Hoops UFR: Michigan State Defense

Hoops UFR: Michigan State Defense

Submitted by Ace on January 20th, 2012 at 4:32 PM

AAAAAAHHHHHHHHH!!!

Ahhhhh. Thank you, Matt Austin Thornton, for your steadfast belief in running the play even if it means passing up a wide-open three to give it to your heavily-guarded big man:

"I was extremely wide open," Thornton said of the final sequence. "We wanted to get the ball inside. I think everyone was surprised by how open it actually was. Play it over again, I'd probably do the exact same thing. Get the ball to our star and hopefully he goes up and gets fouled or makes a shot."

Also, thank you, Jordan Morgan, for stepping up beautifully to block Keith Appling's shot, forcing State to scramble for that final, desperation look by Green. My body is still in the process of uncurling from the fetal position, but I swear I'll jump up and down in celebration as soon as that is physically possible.

You know what happened. I know what happened. It's Friday afternoon. Let's just jump right into the big chart:

Lineup: Burke, Douglass, Hardaway, Novak, Morgan
Time Score Offense Defense Player Result
20:00 0-0 HC Man Hardaway 2-pt Miss
State gets the ball to Adreian Payne in the post, and while he's established great position on Jordan Morgan (-0.5), Zack Novak (+1) is right on time with a double, forcing Payne to kick it out to Brandon Dawson. Dawson is briefly unguarded, as Tim Hardaway was forced to rotate down to Draymond Green in the post, but Dawson drives and tries to shoot a floater. Hardaway (+2) steps up and gets a hand on the shot, and the ball falls harmlessly into Morgan's hands (2-pt, heavy contest, miss).
19:08 3-0 HC Man Morgan Layup Make
MSU pushes the pace after Novak sinks a three, and as they're setting up Morgan (-1, I guess) trips and falls in the post. Appling immediately passes to Payne, Hardaway (+0.5) rotates to force the pass, but Payne makes the right play in passing to Dawson, left alone by THJ, who drives and hits a layup (dunk/layup, late contest, make).
18:39 3-2 HC Man - 2-pt Miss
Payne gets a pass on the wing, about 15 feet from the hoop, and decides to attempt a quick shot. Morgan doesn't respect Payne's jumper, nor should he, and the shot bricks off the far side of the rim (2-pt, no contest, miss). Novak chases down the rebound.
18:10 5-2 HC Man Douglass Turnover
Appling gets a pick from Green, but Burke (+0.5) stays right with him and Novak (+0.5) takes away any drive with a good hedge. Appling gives it off to Wood, who tries an entry pass to Payne in the post, but Morgan (+1) bats it away, unfortunately right to Dawson. Dawson tries to drive on Hardaway, but Douglass (+2) sags off of Wood and strips the ball away, coming up with the steal.
17:25 7-2 HC Man Novak Turnover
Appling gets both an off-ball screen and the a high side pick early in the play, but Burke (+1) is right with him through both. He eventually gets the ball back up top and takes another pick, and Burke has no help as Novak and Hardaway are in the middle of a switch. Appling sees this and crosses over, running Burke into Payne, but Novak (+1.5) slides over to stop the drive, and Appling travels.
16:29 10-2 HC Man Burke 2-pt Make
Green comes out and sets a very high screen for Appling on the edge of the Block 'M', and Burke (-1) goes under the pick. This gives Appling just enough space to utilize his speed and get to the basket, and he hits a driving floater over Burke (2-pt, late contest, make). Burke recovered decently on this play, but he can't let Appling get a running start like that.
15:35 13-4 HC Man Hardaway 3-pt Miss
Wood gets a pick up top from Nix that stalls Douglass, but Morgan (+0.5) steps out and Wood picks up his dribble and makes a jump-pass back up top to Green as Novak (+0.5) rotates nicely. Green swings it to Thornton in the corner, but Hardaway (+1) closes well and gets a hand right in his face - the shot misses (3-pt, heavy contest, miss). Burke (+1) jumps over Appling and Nix to grab the rebound.
15:11 13-4 FB FB Burke 2-pt Miss
Appling rushes the ball upcourt after an ill-advised Hardaway three was off the mark. State doesn't have numbers, but Nix goes barrelling down the middle in front of Appling and Burke (-0.5) gets caught behind him. Appling pulls up just inside the arc and shoots, but can't knock it down (2-pt, no contest, miss). This was almost a moving screen by Nix, but Burke still has to do a better job of getting out to Appling.
14:28 13-4 HC Man Novak Layup Make
Green starts with the ball up top and drives hard to his right against Novak, then spins into the lane, getting by Novak (-1) and forcing Morgan to slide over. Morgan (-0.5) is a split-second late to take the charge, and he hits the deck as Green slips a pass to Nix, who has an open lane for a layup (dunk/layup, no contest, make). Hardaway (-1) is also culpable, as he doesn't recognize the need to rotate onto Nix and is far too late getting over.
13:46 15-6 HC Man Hardaway 2-pt Miss/OR/Layup Make
Wood curl-cuts at the baseline, getting a screen in the process, but Douglass (+0.5) stays right with him. Wood gets a pass on the wing and dumps it to Nix in the post. Morgan (+0.5) is right on him and Novak (+0.5) comes over to help. Nix has an opportunity to hit Green wide open in the post as Hardaway (-1) doesn't rotate, but he instead dribbles into the lane, puts up a heavily-contested shot that misses (2-pt, heavy contest, miss), and is fortunate to have the ball bounce right back to him for a tip-in (dunk/layup, heavy contest, make).
12:45 15-8 FB FB Novak Layup Miss
Appling again rushes upcourt after a missed three, giving to Wood on the wing, where he's guarded by Douglass. Wood fakes and is able to get past Douglass (-1) on the baseline, but Novak (+2) is in perfect position just outside the charge circle. Wood is forced to double-clutch as he avoids barreling over Novak, and his layup attempt misses (dunk/layup, heavy contest, miss). Great job by Novak to get to the right spot, put his hands straight up, and avoid committing a foul.
12:15 15-8 FB FB Douglass 3-pt Miss/OR/Layup Make
Again, Appling breaks out after a missed Michigan shot. He flips a short pass to Wood, who jacks up a deep three and misses (3-pt, late contest, miss). Draymond Green is late coming up the court and Douglass (-2), who's responsible for the weak side, doesn't pick him up and box out. Green gets to the basket unimpeded and tips in the missed shot (dunk/layup, no contest, make).
Lineup: Burke, Douglass, Vogrich, Novak, McLimans
Time Score Offense Defense Player Result
11:32 17-10 HC Man Douglass 2-pt Make
Appling gets a pick from Green up top that Douglass goes under. Novak steps out and switches to prevent Appling from driving. Payne then sets another pick for Appling coming back the other way, and this time Novak (-0.5) has to go under while McLimans hedges. Douglass (-1.5) fails to switch onto Payne even though Burke has sunk down, ready to take Green, and by the time McLimans gets back on Payne he has great post position. Appling gives to Green, who has a better angle to pass into the post. He does, and Payne takes a couple dribbles and sinks a baby hook over McLimans (2-pt, heavy contest, make). McLimans actually gets a +1 for defending this as well as he could, but he didn't have much of a chance to make a play.
Lineup: Burke, Douglass, Vogrich, Smotrycz, McLimans
Time Score Offense Defense Player Result
10:35 19-12 HC Man McLimans 3-pt Miss
Wood gets a high-side screen from Green, takes it, and immediately gives to Green as he pops out to the corner. McLimans (-1) looks very confused in the post and is way late getting over after Smotrycz (+0.5) correctly hedged, and Green has space for an open three, but misses (3-pt, no contest, miss).
9:48 19-12 HC Man Burke Timeout
Price sprints up the court after a miss, but Burke stays with him and Smotrycz (+0.5) comes over to stop the drive on the baseline. Price gives to Wood and gets it right back, and Burke (+2) turns up the heat, pinning Price against the sideline and forcing him to take a timeout.
Lineup: Burke, Vogrich, Hardaway, Smotrycz, Morgan
Time Score Offense Defense Player Result
9:33 19-12 HC Man Vogrich Foul/3-pt Miss
Price gets the sideline inbounds and tries to drive right against Vogrich (+0.5), but can't find room, so he tries an ill-advised jump pass to Wood on the opposite wing. The pass nearly goes out of bounds, but Wood chases it down just as Hardaway gets there. Wood takes a bump from Hardaway and stumbles backwards, drawing a dubiously-late foul call. If the ref calls this when contact is made, fine, but he blows his whistle only after Wood travels. Refs -1. On the subsequent inbounds, M shows a 1-3-1, then moves into man. Wood gets it on the wing and Hardaway (-1) overplays the drive to his right, allowing Wood space to shoot a three, which he misses (3-pt, late contest, miss).
8:58 21-12 HC 2-3? Burke 3-pt Make
I think this is a 2-3, though the video doesn't show the initial setup and it could be a rotated 1-3-1 (picture here). Appling drives sideline around Hardaway and passes in the corner to Green, who shoots over Burke. Burke (+0.5) gets up and provides a great contest, but Green has enough size to still get a good look and knock down the shot (3-pt, heavy contest, make).
8:26 21-15 FB FB Hardaway Layup Make
Appling gets the ball after an MSU steal and charges down the court on the right as Green accompanies him on the left. Burke and Hardaway both attend to Appling while Vogrich (+0.5) gets back on Green. Appling is able to cross over inside of Burke, and Hardaway, who didn't hustle into postion, can't contest and ducks away from contact as Appling hits a layup (-3 Hardaway, dunk/layup, no contest, make).
Lineup: Douglass, Novak, Hardaway, Smotrycz, Morgan
Time Score Offense Defense Player Result
7:56 24-17 HC Man Morgan Turnover
Appling drives to the left against Douglass and passes to Green, now guarded by Smotrycz, in the post. Morgan (+1) jumps over for a quick double, and Green throws up what appears to be an alley-oop attempt to Nix that ricochets off the rim and into Novak's hands.
7:22 24-17 FB FB Hardaway Layup Miss
Broken record alert: Appling leads a fast break after a missed shot. He charges unimpeded up the middle of the court, and Hardaway is there to stop him at the 3-pt line, except Hardaway (-3) continues backpedaling and tries to steal instead of taking a charge or steering Appling away from the basket. Appling goes right by him and tries a Gervin-style finger roll, but it luckily rims out (dunk/layup, no contest, miss). Hardaway's lack of effort on the defensive end is troubling, to say the least. Mike Tirico and Dan Dakich both rip into him for not stopping the ball, and they're justified in doing so.
6:59 24-17 FB FB Novak 3-pt Make
After Smotrycz misses a layup, Appling—yes—pushes the pace. He gets to the top of the key and sees Trice all alone on the wing as Novak (-1) is late getting out there. Trice gets the pass and sinks a three despite a strong effort from Novak to recover and contest (3-pt, late contest, make).
6:32 24-20 HC Man Hardaway 3-pt Miss
Yeesh, Hardaway. He starts the possession by picking up Nix after State rushes the ball upcourt, but drifts to the perimeter, forcing Novak (+0.5) and Smotrycz (+0.5) to sink into the post to pick him up. Green drives into the lane and passes to Wood in the corner, and Hardaway (-2) is late getting there, but the shot rims out (3-pt, late contest, miss). You could pin some of the blame on either Novak or Smotrycz, but I think both were right there in scrambling to defend the unguarded player in the lane, especially since it doesn't look like Hardaway communicated at all that he was switching men on the play.
Lineup: Burke, Douglass, Hardaway, Novak, Morgan
Time Score Offense Defense Player Result
5:57 26-20 HC Man Hardaway 2-pt Block
Nix gets the ball on the baseline against Morgan and Novak slides off of Green to provide help. Nix passes out top to Wood, who drives into Hardaway and Novak (+1), but Burke (-1) is late rotating onto Green and Wood slips him a pass under the basket. Hardaway (+2) makes a fantastic recovery and cleanly blocks Green's shot (2-pt, heavy contest, miss). Thanks for playing defense, THJ.
5:34 28-20 - - Burke Turnover
ESPN doesn't show the play, but Burke (+2) steals Green's inbounds pass after a made basket and immediately drives for a layup. I think this kid is going to be good, you guys.
5:23 30-20 HC Man Morgan Foul/3-pt Miss/OR/2-pt Miss/OR/2-pt Make
Novak is called for a foul after executing a nice switch with Douglass—he didn't quite move his feet fast enough to avoid tripping up Appling. ESPN doesn't show the subsequent inbounds, but Nix gets it in the corner and hands off to Green while effectively screening off Novak. Morgan (-1) doesn't jump out and Novak gets a late contest as Green misses (3-pt, late contest, miss), but Hardaway (-1) bats the ball into the air instead of grabbing it and Brandon Kearney gets an offensive rebound. Kearney gives to Trice, who immediately passes to Nix in the post. Nix's first shot is off the mark (2-pt, heavy contest, miss), but he's able to bat the ball off the backboard, grab it, and go up again, this time finishing (2-pt, late contest, make).
Lineup: Burke, Douglass, Vogrich, Novak, Morgan
Time Score Offense Defense Player Result
4:15 30-22 HC Man/2-3 Douglass 2-pt Miss
Michigan appears to start the possession in man, but when Appling gets the ball on the wing, Burke (+0.5) and Vogrich (+0.5) execute a nice trap, forcing him back well beyond the arc, and M falls back into a 2-3 zone. Trice calls for two separate screens from Payne, and both times Douglass (+1) hands with him; on the second pick Trice drives and Stu forces him to attempt a running jumper that doesn't fall as Morgan (+0.5) gets a hand up to contest (2-pt, heavy contest, miss). Interesting defensive look here from Beilein.
3:30 30-22 FB FB Burke Layup Make
Appling once again charges up the court after a miss, and he's able to blow by Burke (-2), get to the right side of the lane, and hit a driving layup as Morgan is picked off by Payne near the basket (dunk/layup, no contest, make). Burke has to do a better job of stopping the ball in transition on this play.
3:01 30-24 FB FB Douglass Timeout
Michigan turns it over, so Appling leads the break again. This time, Michigan is prepared, as Vogrich (+0.5) and Novak (+0.5) stop Appling's drive in the lane and Douglass (+1) tips Appling's pass out of bounds as he tried to hit Trice in the corner. Timeout.
2:55 30-24 HC Man Morgan 2-pt Make
Green gets the ball in the post and quickly whips it to Kearney in the opposite corner. Kearney swings it to Appling on the high side and gets it right back, then feeds Payne in the post. Morgan (-2) tried fronting Payne but gave up the pass along the baseline, allowing Payne to turn into the lane, back down Vogrich, who has no hope of defending the much-larger player, and hit a short jumper (2-pt, late contest, make).
Lineup: Burke, Douglass, Hardaway, Novak, Morgan
Time Score Offense Defense Player Result
2:06 30-26 HC Man/2-3 Hardaway 3-pt Make
Michigan switches mid-play from man to 2-3, and the timing is very poor, as the switch is made right as Wood gets the ball in the corner and beats Hardaway (-1) along the baseline. Morgan steps up to stop the drive, but Novak is stuck on Green in the post and nobody is guarding Kearney in the far corner. Wood jumps and passes to Kearney, who drains the open three (3-pt, no contest, make). Hardaway can't give up the baseline that easily, but this also seems like a bad choice to change defenses mid-play. It doesn't look like the call came from the bench, but I'm not sure who made it on the floor; I think it was Douglass, but I'm not positive.
1:11 34-29 HC Man Morgan Turnover
Appling gets the ball on the wing with 12 seconds on the shot clock and tries to get into the lane, but Douglass (+1) sticks with him while Morgan steps up to force a pass. Burke (+0.5) gets out quickly onto Trice, who drives baseline, and Morgan (+1.5) again steps up to force a pass. This time, the pass zips by Payne and Hardaway is there to steal and head the other way.
0:37 36-29 HC Man Hardaway 3-pt Miss
Trice runs the clock down to 10 seconds, then drives left and gives to Thornton, who has lost Hardaway (-2) on a screen. Morgan steps out to take Thornton, but Hardaway doesn't switch, instead playing just a couple feet behind Morgan. Payne and Green set a double screen for Wood on the weak side, and Green pops out to the arc, where he's unguarded as Novak and Douglass must choose to take two of the three players on their side of the floor. Thornton passes to Green, who misses a wide open look (3-pt, no contest, miss). Terrible first half on both ends for Hardaway.
Lineup: Burke, Douglass, Hardaway, Novak, Morgan
Time Score Offense Defense Player Result
19:35 36-29 HC Man Hardaway 3-pt Miss
Draymond Green gets the ball as State comes upcourt and dribbles to the left elbow, where Morgan (+1) steps up, stops the drive, and nearly knocks the ball away. Hardaway (-2) gets distracted as he stands next to Green but doesn't fully commit to a double-team, allowing Wood to get open in the corner. Douglass (+0.5) rotates out to get a decent contest, and Wood's shot hits the side of the backboard (3-pt, late contest, miss). Hardaway either has to double hard on Green or stay with his man. He did neither.
19:18 38-29 HC Man Morgan 2-pt Make
Dawson gets the ball on the baseline to the right of the hoop, and Hardaway (+1) pressures him well while Douglass (+0.5) nearly steals the ball on a good double. Dawson kicks it out top to Appling, who gives to Nix on the block. Nix backs down Morgan (+0.5), pivots, hesitates, and then rattles in a short hook (2-pt, heavy contest, make). Decent defense from Morgan here, and Nix nearly picked up a three-second call.
18:05 40-31 HC Man Hardaway Turnover
Appling gets a good screen from Nix and gets a step on Burke (-1), but Morgan (+1) hedges and does a solid job of staying step-for-step with Appling. Still, Appling is quick enough to get to the left side of the hoop, but he runs right over Hardaway (+2), who establishes position just outside the circle and draws the charge.
17:09 40-31 FB FB Burke Foul (1/2)
Wood catches a long rebound on the run and is one-on-one with a backpedaling Burke. Burke (-1) can't get set to take a charge or block the shot, but he doesn't get out of the way and picks up a ticky-tack foul as Wood misses the lay-in (dunk/layup, no contest, foul). Questionable call, but if Burke doesn't have a play, he either needs to foul hard to prevent the layup or clear out—he's lucky Wood doesn't have an and-one opportunity.
Lineup: Burke, Douglass, Hardaway, Novak, Smotrycz
Time Score Offense Defense Player Result
16:49 40-32 HC Man Smotrycz Turnover
Nix gets the ball a few feet outside the lane against Smotrycz, and Hardaway (+0.5) comes over to cut off the baseline. Nix tries to drive into the middle of the lane, but Smotrycz (+2) easily takes the ball away as Nix turns right into him.
16:32 40-32 FB/HC FB/Man Smotrycz Layup Miss/OR/Layup Make
Smotrycz turns the ball over at halfcourt and Wood charges back the other way as State has a four-on-one. Somehow, Douglass (+2) is able to position himself under the basket and force a miss when Wood gives to Dawson for a layup (dunk/layup, heavy contest, miss), but Wood is able to bring in the rebound and bring it out top to reset. Wood passes to Dawson on the high side and gets it right back as Nix sets a downscreen for Dawson, who cuts to the basket as Smotrycz (-2) misses a switch, and Wood throws a lob that Dawson lays in for two despite a great effort from Novak (+1) to recover (dunk/layup, late contest, make).
15:41 40-34 HC Man Douglass 2-pt Make
State with a nice play in the corner to set up a bucket. Green sets an off-ball screen for Dawson, who pops out to the corner and gets the ball as Douglass (-1) is late getting out and overcommits, allowing Dawson to get a step, drive to the lane, and kick out to Green for a 12-footer (2-pt, late contest, make) as the defense collapses on Dawson. Douglass actually gets a hand in Green's face late, but that's a pretty short shot for a good shooter.
15:02 42-36 HC Man Smotrycz Turnover
Wood comes off a screen and dumps it in to Green in the post when Douglass (+0.5) sticks right with him. Novak holds his ground and Green passes to Nix just outside the charge circle, but Smotrycz (+2) comes over after taking a step towards Green, gets his hands up, takes a bump, and then strips the ball away as Nix starts to bring it up for a shot. Nice play.
14:31 42-36 FB FB - Turnover
After a missed three, State runs the break, but Wood trips over himself and travels as he starts to drive. Derp.
Lineup: Burke, Douglass, Hardaway, Novak, Morgan
Time Score Offense Defense Player Result
14:10 44-36 HC Man Hardaway Foul/Turnover
Novak (+0.5) and Douglass (+0.5) make a timely switch as Green runs a pick-and-pop with Appling. Appling gives off to Green, who lobs it towards Payne in the post. Morgan (-1) was fronting and grabs Payne to prevent him from catching the pass, which would've led to a layup, and he's called for a foul. On the inbounds, Green gets it in the corner and goes baseline against Novak, but Hardaway (+2) steps up and takes a charge. Credit to Hardaway for doing that a couple times this half, as I'm sure he got chewed out at the break.
13:31 44-36 HC Man Morgan Turnover
Green tries to lob a pass to Payne in the post, but Morgan (+2) is fronting Payne and this time easily steals the pass.
12:55 44-36 FB Man Morgan 2-pt Miss
Appling pushes the pace after a Michigan miss and Green—who runs upcourt and notices Morgan (-2) is heading back to the post instead of guarding him, as Novak has taken Payne—turns around and sets a crushing pick on Burke, who had no chance on this play. Somebody needs to call that out, as well as pick up Appling on a switch, and I think it's Morgan. Appling gets a wide-open look from a couple feet inside the arc, but misses
12:16 47-36 HC Man Morgan 3-pt Make
Appling gets a high side screen from Payne and gets a step on Douglass (-0.5), who has to go under the pick, and Morgan (-1) doesn't slide over to stop the ball. Hardaway (+1) is forced to abandon the weak side and does a good job of setting his feet, but Appling passes to Thornton, who's now all alone in the corner. Thornton sinks the three (3-pt, no contest, make).
11:11 47-39 HC Man Morgan Turnover
Nix sets another high side screen for Appling with 11 seconds on the shot clock, but this time Morgan cuts off the drive and forces a pass into the corner as Douglass (+1) trails. Morgan (+2) then sinks back onto Nix, who had posted up Burke, cutting off any chance of a pass and forcing Thornton to make a skip pass to Wood. Wood tries to drive on Burke (+1), who recovered well and cuts off the lane and Novak(+1) tips Wood's desperation jump-pass. Douglass is there to intercept before the shot clock expires.
10:35 47-39 HC Man Morgan 2-pt Make
Appling gets another high ball screen, but Morgan (+1) hedges well again. Appling loops around and can't get by Morgan, but he throws up a teardrop from outside the lane that somehow falls through (2-pt, heavy contest, make). Ridiculous shot is ridiculous.
9:55 47-41 FB FB Novak 3-pt Make
Burke has a three-pointer partially blocked and Appling runs again. Michigan does a good job getting back and Novak (+1) gets right out onto Wood as Appling feeds him in the corner, but Wood sinks a three anyway (3-pt, heavy contest, make). C'est la vie.
Lineup: Burke, Vogrich, Hardaway, Novak, Smotrycz
Time Score Offense Defense Player Result
9:03 49-44 HC Man Burke 2-pt Block
Vogrich stops an entry pass into the post with his foot, so State inbounds the ball with 15 seconds on the shot clock. Appling gets it up top and drives quickly, before Nix can get over to set a pick, and Burke (+2) plays him tight, times his jump perfectly, and blocks a pullup J right into Vogrich's hands (2-pt, heavy contest, miss).
Lineup: Douglass, Vogrich, Hardaway, Novak, Morgan
Time Score Offense Defense Player Result
7:54 49-44 HC Man Douglass 2-pt Miss/Foul/Layup Make + Foul
Appling gets a pick up top from Nix, Douglass (+1) goes over and hangs with him, and when Appling doubles back over another Nix pick Morgan (+1) is there to hedge, forcing Appling nearly out to the edge of the midcourt circle. State quickly swings the ball down to Nix in the post, but Novak (+1) holds his own as Nix bricks a hook from outside the lane (2-pt, heavy contest, miss). Morgan (-1) is caught shoving Green under the basket on the rebound, an unnecessary foul given where the ball was headed. On the ensuing inbounds, State whips the ball around the perimeter as Novak, Douglass, and Vogrich (+0.5) all do a fantastic job of rotating and switching, but great ball movement gets it into the post for Nix against Douglass, and Nix hits a lefty layup and gets the foul (dunk/layup, heavy contest, make + foul). Great defense, better offense.
Lineup: Burke, Douglass, Vogrich, Hardaway, Morgan
Time Score Offense Defense Player Result
6:54 49-47 FB FB Douglass 3-pt Make
Appling pushes the pace after Vogrich bricks a three, and while Burke (+0.5) and Morgan (+0.5) pick up Appling and Nix, Douglass (-2) stays near the lane instead of getting out to Kearney in the far corner. Appling makes a quick pass to Kearney, who drains a three over a late-arriving Douglass (3-pt, late contest, make).
Lineup: Burke, Douglass, Hardaway, Novak, Morgan
Time Score Offense Defense Player Result
6:22 49-50 HC Man Burke 2-pt Make
Burke (-1) doesn't anticipate a pick by Nix, but Morgan hedges nicely on Appling to force him towards the sideline, and Appling gives the ball up. He gets it up top again with 8 seconds on the clock, again gets a screen that picks off Burke, and while Novak (-0.5) picks him up, he's able to turn the corner and get up a shot before Morgan can rotate over. The floater falls (2-pt, late contest, make). Morgan comes out even after the nice hedge but a late rotation.
5:29 52-52 HC Man Morgan 3-pt Make
Green gets the ball on the block against Novak and Morgan comes out to double. Green is able to throw a skip pass to Kearney in the opposite corner, and Morgan (-2) never gets back onto Nix, instead staying with Green along with Novak. Kearney gives to Nix, who has to be picked up by Hardaway, and Thornton, Hardaway's man, runs out to the corner. Nobody's there to pick Thornton up, and he hits a three over Hardaway (+1), who made a great effort to guard two players but didn't have much of a chance (3-pt, late contest, make).
4:39 53-55 HC Man Morgan Layup Make
Green takes a pass from Appling at the top of the key and gets a pick from Nix. Morgan (-1) is late with the double, and Green is able to lob a pass to Nix in the post. Hardaway (+0.5) is there on the rotation, but there's little he can do as Nix goes right over him to lay it in (dunk/layup, heavy contest, make). Morgan has to get there earlier so Green can't get space to make the entry pass or he's got to stay on Nix.
4:07 54-57 HC 1-3-1 Morgan Turnover
MSU can't find an opening as Michigan throws out the 1-3-1, and Appling eventually drives wildly into the paint, charging over Morgan (+2) as he tries to pass and picking up, well, a charge.
3:24 56-57 HC Man Burke Foul/2-pt Miss/Foul (2/2)
Douglass (+0.5) stays right with Wood as he comes around a double screen off the ball and gets it on the wing. Wood dumps it in to Green, who spins baseline against Novak (-1) and passes to Payne before Morgan (-1) rotates. Hardaway (+1) does a good job just to foul Payne on the floor before he can dunk. Trice gets the ball on the wing, calls for a pick from Green, and drives to the right, but Novak (+0.5) picks him up and when Trice pulls up for a jumper, Burke (+1.5) blocks it (2-pt, heavy contest, miss). The ball goes right to Thornton, however, and he's able to pick up a shooting foul as he slashes into the paint. Unlucky break, that.
2:20 58-59 HC Man Burke Turnover
Green gets the ball up top and holds until 10 seconds remains on the shot clock, then calls a timeout. Thornton inbounds it to Appling a couple feet inside the half-court line, and Burke (+2) hounds him, forcing Appling to dribble off his foot. The ball goes over half-court, and Appling gets a backcourt violation as Izzo screams in protest about... good defense? [Ed-S: +1 Izzo for gif-friendly chewing of playbook)
1:36 58-59 HC Man Burke 3-pt Miss/OR/2-pt Miss
Appling drives and gets caught in the air due to great defense again from Burke, just chucking the ball near the perimeter, where he's fortunate that Wood gets to the ball first. Appling gets the ball again in the corner, takes a couple dribbles towards the top of the key, and pulls up from beyond the arc, but Burke (+3) nearly blocks the shot and it's off the mark (3-pt, heavy contest, miss). Douglass (-2) can't locate the ball even as it bounces off the floor three feet away, and Wood grabs the rebound. State resets. Appling gets a screen from Green and drives, but Morgan (+1) steps up nicely and Appling can't sink a floater as Hardaway (+1) helps out with the contest (2-pt, heavy contest, miss). Hardaway taps the rebound out to Burke.
0:36 60-59 HC Man Morgan 2-pt Miss/OR/2-pt Miss/OR/2-pt Miss/VICTORY
Thornton gets a pick under the basket from Green and pops out wide open to the three-point line, where he gets the ball from Appling. Novak doesn't run out when Hardaway is caught on the screen, but Thornton immediately passes to Green a couple feet outside the lane. Normally I'd ding Novak for this, but it's clear his instructions were to not leave Green—State's #1 option—at all. Green is forced to pass out top by Novak (+0.5) and Hardaway (+0.5), Nix gets it on the block and passes out to Appling, who drives wildly and has his pullup J blocked by Morgan (+2, 2-pt, heavy contest, miss). Wood gets the ball, nearly loses it, and fights a pass through to Green, who drives to the lane and misses a runner over Burke, who smartly decides not to put his hands up and risk a foul (2-pt, no contest, miss). Green's tip-in attempt, at least according to the play-by-play, comes after the final horn. Exhale.

