to double down in the post to generate steals. They have extremely quick hands on D.
We'll know after the first 5 minutes whether or not tomorrow is a drinking early and often day....
I know Akron was short handed last night, but they blew out Penn State by 25, also beat Ohio by 14 and 7. Akron is a good basketball team. Just not sure if they were anywhere near close to full strength, regardless, VCU absolutely dismantled them like a #1 seed would do.
Like our chances, but this is going to be a tough tough game.
Yesterday, Akron's starting PG was suspended and three other guys were either out or weakened by injury/illness.
Over/Under 4 alley oops in this game. Given the way they play, it seems like there will be plenty of opportunities alley oops. Not saying it will be easy to get through, but when we do, there will be opportunities. (I almost put the over/under at 5, but that seemed excessive)