Unverified Voracity Explores Zero And Uh... Nero? Hero?

Unverified Voracity Explores Zero And Uh... Nero? Hero? Comment Count

Brian March 7th, 2018 at 12:45 PM

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[Marc-Gregor Campredon]

If it keeps going like this I'll learn to spell "renaissance" correctly on the first try. Rob Dauster on Michigan's elite... defense? That is what the card says. Defense.

As surprising as that decision was, the dots connected. Yaklich, like Beilein, spent his life as a teacher and a high school coach before breaking into the college ranks. Unlike Beilein, however, Yaklich has prided himself in his ability to get the most out of a team on the defensive end of the floor.

“As a high school coach, I focused entirely on defense,” Yaklich said. At the high school level, coaching offense is more about skill development, about making your players better shooters, better ball-handlers, better scorers. Figure out a handful of things that you can have success with and trust your players to make plays. “My high school coaches instilled that in me. When I went to Illinois State, I naturally grew into that role. We didn’t have a defensive coordinator, but my voice, that’s what I took pride in.”

At Michigan, that is, quite literally, Yaklich’s role. He was hired to coach Michigan’s defense, to be their defensive coordinator, and the success that the Wolverines have had on that end cannot be overlooked. Prior to this season, Beilein never had a team finish higher than 37th in KenPom’s adjusted defensive efficiency rankings. In the last four seasons, the Wolverines never finished higher than 69th.

“The smartest thing is I stopped coaching it so much,” Beilein said of his team’s defensive improvement. “I let other people become the voice of it. I wanted one guy, that’s all he thinks about all day long.”

I'm not taking credit for suggesting that Beilein needs a defensive coordinator. But I'm not not taking credit. I will be ambiguously pleased.

Similar resumes. I should have posted this a couple days ago when it was slightly different, with the Stauskas Elite Eight team at the top of the list. But anyway here's Bart Torvik's list of resumes most similar to Michigan's in recent committee history:

image

Nik and company are still #3. These are all at least three seeds and 40% of them are twos. I haven't seen anything else suggesting Michigan can get to a two, but hopefully that indicates Jerry Palm's (and 30% of the matrix's) 4-seed is off.

There is exactly one bracket that puts Michigan on the five line, but it's KPI. For some reason KPI is on the teamsheets, so hooray for that.

One of many maximum Beilein moments. A man who recognizes his own limitations.

Unbalanced schedule FTL. This year was an excellent example of how the Big Ten's schedule cheapens the regular season title. A gent calling himself "Wicked_UMD"—must be a St. Cloud State fan—analyzed how the schedule rotation affected expected wins in league play:

Team Exp Win Delta
Michigan State 1.09
Northwestern 0.66
Purdue 0.65
Nebraska 0.51
Ohio State 0.46
Iowa 0.18
Indiana 0.16
Minnesota 0.02
Wisconsin -0.08
Illinois -0.10
Penn State -0.43
Rutgers -0.77
Michigan -0.81
Maryland -1.27

That half-win edge over Purdue had a fairly good shot at costing the Boilers a share of the title, and Michigan is almost two wins back of MSU—flip that first Purdue game and that is also a title-altering schedule gap.

The net result is a cheapening of the regular season title. Adding two conference games will help somewhat, but only somewhat: each team still misses almost half the conference for a second game annually. There is a way to create a maximally meaningful and fair conference race with just one extra game:

Alternative: 19 game conference schedule.

PHASE 1: round robin.
PHASE 2: line is drawn between 7th and 8th teams in the league. Mini-leagues subsequently play round-robin. Rutgers is relegated to the Big East every year.

PROS: Absolutely fair. Winner is undisputed. Makes Big Ten title a huge important deal. Final six games for teams that make upper half would be knock-down drag out brutal free-for-all for league title. Would give top teams impregnable schedule strength. You could televise the schedule draw with Ronaldo and Messi in suits.