You alive?

Maybe.

Want to talk about it?

Sure. Michigan got brutalized on the boards, still had problems properly defending the fast break, and had a couple major breakdowns in communication. Despite all that, they held MSU to just under 50% shooting from the field, allowed just five (!) free-throw attempts, and forced turnovers on 24.6% of Spartan possessions. I really don't know what to make of this game, except that I'm giddily happy that Michigan pulled out a victory.

Did I really see a 2-3, or was that a hallucination?

Fear not, self, for you aren't trippin'. Check out this little trick:

Michigan starts out in man-to-man, but after an early trap they fall back into a 2-3 zone. This curveball appeared to catch State off guard, as they tried a pair of fruitless pick-and-rolls that resulted in a tough shot from within the teeth of the defense. I don't remember Michigan doing this before and I like the wrinkle so long as they know when to break it out. Michigan was later burned on a mid-play switch to the 2-3 that was poorly timed, so this must be handled with caution.

You're getting a little ahead of yourself. How about a...

Chart?

Chart.

Defensive Shot Prevention
Player + - T Notes
Burke 18 7.5 10.5 Tasked with staying with Keith Appling, who was the focal point of both State's half-court offense and their fast break, and he did an admirable job. Burke is getting better at playing defense with his feet instead of reaching for the ball, and for the most part he kept Appling in front of him despite being run through myriad screens. Forcing the late halfcourt violation was the cherry on top of a strong defensive performance. Also: two blocks!
Hardaway 16 17 -1 It was a tale of two halves for Hardaway. In the first, he looked generally disinterested in playing defense, loafing back on a couple fast breaks and getting caught out of position several times. THJ refocused in the second half and took a couple charges while doing a much better job of staying in position. Still, much of what he did in the first half was inexcusable from an effort standpoint.
Novak 13.5 4 9.5 Not sure what Chris Mackinder saw to grade Novak so poorly, as I thought he did a great job shutting down Draymond Green (7 points, 3-8 shooting, 2 offensive rebounds). While Novak didn't have a direct hand in many turnovers, he played great help defense and was rarely in the wrong spot. All that was missing were a couple of Novakian drawn charges.
Smotrycz 5.5 2 3.5 Only played 10 minutes. Missed a switch that led to a basket. Had a couple of nice steals. Generally solid in limited playing time.
Morgan 19 14 5 Had one of the tougher jobs of the night, as he spent much of his time on defense trying to run with Keith Appling after hedging on screens. He was inconsistent with his positional play, missing a couple switches, and pulled in only two rebounds. That block in the waning seconds was huge, though, and he defended the pick-and-roll quite well.
Douglass 12 10 2 Not one of Stu's better games as he uncharacteristically got caught drifting away from his assignment on a few plays and gave up some open looks. Still, Douglass came through with a nice steal, disrupted a few passes, and did a solid job on Appling when Burke needed a breather. Needs to do a better job of boxing out.
Horford - - - DNP (foot)
Vogrich 2.5 0 2.5 Picked up some half-points for rotating well. He really is a mini-Novak, hustling all over the court and even pulling down a pair of rebounds.
McLimans 1 1 0 Two minutes, one good play, one bad play.
Akunne - - - DNP
Christian - - - DNP
TOTAL 87.5 55.5 32 Not bad. Not as good as the 2:1 +/- ratio from the Wisconsin game, but overall a pretty solid effort.

So, um, Hardaway.

Yeah. This is pretty unacceptable defense:

Hardaway doesn't hustle into position and Appling gets an easy two points as a result. This happened twice in the first half to go along with a few instances where he either didn't make a switch or failed to communicate that he was abandoning his man. That's not so good. On the other hand, he had a much better second half and took those two charges. He needs to make that level of effort throughout the game, though, and not after Beilein is forced to pull him multiple times in order to chew him out.

Everybody else?

Pretty, pretty good. Hardaway was the only player to finish in the negative, Morgan worked his tail off, Burke hung with Appling, and Novak shut down Green. Douglass had his ups and downs but was still decent on the perimeter. I think the strength of Michigan's overall team performance is reflected in the...

Shot chart?

Yes. Shot chart.

  Dunk/Layup 2-point 3-point Total
Defense NC LC HC NC LC HC NC LC HC NC LC HC OVR
Man 1/1 2/2 3/3 (1F) 0/2 5/5 (1F) 3/12 1/3 1/5 0/2 2/6 8/12 (1F) 6/17 (1F) 16/35 (2F)
1-3-1 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
2-3 - - - - - 0/1 1/1 - 1/1 1/1 - 1/2 2/3
Fast Break 3/4 (1F) - 0/2 0/2 - - - 2/3 1/1 3/6 (1F) 2/3 1/3 6/12 (1F)
TOTAL 4/5 (1F) 2/2 3/5 (1F) 0/4 5/5 (1F) 3/13 2/4 3/8 2/4 6/13 (1F) 10/15 (1F) 8/22 (1F) 24/50 (2F)

State certainly helped Michigan out by missing four uncontested two-pointers (including Green's last shot, as Burke decided—smartly, in my opinion—not to put his hands up and risk a foul), but they couldn't generate many open looks down low out of their half-court offense and were forced to settle for a whole lot of contested mid-range shots.

That's nice. How did Michigan force so many turnovers?

Tight defense and timely swipes at the ball, for the most part. Here's some of Douglass's finer work, as he recognizes that Brandon Dawson is going to drive to the middle, sags off his man—who's hanging out harmlessly beyond the arc—and comes away with a steal:

Smotrycz also came away with a pair of strips just from playing solid man defense and waiting for his man to bring the ball down and in front of him. He's shown a propensity for doing that and he's beginning to cut down on the reach-in fouls that usually accompany such plays.

Even when State did get a bucket, they usually had to work for it. Watch how well Novak, Douglass, and Vogrich rotate and switch on this play, despite in ending in a Spartan and-one after some fantastic passing:

Just like in football, good offense beats good defense (hence all the scoring). There's not much more you can do on the above play, especially along the perimeter.

Heroes?

Once again, Burke stood out to me as the team's best defender—watch your back, Stu. Novak deserves major credit for the job he did against Green, and I thought Morgan did well in every area save rebounding.

Goats?

First-half Hardaway. Let's hope we don't see that again.

Anything else?


(via Lost Lettermen)

That is all.

Basketball UFR: Wisconsin Offense

Basketball UFR: Wisconsin Offense

Submitted by Ace on January 13th, 2012 at 2:32 PM

Previously: Wisconsin Defense UFR

Before I start, I'd like to pose a question to you all: Given the wealth of valuable offensive metrics out there, is it worth doing the offensive UFRs? I think the defensive UFRs will have great value moving forward, but I'm questioning the value of going through every offensive play as well when there are so many good offensive stats out there and I have other work (read: recruiting) that I could be spending more time on. Read on, and let me know what you think in the comments.

Anyway, as you know, Michigan dismantled Wisconsin on Sunday, but while the Wolverines had an outstanding defensive performance, the offense was merely mediocre, mostly due to a lack of quality inside looks and a fair amount of missed open shots. Even the best offensive play of the day was really more of an outstanding defensive effort:

Fantastic. Moving on, let's dive right in—if you need a primer, as well as a point of reference (that point being the Oakland game), go here.

