Submitted by Brian on February 28th, 2013 at 11:16 AM

2/27/2013 – Michigan 78, Penn State 84 – 23-5, 10-5 Big Ten


zero: searching "Penn State Michigan" on google image search gives you all stuff like this

ONE! Though I compared Penn State to Gopherquest, I did not start a NittanyQuest. Therefore I have not wasted a lot of effort and brought disaster on the basketball team with hubris.

TWO! Vegas lines will adjust to something that is more in line with reasonable expectations for the tourney.

THREE! butt

FOUR! Now not making the Final Four will be okay, if it comes to that. We'll all be like "okay, Sweet Sixteen or whatever pretty good, program keeps moving in the right direction let's get some age up in here."

FIVE! Pat Chambers is having a pretty good day, and he seems like a nice dude.

SIX! why do i have these sores all over my body

SEVEN! If you don't remember what you did I'm pretty sure you can't be prosecuted for it. Michigan's defense in this game should start hitting itself on the head with mallets tout suite.

EIGHT! I was going to be out of town for that Indiana game anyway.

NINE! Kenpom stopped doing his weekly recaps so I don't have to see Michigan featured in both the "biggest upset" and "unlikeliest comeback" categories.

In related news, FUUUUUUU


That doesn't start moving off of 90% Michigan win until the game tied, at which point Kenpom thought Michigan was… 80% likely to win.

TEN! In this trying time I have discovered a terrific support group of people who will come through for me in the event that I become addicted to heroin to forget this game.

ELEVEN! that aint even close to true im just talking about my wifes cats one of whom is a dick

TWELVE! I am fulsome in the glow of life today. Yea, truly the miracle of my existence is made clear, because now I can compare that to something precisely as unlikely as random chemicals coming together in a self-sustaining, evolving process that leads to intelligent life in a empty, cold, hostile universe full of nuclear explosions and little else.

THIRTEEN! The team shot 66% from two!

FOURTEEN! I have a job that is rather flexible when it comes to hours kept, so I did not have to wake up at seven this morning to go into work. This would have been awkward because I was boxing a donkey at that time.

FIFTEEN! Allegedly boxing a donkey.

SIXTEEN! Officer, I have never seen that donkey in my life, nor did I kick its donkey ass six ways to Sunday at seven AM, but if I had I would like you to trust my judgment as to how necessary this alleged vicious beating was.

SEVENTEEN! It may have been Tom Zbikowski in fact.

EIGHTEEN! Basketball is stupid anyway, and is for stupids, and this is not at all a reaction to the events presented me. I am totally in control of my brain.

NINETEEN! also butt


So… that happened. The offense was basically fine except for some crappy three-point shooting and excessive turnovers. Kenpom shows Burke with six(!), which seems vastly wrong. As mentioned, they shot 66% from two, and against Penn State 1.13 PPP should be enough to win the game. /Northwestern 2000'd

The defense. Jebus. Even if you want to set aside the 50% three-point shooting, which you probably shouldn't since Jermaine Marshall didn't have a bad look, Michigan forced just nine turnovers and put Penn State on the line 27(!!!) times to their 20. Jordan Morgan's return did little to staunch the bleeding; it was in fact Morgan going gonzo trapping a guy who shoots 44%/25% that opened up many of the floodgates.

I'm sure that Morgan was told to do this. I don't have any idea why. Those traps did nothing except force Michigan to play 4 on 3 once they were broken, as they always were. This led to fouls and open threes. It's asinine. It is a Tubby Smith substitution pattern. Morgan is outside the three point line—way outside—and this unbalances the defense to such an extent that it's almost impossible to recover. The alternative is a softer hedge that maybe gives up a pull-up jumper more often but… this is Newbill we're talking about. That's a shot you're trying to get.

Meanwhile, Stauskas caused Beilein to channel Bo Ryan momentarily. As I've been saying for a while, Michigan's lack of fouling is actually a symptom of a passive defense that does not force the issue much. Stauskas is the king of not fouling, and that's to the team's detriment. He could have put a Penn State player on the line in transition; instead he just got out of the way and gave up the layup.

In this one we got the passivity (9 TOs for PSU) and put the opponent on the line.

Zone. Michigan should have at least tried to go zone in the first half when Penn State was shredding that hedge. Penn State is not good at basketball and teams like that tend to have no idea what to do when they are faced with a different defense. Sticking with man to man seemed like a thing Michigan was trying to practice in the home game against Penn State; here it ended up costing them.

The wrong direction. Michigan's defense is definitively headed in it. That doesn't make sense given the youth of the team—they should be improving faster than more veteran outfits. The Morgan injury may have something to do with it, but he played 24 minutes in this one and Michigan still got torched. The problems are many.