CONS: May cost league NCAA bids if the best team in the bottom half can't get any marquee wins in the last six games or the worst team in the top half just gets blitzed. Bottom half is just kind of sadly playing out the string. Uncertainty about final three home games may impact ticket sales negatively. Extremely distant possibility that the 8th best team 13 games in can climb all the way to the top.

This will never happen because the folks in charge are more interested in milking as much money out of college basketball than making a drastic and potentially awesome change. But seriously you guys.

Mo draft stock. The Draft Express gents on Michigan's center:

Despite his limitations, and the diminishing market for players his size, there's still a role in today's NBA for a highly skilled big man who can space the floor and plays with a competitive spirit. Wagner is young for a junior, not turning 21 until the end of April, so he has time to continue to improve considering he was already a late bloomer to begin with. He'd likely get picked somewhere in the second round if he decided to keep his name in the draft but also could benefit from coming back for his senior year and continuing to work on his weaknesses, namely his defense, passing and overall feel for the game.

They rank him 55th, so not even towards the top of the second round. SI has an extensive Big Ten Tournament scouting article that comes to a similar conclusion:

Draft Projection: Second Round

After testing and staying in school last year, Wagner has definitely improved, although he’s still a bit of an acquired taste among scouts. It depends on what you value in your bigs, and his considerable offensive skills will be worth the risk to some teams despite his lackluster defense and physical limitations in that area. Wagner excels as a screener and post-up option and has a good feel for finding pockets in the defense. He’s heavy-footed and looks a bit clumsy at times, but his skill level facing up, attacking closeouts and keeping defenders honest gets the job done in college. He gets some credit for helping lift Michigan to the title (and was named the tournament’s Most Outstanding Player) but the Wolverines won more by playing great team basketball than relying on Wagner to carry them.

It'll be up to Wagner's whim. He's not in the range where he's going to get a guaranteed contract and may end up in the G-League. The money there isn't great so he might decide he'd rather play under the bright lights of the NCAA than for the Fort Wayne Mad Antz even if he delays his earnings a year. If the consensus is that he'll stick on a roster that's a totally different matter.

FWIW, SI on Matthews:

Draft Projection: 2019

The former Kentucky transfer has been plagued by consistency issues throughout his career but has an outside chance at the league depending on how much he can improve over the course of the next year. “I can’t put my finger on what he does well,” says one scout, the sentiment being that Matthews is best suited as a 3-and-D wing given the heavy demand for such players. He has the right type of body to fit in the league, but struggles to create his own offense and has to simplify his approach. He did hit a pair of threes against Michigan State, but must improve his shot selection and become a consistently impactful defender to succeed in the NBA.

Silver lining from his collapse midseason is that Michigan doesn't have to worry about his departure after just one year.

The hopes are dangerously up. George Sipple of the Free Press checks in with Quinn and Jack Hughes, who's currently the projected #1 pick in the 2019 draft. In addition to various items about how he is a generational hockey player is this tantalizing possibility:

Two Hughes at U-M in 2019?
There’s a chance Jack could join his older brother at Michigan next season. The middle Hughes has not committed anywhere, and Ellen and Jim acknowledge U-M is one possibility.

Michigan has had players accelerate to play college hockey early. Jack is currently in his junior year of high school, but, through online courses, he could go on an accelerated academic track, and graduate early to be able to play collegiality next year.

Jack sought exceptional status to play in the Ontario Hockey League as a 15-year-old, but was denied. Among the short list of players who have been granted that status to play a year early are John Tavares, Aaron Ekblad and Connor McDavid, who are now in the NHL. …

“It could be a perfect scenario,” Jim said of Jack going to U-M. “But they’re not there yet. The beauty is Jack is in a really great spot right now. He values the development he’s getting with Seth and Wrobo.”

For perspective, Hughes is playing up with the U18s as a U17:

Adding Hughes—and presumably keeping Quinn—would radically change next year's outlook.