Lineup: Burke, Novak, Hardaway, Smotrycz, Morgan
Time Score Off Set Defense Player Result
20:00 0-0 2-1-2 Man Novak 3-pt Miss
After Michigan wins the tip, Burke hands off on the right side to Smotrycz, who swings it to Morgan at the top of the key. Smotrycz (+0.5) sets a nice off-ball downscreen on Novak's man, freeing up Novak to take a handoff from Morgan. Novak gets an open look for three, but can't connect (3-pt, no contest, miss).
19:05 0-0 2-1-2 Man Morgan 2-pt Miss
Novak and Morgan end up running a high pick-and-roll with 10 seconds on the shot clock. Morgan sets a decent screen, but Novak's man is able to fight over it, so no points either way there. Novak (+1) slips a slick bounce pass to Morgan just inside the free throw line, but Morgan can't hit a pullup jumper as the Wisco D recovers (2-pt, heavy contest, miss).
18:17 0-0 2-1-2 Man Morgan 2-pt Make
It's Novak and Morgan again on the high P&R. This time, Morgan's screen is effective, as Novak draws both defenders when his man tries to go over the top again. Novak (+1) drives hard to his left, then delivers a nice jump-pass to Morgan, who pivots as his man flops while trying to take a charge that isn't there, then banks in a short fallaway J (+1.5, 2-pt, no contest, make).
17:29 2-0 2-1-2 Man Hardaway 2-pt Miss
Blergh. Hardaway takes the ball up the court after hauling in a defensive rebound, barely gives the offense time to set up, and jacks up a very long two after getting a quick screen from Morgan. Brick (Hardaway -2, 2-pt, late contest, miss). As Brian pointed out in the game column, Hardaway can get that shot off whenever he wants, and putting it up with 30 seconds on the shot clock is not at all ideal.
16:57 2-0 2-1-2 Man Novak 2-pt Miss/OReb/Layup Make
Burke gets a screen up top from Morgan, starts to drive, and pulls up for an open 18-footer that draws the back iron (2-pt, no contest, miss). The long rebound goes right back to Burke, who dishes off to Hardaway near the corner. Hardaway (+1) sees Novak open at the top of the key and gives it to him. Novak pumps, forcing a recovering Jordan Taylor to overrun him, then drives hard to the hoop and connects on a running one-hander (+2, dunk/layup, late contest, make).
Lineup: Burke, Douglass, Hardaway, Novak, Smotrycz
Time Score Off Set Defense Player Result
16:09 4-0 2-1-2 Man Smotrycz 3-pt Miss
Douglass holds the ball at the top of the key as Smotrycz comes over from his center position towards Novak in the corner. Smotrycz fakes as if he's going to screen Novak's man, and instead pops out to the arc, where Douglass hits him with time to get off a shot before Berggren can get out there. Smotrycz can't connect (+0.5, 3-pt, late contest, miss), and while Novak GRITs his way to the rebound, he grabs it while his body is partly out of bounds. Really like the design of this play to get Smotrycz a clean look from deep.
15:28 4-2 2-1-2 Man Hardaway 2-pt Miss
Blergh the second. With 20 seconds left on the clock, Hardaway gets a half-hearted pick from Smotrycz (-0.5), pulls up at the elbow, and hits only backboard with a heavily-contested shot (-1, 2-pt, heavy contest, miss).
14:31 4-2 2-1-2 Man Burke Layup Make
Smotrycz (+0.5) gets the ball up top, waits for someone to come open, then hands off to Burke while also setting a screen on Taylor, who is forced to go over the top and can't keep up with Burke. Burke doesn't stop and takes it right to the hoop, where he hits a layup over Berggren (+1, dunk/layup, heavy contest, make). Burke did a fantastic job getting the shot up quickly before Berggren could position himself for a strong challenge—he had little choice but to put up his hands and hope Burke missed.
13:46 6-2 2-1-2 Man Novak Layup Make
Burke gets the ball at the top of the key, and unlike earlier, Smotrycz (+0.5) actually sets a screen when he heads to Novak in the corner. Novak (+1) makes a great cut to the lane, where Burke (+1) hits him in stride with a perfect bounce pass. The defense is late getting over, and Novak hits the layup (dunk/layup, late contest, make).
13:00 8-2 FB FB Hardaway Foul (2/2)
Novak spearheads a semi-transition possession after a defensive board. Michigan spreads the floor with all five players outside the 3-pt line, and Novak passes off to Hardaway, who drives hard to the left with no help coming and draws a shooting foul when he gets past his man (+1, dunk/layup, late contest, foul).
Lineup: Burke, Douglass, Vogrich, Smotrycz, Morgan
Time Score Off Set Defense Player Result
12:33 10-4 1-4 High Man Morgan Turnover
Morgan (-2) sets a blatantly moving screen on Burke's man, and is called for it. Sloppy.
Lineup: Burke, Douglass, Vogrich, Smotrycz, McLimans
Time Score Off Set Defense Player Result
11:58 10-7 2-1-2 Man Smotrycz Layup Miss (Block)
McLimans (+0.5) sets a good off-ball screen to briefly free up Smotrycz, who curl-cuts to the basket from the corner. Douglass feeds him and Smotrycz goes up for a lefty layup, but Evans makes a fantastic play to recover from behind and block the shot (dunk/layup, heavy contest, miss). Not going to fault Smotrycz there—he had an open lane and Evans just made a great play.
11:14 10-10 2-1-2 Man Smotrycz Turnover
Smotrycz (-3) comes off an off-ball screen, gets it at the top of the key, then sends a really lazy pass in the direction of Burke. Taylor easily cuts it off and is ahead of the pack on the break, and he'll make an uncontested layup. You just can't make that pass.
Lineup: Burke, Douglass, Vogrich, Novak, McLimans
Time Score Off Set Defense Player Result
10:56 10-12 2-1-2 Man McLimans 3-pt Make
Great play design out of a timeout by Beilein. Burke runs a high screen with McLimans (+1), who immediately turns and sets another pick for Douglass, who comes from the baseline and is wide open for three. Burke (+0.5) finds him, and Douglass buries the trey (+0.5, 3-pt, no contest, make).
10:09 13-12 2-1-2 Man Burke Layup Miss/OReb/Foul
Burke (+2) comes off a screen, puts on a sweet hesitation move, and gets to the basket, but he can't hit a tough running layup (dunk/layup, heavy contest, miss). McLimans (+1) fights hard for the rebound between three defenders, and though he can't bring it in cleanly he draws a foul.
9:55 13-12 OOB Man McLimans 2-pt Miss/OReb/3-pt Miss
Nice play design off the inbounds frees up Vogrich for an open 18-footer, but he can't connect (2-pt, late contest, miss). The long rebound bounces out to Novak. Douglass ends up with the ball up top and McLimans pops out for a decent look from three, but he misses as well (3-pt, late contest, miss).
9:05 13-14 2-1-2 Man Burke Layup Miss
Burke gets a screen from McLimans, but McLimans (-0.5) isn't in great position and Taylor is able to go cleanly over the top. Burke still goes hard to the left and tries to get up a layup, but Taylor is right in his pocket and Burke's shot is short (Burke -1, dunk/layup, heavy contest, miss). With 16 seconds on the clock, Burke had time to reset there.
Lineup: Brundidge, Douglass, Hardaway, Novak, Smotrycz
Time Score Off Set Defense Player Result
8:00 13-14 FB FB Smotrycz 3-pt Miss
Brundidge pulls in a tough rebound on the other end and, while falling over, gets it to Hardaway, who breaks out with Smotrycz. Both head to the right side and nobody picks up Smotrycz (+0.5) as he drifts towards the corner. Hardaway feeds him and Smot has all day, but he misses the open three (3-pt, no contest, miss). Nice breakout off the miss, just couldn't knock down the shot.
7:26 13-14 1-4 High Man Hardaway Layup Miss
Hardaway (-1) comes off a good off-ball screen from Smotrycz (+0.5), who then pops out and is wide open for three. Hardaway instead drives right at Berggren and tries to scoop the ball in... brick (dunk/layup, heavy contest, miss). No need for Hardaway to be so hasty in getting up a shot, since there were over 20 seconds left on the clock.
6:57 13-14 FB FB Novak 3-pt Make
Smotrycz leads a breakout after hauling in a rebound, with Michigan going 3-on-3 against Wisconsin. Smot passes off to Novak (+2), who drives towards the lane, draws attention from three defenders, then looks off a defender in order to free up Hardaway (+1), trailing on the play, for three. Hardaway drills it (3-pt, late contest, make).
Lineup: Burke, Akunne, Hardaway, Novak, Smotrycz
Time Score Off Set Defense Player Result
6:14 16-14 2-1-2 Man Smotrycz Foul/3-pt Make
Smotrycz (+1) comes off a pick and roll with Burke, gets the pass, and makes a nice move to get to the basket, where he draws a non-shooting foul just before he makes a layup—that probably counts if this is the NBA. Off the inbounds, Burke gives to Hardaway, who draws three defenders near the lane, and Smotrycz pops to the arc, gets the pass, and hits a three (3-pt, late contest, make).
5:19 19-16 2-1-2 Man Novak 2-pt Miss
Akunne gets the ball up top and Smotrycz (+0.5) again sets that off-ball screen in the corner for Novak. Akunne gives it up, and Novak gets a good look on a pullup at the free-throw line, but it bounces off the back iron (2-pt, late contest, miss). Smotrycz stupidly commits a foul on a rebound he has no chance at.
4:40 19-16 2-1-2 Man Burke 2-pt Make
Burke runs a high pick and pop with Smotrycz (+0.5), and both end up open as Burke gets by his man and Smotrycz drifts open for three. Burke takes the open look at the free throw line and knocks it down (+1, 2-pt, no contest, make).
Lineup: Burke, Douglass, Hardaway, Novak, Smotrycz
Time Score Off Set Defense Player Result
3:26 21-16 FB FB Burke Layup Block/Foul/2-pt Make
Hardaway (+1) sees an opening after a Wisconsin miss and drives hard to the basket, and though his layup attempt is blocked (dunk/layup, heavy contest, miss), it probably should've been a foul and there's an immediate make-up call as he brings in his own rebound. After the inbounds, Hardaway gets it up top, and Smotrycz (+0.5) picks off Taylor in the corner and frees up Burke, who gets the pass from THJ, steps inside the arc, and drills a long two (+1, 2-pt, late contest, make).
2:37 23-16 2-1-2 Man Burke Turnover
Burke gets a pick from Smotrycz but crosses over in front instead of going around and using the pick. He tries a quick drive to the bucket, but Taylor slaps the ball out and steals as Burke (-1) picks up his dribble to go up for a layup.
Lineup: Burke, Douglass, Hardaway, Novak, McLimans
Time Score Off Set Defense Player Result
2:04 23-19 2-1-2 Man Novak 2-pt Make
Lots of motion here. Burke (+0.5) starts the play by giving to McLimans at the top of the key, then goes to the corner and sets a pick for Hardaway, who comes over the top and gets it from McLimans as he gets another pick along the way from Douglass (+0.5). Hardaway (+1) drives hard to the right, three defenders collapse on him, and this frees up Novak to curl around from the right corner and take a pass on the run from THJ. Novak (+1) pump-fakes a three and gets Evans to bite, then dribbles into the lane and hits a pull-up J from the free-throw line (2-pt, late contest, make).
1:14 25-19 2-1-2 Man Novak 3-pt Miss
Pretty bleh possession here. Michigan cycles the ball around the perimeter until McLimans ends up with it at the top of the key. Novak, with no help from a screen, pops out to the 3-pt line and gets it, but can't hit the three with Evans right there to contest (Novak -1, 3-pt, heavy contest, miss). Too early in the clock for that shot.
0:35 25-19 2-1-2 Man Burke 2-pt Miss
Burke holds as Michigan can kill the rest of the clock for the half. With 8 seconds left, he drives, doesn't get anything, and jumps along the baseline to get the ball to Novak in the corner. Novak dribbles into the lane and has no choice but to put up a tough fallaway with a hand in his face (2-pt, heavy contest, miss). Not a fantastic play, so no positives, but not the worst end of half possession, either, so no negatives.
Lineup: Burke, Novak, Hardaway, Smotrycz, Morgan
Time Score Off Set Defense Player Result
20:00 25-19 2-1-2 Man Morgan 2-pt Miss
Burke starts to drive from right to left on Taylor, but doesn't have a step and gives to Morgan at the FT line. Morgan fakes a handoff back to Burke and drives right into Burggren, turning his back, pivoting, and then putting up a tough righty shot off the glass that bounces out (-1, 2-pt, heavy contest, miss). This really wasn't there, and Morgan probably should've kicked it back out.
19:27 25-19 2-1-2 Man Morgan 3-pt Miss/OReb/3-pt Make
Burke runs a high P&R with Morgan, but Morgan doesn't hold his ground long enough to actually affect Taylor (guarding Burke). Burke kicks out to Novak, who gets a decent look from deep but can't hit (3-pt, late contest, miss). Morgan (+0.5, with a half-minus for the crappy pick) is initially boxed out but backs Burggren right under the basket and gets his hands on the rebound. The ball is knocked around and Smotrycz (+0.5) ends up with it and kicks it out to a wide-open Hardaway, who buries a three (3-pt, no contest, make).
18:24 28-19 FB FB Burke Turnover
Hardaway (+0.5) hits Burke with a nice outlet pass after a rebound and Michigan has a 3-on-2 with Burke charging down the right side, Morgan (+0.5) cutting to the basket, and Smotrycz (+0.5) fading to the corner—great spacing here frees up Morgan. Burke (-2), instead of making a simple bounce pass that would almost assuredly result in a dunk, tries to hit Morgan with a lob; Gasser is able to get a hand on the pass and Evans grabs it.
17:24 28-19 2-1-2 Man Burke 3-pt Miss
Burke (+2) gets a good pick from Morgan (+0.5) and manages to split between three players, causing Evans to come over from Smotrycz in the corner. Burke immediately gets it out to Smotrycz for an open look, but Smotrycz completely air-mails the three, missing everything (3-pt, late contest, miss). Yikes.
Lineup: Burke, Douglass, Hardaway, Novak, Morgan
Time Score Off Set Defense Player Result
16:39 28-19 FB FB Burke Foul (2/2)
Burke (+2) comes flying out of the gate after pulling in a defensive rebound. He nearly blows by Taylor, takes a bump, and draws the two Wisconsin defenders as he stops inside the FT line and dishes to Hardaway under the basket. Taylor recovers, but only in time to foul Hardaway, who does a great job switching hands to make sure he gets up a shot and draws a shooting foul (+1 Hardaway, dunk/layup, late contest, foul).
15:44 30-19 FB FB Morgan 2-pt Miss/OReb/Layup Make
Burke (+1) again pushes the pace after a turnover, and with Michigan 3-on-3 he creates space by pulling up inside the FT line, where he gets an open look but misses (2-pt, no contest, miss). Novak (+1) bats the rebound off the glass, and Morgan (+2) comes from beyond the 3-pt line to grab the rebound inside the lane. He goes right back up with the left hand and hits the putback layup (dunk/layup, late contest, make). Great hustle from Morgan to even get into the play.
14:59 32-22 2-1-2 Man Morgan Turnover
Morgan gets the ball in the high post, Burke runs by him with Morgan faking a handoff, then Burke stops and curls back around, this time taking the ball as he gets a step on Taylor. Morgan's man is forced to step over to stop the drive, and Burke (+1) dishes it off to Morgan, who's diving to the hoop. Morgan (-1) gets stripped by Taylor, however—get the ball up!—and Wisconsin comes up with the loose ball.
14:13 32-22 2-1-2 Man Burke 2-pt Miss
Burke gets a good screen from Morgan (+0.5) up top, freeing him up for an open 15-footer, but it rims out (2-pt, no contest, miss).
Lineup: Burke, Douglass, Hardaway, Novak, McLimans
Time Score Off Set Defense Player Result
13:01 32-23 2-1-2 Man Hardaway 2-pt Make
Hardaway gets the ball and drives around a pretty half-hearted pick from McLimans (-0.5), but still gets a half-step on his man, pulls up at the free-throw line, and nails a jumper (+1, 2-pt, late contest, make). Would like to see him attack for that shot more often.
12:15 34-23 FB FB Douglass Foul (2/2)
After getting a steal, Douglass leads a 2-on-2 fast break with Burke on the other side. Burke is well-covered by Taylor so Douglass goes hard at Kaminsky, drawing contact and getting to the line (Douglass +1, dunk/layup, heavy contest, foul).
Lineup: Burke, Douglass, Hardaway, Novak, Morgan
Time Score Off Set Defense Player Result
11:41 36-26 2-1-2 Man Hardaway Layup Make
Hardaway gets the ball on the left side and drives over the top of a Morgan screen, but Morgan (-0.5) rolls before he actually picks off Jackson, who's able to stay right with THJ. Hardaway gets to the right block and starts backing Jackson down, does a slow spin to the middle of the lane, and is able to get to the left side of the basket and body out Jackson as he goes up strong for a layup (+2, dunk/layup, late contest, make). Nice work by Hardaway to use his frame to get himself a great look.
11:03 38-26 2-1-2 Man Burke Layup Make
Trey Burke! Burke gets the ball on the left side and gets a screen from Morgan, and this time Morgan (+0.5) sticks around just long enough to throw Taylor off-course. Burke gets into the lane, hesitates, then goes right at Berggren, getting into his chest and hitting a righty layup as he falls over (+2, dunk/layup, heavy contest, make). Impressive.
10:19 40-26 FB FB Burke Layup Make + Foul (1/1)
After a steal, Burke pushes up the court as he's one-on-one with Taylor, who is retreating quickly and can't get turned around until he hits the paint. Burke (+2) gets into the lane, executes a textbook jump-stop, and hits the layup while Taylor raps him on the arm for an and-one (dunk/layup, heavy contest, make). The CBS mic picks up a very excited/spastic Novak screaming "AAAAAAND ONE!" as he chest-bumps the freshman. Man, I love this team.
Lineup: Burke, Douglass, Hardaway, Smotrycz, Morgan
Time Score Off Set Defense Player Result
9:52 43-29 2-1-2 Man Smotrycz 3-pt Miss/OReb/3-pt Miss/OReb/Turnover
Smotrycz gets the ball on the elbow, picks up his dribble, and is just kinda stuck there for a couple seconds. Douglass comes over and gets the ball, and Smotrycz (+0.5) sets a nice pick for him, then pops out to the corner. Douglass draws both defenders and passes out to Smotrycz, who can't hit the three (3-pt, late contest, miss). Hardaway (+1) uses his leaping ability to grab the rebound, and he's fouled as he comes down with it. After the inbounds, Burke eventually works his way into the lane, then kicks out to Hardaway, who fires from deep and misses (3-pt, heavy contest, miss). Morgan (+0.5) tips the rebound and Smotrycz grabs it, then loses it, but Morgan recovers and gets it out to Burke. After M kills clock, Burke (+0.5) gets the lane and kicks out to Smotrycz (-1), who travels while making a ball-fake. At least we killed a lot of clock.
8:13 43-31 2-1-2 Man Morgan 2-pt Miss/OReb
Burke gets the ball on the left wing and drives baseline, attempting a tough right-handed runner from just outside the paint and missing (-1, 2-pt, heavy contest, miss). No need for that shot with 20 seconds on the shot clock. Morgan (+1) goes up strong, bats the ball off the backboard, and nearly grabs it before it goes OOB off a Wisconsin defender. TV timeout.
Lineup: Burke, Douglass, Hardaway, Novak, Smotrycz
Time Score Off Set Defense Player Result
7:51 43-31 OOB Man Novak Foul (2/2)
Hardaway takes it on the left side, sees an opening in the middle of the lane, and drives there, drawing Evans, who was guarding Novak on the right. Hardaway (+1) dishes to Novak, who pump-fakes and gets by a recovering Evans, then is fouled as he pulls up and shoots a jumper on Bruesewitz (Novak +1, 2-pt, late contest, foul).
7:11 45-33 2-1-2 Man Novak 3-pt Miss/OReb/Layup Make
Burke gets the ball on the wing and gets a great screen from Smotrycz (+0.5), and Burke gets a wide-open look from three, but can't hit (3-pt, late contest, miss). Novak (+2) comes flying over to grab the long rebound, dribbles into the lane after his man trips going for the board, and hits a layup before the defense can react (dunk/layup, late contest, make). MOAR GRIT.
6:22 47-33 FB FB Novak Layup Make
Novak (+2), after diving on a loose ball at halfcourt, makes a beautiful flip over his head to a streaking Burke (+1), who runs by everyone and hits a finger roll as Uncle Verne has an aneurysm (dunk/layup, no contest, make). Fantastic play.
5:59 49-35 2-1-2 Man Novak Turnover
Burke penetrates after getting a handoff from Novak and coming around a screen from Morgan, but Taylor stonewalls the drive and Burke passes back out top to Novak. Novak (-2) pump-fakes, drives, and then travels as he tries to turn around and kick it back out again.
5:27 49-35 2-1-2 Man Novak Layup Make
Michigan works the clock down below 10, Burke gives it to Hardaway on the left wing, and Hardaway (+1) makes a nice skip pass to Novak in the opposite corner. Novak pumps the three and drives hard baseline, getting into the lane and hitting the game-sealing layup (+2, dunk/layup, late contest, make). That's how you put the final nail in the coffin. Charting ceases for the ensuing foul-fest.

GRIT!

Agreed. Zack Novak is pretty awesome at this basketball thing. Other than a late derp that resulted in a travel, he played as well as you could ask of him.

GRITSCREAM!

Gritscream. Also, Trey Burke covers ground with alacrity:

SHOULD I JUST KEEP SCREAMING?

Sure. It's Friday afternoon. Scream all you want.

CHART!

Chart.

Offensive Creation
Player + - T Notes
Burke 18.5 5 13.5 Not at all his best offensive performance (14 points on 6-15 shooting, 2 assists, 2 turnovers), but he still had a largely positive offensive impact to go along with his stellar defending of Taylor. Gets into trouble when he tries to do too much, but remember, freshman point guard and all.
Hardaway 12.5 4 8.5 Takes some dumb shots and disappears for stretches, then does something awesome that reminds you why he's an NBA-caliber player. Had 17 points on 10 shots with zero turnovers—if his in-game streakiness results in stat lines like that (he also had 10 rebounds, two on offense), I'm totally cool with it.
Novak 16 3 13 His ruthless efficiency may be a result of his relatively low usage, but I'd still like to see Michigan test that theory and get him the ball more. Novak has become very effective with his pump-fake and drive, and he's finishing well, too.
Smotrycz 7.5 4.5 3 Pretty quiet day for Smotrycz, who racked up almost all of his positives on screens, then had one awful turnover account for three of his negative points. His three points on 1-6 shooting with one assist and two turnovers jives with the small point total.
Morgan 8 5 3 Only played 19 minutes and did most of his damage on the boards, hauling in five offensive rebounds. Three turnovers is a little disconcerting considering he barely handled the ball.
Douglass 2 0 2 With Burke playing 37 minutes, Douglass spent most of the game as a spot-up shooter and Michigan didn't run many plays through him. No negatives means no bad shots, which is nice to see from Stu.
Horford - - - DNP (foot)
Akunne - - - Not even sure he touched the ball during his brief cameo.
Christian - - - One minute in uncharted garbage time.
Vogrich - - - Got up a shot during his short stint off the bench, but otherwise a non-factor.
McLimans 2.5 1 1.5 Set some good screens, set some bad screens. Looks like Big Bird.
Team - - - Like with the defensive UFR, the "Team" category will disappear next time, as it was a total cop-out. May introduce an RPS metric in its place.
TOTAL 67 22.5 44.5 Solid day against a tough Wisconsin defense—1.09 points per possession is very good against the Badgers. Michigan didn't shoot well, but held down their turnovers and did great work on the offensive glass.

Okay, I've calmed down. That looks... good?

Yes, it does. As we'll see in the video breakdown, Beilein did his usual stellar job of setting the team up for success with his offensive ingenuity. The guards limited mistakes against a very good Wisconsin outfit—the team turned it over on 16.7% of their possessions—and the offensive rebounding was superb.

But Jordan Morgan is no longer getting a +23!

This is true. I toned down the points for successful picks—those really should've been worth a half-point from the beginning—and also Morgan only played 19 minutes. Smotrycz got most of his points setting the picks that Morgan didn't this game.

What about magic invisible Stu?

I'm really still trying to get a handle on Douglass and what he brings to the team. He scored very well (+10.5, third on the team) in the defensive UFR, and watching him in detail I think people are right in saying he's the squad's best perimeter defender. He did almost nothing—positive or negative—on offense, however, despite playing 30 minutes. With Burke handling point guard duties for nearly the entire duration of the game, I think this is mostly a function of his role in the offense. When Burke is running the point, Douglass is mostly a spot-up shooter, and with the emergence of Novak as both a very solid outside shooter and a threat to drive to the basket, any plays run for guys other than Burke, Hardaway, or Smotrycz (Morgan mostly just sets picks and crashes the boards) go to Novak. I'm totally fine with this—Stu had one open look from three this game, and he knocked it down. Keep doing that and there will be no complaints from me.

Speaking of shooting...

Yep, another chart.

  Dunk/Layup 2-point 3-point Total
Player NC LC HC NC LC HC NC LC HC NC LC HC OVR
Burke 1/1 - 3/5 (1F) 1/4 1/1 0/1 - 0/1 - 1/5 1/2 3/6 (1F) 5/13 (1F)
Hardaway - 1/1 (2F) 0/2 - 1/2 0/1 1/1 1/1 0/1 1/1 3/4 (2F) 0/4 4/9  (2F)
Novak - 4/4 - - 1/2 (1F) 0/1 0/1 0/1 0/1 0/1 5/7 (1F) 0/2 5/10 (1F)
Smotrycz - - 0/1 - - - 0/1 1/4 - 0/1 1/4 0/1 1/6
Morgan - 1/1 - 1/1 - 0/2 - - - 1/1 1/1 0/2 2/4
Douglass - - (1F) - - - 1/1 - - 1/1 - (1F) 1/1 (1F)
Horford - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Akunne - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Christian - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Vogrich - - - - 0/1 - - - - - 0/1 - 0/1
McLimans - - - - - - - 0/1 - - 0/1 - 0/1
TOTAL 1/1 6/6 (2F) 3/8 (1F) 2/5 3/6 (1F) 0/5 2/4 2/8 0/2 5/10 11/20 (3F) 3/15 (1F) 19/45 (4F)

Michigan didn't have the easiest time finding open looks, especially inside, and while they hit the lion's share of their layups, open jumpers were an issue. That 2/8 number on late-contest threes is especially disconcerting, as those are exactly the type of shots this offense is designed to create. Still, those shots were created, and the Wolverines didn't force too much, so I'm not worried about this performance. The shots will fall if they play like this on most nights, and it's always good to remember that Wisconsin is very good defensively.

You forgot to mention the Hardaway thing.

Ah, yes, the Hardaway thing. Brian expressed his frustration with Hardaway jacking up long twos early in the shot clock, and, well, it's a legitimate gripe:

That's bad, mmmkay? Hardaway's length and athleticism allow him to rise above the defense for a pretty clean look whenever he wants to shoot a jump shot. It is never necessary for that shot to come from 18 feet with 30 seconds on the shot clock. I counted two pretty terrible early-clock jumpers from THJ, and he forced the issue a couple times when he drove inside, as well. It looks like he's getting frustrated by his recent shooting struggles (keeping Michigan afloat against Northwestern notwithstanding) and when he tries to jump-start his own offense, it comes at the expense of the team. Northwestern was an improvement on the shooting front, so hopefully this kind of stuff mostly goes away as the season progresses. It probably won't go away entirely.

Meanwhile, Beilein is a magician.

Yes. Michigan set a ton of high screens for Burke, and also had the center head over to the corner to set off-ball screens for the guard in the corner. Because the team almost exclusively sets up in that 2-1-2 before plays, making the start of every possession look pretty much the same, they are able to do some pretty simple things that can completely confound a defense when they're looking for x and Beilein calls for y. Here, instead of having the center go out and screen the guy in the corner, Douglass (playing up top without the ball) dives into the paint, then curls back around to get a screen from McLimans:

The screen gets Douglass wide open at the top of the key, and he drills the three. It's a really simple play that doesn't ask for too much, other than a pair of solid screens from the center, and when executed properly it creates a great look for three points.

Finally, some obligatory love for Trey Burke, who continues to impress even when his jump shot is a little off.

Burke uses picks very well, making sure to rub close to the screener and get as much separation as possible, and his quickness makes it so that few players will be able to recover once that happens. On the above play, he's even able to throw in a little hesitation move at the free-throw line before going hard in the paint, getting right into Bruesewitz and hitting the layup while attacking in a way that makes it tough to alter the shot. He just keeps getting better, and I'm starting to just hope he'll be around for more than two years.

Heroes?

Novak and Burke. Novak's efficiency definitely calls for further exploration of his role in the offense—I think he needs to get the ball more, as he's proven he can take it inside and finish well. Novak attempted four layups, all before the defense could properly contest, and while part of that is picking his spots well, it's also because the defense has to respect his outside shot.

As for Burke, he's not making many errors while creating a lot of shots for both himself and his teammates. His shot is still relatively inconsistent, but I think that will work itself out in time—his free-throw shooting (75% on the season) and great form lead me to believe he'll only improve in that regard.

Goats?

There's no way I can call Hardaway a goat when he's putting up 17 points on 10 shots. No other player really qualifies for consideration—Smotrycz was forced to play center for much of the game due to Horford's absence, so he mostly set screens, and Morgan's five offensive rebounds more than offset his three turnovers.

