And so Michigan starts out the season running smoothly, taking care of business on its home floor, looking solid in nuetral site games against tough competition, with two of it players turning up on first round big boards and two point guards that look as capable as any in the country. They return home to beat Syracuse in a "not as close as the final score would indicate" game, and then predictably drop 2 straight to the New Jersey Institute of Technology and Eastern Michigan, managing only 40 points against the Eagles.
What the hell is going on. NJIT seemed somewhat flukish, I was sure that things would return to form last night. What I ended up seeing was pretty concerning. If we have learned anything in the last 5 years of college basketball is that things ebb and flow throughout the year, a team can appear dead in the water one moment and be on top of the world the next. However, I sensed something concerning last night, it looked like there was some give up there. They seemed "irritated" that it was happening but no so much so that they planned on really doing anything about. I think fatigue could be a real issue right now.
I started the season thinking this team was almost going to platoon certain positions and overwhelm teams with perimeter athleticism and bodies, but I have been really stunned how reserved Beilein has been with the rotation.
In my opinion, the move at this point is to throw the fresh fish in the water against Zona. Let's be honest for a second, this game is not looking good. And at this point, we are not talking about tournament seeding anymore, the focus needs to be on making the tournament now. Arizona is the only game remaining on the non-conference schedule that is not a must win. Four losses is a concern going into conference play, five losses would be a flat out problem, concerning the nature of the two most recent ones. He should go with Dawkins and Rawk for a while this Saturday. They are going to have to grow up at some point. This team needs them, like now, and I think it is time for JB to see what kind of hand he has in game action.