Brandon Johns highlights. He is up for Mr. Basketball and looks like a perfect fit as a Beilein 4:

His main competition is David DeJulius, it appears.

One and done done? The NBA's one and done rule was always more about the NBA than college basketball, and now that they've got Lebron and a former president criticizing it publicly it may not be long for this world. The proposal is wrought with frippery that attempts to make it seem like one-and-done wasn't a selfish act from the drop:

Current NBA commissioner Adam Silver and several of his top advisers have been engaged in listening tours and information-gathering missions with an array of stakeholders for months. That has included formal meetings with the National Basketball Players Association about adjusting the so-called "one-and-done" age-limit rule. But Silver's aim is much more comprehensive than simply re-opening the door for 18-year-olds to play in the NBA, sources said.

A plan is expected to include the NBA starting relationships with elite teenagers while they are in high school, providing skills to help them develop both on and off the court. It would ultimately open an alternate path to the NBA besides playing in college and a way 18-year-olds could earn a meaningful salary either from NBA teams or as part of an enhanced option in the developmental G League, sources said.

The NCAA is either going to work with the NBA to keep a healthy number of future stars in college basketball or lose them all because of their archaic rules. Survey says it'll be the former because the people in charge care about money.

Etc.: I summon the Bracket Leak Hero from his home in Valhalla. Daily on Lavigne. Also Boka. Amateurism under attack, repeatedly, FBI investigation is good.

Comments

MGoPodcast 9.18: Completely Serious About All of It

MGoPodcast 9.18: Completely Serious About All of It Comment Count

Seth February 20th, 2018 at 9:45 AM

1 hour and 23 minutes

2018-02-20 mgopodcast 9.18

We are at the Residence Inn Ann Arbor Downtown, which now is the time to book those rooms for football next year because those fill up.

We Couldn’t Have One Without the Other

We can do this because people support us. You should support them too so they’ll want to do it again next year! The show is presented by UGP & The Bo Store, and if it wasn’t for Rishi and Ryan there would be VERY long hiatuses between podcasts.

Our other sponsors are also key to all of this: HomeSure Lending, Peak Wealth Management, Ann Arbor Elder Law, the Residence Inn Ann Arbor Downtown, the University of Michigan Alumni Association, Michigan Law Grad,Human Element, Lantana Hummus and new this week introducing Ecotelligent Homes

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1. The Hoops Podcast

starts at 1:00

Bracketology: Even the biggest skeptics are coming around on Michigan as a 6-7 seed: NCAA and their buckets make it annoying because a win at Michigan State is the same as a “Quadrant One” trip to Penn State. Encouraging to see head of the selection committee say strength of nonconference is garbage. Big Ten goes to 20 games next year so we’ll see fewer Houston Baptists.

Poole eating into Matthews’s minutes, which is a nice thing to see given CM’s turnovers. MAAR is up to 20% usage. Michigan can beat anybody when they’re getting a huge shot differential from their turnover avoidance. Posting up on Dunc doesn’t work anymore. Peak Wisconsin names—Happ took 23 twos in that game!

Big Ten future: Indiana should be back up, Maryland will solidify itself, Brad Underwood a good hire at Illinois. Annually convince ourselves that Iowa will be good, but they’re 250th on defense. Penn State preview: Watkins gets angry—go get him Mo! Unlikable players in the Big Ten?

2. The Ball of Crap so We Aren’t Talking Recruiting Segment

starts at 34:01

Curling! Signing Day: Michigan recruiting imploded and we don’t know why. Otis Reese is understandable because Georgia is paying ridiculous money. Losing Herron from the 2019 class hurts.

Jim McElwain: he’s a position coach who can’t recruit, don’t think he’s a competent dude or a good dude—denigrating players like Mark Mangino. Made up a death threat. Credit card fraud. Track record as a WRs coach but as a 10th assistant he’s a wasted opportunity more than anything. Nobody down South likes him so you’re not even getting some help in Florida recruiting. Like Sherrone Moore and Ed Warriner hires. Not great that Pep is still around if it’s only because he didn’t get an NFL offer.