Anything else?

Again, please let me know what you think of the offensive (and defensive, for that matter) UFR in the comments. This is really time-consuming and it'd be really valuable to know whether or not this is worth the effort. I'm pretty committed to the defensive UFR, but this one seems like it could be covered by a summary of the advanced metics and some picture-pages. Your input is greatly appreciated.

Basketball UFR: Wisconsin Defense

Basketball UFR: Wisconsin Defense

Submitted by Ace on January 12th, 2012 at 3:37 PM

Not entirely related, but this needs to be the intro (via MGoVideo):

DON'T LET ANYBODY COME IN YOUR HOUSE, PLAY HARDER THAN YOU PLAY, AND BEAT YOU. When Cazzie Russell says such things in "The House That Cazzie Built" (or is that now "The Center That Cazzie Built"?) you listen. Michigan listened.

The Wolverines narrowly defeated Northwestern at home last night in an ugly, ugly game, but on Sunday they put on perhaps their finest performance of the season in crushing Wisconsin, 59-41, to end a 10-game losing skid against the Badgers. I'm still not sure how often I can do these while still providing the proper amount of recruiting coverage, but I did UFR the game, and not only that, but this time I actually covered both offense and defense.

So, today is the debut of the basketball defensive UFR. It it likely fraught with errors and oversights, so as always I encourage the basketball coaches/junkies to please tell me what I'm doing wrong in the comments. The setup is much the same as the offensive UFR in that it tracks shot creation, but this time it's all about preventing good looks instead of creating them. Rebounding is mostly tracked in more traditional stats, so that is mostly ignored unless a player makes a particularly strong effort to haul in a rebound and prevent what would otherwise be an easy putback opportunity.

I made little effort to try and figure out what Wisconsin was trying to run on each offensive set, as doing so would've put the ETA on this post at sometime around the 32nd of Neverary. Instead, possessions are broken down as either half-court (HC) or fast break (FB). Defensive set is charted as usual, noting whether Michigan is in man, 1-3-1, or defending the fast break (the Wolverines did not break out any 2-3 this game, something they rarely do anyway). Without further ado, here's chart the first, broken into sections whenever Michigan makes a lineup change:

Lineup: Burke, Novak, Hardaway, Smotrycz, Morgan
Time Score Offense Defense Player Result
19:45 0-0 HC Man Morgan Turnover
After running the shot clock down to 10 seconds (this is Wisconsin, remember), point guard Jordan Taylor runs a high screen with center Jared Berggren. Burke (+0.5) and Morgan both hedge hard, forcing Taylor to pass off to Berggren in the corner. Berggren gives back to Taylor, who tries to hit Mike Bruesewitz under the basket, but Morgan has fallen back into the lane—at first he's not looking for the entry pass, but recovers in time to deflect the pass (+1.5), and Novak collects the loose ball, but...
19:07 0-0 FB FB Morgan Foul (0/2)
...Novak can't hold onto the ball cleanly, and it's stolen. Ryan Evans gets a pass with an open lane to the hoop, goes up for the dunk, and is fouled from behind by Morgan, preventing the basket (+0.5, dunk/layup, late contest, foul). Evans misses both free throws.
18:34 0-0 HC Man Smotrycz 2-pt Miss
Wisconsin dumps the ball into Berggren, guarded by Morgan, on the left block. Berggren fakes to the middle of the key and spins to the baseline, beating Morgan (-1), who can only put his hands up and force him further baseline. Smotrycz (+2) slides over from the other side of the key for a well-timed double-team, then gets a great contest when Berggren tries a Dream Shake—he can't connect on a short, but tricky, hook shot (2-pt, heavy contest, miss).
17:54 2-0 HC Man Morgan 2-pt Miss
Ryan Evans ends up with the ball on the right wing, and he's clearly looking to get the ball to Berggren on the block. Morgan (+1) does a great job of fronting him and denying any chance at an entry pass. Evans doesn't even try, instead doing a quick ball fake that creates some space against Smotrycz (-0.5). Evans misses a long two as Smotrycz recovers to get a late contest (2-pt, late contest, miss).
17:21 2-0 HC Man Burke 2-pt Miss
Fantastic defense from Burke here. Taylor spends the entire possession trying to post him up, but Burke holds strong, eventually forcing Taylor to receive the pass near the baseline 15 feet away from the basket. Taylor backs him down, but Burke forces Taylor to try a fadeaway from just inside the FT line and gets a hand right in his face—the shot doesn't even draw iron (Burke +2, 2-pt, heavy contest, miss).
16:26 4-0 HC Man Novak Turnover
Bruesewitz, whose name really sucks to have to spell out multiple times, gets matched up with Novak and posts him up. Novak (+1) does a great job forcing him away from the basket, and he catches the pass just a couple feet inside the 3-pt arc. Bruesewitz starts to back towards the basket, and Hardaway (+0.5) comes over for solid double-team. Bruesewitz travels trying to get a pass off.
Lineup: Burke, Douglass, Hardaway, Novak, Smotrycz
Time Score Offense Defense Player Result
15:52 4-0 HC 1-3-1 Smotrycz 2-pt Make
Michigan breaks out the 1-3-1 for the first time, and initially all Wisconsin can do is swing the ball around the perimeter. They flood the middle of the zone with two players, however, and Smotrycz (-1) strays too far from the middle. Bruesewitz finds Evans open with space in the middle of the lane, and he takes it over Novak—who has the backside and is caught between Evans in the key and Taylor up top—for a short runner (2-pt, late contest, make).
15:07 4-2 HC Man Burke 2-pt Miss
Great team defense here as Wisconsin simply can't find an opening. Eventually, Taylor gets a screen up top with 8 seconds on the clock, Burke fights past it as Hardaway (+0.5) also shows before falling back to his man. Taylor drives left and pulls up just inside the arc, missing the long two as Burke gets a hand right in his face (Burke +1.5, 2-pt, heavy contest, miss).
14:16 6-2 HC Man Douglass 2-pt Miss
Wisconsin again works the ball around the arc for about 20 seconds, then Josh Gasser drives into the lane against Hardaway (-0.5), who's initally beaten, but Novak (+1) steps up and stops the penetration. Douglass (-1), guarding Ben Brust at the top of the key, takes a peek into the lane, and Brust cuts behind him into the lane, drawing three defenders and passing off to an open Berggren. Smotrycz recovers to get a late contest, but Berggren should've hit the relatively open look from 12 feet (2-pt, late contest, miss).
13:27 8-2 HC Man Smotrycz 2-pt Miss
Taylor takes a pick on the elbow that draws both Burke and Novak. He dishes off to Rob Wilson in the corner as Hardaway (+0.5) rotates over nicely—Novak (+0.5) falls back and picks up Hardaway's man in the opposite corner. Wilson drops it off to Berggren on the block. He tries backing down Smotrycz (+2), can't get any closer, and bricks a baby hook with Smotrycz right in his face (2-pt, heavy contest, miss). Great on-ball defense from Smotrycz there, and M doing a fantastic job of showing on picks and not giving Taylor any room to maneuver.
Lineup: Burke, Douglass, Vogrich, Smotrycz, Morgan
Time Score Offense Defense Player Result
12:51 10-2 HC Man Morgan Layup Make
Lots of confusion here. Wisconsin runs a high pick and roll and Smotrycz hedges hard, as he's clearly been coached to do on Taylor in this game. Smotrycz (-1) then slides back into the post, but Morgan is already there. Morgan is now confused about who to guard and is way late getting out to Josh Gasser, who is all alone behind the arc. Wisconsin swings it to Gasser, who fakes baseline, gets Morgan to bite, and takes it strong to the hoop, finishing with the left before help can arrive (Morgan -1, dunk/layup, late contest, make). I could be wrong, but I think Smotrycz wasn't supposed to drop back into the post since he's now the 4, but Morgan also has to do a better job staying between his man and the basket.
Lineup: Burke, Douglass, Vogrich, Smotrycz, McLimans
Time Score Offense Defense Player Result
12:19 10-4 HC Man Smotrycz 3-pt Make
Wisconsin again runs the high P&R, but McLimans (+1) does a solid job of getting out on Taylor and then recovering to his man. Wisconsin ends up dumping it down to Ryan Evans, who's posting up McLimans on the right block. McLimans stymies Evans, who pivots around looking for somewhere to dump the ball to. Smotrycz (-2) comes over to double, but he's way late and has to scramble back out when Evans gives to his man, Gasser, who fakes the shot and easily gets the lane. The defense has to collapse down, and Gasser finds Bruesewitz in the corner for an open three (3-pt, late contest, make).
11:45 10-7 HC Man McLimans 3-pt Miss/OReb/Layup Miss/OReb/3-pt Make
Bruesewitz gets the ball on the block against McLimans (-1) in great position—McLimans lets him establish his spot way too deep in the lane. Vogrich collapses down to help and Douglass swings over to Vogrich's man, who gets the pass from Bruesewitz and swings it around the perimeter. Michigan is scrambling, Burke (-2) rotates down low to Evans, who McLimans has covered, and Taylor ends up with an open look from three, but he misses (3-pt, late contest, miss). Smotrycz (-1) doesn't block out Bruesewitz, who grabs the board, misses a very tough putback (dunk/layup, heavy contest, miss), gets his own rebound, and passes out to Ben Brust, who is all alone up top for a three (3-pt, no contest, make). Douglass gets a -1 for being the fifth(!) M defender in the lane on the second putback attempt, leaving the perimeter entirely unguarded.
11:00 10-10 FB FB Burke Layup Make
Nothing Burke can do here as Taylor is out in front after stealing a Smotrycz pass near halfcourt. Taylor breezes in for a layup, and Burke smartly doesn't try to contest—he's too far back to do anything but give up an and-1 (dunk/layup, no contest, make).
Lineup: Burke, Douglass, Vogrich, Novak, McLimans
Time Score Offense Defense Player Result
10:41 13-12 HC Man Novak Turnover
Let's follow Novak here. First he hedges nicely on a P&R up top, then drops back to Bruesewitz, his original man. Wisconsin swings it to Gasser on the elbow as Bruesewitz tries to establish post position on Novak, but Novak drives him nearly out to the 3-pt line. He bails on posting up, takes a handoff, and passes back out to the top of the key. Bruesewitz, with Novak still on him, ends up with the ball at the opposite elbow, gives to Taylor in the corner, then sets a pick with 8 seconds on the play clock. Novak (+3) hedges hard on Taylor as Burke fights through the screen, and Taylor's pass goes through Bruesewitz's hands and out of bounds. GRIT.
9:38 13-12 HC Man Burke 2-pt Make
Taylor runs another high P&R that Burke initially is caught up in, but McLimans (+1) does a great job of getting out on Taylor and forcing him into the corner, where Burke gets over to recover as McLimans settles back into the post. Wisconsin works it around the arc while putting Burke (+2) through a series of off-ball screens, which he does a great job of fighting through and staying with Taylor. Taylor ends up with the ball up top and the clock winding down, drives left with Burke right in his pocket, and hits a tough pull-up jumper with Burke's hand nearly on the ball (2-pt, heavy contest, make). Unless he's two inches taller, there's no way Burke can play this any better.
8:43 13-14 FB FB Burke 3-pt Miss
Burke (-1) is way late getting back after missing an ill-advised layup attempt on the other end. Taylor takes advantage of having an extra man by driving hard into the middle at McLimans, which draws Vogrich and also, unnecessarily, Douglass (-1), who leaves Gasser open for three. He misses (3-pt, late contest, miss). Novak (+0.5), being Novak, gets a good blockout and then dives for the loose rebound, but he's tied up on the floor and Wisconsin maintains possession.
Lineup: Brundidge, Douglass, Hardaway, Novak, Smotrycz
Time Score Offense Defense Player Result
8:30 13-14 HC Man Brundidge 2-pt Miss
Brundidge with an early cameo, and he acquits himself well, fighting through several off-ball screens and sticking right with his man. Evans ends up taking on Hardaway one-on-one, and Hardaway trips over Evans's foot (no minus for that unlucky break). Evans can't hit the now-wide-open long two (2-pt, no contest, miss), and Brundidge (+1.5) hauls down a really tough board between three guys. One point for the rebound and a half-point for strong off-ball defense.
7:52 13-14 HC Man Douglass 2-pt Miss
Evans posts up Douglass on the left block and backs him into the middle of the lane, but Douglass (+1) doesn't give up any ground to the bigger player. Evans tries to put up a turnaround jumper anyway, and it rims out (2-pt, heavy contest, miss).
7:09 13-14 HC Man Novak 2-pt Miss
Taylor pushes the pace (no, seriously) after a Michigan miss and attempts to drive on Douglass, but Stu (+1) stays right in front of him and Taylor has to back out. Taylor passes to Berggren on the block, who tries to back down Novak (+1), but Novak holds strong and Berggren misses a contested turnaround fadeaway (2-pt, heavy contest, miss). Smotrycz (+0.5) gets up for a tough rebound in a crowd.
6:44 16-14 HC Man Brundidge Foul
Brundidge (-0.5) gets called for a reach-in foul, and we go to a timeout.
Lineup: Burke, Akunne, Hardaway, Novak, Smotrycz
Time Score Offense Defense Player Result
6:30 16-14 HC Man Novak Turnover
Evans gets the ball on the block and is closely guarded by Novak. Brust cuts to his side of the court, losing Smotrycz (-1), gets the ball, and drives to the paint, where it looks like he has space as Smotrycz overcommits at the arc. Novak (+1) smartly steps up and cuts off the drive, however, and Brust tosses a pass out of bounds. Nice play by Novak, but Akunne (-1) left Gasser wide open 10 feet from the basket—if the pass is on target, this is probably an easy bucket.
5:56 19-14 HC Man Smotrycz 3-pt Miss/OReb/2-pt Make
Wisconsin sets a double screen for Taylor at the top of the key, and though Burke (+0.5) stays right with Taylor, Smotrycz (-2.5) drops back into the lane despite the fact that his man, Berggren, has popped out to the 3-pt line. Akunne (+0.5) hauls ass to close out but can't get there to really contest, but Berggren misses (3-pt, late contest, miss). Smotrycz can't even haul in the rebound as Gasser beats him to the spot. Wisconsin resets, Gasser cuts to the top of the key and loses Akunne (-1), then drives to the free throw line and hits a runner (2-pt, late contest, make).
5:04 19-16 HC Man Burke 2-pt Miss/OReb/Turnover
Wisconsin again sets that double screen for Taylor, and this time he drives, but Burke (+1) stays right with him and forces a tough pullup J as Smotrycz (+1) also comes over to contest (2-pt, heavy contest, miss). Berggren brings in the rebound after it bounces out of the lane. Berggren eventually gets it in the post, where Smotrycz has him covered, then he throws it out of bounds when Taylor zigs and he expects a zag.
4:29 21-16 HC Man Burke Foul
Wisconsin works it over to Rob Wilson, who tries to back down Novak (+1) into the lane but can't make any progress. Wilson tries to slip a pass to a cutting Taylor but Burke (+2) is right there and pokes the ball away. Hardaway dives for the loose ball and is called for a questionable foul when he collides with Taylor, who was also diving for it. Let them play, IMO. TV timeout.
Lineup: Burke, Douglass, Hardaway, Novak, Smotrycz
Time Score Offense Defense Player Result
3:53 21-16 HC Man Smotrycz 2-pt Miss
Taylor drives to the baseline and has a half-step on Burke (-0.5), but Novak (+1) is there to cut off the drive. Evans, Novak's man, pops out towards the arc and gets the pass from Taylor, but Smotrycz (+1) slides over to contest, and he misses a long two (2-pt, heavy contest, miss).
3:08 23-16 HC Man Burke 3-pt Block
Taylor ends up with the ball on the wing, tries to drive into the lane, and is stymied by Burke, forcing Taylor to pass back out top as the shot clock approaches 10. Taylor gets the ball right back and tries to get up a quick three over Burke (+2), but Burke blocks it (not credited in the box score, but Taylor doesn't airball by 3 feet if it isn't) (3-pt, heavy contest, miss). Ball to Michigan, which draws some legitimate protests from the Badgers.
2:26 23-16 HC Man Smotrycz 2-pt Make + Foul (1/1)
After Smotrycz and Burke (+0.5) stymie a high P&R for Taylor, Berggren ends up posting up Smotrycz on the left side of the lane. Smotrycz (-1) lets him get into the middle of the lane just outside the charge circle, and Berggren makes a righty baby hook as Smot fouls him on the other arm (2-pt, heavy contest, make + foul). Novak (-0.5) is late coming over to help, btw.
Lineup: Burke, Douglass, Hardaway, Novak, McLimans
Time Score Offense Defense Player Result
1:49 25-19 HC Man Burke 2-pt Miss
Wisconsin can't do anything on this possession, thanks to great off-ball D by McLimans (+1) and Douglass (+0.5), who both fight off screens and blow up whatever play the Badgers planned on running. Taylor has to create himself with 10 seconds left on the clock. He gets a screen from Berggren and both Burke and McLimans hedge hard again. Burke (+1.5) stays right with Taylor and McLimans falls back, Taylor drives to the free-throw line and has to settle for a tough pull-up with Burke's hand in his face (2-pt, heavy contest, miss).
0:50 25-19 HC Man Novak 2-pt Miss
Taylor and Berggren run that high P&R, and with McLimans (+0.5) hedging on Taylor and stopping the drive as he's supposed to, Novak has to fall back off his man Evans briefly to stop any potential pass into the lane. Douglass (-0.5) rotates over onto Evans but drops back to his man, who's positioned himself for an open corner three, just as Taylor gives to Evans all alone up top. McLimans has recovered to his man, but Novak (-1) is way late getting back out on Evans, who luckily bricks the open two (2-pt, late contest, miss). This could be more on Douglass. Basketball people, let me know in the comments. Also, Burke (+0.5) impressively comes flying in for the rebound after it's tipped off the backboard by a sea of hands.
Lineup: Burke, Novak, Hardaway, Smotrycz, Morgan
Time Score Offense Defense Player Result
19:45 25-19 HC Man Novak 2-pt Miss
This play looks to be designed to get Evans the ball in the post, but Novak (+1) does a great job of fronting and denying the ball. Taylor instead gives to Gasser, who gets separation from Smotrycz (-0.5) with a simple ball-fake and move to the baseline. Smotrycz recovers to get a late contest of the long two, which misses (2-pt, late contest, miss). Smot is not quick, and this play really exposes his slow feet even though no points come as a result.
18:48 28-19 HC Man Hardaway 2-pt Miss
Nice job by Hardaway here. Evans gets the ball in the post against Smotrycz, and Hardaway comes over to double on the baseline, then gets all the way back up top by the time Wisconsin can swing it around to Gasser, his original man. Gasser tries to drive left, but Hardaway doesn't charge out too hard and is able to stay with him step-for-step, forcing Gasser to pivot and try a fadeaway that Hardaway contests (2-pt, heavy contest, miss). To top it off, Hardaway (+2.5) then jumps over everyone to pull down the rebound.
18:20 28-19 HC Man Burke 2-pt Miss
Taylor gives it up initially, goes through a screen in the middle of the lane that Burke fights through, and ends up getting the ball in the left corner as Wisconsin clears out for him. Taylor doesn't attempt to drive and instead just shoots a long two, and Burke (+1) has his hand right there to contest (2-pt, heavy contest, miss). Not a great shot from Taylor, but Burke has been all over him all game. Unfortunately, Morgan (-1) grabs the rebound but doesn't keep the ball high and has it slapped off his leg and out of bounds.
17:58 28-19 HC Man Smotrycz 2-pt Miss
Evans tries to post up Smotrycz, but Smotrycz (+1.5) pushes him out near the perimeter and slaps the entry pass out of bounds. After the inbounds, Hardaway (+1) does a great job denying on a designed backdoor cut, Wisconsin is forced to reset, and Smotrycz stays right with Evans as he drives, pulls up, and misses from the FT line (2-pt, heavy contest, miss). This time Morgan securely hauls in the rebound.
17:12 28-19 HC Man Burke 3-pt Miss/Foul
Taylor gets a pick up top and is hounded by both Burke (+1) and Morgan (+1), drives to the baseline and has to stop there and pick up his dribble. Taylor passes inside to Berggren, where Morgan has recovered to pick him up, and Berggren gives back out to Taylor, who jacks up a contested three (3-pt, heavy contest, miss). Novak (-1) loses Evans under the basket and doesn't box out, then Smotrycz (-0.5) picks up a foul pushing Evans in the back to prevent an offensive rebound. Smotrycz was put in a very tough position, but that's also his critical third foul early in the second half. Now he has to come out.
Lineup: Burke, Douglass, Hardaway, Novak, Morgan
Time Score Offense Defense Player Result
16:50 28-19 HC Man Hardaway 3-pt Miss
Taylor curl-cuts off a screen on the left elbow, but Burke (+1.5) hangs right with him while going over the top of the pick. Wilson passes to Taylor, and Hardaway, who's guarding Wilson at the top of the key, cheats in to try to steal and then collapses down on Taylor. With Burke in good position, I don't think this is the right move, as Burke has the drive covered and Hardaway (-2) leaves Wilson wide open. Taylor kicks it out and Wilson bricks the uncontested three (3-pt, no contest, miss). Again, great D by Burke, but THJ gets a little greedy.
16:33 30-19 HC Man Novak 3-pt Miss/OReb/Turnover
Michigan initially stymies the Wisconsin offense, forcing Taylor to desperately drive with the clock under 10. As he gets near the lane, Burke (+1) completely cuts him off with help from Novak (+0.5), but Morgan (-1.5) is also looking in and loses track of Evans, his man. Douglass (+0.5) has to switch and guard Evans, who's cutting to the basket, and this leaves Brust wide open for three. Brust has nobody near him when he gets the pass from Taylor, but his shot comes up short and draws front iron (3-pt, no contest, miss). Evans pulls in the rebound over Morgan and gets it back out top. Wisconsin eventually gets it in to Berggren in the post, and Novak (+2) sneaks over and rips the ball away from him.
15:35 32-19 HC Man Douglass 3-pt Make
Douglass (+1) fights through multiple off-ball screens, seamlessly executes a switch with Novak (+0.5), and gets out to cover Evans on a skip pass, forcing Wisconsin to reset. Taylor comes off a pick and passes to Bruesewitz, who hits a three with Hardaway (+0.5) right in his face (3-pt, heavy contest, make).
14:36 32-22 HC Man Novak 2-pt Miss
Novak pulls a seamless switch with Douglass (+0.5) on an off-ball screen, ending up on Traevon Jackson on the wing. Jackson drives baseline and tries to get a shot over Novak, but Novak slaps the ball away on the way up (not credited as a block in the box score, so no shot chart, but Jackson was clearly trying to shoot). The ball goes off the side of the backboard and back to Jackson, who goes back up with it and can't bank in a tough 10-footer over Novak (+2, 2-pt, heavy contest, miss).
13:44 32-22 HC Man Hardaway 2-pt Miss/OReb/Foul (1/2)
Taylor runs a high P&R, Burke (+0.5) and Morgan hedge well again, and Taylor is forced to throw a skip pass to Wilson in the opposite corner. Hardaway (+1), who had come down into the paint to help out on Morgan's man, gets back out and almost gets a hand on the ball as Wilson chucks a long two at the end of the shot clock. It misses (2-pt, heavy contest, miss). Wisconsin's Kaminsky grabs the board as he gets position on Morgan (-0.5, getting a half-point credit for his D on the P&R). Wilson ends up with the ball on the wing, drives against Novak, and picks up a really ticky-tack foul as he shoots while flying out of bounds (2-pt, late contest, foul).
Lineup: Burke, Douglass, Hardaway, Novak, McLimans
Time Score Offense Defense Player Result
12:44 34-23 HC Man Douglass 2-pt Miss/OReb/Turnover
Wilson gets the ball up top as Wisconsin can't do anything with the first 20 seconds of the shot clock. He hesitates, then drives, getting a half-step on Douglass, but Stu recovers and with help from Novak (+0.5) contests Wilson's runner (2-pt, heavy contest, miss). Hardaway (-1) forgets to block out, Bruesewitz grabs the rebound, and Douglass (+2.5) bails him out by stealing the ball clean as Bruesewitz comes down with it.
12:10 36-23 HC Man   3-pt Make
Jackson has the ball up top and gives to Bruesewitz, who drives by McLimans (-1) into the paint as Jackson sets a screen on Hardaway, who switches with Douglass, on the opposite side of the court. Douglass (-1) is caught in no-man's land because of the penetration, but doesn't make a move to Bruesewitz or back outside to Jackson. He pays for his indecision as Jackson gets the ball and drains a three right over him (3-pt, late contest, make).
Lineup: Burke, Douglass, Hardaway, Novak, Morgan
Time Score Offense Defense Player Result
11:23 38-26 HC Man Douglass Turnover
Jackson gets the ball on the wing and looks to dump it into Bruesewitz in the post, but Novak (+0.5) fronts well and denies. Jackson then drives to the middle against Hardaway (-0.5) and gets a step, but Douglass (+1) rotates over quickly. Jackson panics when he sees Douglass and zips a hurried pass into the Wisconsin bench. Bo Ryan is not amused.
10:47 40-26 HC Man Douglass 3-pt Miss/OReb/Turnover
Berggren posts up Morgan near the baseline, about five feet outside the lane, and Wisconsin clears out for him. Berggren backs down to the edge of the paint, where Novak (+0.5) comes over to cut him off, but Hardaway (-1) cheats down and loses Bruesewitz, who's all alone for three up top. He misses (3-pt, late contest, miss), but Berggren gets the board over Douglass after Morgan (-1) doesn't block him out. HOWEVA, Douglass (+2) bats the ball away from Berggren and Burke collects the loose ball, starting a break the other way.
Lineup: Burke, Douglass, Hardaway, Smotrycz, Morgan
Time Score Offense Defense Player Result
10:15 43-26 HC Man Burke 3-pt Make
Taylor gets the ball up top and unexpectedly pulls up for three, hitting it just over Burke, who contested well (Burke +0.5, 3-pt, heavy contest, make). Nothing you can do about that.
8:36 43-29 HC Man Morgan Layup Make
Bruesewitz has the ball up top while Taylor sets a screen of sorts (he more just gets in the way) on Morgan away from the ball. Morgan (-1) is very slow to recognize this and has to switch with Burke, who's now stuck on the much-bigger Evans. Evans sees this and goes right at Burke (-1), who flails at the ball instead of getting between Evans and the basket, and Evans hit a layup before help can arrive (dunk/layup, late contest, make).
Lineup: Burke, Douglass, Hardaway, Novak, Smotrycz
Time Score Offense Defense Player Result
7:40 45-31 HC Man Burke 2-pt Make
Michigan does a great job sticking with their men and not giving any openings, especially Burke (+0.5) on Brust, who went through a couple off-ball screens. Wisconsin has to run the clock down to 12, not ideal in this situation, when Evans gets the ball on the wing and puts up an 18-footer over Smotrycz. He hits it (2-pt, heavy contest, make), but Michigan will absolutely take that possession in this situation.
6:44 47-33 HC Man Douglass Turnover
When people say Stu Douglass is M's best perimeter defender, this is what they're talking about. He starts man-up on Taylor up top, comes over a screen, the smartly rotates over to Bruesewitz as Novak picks up Taylor. Bruesewitz gets the pass as Douglass is running over and tries to cut back the opposite way, but Douglass (+3) knocks the ball away with his left hand. Douglass and Bruesewitz dive for it, so of course Zack Novak (+1) also hits the floor and grabs the loose ball. He'll get more points for this on the offensive UFR, as he then flips the ball to Burke for a breakaway layup.
6:07 49-33 HC Man - 2-pt Make
Taylor gets the ball off a sideline inbounds after a bizarre review of the previous play. Wisco is now in desperation mode, so Taylor just runs up the court, pulls up at the FT line, and buries a jumper over Douglass (2-pt, heavy contest, make). That's just a great shot.
5:35 49-35 HC Man Morgan 3-pt Miss
Taylor dribbles upcourt and launches a three from well beyond the arc as soon as he gets up the floor, missing all but the backboard (3-pt, no contest, miss). Morgan (+1) boxes out Evans perfectly to grab a tough rebound.
4:53 51-35 HC Man Douglass Turnover
Douglass (+2) picks Taylor's pocket as he comes across halfcourt, then is fouled by Taylor as he tries to reel the ball in. It's a parade to the free-throw line for Michigan from here on out, so charting ceases.

Well, that was fairly dominant.

Indeed it was. Wisconsin couldn't get anything going, mostly thanks to fantastic perimeter defense from Michigan, especially against Jordan Taylor and the high pick-and-roll. The Badgers tried to free up Taylor on most of their plays, and he just never found any space. Take a bow, Trey Burke.

You might want to mention Novak and Douglass as well.

I might go into a GRIT-spasm in doing so, but sure thing. Novak is so incredibly sound on defense that I think his contributions on that end might actually be underrated. He's remarkably good at denying the ball against the post-up despite being all of 6'4". He doesn't get lost on switches, sticks to his man like glue off the ball, and is strong on the ball, as well. He is all of the grit, and that's why we love him.

As for Douglass, he's not the quickest guy out there, but like Novak he's usually in the right spot. He looked just fine when he ended up on Jordan Taylor, and was just as effective when playing against bigger guards. Then he comes up with five steals, and those aren't by accident—he knows just the right time to reach in and poke the ball out, and often does so when he sneaks up for a quick double that the ballhandler doesn't see coming. He picks his spots well. When you wonder why coaches love having seniors on the squad, it's not just because they provide leadership—the on-court benefits of experience are very apparent when watching Novak and Douglass play.

What about the bigs?

The scores for the big men aren't nearly as high as the guards, but I didn't think they were bad, at least not Morgan. Morgan had to hedge hard on a lot of high screens, and he did a very good job with it, as evidenced by Taylor's lack of production and inability to get off a decent pass despite Michigan constantly bringing two players out on him after picks. He did get out of position at times in the post, but for the most part I thought he was solid. The lack of a ton of positive points, I think, comes from him not making a lot of big plays (read: blocks) and me not factoring rebounding in heavily.

Smotrycz, well, is a work-in-progress. He looks lost out there more than any other player, and he's not athletic enough to make up for being out of position. The fouling is also a big issue—he goes for the ball a lot, but doesn't pick his spots well like Douglass, so he gets hit with a lot of reach-ins and the like when they're entirely unnecessary. When he's defending the ball in the post, however, he's actually pretty decent. That extra size he added this year is beneficial.

Enough talk. Let's go to the...

Chart?

Chart.

Defensive Shot Prevention
Player + - T Notes
Burke 20 4.5 15.5 Did a fantastic job on Taylor, holding him to a stat line of 12 points on 5-15 shooting and just one assist to three turnovers. His quickness makes up for a lot of his freshman mistakes on the defensive end, and he's surprisingly strong for his size, though he's still caught out of position at times.
Hardaway 6.5 5 1.5 Not an outstanding game from Hardaway defensively. Guards can take advantage of his lack of a quick first step, and THJ often gets burned when he tries to make a big play on defense instead of staying positionally sound.
Novak 18.5 2.5 16 Almost never in the wrong place, and at this point in his career he's entirely comfortable playing against bigger guys in the post. Simply GRIT-tastic.
Smotrycz 8 11 -3 To be blunt, Smotrycz's lack of athleticism really hurts him on this end of the floor, and it doesn't help that he seems to get confused fairly often about where he's supposed to be. I was actually impressed by his ability to hold up in the post, but his off-ball defense needs work.
Morgan 5 7 -2 I didn't really think Morgan had a bad game, but Wisconsin mostly stayed away from posting him up, instead choosing to go at Novak and Smotrycz. Spent most of his day hedging on picks, which he did pretty well.
Douglass 15 4.5 10.5 I see Douglass catching a lot of flak, but the talk of him being a very good perimeter defender isn't BS. Like Novak, he's rarely out of position, and he's learned to use his length to stay in front of quicker guards. Also has quick hands and knows when to go for the steal, and, just as importantly, when not to.
Horford - - - DNP (foot)
Akunne .5 2 -1.5 Is Eso Akunne.
Christian - - - Got in for one minute after charting ceased.
Vogrich - - - Played very little during the meat of the game and didn't have a major impact either way.
McLimans 3.5 2 1.5 Not too shabby for being the third-string center. Did quite well defending the pick-and-roll, but still isn't strong enough to hold up well in the post.
Team - - - The team metric has been eliminated, since it was pretty much a cop-out for when I couldn't figure out where to give individual credit. This will be gone next time.
TOTAL 77 38.5 38.5 The exact 2:1 ratio was not intentional, but pretty cool, right? A strong positive number makes sense given that Michigan held the Badgers to just .76 points per possession and a 38.2 eFg% while forcing turnovers on 22.2% of their possessions.

As you can see, the big standouts were Burke, Novak, and Douglass. Novak's tiny negative total came on a handful of -0.5s, while Douglass was a little more prone to making bigger mistakes that lead to baskets (same deal for Burke). Smotrycz obviously needs to improve on the defensive end, but it's really hard to criticize much about the defense after you look at the...

SHOT CHART!

Jeez, I hear you, self. Shot chart.

  Dunk/Layup 2-point 3-point Total
Defense NC LC HC NC LC HC NC LC HC NC LC HC OVR
Man - 2/2 0/1 0/1 1/5 (1F) 4/19 (1F) 1/4 2/5 2/4 1/5 5/12 (1F) 6/24 (1F) 12/41 (2F)
1-3-1 - - - - 1/1 - - - - - 1/1 - 1/1
2-3 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Fast Break 1/1 (1F) - - - - - 0/1 - 1/1 0/1 (1F)   1/2 (1F)
TOTAL 1/1 2/2 (1F) 0/1 0/1 2/6 (1F) 4/19 (1F) 1/4 2/6 2/4 2/6 6/14 (2F) 6/24 (1F) 14/44 (3F)

More like SHOT CHART OF DOOM.

Seriously, this is ridiculous. Well over half of Wisconsin's shots were heavily contested, and most of those came inside the arc but not close enough for a layup. The Badgers shot just four layups—plus a foul—all game (at least out of what was charted, which was the whole part that actually mattered). Yes, Wisconsin plays a brutally slow pace, but they still managed to chuck up 19 heavily contested two-pointers. I just... wow. I really didn't fudge this. That's just a fantastic defensive performance. The official box score shows Wisconsin—who shot a lot after charting stopped—finishing 16-51 from the field, a paltry 31.4%. They attempted all of five three throws. There was just nothing open.

NOTHING, I TELL YOU!

Nothing. Let's post some videos.

Finally.

Trey Burke, yo:

Wisconsin tried everything with Jordan Taylor, and that included posting him up early against the smaller Burke. As you can see, that didn't work so well. Burke held up and Taylor couldn't get good position, then when Taylor finally got the ball, Burke was all up in his grill. If Burke was two inches taller, I think he ends up with three or four blocks.

Then there was Novak. Watch him through the entirety of this play, and you'll begin to understand what he brings to the defense:

That's tireless work against a much bigger player, fighting through screens and keeping up the pressure all while having an acute awareness of where he is relative to the ball. With the shot clock winding down, he executes a hard hedge on Taylor perfectly, and the other senior, Douglass, is in great position with his rotation in case the pass doesn't go out of bounds.

Just show that really awesome play already.

Really awesome play:

It speaks volumes that I'm a big fan Uncle Verne Lundquist despite the fact that he contributes to CBS's shameless shilling of the SEC (go away, Gary Danielson), and it's because he loses his mind at just the right moments. That was one of them. Also, check out Douglass's effort throughout the play. Just fantastic.

Heroes?

Burke, Novak, and Douglass, in case you just skipped to the very end and haven't read a word I wrote above.

Goats?

Smotrycz? I guess? When your team chokes the life out of Wisconsin and six players get the vast majority of the minutes, there really are no goats.

Basketball UFR: Oakland

Basketball UFR: Oakland

Submitted by Ace on December 16th, 2011 at 4:26 PM

This is edition the second of my wildly experimental basketball UFRs, and I've already gone and made major changes to the methodology. Gone is grading each possession by splitting up just one measly point. Now there's no set point total for a single possession, and instead I hand out anywhere between -3 and 3 points per player, still based on shot creation. The shot chart remains unchanged, and now there's a defensive shot chart—broken down by type of defense—as well. Still no defensive charting by player/possession because good lord I need to eat and sleep on occasion.

For those who missed it, here's my (now-altered) explanation of the charting from the Memphis UFR:

The play-by-play breakdown is relatively simple—it's broken up by possession ... I tell you the offensive set and defense (either man or type of zone, plus whether or not they pressed). FB == fast break. OOB == set from an inbounds play. I am not a basketball coach, and the last time I played competitively was in middle school, so corrections on terminology and the like would be much appreciated. Points do not coincide with made or missed baskets, but instead are awarded on the basis of creating shot opportunities—for instance, a pick to free a man, a cut to get open, or a nice pass may merit half-points, and creating a bucket on an isolation will earn a full [more] point[s].

Shots are charted separately, and are broken down into three categories: dunk/layup, two-point shots, and three-point shots. They are further categorized by the level of contest from the defense—either no contest, late contest, or heavy contest—which, according to a tidbit from a BTN announcer, passed on to me by Brian, is how John Beilein charts shots.

For explanations of the offensive sets, click over to the Memphis post. I'm still deciding whether or not to put in unit +/- stats—those may come later in the season, as I start getting more used to churning these out on a regular basis. I do include substitution notes, so if some enterprising user has the will, it is possible to figure those out from the chart.

This is still very much a work-in-progress, and I'll be reading up on the Beilein offense over Christmas so that there should be more detail beyond the initial offensive set (which is almost always a 2-1-2) about what play was run. Right now, it's moving too quickly for me to figure it out based upon my current knowledge. So as always please leave suggestions in the comments and I'll look to incorporate them. Even if I'm not implementing suggestions from the Memphis UFR doesn't mean I've ignored them—it might just mean that I didn't have the chance to use them this time around, but I'm always looking back on old comments for reference.

With that, let's move on to BurkeFest 2011:

Time Score Off Set Defense Player Result
19:38 0-0 2-1-2 Man Burke Layup Make
After 15 seconds of setting up the offense, Morgan (+1) gets the ball on the right block, dribbles out of a double team, and makes a nice skip pass to Smotrycz. Smotrycz takes a couple hard dribbles towards the lane, drawing two defenders, then passes it out to Burke and immediately sets a screen (+1), which forces a switch. Burke crosses over the defender, blows right by him, and finishes with a layup (+2, dunk/layup, no contest, make).
19:07 2-2 2-1-2 Man Hardaway 2-pt Miss
Burke and Morgan run a pick and roll at the top of the key, but Oakland hedges hard on Burke and he has no space to get off a pass. Instead, Burke re-sets and hits Hardaway on the wing. Hardaway drives baseline, pulls up, and tried a contested 15-footer, which he airballs (-1, 2-pt, heavy contest, miss).
18:37 2-2 2-1-2 Man Morgan OReb/2-pt Miss
Burke and Hardaway pass it back and forth for a while before Hardaway drives around a Morgan screen, getting around his man and drawing the defender from the weak side (+1). This leaves Smotrycz wide open in the corner, and Hardaway gives it to him, but the open three misses (3-pt, no contest, miss). Morgan comes down with the offensive rebound, takes a strong dribble into the middle of the paint, and puts up a baby hook that catches the back iron and bounces out (+2, 2-pt, heavy contest, miss).
17:34 2-2 4-1 High Man Novak 3-pt Make
Novak gets the ball on the wing, fakes a shot from three, then drives just inside the FT line. He puts his body into his man and looks as if he's going to try to shoot, drawing the defense in from the perimeter (+2), before kicking out to an open Smotrycz, who buries a three (3-pt, no contest, make).
17:02 5-2 FB FB Burke TO
Michigan pushes the pace after an Oakland miss. Burke gets the ball and tries to drive between three guys, then jumps into the lane without a clear idea of where he's going with it. He loses control of the ball and Oakland grabs it (-2 Burke, unforced TO).
16:49 5-4 2-1-2 Man Smotrycz TO
Smotrycz gets it at the top of the key and drives to the left elbow before picking up his dribble, allowing his man to get right up in his business. Hardaway (+1) cuts along the baseline to give him an option, but Smotrycz's pass is knocked away and stolen (-2 Smotrycz, forced TO). Nice cut by Hardaway, and the pass nearly worked and would've led to a layup, but Smot needs to keep his dribble alive so he's not forced into such a tough play.
15:37 5-4 2-1-2 Man Novak 2-pt Make
Novak sets a pick for Hardaway in the lane, then pops out to the key, where he's freed up by a pick for Morgan. Smotrycz, who gets the ball on the right elbow as this is happening, passes to Novak at the top of the key. Novak goes back around Morgan (+1), who picks off his man, and jumps off two feet at the left corner of the free throw line, hitting a nice pullup jumper (+2, 2-pt, late contest, make).
14:58 7-4 FB FB Novak 3-pt Make
Novak runs out on the break after an Oakland miss, dribbling up the middle then going hard for the left corner. Novak (+2) draws three defenders as he does this, then kicks out to a wide-open Hardaway—trailing Novak on the play and finding open space—for three (+1, 3-pt, no contest, make).
14:22 10-4 FB FB Smotrycz 3-pt Miss
After another Oakland miss, it's Smotrycz pushing the pace this time, recognizing that Oakland isn't in good position to get back (+1). He makes a nice pass to Novak on the wing; Novak (+1) immediately hits a trailing Hardaway, who's got no one around him at the three-point line. Unfortunately, he can't knock this one down (3-pt, no contest, miss).
13:58 10-4 2-1-2 Man Smotrycz Layup Make
Burke starts the offense by passing to Morgan at the top of the key; he turns and gives to Smotrycz on the right wing, and Smotrycz dribbles back towards Morgan before dishing it to Hardaway, who's just a few feet to his left. Smotrycz then fakes a screen for Hardaway before doubling back behind Morgan (+1), who frees up Smotrycz with a pick of his own. Smot is all alone on the backdoor cut, takes a nice feed from Hardaway (+1), and hits the easy layup as his defender can't recover (+2, dunk/layup, late contest, make).
13:20 12-4 1-1-1-2 Man Burke 3-pt Make
Beautiful ball movement here as Novak leads the charge off a rebound, driving down the right side before handing off to Burke, who's running back towards the top of the key. Burke (+2) goes around a double pick from Morgan and Smotrycz, draws in the D, then passes over three converging defenders to an open Novak in the corner. One defender scrambles out to Novak, so he makes the extra pass (+1) to Smotrycz, who buries an open three (3-pt, no contest, make).
12:39 15-7 2-1-2 Man Burke 3-pt Miss
Horford in for Morgan. Hardaway gets the ball on the left elbow and makes a solid skip pass to Burke in the right corner. Burke is well-guarded, but decides to go up for the shot anyway (-1, 3-pt, heavy contest, miss). Not the worst shot in the world, but there were still 23 seconds on the shot clock—I'd rather see Burke pull that one back out.
12:11 15-7 2-1-2 Man Burke 3-pt Make
Vogrich in for Hardaway. Michigan cycles the ball around the perimeter for a while until Horford (+1) comes out to run a pick and roll with Burke on the right elbow. Burke gets around the pick but drives into two defenders with a third recovering. Burke (+1) turns and passes to an unguarded Novak in the corner. Money (3-pt, no contest, make).
11:37 18-9 2-1-2/OOB Man Novak 3-pt Miss
Horford (+1) runs a high screen and roll with Burke (+1) that gets Horford open under the basket, where he draws a foul. Douglass in for Burke. After passing ball around after the inbounds, Smotrycz (-1) drives from the corner and dishes in traffic to Horford, but the pass is low and Horford is well-covered—held ball, possession arrow for Michigan. Horford gets the next inbounds out past the three-point line, hands it off to Novak, who misses a three as the shot clock winds down (Team -1, 3-pt, late contest, miss). Ugly possession after the initial foul.
10:32 18-9 2-1-2/OOB Man Vogrich 2-pt Miss
Michigan clears out for Smotrycz on the block, but he's fouled on the floor. Burke in for Novak. Michigan lines up in their normal OOB set, with their two bigs (Smot and Horford) in line with the inbounder (Burke) while the two wings form a box on the opposite side of the lane. The two bigs set a double screen; Douglass is the first man through and he splits between the picks and heads for the basket, while Vogrich trails and goes around both picks for the corner. Burke gives to Vogrich, who gets a good look from about 18 feet but can't connect (Team +1, 2-pt, late contest, miss).
10:00 18-9 2-1-2 Man Horford 2-pt Miss
Smotrycz dumps it in to Horford on the block, and Horford decides to take a couple power dribbles as the rest of the team clears out. He gets to the middle of the lane but can't finish a lefty baby hook with a hand in his face (2-pt, heavy contest, miss). Good positioning by Horford, but this isn't really in his arsenal—those cancel out, so no plus or minus on this play.
9:38 18-9 FB FB Burke Layup Make
After Laval Lucas-Perry misses a layup for Oakland, Burke runs out on the break. Michigan has a three on two with Burke in the middle, Douglass fading out to the 3-pt line on the left, and Smotrycz charging to the basket on the right—great spacing by all three guys here. Burke (+3) pulls up at the FT line, drawing one defender while looking off the other, who heads out for Douglass (+1), jumps as if he's going to shoot, then perfectly hits Smotrycz with a no-look pass for a layup (+1, dunk/layup, no contest, make).
9:23 20-11 2-1-2 Man Burke 3-pt Make
Novak in for Smotrycz. Burke gets the ball on the left elbow and dribbles to the middle around a Horford (+1) screen. Burke's man goes under the pick, so he crosses back over, squares up, and drills a three (+2, 3-pt, no contest, make).
8:54 23-11 3-2 Man Burke 3-pt Miss
Douglass takes it up the court after an Oakland miss, and Michigan sets up briefly with two men (Horford and Vogrich) playing down low and three out on the perimeter—not sure if this is by design or a product of a quickly-run possession. Douglass dribbles into the lane and flips it underhand to Burke, who's open but a couple feet outside the NBA 3-pt line. He shoots anyway and misses (-1, 3-pt, late contest, miss).
8:26 23-11 2-1-2 Man Hardaway TO
Hardaway in for Vogrich. Hardaway runs a pick and roll with Horford on the left side, and Hardaway tries to drive right, is cut off, and throws a pass three rows into the seats (-3, unforced TO). He had Horford open on the roll but didn't see him. The pass is so poor it's unclear if the intended recipient was Douglass or Burke.
7:59 23-11 - - Douglass FT (2/2)
Douglass is fouled trying to corral a defensive rebound, and M is in the bonus. He nails both. Hooray for free points.
7:39 25-11 2-1-2 Man Novak TO
Morgan in for Horford. Novak gets the ball in the right corner and drives to his left, getting into the lane and forcing Morgan's man to switch out on him. Novak makes the right decision and tries to slip a pass under the basket to Morgan, who's now being defended by a shooting guard, but the pass is well wide and goes OOB (Novak -1, unforced TO).
7:11 25-13 2-1-2 Man Hardaway TO
Hardaway gets the ball right off the bat on the left wing, tries to drive baseline, and is stymied by two defenders. He leaves his feet and tries to pass to Novak in the opposite corner, but with two hands in his face this is difficult and the pass short-hops in front of Novak, who can't bring it in before it bounces OOB. Hardaway -2, unforced TO.
6:32 25-15 2-1-2 Man FC Press Morgan Layup Make
Burke breaks a one-man press and gets to the top of key as Morgan sets an off-ball screen for Hardaway. Oakland switches on the screen and Hardaway's man is late to recover on Morga, who is already cutting to the basket. Burke swings it to Novak (+1) who immediately hits Morgan under the basket for a layup (+2, dunk/layup, late contest, make).
5:39 27-15 FB FB Burke Layup Miss
Hardaway brings it up quickly after an Oakland miss and dishes to Burke on the left wing. Burke (+2) blows right by his man and draws the defender guarding Morgan, so he stops on a dime in the paint and slips it to Morgan for what should be an easy layup. Morgan biffs it (dunk/layup, no contest, miss). No minus for Morgan as this charting is about shot creation—his miss shows up in the shooting chart.
5:13 27-17 2-1-2 Man Douglass 2-pt Miss
Vogrich in for Hardaway. Douglass flashes out to the 3-pt line and gets a pass from Vogrich. Stu drives to his right, gets stuck on the baseline, and tries a turnaround J from a few feet outside the lane. Airball (Douglass -2, 2-pt, heavy contest, miss). With 20 seconds on the shot clock, that's not at all what you want.
4:49 27-17 4-1 High Man Vogrich TO
This is close to being a nice play, but not quite. Vogrich gets the ball on the wing and drives right around his man, forcing Oakland's D to rotate and leaving Douglass wide open in the opposite corner. Vogrich sees this and passes to Stu, but the give is high and Stu's foot comes down OOB after he has to jump for the catch. Vogrich -1.
3:56 27-20 4-1 High Man Smotrycz TO
Horford and Smotrycz in for Morgan and Douglass. Smot gets the ball on the right sideline and drives to the lane. He tries to rifle a jump-pass to Horford, who is all of four feet away, and the pass ricochets off Horford's hands, then off the backboard, and is stolen (Smotrycz -2, unforced TO).
3:25 27-21 2-1-2 Man Vogrich Layup Make/FT (0/1)
Burke gets a pick from Horford well past the 3-pt line on the left side. Horford (+1) sets a great screen and Burke's man is picked off trying to go over the top; Burke slows as he nears the FT line and sucks in another defender, who was guarding Vogrich in the corner. Burke (+1) dishes to Vogrich, who goes hard to the hoop, hitting a very tough layup over a rotating LLP and drawing a foul in the process (+2, dunk/layup, heavy contest, make).
2:48 29-24 2-1-2 Man Smotrycz TO
Smotrycz takes the ball on the right wing and drives to the basket. He tries to stop near the FT line, but travels. Derp. -2 Smotrycz, unforced TO.
2:17 29-24 2-1-2 Man Burke 3-pt Miss/OReb/Layup Make
Burke runs a pick and roll with Horford up top, his man goes under, and he's got space to shoot a relatively deep three if he wants. Instead, Burke sees Vogrich open with help late-arriving and passes. Vogrich can't knock down the jumper as the defender gets a late hand in his face (+1 Burke, 3-pt, late contest, miss). Horford (+2) hauls in a tough offensive board between three defenders and kicks it out to Burke, who drives past two defenders and hits a quick layup before the D can recover (+2, layup, no contest, make).
1:32 31-27 2-1-2 Man Burke TO
Burke runs another high screen and roll with Horford, drives, spins, draws a few defenders, then tries to hit a cutting Vogrich at the three-point line. Unfortunately, his pass is behind Vogrich, who can't reel it in as the ball goes off his hands and OOB (-2 Burke, unforced TO). Burke a little wild here.
1:07 31-27 - Man Burke 2-pt Miss/OReb/Layup Miss
Burke pushes the pace off an Oakland miss, drives to his right, and forces a heavily-contested bank from just outside the lane (-1, 2-pt, heavy contest, miss). Horford again brings in the board, but he's in a good deal of traffic, and instead of kicking it out he tries a turnaround lay-in that comes up short (dunk/layup, heavy contest, miss). Horford gets a +1—two in the positive for the tough rebound, one negative for forcing the shot.
0:44 31-29 2-1-2 Man Burke 3-pt Miss/OReb/FT (1/2)
McLimans and Akunne in for Horford and Vogrich. Burke hangs around the perimeter, running the shot clock down to ten, which is just fine given the situation. He then steps up to the 3-pt line, makes one crossover dribble, and chucks up a shot with a hand right in his grill, missing everything but the backboard (-2, 3-pt, heavy contest, miss). Smotrycz (+2) comes up with the rebound, goes up strong, and draws a shooting foul.
Time Score Off Set Defense Player Result
Notes
20:00 32-32 2-1-2 Man Hardaway 2-pt Make
Starters in for the start of the second half. After not getting anything going early in the clock, Burke resets the offense and calls a new play. He passes off to Smotrycz, who gives to Novak at the top of the key. Morgan (+1) sets a downscreen on Hardaway's defender, freeing up THJ on the left wing. Novak gives, and Hardaway (+1) is able to take a dribble inside the arc and rise up for an 18-foot jumper (Team +1, 2-pt, late contest, make).
19:11 34-32 2-1-2 Man Hardaway 3-pt Miss
Burke dribbles towards the left corner, handing the ball off to Hardaway, who's coming back behind Burke to the top of the key. Hardaway has space for a deep-ish three and puts it up, but misses (3-pt, heavy contest, miss). Tempted to minus Hardaway here since his defender got there to contest the shot, but his high-rising jumper really makes the contest moot. Plus, nice to see him getting involved after a quiet first half.
18:40 34-32 2-1-2 Man FC Press Hardaway 3-pt Make
Hardaway has to re-set the offense at the top of the key with around 20 on the shot clock. He calls for a pick from Morgan (+1), gets good penetration into the lane, then kicks to Smotrycz in the corner. Smot nails the three (+2 Hardaway, 3-pt, late contest, make).
18:05 37-35 2-1-2 Man Smotrycz 3-pt Make
Novak gets a pass from Burke and drives baseline, but stalls in the corner, where he's doubled by Smotrycz's man. Smot flares out to the 3-pt line, where Novak passes to him. A rotating defender flies by in a futile effort to steal the pass, while Smot's original man buys a pass fake from Smot and runs out to Burke. Smot is left wide open despite still holding the ball, and he drills a three (+2, 3-pt, no contest, make).
17:18 40-37 2-1-2 Man Morgan 2-pt Miss/OReb/TO
After an off-ball foul on Oakland, Hardaway comes free on an inbounds play (+1 Team) but can't knock down a 15-footer (2-pt, late contest, miss). Morgan flies in between two guys for the rebound but can't keep his pivot foot when he lands. Just a tough break for Morgan, as he had two defenders draped all over him. He gets a +1 for the board.
16:49 40-37 FB FB Hardaway Dunk Make
After Oakland misses a three, Hardaway (+3) gets the rebound and immediately takes off. He threads a perfect bounce pass to a streaking Morgan, who dunks with authoritay (+1, dunk/layup, no contest, make).
16:43 42-39 2-1-2 Man Hardaway 3-pt Miss
Morgan (+1) again sets an off-ball downscreen for Hardaway, who flashes out for a look from three as he gets a pass from Burke. Hardaway gets a decent look, but can't knock it down (+1, 3-pt, late contest, miss).
16:23 42-42 2-1-2 Man Smotrycz FT (1/2)
Smotrycz gets the ball on the wing and drives hard with his left hand to the FT line, drawing weakside help from Hardaway's defender. Hardaway (+1) dives for the basket and Smot (+2) feeds him a nice lefty bounce pass. Hardaway is met at the rim by two defenders and fouled.
15:35 43-42 2-1-2 Man Burke TO
Burke gets a screen from Morgan and tries to drive baseline, but he gets cornered near the basket, jumps, and has his pass to Hardaway in the corner stolen easily (-2 Burke, forced TO).
15:12 43-42 - Man Hardaway Layup Miss
Smotrycz runs out after an Oakland miss and this is a semi-transition possession. He dribbles towards the Michigan bench, and Hardaway takes a jab-step towards the basket, then cuts behind Smot and takes a handoff. Hardaway gets into the lane and splits two defenders, but can't hit a tough underhand layup with two defenders contesting (+1, dunk/layup, heavy contest, miss). Morgan came open when his defender rotated onto THJ, but it would've taken a great pass to get it to him under the basket.
14:35 43-42 2-1-2 Man Burke 3-pt Make
Hardaway drives to his right but is stymied by a double team, so he throws a skip pass to Burke on the left elbow. Burke drives into the paint, is temporarily stopped, but pulls a ridiculous between-the-legs crossover that gets him into the lane and draws three defenders. Burke (+3) kicks it out to a now wide-open Hardaway, who drains the three (3-pt, no contest, make).
13:27 46-45 2-1-2 Man Burke 2-pt Make
Burke has to re-set the offense after they can't get anything going early in the clock (Team -1). He waits, gets a screen up top from Morgan (+1), and blows by two defenders into the paint, where he pulls up for a running floater before help can arrive (+2, 2-pt, late contest, make). At this moment I'm now praying Burke stays in college for longer than two years. These last two plays were star caliber.
12:45 48-48 2-1-2 Man Morgan 3-pt Miss/OReb/FT (1/2)
Burke (+1) drives to his right, hesitates, then finds room under the basket, where he kicks out to an open Hardaway in the corner. Hardaway can't connect (3-pt, no contest, miss), but Morgan (+2) jumps between two defenders to pull down the rebound. He pivots, goes back up for a layup, and is fouled in the process.
12:07 49-49 2-1-2 3-2 Zone Burke 3-pt Make
Douglass and Horford in for Smotrycz and Morgan. Oh, hey, a zone! Oakland decides to put three guys up top instead of the more common 2-3. They don't come out far enough, however, as Burke is able to rise up from NBA distance and drill a triple (+2, 3-pt, no contest, make). If Burke can hit that shot, I'm all for him taking it given the complete lack of pressure from the D.
11:23 52-51 2-1-2 Man Hardaway TO
Surprise! Oakland abandons the zone. Novak and Hardaway run by each other at the 3-pt line and Novak hands off, but Hardaway drops the ball and LLP steals it (-2 Hardaway). THJ was moving a little too quickly for his own good and didn't make sure to secure the ball—the pass wasn't bad by any stretch.
10:58 52-51 2-1-2 Man Hardaway 3-pt Make
Horford (+1) with another off-ball pick for Hardaway on the weak side frees him up for an open look from three, which he hits after getting the pass from Burke (+1, 3-pt, no contest, make). THJ and whoever is playing center are just abusing the man defense on the weak side—that's the third time they've created an open look using the same play this half. Gotta think Beilein saw something there.
10:38 55-53 2-1-2 Man Hardaway 3-pt Make
Hardaway and Horford (+1) run a high pick and roll at the top of the key. Hardaway's defender goes under the screen, so he pulls up and drains a three (+1, 3-pt, no contest, make). Oakland made that one easy for THJ, especially with him on a bit of a shooting streak at the moment.
10:10 58-53 FB FB Burke Layup Make
Burke steals an Oakland inbounds pass near midcourt and Douglass is already streaking up the middle of the court ahead of everyone. Burke (+1) floats a nice pass to Stu, who hits an uncontested layup (+1, dunk/layup, no contest, make). Stu's point is for getting up the court so quickly, not for making an open layup, FTR.
9:47 60-53 - - Hardaway FT (0/1)
Hardaway is fouled by LLP going for a defensive rebound and M is in the bonus. He misses the front end of a one-and-one.
9:31 60-53 2-1-2 Man Burke 3-pt Make
Smotrycz in for Novak. Burke runs a high pick and roll with Morgan (+1), his defender goes under, and Burke pulls up and hits a three (+2, 3-pt, no contest, make).
8:56 63-55 2-1-2 Man Burke 3-pt Make
Burke gets another high screen from Morgan and drives hard to the left, drawing an extra defender as weakside help comes to cover Morgan. Burke (+2) uses a slight hesitation move to get himself space then hits Douglass on the wing with a jump-pass. Douglass collects the pass, which was a little low, and hits an open three (+1, 3-pt, no contest, make).
8:31 66-57 2-1-2 Man Smotrycz 2-pt Make
Vogrich in for Hardaway. Burke has to drive wide around a pick from Morgan, but gets around the corner and draws three collapsing defenders as he nears the lane. Burke (+2) kicks out to Smotrycz, who pump-fakes a three with the D recovering, drives around a man, then hits a tough double-clutch runner as he gets into the paint (+2, 2-pt, heavy contest, make).
8:02 68-59 2-1-2 Man Morgan Layup Make
High pick and roll between Morgan and Burke, again. Burke (+2) gets penetration, again. This time he hits a rolling Morgan for an open layup (+2, layup, no contest, make). Oakland can't stop Burke, nor, at this point, can they hope to contain him.
7:29 70-59 FB/2-1-2 Man Burke TO
Douglass (+1) initially has a 2-on-2 fast break off a long rebound, but smartly pulls out and resets the offense. Burke again runs a high P&R with Morgan, but as he drives to the lane he loses the ball out of bounds (-1, unforced TO). Only Trey Burke can stop Trey Burke.
6:46 70-61 2-1-2 Man FC Press Morgan 2-pt Make
Smotrycz gets the ball on the wing, tries to drive off a pick from Morgan, but can't get any penetration, so he gives to Morgan a couple feet outside the paint. Morgan squares up, pivots in a complete circle to give himself space, and calmly knocks down a jumper (+2, 2-pt, late contest, make). If he can consistently hit that shot, I'll be very excited about his offensive development.
6:05 72-61 - - Burke FT (1/2)
Burke is fouled going after a long defensive rebound and goes to the line. He hits the first and misses the second. Thanks for the free point, Oakland.
5:59 73-63 2-1-2 Man Burke 3-pt Miss
So, this Burke kid. This time he stays patient after Oakland hedges hard on a—guess what?—high pick and roll with Morgan, gets another screen from Smotrycz, and pulls a quick crossover to split right between the two defenders. Burke (+3) ends up with all five Oakland players surrounding him in the lane, so he kicks out to Douglass, who can't knock down the open three (3-pt, no contest, miss).
5:36 73-65 2-1-2 Man Akunne 3-pt Miss/OReb/TO
Akunne in for Burke. After the ball cycles around for a while, Akunne (+1) eventually gets it on the left elbow and throws a solid skip pass to Douglass in the opposite corner. Stu gets a good look, but misses the three (3-pt, late contest, miss). Morgan (+2) pulls in another tough offensive board between two guys. Eventually, Akunne (-2, forced TO) gets the ball out top and just has it stolen from him, but...
4:44 73-65 - Man Akunne TO
...Smotrycz steals the ball right back, and M gets a fresh shot clock. He passes to Akunne, who awkwardly dribbles to his left and gets picked clean (-2, forced TO). Akunne just doesn't look comfortable handling the ball, to say the least.
4:39 73-67 ? Man Douglass 3-pt Miss/OReb/FT (1/2)
Lots of confusion at the start of this possession as Akunne and Douglass go to the same spot on the floor, with Stu yelling at Akunne and pointing for him to go to the wing. He does so, and ends up getting an open look as Hardaway (+2) comes off a pick from Morgan and kicks out, but Akunne can't connect (3-pt, no contest, miss). Smotrycz grabs the long board (+1) and passes out to Douglass, who's now running the point. Stu (-1) gets trapped near midcourt, but is bailed out by a foul call and goes to the line.
4:04 74-67 4-1 High Man Burke 3-pt Make
Burke in for Akunne. Burke runs a high screen with Morgan, then doubles back and takes another pick from Smotrycz (+1) that frees him up to drive to the baseline. Burke (+1) starts to fall OOB but makes a last-ditch pass to Hardaway, who drains a killer corner three (3-pt, heavy contest, make). Dagger.
3:25 77-67 FB FB Smotrycz Dunk Make
Smotrycz (+2) comes up with a steal, takes a couple dribbles, and threads a fantastic bounce pass ahead to Douglass, who's out in front of everyone. Stu dunks, which is always fun (+1, dunk/layup, no contest, make).
3:04 79-69 4-1 High Man Burke 3-pt Make
Burke, Morgan (+1), high pick and roll. Burke (+2) finds space on the right side, drives to the lane, and kicks out to an open Stu for three (3-pt, no contest, make).
2:27 82-69 4-1 High Man Burke Layup Make
Burke kills clock until there are just six seconds left to shoot, drives left from a good five feet outside the NBA 3-pt line, and blows by LLP for a driving layup (+2, dunk/layup, late contest, make). Charting ceases as this becomes free throw city and M doesn't attempt another field goal.

TREY BURKE LIKE WHOA

Indeed. It's a little easier to do this as the point guard, but he's the focal point of this offense, and right now he's having no trouble carrying that burden. Outside of a few freshman mistakes—usually when he tries to do too much—Burke is playing within himself and making a lot of fantastic plays in the process.

JOHN BEILEIN LIKE WHOA

Yep. Much like Memphis, Oakland played almost exclusively man-to-man, and Dylan threw in this tidbit about how the Grizzlies game-planned for Michigan:

At the press conference after the game on Saturday, Oakland coach Greg Kampe said the Grizzlies’ game plan was to limit the back-door cuts and make the Wolverines beat them from behind the arc.

Live by the sword, die by the sword, I guess. There weren't too many plays where Michigan freed up an open cutter to the basket, but that's mostly because they were busy pick-and-rolling Oakland's defense to death. With Michigan raining in open threes (more on that after the shot chart), many created by Oakland playing soft on screens instead of following over the top, you'd think Kampe would've made an adjustment, but none came. I guess there was one 3-2 zone, which in theory should limit three-pointers, but they played so soft that Burke calmly drilled a three anyway. After that, zone abandoned, and Michigan resumed death by picks. Fantastic game-plan by Beilein, and great execution by the team.

Big men like whoa?

You seem slightly less enthused, self, and I'm not surprised—I'm a little confused, too. As you'll see below, both Morgan and Horford come out with huge positive scores and barely anything in the negative, mostly thanks to both having solid days on the glass and being major parts of the pick-a-palooza. I'm still trying to figure out what a big man can do to earn a negative in this offense aside from turning the ball over—since they rarely get the ball in the post, there's not many opportunities to force bad shots, and otherwise they're mostly setting screens and getting in position to grab offensive rebounds. Suggestions, please?

Way to pawn off all the work on the readers.

Shut up. On to the...

Thanks, boss.

[All credit to a2_electricboogaloo for the above]

Offensive Creation
Player + - T Notes
Burke 43 12 31 Holy Horton, we got ourselves a point guard.
Hardaway 16 8 8 Quiet first half, some bad turnovers, but mostly solid. Needs to find a way to get more involved early, though foul trouble played a role in this game.
Novak 9 1 8 Extremely sound. I agree with Brian—I'd like to see him get the ball more. Other than Burke and Hardaway, he's the one guy who can consistently create and knock down jumpers from inside the arc when he's got the ball.
Smotrycz 17 7 10 Very nice game for Smot. Still not great handling the ball, but he's creating more offense for himself and also doing a good job of hitting the glass. His slow, awkward drives are still slow and awkward, but much more effective these days.
Morgan 24 1 23 Product of tons of good screens and some nice work on the boards. Going to have to figure out what to do about tiny negatives for big men—Morgan did not have twice the impact as Smotrycz, though he still played well.
Douglass 5 3 2 Relative non-factor in the shot creation department. Dunked.
Horford 10 1 9 More death by screens.
Akunne 1 4 -3 Please, please, no more putting him at the point.
Christian - - - DNP
Vogrich 2 1 1 Starting to show ability to get to the basket and finish. Quiet day otherwise.
McLimans 0 0 0 Nothing of note in one minutes of PT.
Team 3 2 1 Some nice inbounds plays, and I really could've added a lot more here for killing Oakland with the off-ball screens.
TOTAL 130 40 90 Again, no context for these numbers, but Michigan had a very strong offensive game while playing at a high tempo, mostly thanks to Oakland pushing the pace like crazy.

Those overall numbers are wildly in the positive, obviously, but I think as we go along (assuming I stay with this method, which I rather like on first glance), that will be the norm, though maybe not to such a high degree—basketball offenses score a lot of points, and usually it's missed shots that keep a team from scoring on most possessions, not poor plays. Since this is about shot creation, with shooting taken out of the equation, the numbers should be positive or something went very wrong.

Also, Michigan scored 1.25 points per possession against Oakland—the offense was lethal, and the numbers reflect that, at least as far as I can tell without another reference point. The only major knock against Michigan's offense this game would be turnovers—the Wolverines had a 23.7% turnover rate, which is not so good—but that was more than made up for by the team rebounding over 27% of their misses and also getting to the line with relative frequency.

As for individual players not covered in the previous section, I'm really impressed with the improvements in Zach Novak's game. He still has all of the grit, but he's also turned into a smart distributor—this game: eight assists, one turnover—and while he doesn't take many shots, when he does, they're good looks. Especially in situations where Hardaway is struggling or off the floor, I'd like to see the offense run through Novak a little more.

Smotrycz had the most impressive game statistically, scoring 20 points on just eight shots and hauling in nine rebounds, and he seems to be getting more comfortable in the offense. As you'll see below, he took advantage of a lot of open looks, but he got into the lane and was able to hit the two contested shots he took—tough to ask for much more from a sophomore big with limited athleticism.

Shall we go to the shooting chart? You're writing too much.

Yes I am, and it's Friday, dammit. Shooting chart (now with player and team totals so it's actually useful!).

  Dunk/Layup 2-point 3-point Total
Player NC LC HC NC LC HC NC LC HC NC LC HC OVR
Burke 2/2 1/1 - - 1/1 0/1 3/3 0/1 0/2 5/5 2/3 0/3 7/11
Hardaway - - 0/1 (1F) - 1/2 0/1 4/6 0/1 1/2 4/6 1/3 1/4 (1F) 6/13
Novak - - - - 1/1 - 1/1 1/2 - 1/1 2/3 - 3/4
Smotrycz 1/1 1/1 (1F) - - 1/1 3/4 - - 4/5 1/1 1/1 (1F) 6/7 (1F)
Morgan 2/3 1/1 (1F) - 1/1 0/1 - - - 2/3 2/2 0/1 (1F) 4/6 (1F)
Douglass 2/2 - - - - 0/1 2/3 0/1 - 4/5 0/1 - 4/6
Horford - - 0/1 - - 0/1 - - - - - 0/2 0/2
Akunne - - - - - - 0/1 - - 0/1 - - 0/1
Christian - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Vogrich - - 1/1 (1F) - 0/1 - - 0/1 - - 0/2 1/1 (1F) 1/3 (1F)
McLimans - - - - - - - - - - - - -
TOTAL 7/8 3/3 1/3 (4F) - 4/6 1/6 13/18 1/6 1/4 20/26 8/15 3/13 (4F) 31/54

Almost exactly half of Michigan's shots were of the "no contest" variety, and all of those were either dunks/layups or three-pointers. This is exactly what you want to see out of John Beilein's offense, which is predicated on creating either open layups or good looks for three points. The Wolverines shot the lights out—their 71.3 eFG% is the third-highest in any game of the Beilein era, according to Dylan—and it's easy to see why when you look at the above.

Interestingly, most of the team's bad shots came on non-layup two-pointers, and looking back at the play-by-play, that's mostly because those shots came outside the framework of the offense. Of note: no single player took more than one heavily contested two-pointer, which says to me that this team is well-coached, though we already knew that. Same goes for tough dunk/layup attempts (on which M drew more fouls than they had missed shots), and only Burke and Hardaway jacked up threes while being heavily guarded—if I'm going to pick two guys to do that, it's those two.

Can we see some videos already?

Sure thing. Here's Trey Burke being totally awesome:

As Greg Kelser was saying before I cut off the clip, that's just a perfectly-run fast break, especially by Burke. I don't have much analysis here other than saying that, well, that guy doesn't look like a freshman point guard, even with the higher-than-ideal turnover rate. All three players run this perfectly, with Stu fading off to the perimeter to stretch out the defense, Smotrycz going hard in the paint, and Burke using the threat of his pull-up J to freeze the defense and allow him to dish for an easy assist.

More Burke ridiculousness, you say? Here you go:

That elicited a rather loud "WUT?" when I watched it live, and I'm still not really over this—that's just a sweet move in traffic that takes a bogged-down play and turns it into an opportunity for a wide-open three. Burke doesn't have the size of Darius Morris, which allowed Morris to bully his way into the lane with regularity, but he's quicker and those handles let him do many of the same things Morris did, just in a different fashion. He used that same crossover—though not between the legs—to slice between two defenders jumping out on a pick and create a wide open three for Douglass when the entire defense freaked and collapsed into the lane.

As for general Beilein scheme stuff, check out how much Novak moves on this play, which ends in him knocking down a pull-up jumper:

He starts at the top of the key, cuts hard to the hoop, sets a screen, pops back out the top of the key, goes over a pick from Morgan, and gets himself a good shot. This is what Beilein's offense is all about, especially against man defense—eventually, lots of cuts and screens should free up an open shooter, whether it's the guy with the ball or some moving away from the play.

What about the defense?

Ah, yes, there is now stuff on the defense, though admittedly not nearly as much as the offense. The main feature I'm introducing is the defensive shot chart, which is the same as the offensive shot chart but broken down by type of defense:

  Dunk/Layup 2-point 3-point Total
Defense NC LC HC NC LC HC NC LC HC NC LC HC OVR
Man 3/4 2/4 (1F) 3/6 (2F) 2/3 1/2 (2F) 1/11 (2F) 2/6 2/6 3/6 7/13 5/12 (3F) 7/23 (4F) 19/48 (7F)
1-3-1 - - - - - - 0/1 - - 0/1 - - 0/1
2-3 - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Fast Break - - 1/2 (1F) - (1F) - - 0/1 - - 0/1 (1F) 1/2 (1F) 1/3 (2F)
TOTAL 3/4 2/4 (1F) 4/8 (3F) 2/3 1/2 (3F) 1/11 (2F) 2/7 2/7 2/6 7/14 5/13 (4F) 8/25 (5F) 20/52 (9F)

Turnovers: Man—8 (2 forced, 6 unforced), 1-3-1—0, Fast Break—2 (1 forced, 1 unforced)

This doesn't match up exactly with the stats from the box score (which has Oakland going 26/59), mostly because Oakland rained in 11 points in garbage time and I was done charting at that point. But yeah, check out that shot distribution versus Michigan's and you get the story of this game—Michigan was able to generate a lot of open looks, and Oakland was forced into taking a lot of tough shots.

Also, as you can see, Michigan spent almost the entire game in man, throwing out the 1-3-1 on one possession when the Grizzlies made their big run at the end of the first half. They also did a good job of getting back in transition, as Oakland wasn't able to generate many good shots even when out on the break. Some might look at the box score, see that Michigan gave up 80 points, and think that they didn't play good D, and I think those hypothetical people would be wrong. Oakland was hanging almost exactly at one point per possession until garbage time got them up to 1.09 ppp.

No lengthy breakdown on individual defenders yet, as this is long enough already, but off the cuff I was impressed with Smotrycz—who came up with two steals, had seven defensive rebounds, and only recorded two fouls, which have been a bugaboo this year—and the interior duo of Morgan and Horford, who didn't let much open up inside the lane. Burke needs to learn that he doesn't have to contest every shot, as he got into some unnecessary foul trouble, and Hardaway allowed Laval Lucas-Perry to blow right by him for an and-one, which was kinda embarrassing.

Heroes?

Burke, of course. Other than him, Smotrycz had a great day shooting and was solid all-around, Novak was very efficient, and THJ managed to score 18 second-half points after early foul trouble. Also, John Beilein for coaching circles around the other guy, again.

Goats?

First-half Hardaway only had three points while amassing two fouls—he's got to snap out of that habit before Big Ten season. Eso Akunne should probably not play point guard again. I'm getting a little worried about Carlton Brundidge, because while Akunne has more experience, he looked lost at times in the offense and is completely out of his element as a primary ballhandler. Could Brundidge really be worse as a third-string (behind Douglass), couple-minutes-a-game point guard?

Anything else?

Nah, I think I've pretty much covered it all, though I'm sure I'll be proven wrong about that in the comments. Fire away, people. Let me know what you think of this.

Basketball UFR: Memphis

Basketball UFR: Memphis

Submitted by Ace on December 6th, 2011 at 4:17 PM

This game happened, like, two weeks ago, so apologies in advance for revisiting something that could not be less timely, but I had all these charts and stuff that took a really long time to fill out. This is the first of what I expect will be many forms of a basketball UFR, so suggestions are not only welcome, but encouraged. I'll be doing these with regularity come Big Ten season, and now that I have a basic template, they'll come down the pipe much faster than this one.

An explanation of my methodology is probably in order. The play-by-play breakdown is relatively simple—it's broken up by possession, one point can be earned or lost on each possession (lots of half-points are assigned, but I like this method since you want to average at least—technically a bit above—one point per possession), and I tell you the offensive set (more on that later) and defense (either man or type of zone, plus whether or not they pressed). FB == fast break. OOB == set from an inbounds play. I am not a basketball coach, and the last time I played competitively was in middle school, so corrections on terminology and the like would be much appreciated. Points do not coincide with made or missed baskets, but instead are awarded on the basis of creating shot opportunities—for instance, a pick to free a man, a cut to get open, or a nice pass may merit half-points, and creating a bucket on an isolation will earn a full point.

Shots are charted separately, and are broken down into three categories: dunk/layup, two-point shots, and three-point shots. They are further categorized by the level of contest from the defense—either no contest, late contest, or heavy contest—which, according to a tidbit from a BTN announcer, passed on to me by Brian, is how John Beilein charts shots.

Offensive Set Notes: Michigan starts nearly every possession, as you'll see in the chart, with a 2-1-2 set. It looks like this:

212

Douglass is the point guard here, and the man in the middle is always the center (in this case, Smotrycz). One wing starts up top, opposite the point guard (Vogrich) while the other is down by the baseline (Hardaway) across from the four (Novak). From here, Beilein has a seemingly infinite number of plays. On occasion, Michigan starts in a slight variant of this, which for lack of a better term (or lack of basketball knowledge) I called a 2-1-1-1:

2111

As you can see, the shooting guard (Douglass) has moved from the wing over to the top of the key, right in front of the center. This opens up the outside of the court a bit more and allows for some interesting double screens in the middle. For something completely different, here's Michigan running a 1-4 high, where everything starts outside the arc:

14high

We'll see if the distribution—almost entirely 2-1-2 in this game—changes at all when Michigan plays a defense that does something besides man. I have Memphis down for one zone press, and on every other possession they were in man-to-man. Josh Pastner isn't much into this whole "X's and O's" thing, and would much rather you leave him alone and let him continue recruiting McDonald's All-Americans.

Here goes (something that is probably) nothing...

Time Score Off Set Defense Player Result
20:00 1H 0-0 FB FB Hardaway FT (1/2)
Morgan (+0.5) wins the opening tip and knocks it right to Hardaway. Hardaway (+0.5, dunk/layup, late contest, foul) sees an opening, crosses over Joe Jackson, and drives to the bucket, where he's fouled by a late-arriving Tarik Black.
19:37 1-2 2-1-2 Man Burke 2-pt Make
The offense is stagnant for 15 seconds, with Morgan setting an off-ball pick for Smotrycz that is ignored and Hardaway posting up his defender without great position (Team -0.5). Hardaway sees Burke has the ball one-on-one, clears out to the corner (+0.5) and Burke drives to the bucket, spins past Jackson, and hits a running floater in the lane (+1, 2 pt., no contest, make).
18:58 3-2 1-4 High Man Novak 3-pt Make
Novak grabs a defensive board and charges hard up the court, but Memphis gets back. He hands off to Burke at the top of the key, where Morgan (+0.5) sets a screen that Burke takes. As Burke scrapes over the top of the screen to the left, Novak loops behind him and takes a handoff from Burke, while three Memphis defenders are caught up with Burke. Morgan dives into the lane, where he's open but with help coming, and Novak pulls up and drains a three just before a recovering defender can get a hand in his face (+0.5, 3 pt., late contest, make).
18:33 6-4 2-1-2 Man Smotrycz TO
Burke starts the offense from well beyond the three point line, dribbles to his right, and passes to Smotrycz, who had flashed from the baseline to the FT line extended next to the sideline. Memphis's Wesley Witherspoon plays him tight, trapping him without room to dribble. Smotrycz tries to clear Witherspoon out, but brings the ball down too low and has it slapped away right to a Tiger defender (-1, forced TO).
18:09 6-4 2-1-2 Man Hardaway Block
Burke starts down the left side and gives to Morgan, who has flashed out to the three point line. He swings it to Smotrycz (+0.5) on the right, who moves back towards Morgan—now setting a pick—before hitting Hardaway on a textbook backdoor cut (+0.5). Hardaway goes up for the dunk but is blocked from behind on a spectacular defensive effort (dunk/layup, heavy, block).
17:26 6-4 OOB Man Hardaway 2-pt Make
Burke attempts a one-man fast break, but has the ball knocked out of bounds on the baseline. Burke inbounds with Michigan lined up in a box, Morgan and Smotrycz in line with Burke, Novak and Hardaway on the other side of the lane. Novak curls around a double screen by Smot and Morgan before diving to the basket. Hardaway follows Novak, beating his man, gets the inbounds pass from Burke, and drains a corner jumper from just inside the line (+0.5, Team +0.5, 2 pt., no contest, make).
16:55 8-4 2-1-2 Man Hardaway Layup Make
This one is too easy. Burke dribbles up the court, goes to his left as Novak vacates to the top of the key, and Hardaway takes a quick jab-step towards midcourt before cutting along the baseline (+0.5). Burke hits him perfectly in stride (+0.5) and Hardaway hits the layup (dunk/layup, no contest, make).
16:29 10-4 2-1-2 Man Morgan TO
Morgan comes up from the FT line to the top of the key and gets the pass from Burke, but he's come out so far that he's nearly standing on the midcourt logo (which is annoyingly large, but not THAT large). Witherspoon slaps the ball away and starts a fast break for Memphis (Morgan -1, forced TO).
16:14 10-6 2-1-2 Man FC Press Burke 2-pt Make
Horford in for Morgan. Novak breaks the press from Memphis and eventually gives it back out to Burke, who's 28 feet away from the bucket on the left side. Horford comes over and sets a pick that does little (-0.5). Burke fights his way right around Jackson, however, and finds space in the middle of the lane to hit a short floater (+1.5, 2 pt, no contest, make). This is just Burke being a superior athlete, as he received little help.
15:34 12-9 2-1-2 Man FC Press Smotrycz Layup Make
Burke breaks the press down the right sideline and gives to Horford at the top of the key, who passes to Smotrycz on the right elbow outside the 3-point line. Burke clears out to the left corner, and Smotrycz makes a quick crossover to his right, getting a step and taking it all the way to the bucket for a tough layup (+1, dunk/layup, heavy contest, make). Not pretty, but effective.
15:01 14-9 FB FB Hardaway FT (2/2)
Hardaway pushes the pace off a long defensive rebound, beats everyone up the court, and draws a shooting foul (+1, dunk/layup, late contest, foul).
14:31 16-9 - Man Hardaway 2-pt Make
Douglass in for Smotrycz. Hardaway again going fast up the court after a rebound. The entire team is beyond the three point line as Hardaway dribbles to the top of the key, but Horford has the presence of mind to set a quick screen (+0.5) which gives Hardaway just enough space to get off a long two, which drops (+0.5, 2 pt., heavy contest, make). Probably an ill-advised shot with 29 seconds on the shot clock, but Hardaway is feeling it and he hits it, so he gets the half-point.
13:58 18-11 2-1-2 Man Hardaway 3-pt Miss
Burke swings it to Novak at the top of the key. Novak starts driving to the left and Hardaway makes a hard V-cut to clear himself a little bit of space at the three-point line. Novak gives it to him, and Hardaway chucks up a three with a hand right in his grill—it misses with nobody in position for a rebound (-1, 3 pt., heavy contest, miss).
13:25 18-14 2-1-2 Man Novak Layup Make
Smotrycz in for Horford. Burke gives to Novak on the right elbow, who passes to Smotrycz at the top of the key. Douglass (+0.5) sets a pick for a cutting Novak as Smotrycz swings it to Hardaway, who finds a wide-open Novak (+0.5, dunk/layup, no contest, make) for an easy layup.
12:52 20-16 2-1-2 Man Smotrycz 2-pt Miss
Burke hands off to Novak, who swings it to Douglass at the top of the key. Smotrycz sets a screen for Hardaway in the lane, then pops out to the three point line, where Douglass gives it to him. Smotrycz pumps and then drives, where he's doubled with Hardaway now open under the basket. Instead of passing, Smotrycz pumps, tries to draw a foul, and nearly misses everything as his five-foot leaner ricochets off the underside of the backboard (-1, 2 pt., heavy contest, miss). Memphis gets the board. Smot really forced that one.
12:30 20-17 - Man Hardaway TO
Akunne in for Burke. Instead of giving the offense a chance to set up off a missed Memphis FT, Hardaway drives into the left corner, where he picks up his dribble and is trapped by a double team (-0.5). He does find a cutting Smotrycz under the basket, but Memphis rotates nicely and Smotrycz (-0.5, forced TO) is stripped clean as he tries to go up for a layup. Might be a little harsh on Smot here, as Hardaway didn't put him in a great position and he did make a nice cut, but he's gotta be more secure with the ball.
12:06 20-19 2-1-2/OOB Man Akunne TO
Michigan works the ball around the perimeter, Amaker-style, until a Hardaway pass to an open Smotrycz is tipped OOB on the sideline with 8 seconds on the shot clock. Media timeout. Vogrich in for Hardaway. Akunne gets the inbounds, gives it to Smotrycz and gets it back immediately, and is stripped along the sideline as the shot clock expires (forced TO). Akunne -0.5 for not getting a shot off, Team -0.5 for putting him in that position in the first place.
10:55 20-19 1-4 High Man Douglass 3-pt Make
After Michigan swings the ball around the perimeter for a while, Novak (+0.5) sets a screen in the paint to open up Horford, who flashes to the top of the key while Douglass holds the ball on the right. Douglass gives to Horford, then cuts back around him, and Horford (+0.5) hands it back off and screens Stu's man. Douglass buries a wide open three (3 pt., no contest, make).
10:18 23-19 2-1-2 Man Douglass 3-pt Miss
Nobody is really moving without the ball, so Douglass (+0.5) drives to the basket with 16 seconds left on the shot clock. He's well-defended, but the defense collapses on him, so he kicks it out to an open Novak in the corner. Novak can't sink the shot, and Horford commits a foul for going over the back trying for the board (Team -0.5, 3 pt., no contest, miss).
9:30 23-21 - 2-2-1 FC Press/2-3 Zone Douglass 3-pt Miss
Lineup is now Burke, Douglass, Vogrich, Christian, McLimans. Yeah. Michigan breaks the press rather easily and Vogrich (+0.5) makes a nice skip pass to Colton Christian in the corner. Christian immediately kicks it out to Burke (+0.5), who finds a wide-open Douglass up top for a three. It clangs out and the rebound goes OOB off Christian (3 pt., late contest, miss).
8:35 23-21 FB/OOB Man Christian Layup Make
Burke tries to get a quick break off a Memphis miss and Vogrich is fouled driving the baseline. Hardaway checks in for Douglass. With Burke inbounding from the baseline, Hardaway (+0.5) comes from under the basket to set a screen for Christian, who dives to the basket and takes the feed from Burke. He goes up and hits the layup with a hand in his face (+0.5, dunk/layup, heavy contest, make.)
7:31 25-23 2-1-2 Man FC Press Hardaway TO
Again, Burke has no trouble breaking the press. The ball eventually is worked around to McClimans at the top of the key. He passes to Hardaway on the wing and goes to set a screen, but Hardaway chooses to spin away from the screen and into two defenders, getting stripped in the process and turning it over (-1, foi'mrced TO).
7:09 25-23 2-1-2 Man Hardaway Block
Hardaway once again finds himself with the ball on the left side, and again drives hard to the left side of the basket. He pulls up from around 12 feet and tries a jumper, but he's well-defended by his man and McLimans's man rotates over and blocks the shot (-1, 2 pt., heavy contest, block). Athletic play by the defender to block it, but also a bad force with 18 seconds on the shot clock.
6:36 25-25 2-1-2 Man Christian OReb, 3-pt Miss
Burke chucks up a deep three after going too far around a pick from McLimans (Burke -1, 3 pt., no contest, miss) but Christian makes a great effort under the boards to tap the ball to himself and haul in the rebound (+1). He manages to fend off three defenders to keep the ball and backs out to the three-point line, where he passes to an open Vogrich out of a double team (+1). Vogrich misses (3 pt., no contest, miss). Fantastic effort from Christian, however.
6:03 25-27 - Man Vogrich Layup Make
Michigan comes out of a timeout with Burke, Vogrich, Douglass, Novak, and Smotrycz. ESPN cuts back from the break as Vogrich gets the ball on the left sideline, played tight by his man. He clears the ball through and drives it straight to the bucket, getting his body between himself and the defender and going up strong for a layup (+1, dunk/layup, heavy contest, make).
5:17 27-27 2-1-2 Man Burke TO
Smotrycz sets a pick for Burke up top and rolls open towards the basket, but Burke ignores him, tries to drive it himself, and then commits a palming violation as he attempts to pass to an open Douglass in the corner (-1, unforced TO). A full minus for missing the open man and then committing the turnover, though I had no idea they still called carries at any level of basketball.
4:46 27-27 FB/OOB Man Novak TO
Novak starts the breakout after a defensive rebound, and Michigan has numbers. Novak gives to Burke, who makes the right choice to pass to an open Douglass on the elbow. Douglass draws the defense and finds Vogrich under the basket; he's fouled. After resetting the offense off the inbounds, Novak takes the ball from the left wing and tries to drive to the free throw line off a Smotrycz screen. Smot's man switches and steals the ball from Novak (-1, forced TO).
4:14 27-29 2-1-2 Man Douglass TO
Douglass receives a skip pass on the right side from Vogrich, then makes a sloppy bounce pass to Burke, who's just a few feet away from him. Burke gets a hand on it, but the ball goes OOB. Douglass -1, unforced TO.
3:24 27-29 1-4 High Man Burke 3-pt Miss
Burke dribbles to the elbow and spins away from a Smotrycz pick, choosing to drive under the basket, leaving his feet as the defense collapses (-0.5). He's bailed out by finding an open Douglass for three, but there's still no need to jump. Douglass misses (3 pt., no contest, miss), and Smotrycz (-0.5) gets hit with an offensive foul for blatantly shoving the guy boxing him out in the back.
3:02 27-31 2-1-2 Man FC Press Douglass 3-pt Make
Hardaway in for Vogrich. Hardaway gets the ball on the wing and Smotrycz comes over for a pick-and-roll. Smot (+0.5) draws two defenders as he dives to the basket, and Douglass rotates to the top of the key, where Hardaway (+0.5) finds him for a wide open look. This time, Stu knocks it down (3 pt., no contest, make).
2:08 30-31 FB FB Burke FT (1/2)
Smotrycz grabs a defensive board and immediately runs out on the break, as two Memphis players are caught under the M basket (+0.5). Unfortunately, a guard catches up to him and knocks the ball away as Smot falls to the ground (-1), but Burke is in the right place, grabs the loose ball, and takes it to the hoop, where he's fouled while attempting a short pull-up J (+0.5, 2-pt, heavy contest, foul).
1:49 31-31 FB FB Burke Layup Make
Douglass skies for a long defensive rebound and Burke immediately takes off downcourt, beating both Memphis guards down the floor. Stu (+0.5) lobs a beautiful pass that hits Burke in stride, and he goes in for a nice reverse layup without needing to put the ball on the floor (+0.5, dunk/layup, no contest, make).
1:26 33-31 FB/OOB Man Burke 2-pt Make
Hardaway launches a pass the length of the court to Novak, who dribbles to the FT line, waits, then tosses it to Burke, who cut to the corner. Burke makes a nice touch pass (+0.5) to Hardaway, who found space for an open three, but he misses (+0.5, 3 pt., no contest, miss). Memphis knocks the rebound OOB, with Smotrycz there putting up a good fight. On the inbounds, Douglass gets the pass after going around a double pick, then finds Burke—the inbounder—wide open for a 10-footer after drawing three defenders (Douglass +0.5, Team +0.5, 2-pt, no contest, make).
0:41 35-31 FB FB Hardaway 2-pt Make
Hardaway gets the defensive board and takes off along with Burke and Douglass against three scrambling Memphis defenders. He stops on a dime, nearly traveling but losing his man in the process, and rattles in an 18-foot pull-up jumper (+1, 2 pt., no contest, make). End of 1H, 37-31 Michigan.
Time Score Off Set Defense Player Result
19:47 2H 37-33 2-1-2 Man Morgan OReb, Layup Make
Starters back in. Burke gets himself trapped out near halfcourt with 10 seconds on the shot clock (-0.5), but spins and finds Smotrycz at the FT line. Smot drives and tries a spinning hook shot with the clock about to expire, but it rims out (+0.5, 2-pt., heavy contest, miss). Nobody blocks out Morgan, however, who grabs the rebound and lays it in for two (+1, dunk/layup, no contest, make). Nice job of Smotrycz to draw the defense when the offense had been stagnant, and good positioning by Morgan.
18:56 39-33 2-1-2 Man Burke 3-pt Miss
After an off-the-ball foul on Memphis, Burke inbounds from under the basket. Michigan again aligns in a box, and Novak splits through the two bigs (Morgan & Smot) while Hardaway pops out to the three-point line. Burke inbounds to Hardaway, who swings it to Smotrycz, who finds Burke open in the corner for a three, which he misses (Team +1, 3 pt., late contest, miss).
18:24 39-34 2-1-2 Man Novak 3-pt Make
After a few passes, Smotrycz gets the ball on the right wing. On the left side of the lane, Novak sets a screen for Hardaway, then pops out to the top of the key as both Memphis defenders follow THJ. Smotrycz finds Novak all alone for three, and he buries it (+1, 3 pt., no contest, make).
17:46 42-36 - Man FC Press Smotrycz 2-pt Make
Horford in for Morgan. Memphis presses after a made FT. Burke (+0.5) breaks it himself, streaking down the right side, sees a double coming, and passes to Smotrycz, whose man stepped out on Burke. Smot pump fakes and steps past a closing Memphis defender—a nice move—and pulls up for an easy 12-footer (+0.5, 2-pt., no contest, make).
17:18 44-36 2-1-2 Man FC Press Burke 3-pt Miss
Michigan inbounds with 22 on the shot clock after Smotrycz drives and has the ball knocked OOB. Burke gives it to Novak under the basket, but he can't go up with it and has to take it out. Ball is passed around the perimeter for too long, and finally Burke has to chuck up a desparation three from 30+ feet as the shot clock is about to expire. It misses badly (Team -1, 3 pt., no contest, miss).
16:16 44-38 2-1-2 Man FC Press Horford FT (2/2)
Burke again runs right past the Memphis press—not sure why they're still doing it—gets to the lane, and dishes it off to Horford under the basket (Burke +0.5). Horford goes up for the layup and is fouled (+0.5, dunk/layup, heavy contest, foul). Nice job of diving to the basket by Horford, and great penetration by Burke to set it up.
15:50 46-38 FB Man Horford 3-pt Miss
Douglass in for Smotrycz. Hardaway runs off a Memphis miss, finds Burke, who tries a running floater that comes up short (2 pt., late contest, miss). Horford (+1) snags the offensive rebound in traffic, dribbles once, sees nothing is there, and kicks it out to Hardaway, who passes to an open Novak for a look at a three. Clang (3 pt., late contest, miss).
15:24 46-41 2-1-1-1 Man Burke 3-pt Miss
Not sure what to call this, but instead of their normal 2-1-2, Burke starts in the center of the court and Douglass, instead of starting even with him on the opposite wing, stands right in front of Horford in the middle (pictured up top). Burke spends the entire shot clock dribbling around, missing an open Douglass early in the possession, and has to dish out to Stu for a deep three as the shot clock is about to run out (Burke -1, 3 pt., heavy contest, miss).
14:23 46-41 2-1-2 Man Burke 2-pt Make
Douglass has the ball up high on the right side. Novak begins a curl cut towards the basket that ends up turning into a sort of awkward pick for Burke (+0.5? Sure. GRIT.) Douglass passes to Burke, who banks in a long two (+0.5, 2 pt., late contest, make). Not a pretty shot on this particular occasion, but Burke gets great elevation on his jumper.
13:55 48-41 FB FB Douglass 3-pt Miss
Novak gets a defensive board and pushes the pace, passing it up to Douglass, who's standing about 28 feet from the basket. Douglass turns and... fires up a three. Huh? (-1, 3 pt., no contest, miss). Yes, Douglass is open here, but it's not hard to get open 28-footers at any point in the shot clock, and Michigan had Memphis scrambling to get back. Turrible shot selection, Kenny. Turrible.
13:29 48-41 2-1-1-1 Man Horford Layup Make
Akunne and Smotrycz in for Burke and Novak. After passing around the perimeter for a while, Horford comes up and sets a pick Hardaway (+0.5), who finds Horford open on the roll for an easy layup (+0.5, dunk/layup, no contest, make).
12:34 50-41 1-4 High Man Akunne 3-pt Make
Douglass (+0.5) pushes the pace off a Memphis miss, gives it to Hardaway at the top of the key, and THJ swings it to an open Akunne on the wing. Eso buries the three (+0.5, 3 pt., no contest, make). Half-points to Douglass for recognizing that Memphis wasn't getting back quickly and Akunne for finding the open area, but this was mostly a defensive bust by the Tigers, who had two men collapsing down on Horford in the paint.
12:11 53-42 2-1-1-1 Man FC Press Hardaway FT (2/2)
Novak in for Smotrycz. After a kick-ball violation on Memphis, Douglass inbounds. Hardaway sets a screen for Akunne, then pops out to the three point line, where Douglass inbounds to him. Hardaway dribbles to the FT line, pulls up, and gets fouled as he shoots a jumper (+1, 2 pt., late contest, foul).
11:38 55-44 3-2 Man FC Press Douglass 3-pt Miss
Morgan and Burke in for Horford and Akunne. Morgan starts the set down on the baseline instead of the center's normal spot in the middle of the lane. With time running low on the clock, Douglass drives to the right, is stopped, spins, and somehow hits an open Vogrich in the corner with a skip pass (+0.5). Vogrich can't connect (Team -0.5, 3 pt., no contest, miss). Ugly possession—with 10 seconds left on the shot clock, all five M players were outside the three-point line.
10:50 55-46 2-1-2 Man 3/4 Press Morgan Layup Make
After the ball cycles around the perimeter for a while, Burke calls for a Morgan pick with ten seconds on the clock. He drives to the left, beats his man, and wraps a pass around a defender to Morgan, who has crashed to the basket (Burke +0.5). Morgan collects it, goes up strong, and makes a tough lay-in with a defender right in his face (+0.5, dunk/layup, heavy contest, make).
10:03 57-47 2-1-2 1-1-2-1 Press/Man Hardaway TO
Vogrich and McLimans in for Douglass and Morgan. Burke, as usual, breaks the press as Memphis backs off a bit and goes into man. Hardaway gets the ball on the wing and Burke curls to the basket. He's open, but Hardaway doesn't give. Instead, he tries to pass to McLimans on a backdoor cut, but the pass is easily cut off. -1 Hardaway, unforced TO.
9:37 57-47 2-1-2 Man Hardaway Block
Michigan can't find an open cutter or a lane to the basket, and cycles the ball around the perimeter. Novak swings it to Hardaway in the corner and he tries a quick three, but he's well-defended and the shot is blocked (Hardaway -0.5, Team -0.5, 3 pt., heavy contest, block).
9:03 57-47 FB FB Burke Layup Make
Burke turns on the jets on the fast break, spins around a defender at midcourt, then has the ball knocked from behind right through a defender's legs to Hardaway for a layup (+0.5 Burke, +0.5 Hardaway, dunk/layup, no contest, make). That was totally unintentional, but I'm feeling generous and that move at halfcourt was pretty sweet, plus it's tough to give THJ a full point for having the ball roll right to him under the basket.
8:38 59-47 2-1-2 Man Douglass 2-pt Miss
Douglass in for Burke. Michigan gets a fresh clock after Tarik Black fouls Smotrycz on a halfhearted drive to the basket. After resetting up top, Douglass tries multiple times to get to the basket, is stymied, and settles for a 12-foot fallaway with a hand in his grill (-1, 2 pt., heavy contest, miss).
7:25 59-47 FB FB Hardaway 2-pt Miss
Hardaway goes on a one-man break, jump-stopping between three defenders and airballing his pullup jumper from the paint (-1, 2 pt., heavy contest, miss). Douglass grabs the airball and kicks it out to an open Novak, who pump-fakes a three, steps up, and can't hit from just inside the arc (2 pt., late contest, miss).
7:02 59-47 2-1-2 Man FC Press Novak FT (2/2)
Burke in for McLimans. Novak takes the ball from the wing and dribbles around Smotrycz to the top of the key, where he hits a back-cutting Hardaway (+0.5) with a great bounce pass (+0.5). THJ goes up for a dunk and is fouled (dunk/layup, late contest, foul).
6:28 61-47 - Man FC Press Smotrycz TO
Memphis is in a weak full-court press, but Smotrycz—the inbounder—doesn't have a man on him, so he curls back around and sets a pick (+0.5) for Burke, who's able to drive all the way to the basket (+0.5). Smot does a great job of trailing and finds himself wide open in the lane, and Burke puts a pass right on the money that goes right through Smot's hands and OOB (-1, unforced TO). Oops.
5:50 61-49 2-1-2 Man FC Press Hardaway Layup Make
Hardaway takes the ball on the wing and passes to Smotrycz, who swings it over to Novak as Hardaway makes a hard backdoor cut. Novak (+0.5) finds THJ, who spins off his man—who overplayed the pass—and goes up for a layup before the defense can fully rotate. Money (+0.5, dunk/layup, late contest, make).
5:12 63-51 - Man FC Press Hardaway TO
Hardaway gets the inbounds after a made FT, beats the press down the left side, then tries to stop, turn, and pass back to Douglass as a double comes. He's falling over as he does this and Memphis steals easily (-1, unforced TO).
4:55 63-54 4 Corners Man FC Press Burke Layup Make
Memphis again presses, and Michigan goes into the old four corners. Burke just beats his man off the dribble and goes right up the middle for a layup (+1, dunk/layup, late contest, make). He's gonna be good, that one.
4:35 65-54 2-1-2 Man Burke TO
Morgan has the ball at the top of the key and Burke (+0.5) comes open on a curl cut around a Hardaway (+0.5) screen. He takes it right at the basket, but 3 defenders collapse and Burke is stuck in no man's land when he jumps, giving it away when he tries to kick it out to Smotrycz. -1 Burke, unforced TO. Think he could've taken the shot if he went up strong, but he made a mistake in leaving his feet without knowing where he was going with the ball. Last two possessions are a good reminder of what it's like to have a talented freshman PG.
4:10 65-56 OOB Man FC Press Hardaway FT (2/2)
Memphis comes out of a timeout in the press again, but immediately fouls Hardaway when he gets the inbounds pass. Michigan is in the double bonus. Derp.
3:56 67-56 2-1-2 Man 3/4 Press Smotrycz 3-pt Make
Douglass dribbles around for a really long time without anything opening up, which I guess is understandable considering Michigan is trying to kill clock now. He nearly gets stuck in the paint, but just before the shot clock is going to expire he finds Smotrycz, who nails a dagger with a hand in his face (+1, 3 pt., heavy contest, make). End of charting, because this is remarkably time-consuming and the game is essentially over at this point.

So, are you going to do the alter-ego thing too, Ace?

You know, I hadn't really thought about it, but it is a really easy way to transition between...

Charts?

Yes, charts, but you're jumping the gun, alter-ego. We should probably figure out what happened above.

So, um, what happened?

Coaching happened, at least for Michigan. I'm not exactly sure what to call whatever Pastner does. Michigan hit Memphis with a wide variety of screens and cuts that took full advantage of their man defense, and the Tigers apparently don't play zone... ever. Beilein probably felt like he was back pwning NAIA fools again. As for individual player performances...

Wait, now you're jumping the gun. We have a...

Oh, right.

Chart?

Chart.

Offensive Creation
Player + - T Notes
Burke 9.5 5 4.5 Had some freshman mistakes, but overall quite good.
Hardaway 10 7 3 Best creator on offense, but forces plays too often.
Novak 4 1 3 Tons of half-points, GRIT. What did you expect?
Smotrycz 5 5 0 Pretty much as expected. Does a lot of good things, but also makes some glaring errors. Looks uncomfortable handling the ball, especially in the post.
Morgan 2.5 1 1.5 Not very active, does good job crashing to basket.
Douglass 3 3 0 Guard version of Smotrycz. Lots of positive half-points and inexplicable minus-ones. Still good for at least one absurd three-point attempt per game.
Horford 3 .5 2.5 Little post game to speak of, but very active off the ball. Much-improved.
Akunne 0.5 0.5 0 He's... useful? That's a bonus.
Christian 2.5 0 2.5 One fantastic hustle possession and a layup off a pick. Nice spark off the bench.
Vogrich 1.5 0 1.5 Pretty quiet day, but did have a nice driving layup.
McLimans 0 0 0 Nothing of note in seven minutes,
Team 2 3.5 -1.5 A couple of well-executed plays where there were too many players doing something right to break down credit individually. Also, a few plays of Amaker-ball, which are justifiably minused.
TOTAL 43.5 26.5 17 Really have no clue what this means yet.

This should not come as news to those who have watched Michigan play this year, but Trey Burke is quite good for a freshman, or just period. He was efficient shooting the basketball, took care of the ball outside of a couple bad plays, and didn't try to force the issue too much. In fact, he was better than Tim Hardaway in that regard, though THJ is the one guy on the team who can really create his own shot from anywhere on the floor, so that's understandable.

I was torn about who should start at center after this game, and though Jordan Morgan locked that job down over the last couple weeks, it's still worth noting that Jon Horford is a lot better than he was last year. He hits the boards hard, is a presence inside on defense, and now looks comfortable in the offense, which has opened up opportunities for him to score a few points. Horford is a much more explosive athlete than Morgan, so if he can develop a passable post game, I think he'll eventually overtake Morgan for the starting role. Even if he doesn't, he's a viable big man off the bench, something Michigan didn't really have last year.

Stu and Metrics may drive me insane before the year is out, at least if this game is any indication. Douglass can handle the ball and plays good defense, but he's not hitting his open looks (more on that later) and his shot selection can be highly questionable. He also looks completely out of sorts when he has to take the ball anywhere near the basket, an affliction that also seems to affect Smotrycz, who turned the ball over multiple times because he forgets to hold the ball above his head instead of keeping it low and allowing defenders to knock it away. When I'm looking at the TV and screaming "I WAS TAUGHT NEVER TO DO THAT WHEN I PLAYED REC-ED BALL IN THIRD GRADE," well, it's an issue. On the other hand, Smot does look better when he drives to the basket, and his finishing looks improved, so hopefully this is just him getting acclimated to playing in the post more often.

I'm lonely.

Sorry, totally ignored myself there. Should we talk about the shooting chart?

Yes, you negligent jerk.

No need to get pissy, self. Shot chart is broken up by the three different levels of shots. NC == no contest. LC == late contest. HC == heavy contest. You probably already figured that out. The (3F) for Hardaway under late contested dunks/layups means he was fouled three times while taking those types of shots, since those attempts are worth noting but obviously can't count against shot attempts.

  Dunk/Layup 2-point 3-point
Player NC LC HC NC LC HC NC LC HC
Burke 2/2 1/1 - 2/2 1/1 (1F) 0/2 0/1 -
Hardaway 2/2 1/1 (3F) 0/1 2/2 (1F) 1/3 0/1 - 0/2
Novak 1/1 - - - 0/1 - 1/1 1/2 -
Smotrycz - - 1/1 1/1 - 0/2 - - 1/1
Morgan 1/1 - 1/1 - - - - - -
Douglass - - - - - 0/1 2/5 0/1 0/1
Horford 1/1 - (1F) - - - - - -
Akunne - - - - - - 1/1 - -
Christian - - 1/1 - - - - - -
Vogrich - - 1/1 - - - 0/2 - -
McLimans - - - - - - - - -

Again, we'll see what trends emerge as I do more of these, but I was impressed by the number of wide open looks Michigan got in this game. The team actually missed a fair amount of wide open threes, or the score could've been even more lopsided. Also, only one missed dunk/layup on the day, and that came on a great block from behind—everybody finished well around the basket. The only players that could make you go "argh" are Douglass—gotta knock down more of those open looks—and Vogrich, who can't seem to find his shot. Oh, and ESO!

Can I introduce the "Let's go to the tape" section?

Do you do that?

I am well versed in the art of section breaking in 190 languages, dialects, and levels of sanity.

Okay.

Ga naar de video mijn kleine recensent

This section is going to be shorter than normal, because this is more of a test run and I forgot to cut video in the second half, but here are two plays that stood out. The first is just one of Beilein's plays working like magic, as Novak gets freed up by a pick on the backside of the play and Hardaway hits him perfectly for a layup:

That's just beautiful basketball—as I watched this game in slow motion, focusing on all the off-ball movement involved in Beilein's offense, I gained a huge appreciation both for his coaching and the execution by the players. If you're just looking at the ball when Michigan is on offense, you're missing out.

As for the other video I cut, well, this is just a fantastic pass by Douglass and a great finish by Burke, included because you all need to be as excited about Burke as I am:

While the layup looked easy, Burke's decision to not dribble and cut across the face of the retreating defender—basically cutting him off from any chance at contesting the shot—is a savvy move and very encouraging coming from a freshman. His basketball instincts are ahead of the curve.

Heroes?

Burke and Hardaway, who provided the bulk of the offense. Also Novak, who was deadly from three and did all the usual Gritty McGrittereckstein stuff. Oh, and John Beilein like whoa.

Goats?

It's tough to call anyone a goat after beating the #8 team in the country, but Douglass can't waste possessions like he did, and also needs to start hitting open threes. That's what he's here for, and it's long past time where we can use the excuse that he's not used to handling backup point guard duties and that's somehow affecting his shot.

Anything else?

This is obviously just an offensive UFR, as I worked on this during Ohio State week and there just wasn't any time to do the defense. In the future, I'm thinking I'll just re-create the shot chart—no need to do a possession-by-possession breakdown for the other team's offense—for the opposing team and break that down further based on what type of defense Michigan played. It'll likely be included with the offense as a general basketball UFR.

Consider this a test run. Please give feedback, especially if something is confusing or you have a correction about basketball coaching stuff that I probably messed up.