3. Gimmicky Top Five: Top Five Things NCAA Would Cite Beilein For

starts at 52:51

The FBI is going to come down on a lot of programs and the people in Ann Arbor aren’t scared, but we’re going to try to figure out what they’d find if they put Michigan’s basketball program under the microscope. This is what Michigan State failed to do—we’re getting out in front!

4. Ace’s Hockey Podcast wsg David Nasternak

starts at 1:06:26

Sweep weekend over #1 Notre Dame gives them a shot at the playoffs, provided they take care of business down the stretch vs. Arizona State—tournament upsets can really hurt teams in the 13-15 at-large area. ND was a good matchup for us because Michigan's an offensive team that can control the puck.

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MUSIC:

  • “We Will Not Make It (Not Without You)”—Twin Peaks
  • “The Star Spangled Banner”—Francis Scott Key, as “performed” by Fergie
  • “Drunk and On a Star”—Kevin Morby
  • “Across 110th Street”

THE USUAL LINKS

They do have a couple of immensely punchable faces.

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Unverified Voracity Shows NO MERCY

Unverified Voracity Shows NO MERCY Comment Count

Brian January 23rd, 2018 at 1:54 PM

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On the awful MSU thing. I have all these tabs open and am struggling to say anything that's not all-caps and spittle-flecked. Most of these tabs have the same theme: how on earth can these people survey the devastation wrought under their leadership-type substance and not commit career seppuku? The lack of shame on the part of MSU's leadership is unprecedented; all these people should be voted out, if possible. The two guys who would have been up for election in November are getting out of the way, but if I know anything it's that a... person like Joel Ferguson will try to bluster his way through:

As a reminder, here's Ferguson in March:

“But if Coach Klages was told as early as 1997 about this and didn’t do anything, isn’t the university at fault?” Jones asked.

“I wouldn’t say that at all,” Ferguson said. “That’s a bad decision that she made, and it has to be stretched to us by all the folks chasing ambulances, because there’s no payday by her.”

He's up in 2020, and if the state Democratic party knows what's good for them they won't let him get to the ballot. Does anyone know if you can recall trustees?

Meanwhile, Lou Anna Simon should not resign. She should be put in jail. She was told that there was a sexual predator at the university she purports to be in charge of, and she said "don't tell me about it," by her own admission:

"I told people to play it straight up, and I did not receive a copy of the report."

If three Penn State executives saw jail time for failure to report, Simon should too. It is absolutely indisputable that her purported leadership increased the number of victims from the worst serial sex assault case in American history. I feel like I'm going crazy here. At long last, does Michigan State have no shame?

The nice old man who expresses himself in Werther's Originals sculpture. A very John Beilein criticism is leveled here.

The man is himself, and nobody else.

Patterson status. Michigan is waiting on Shea Patterson's appeal for immediate eligibility, but the folks in charge are dotting and crossing letters before they make their move. "Late February" is the current timeframe; Sam Webb provides the most thorough update I've seen so far:

There are six other kids/schools I know of at this point – Houston (Deonte Anderson), Florida (Van Jefferson), Nebraska (Breon Dixon), Georgia Tech (Jack DeFoor), Central Florida (Tre Nixon), and UAB (Jarrion Street). My gut tells me that the process for gathering information for each kid’s appeal is painstakingly thorough and they all want to make sure no details are missed. So the delay is largely due to their desire to make sure no corroborating details are missed, because as one source close to Patterson’s circle told me… “you only get one shot at this. You can’t go back and add things after the fact.)”

There are several additional paragraphs at the link.

The delay comes from meticulousness as the lawyer who's working with these guys collects everything from all seven of them so he can present the best case to the NCAA that Ole Miss went out of its way to lie to that year's recruiting class so they would end up signing. NCAA waivers seem to make no sense from the outside but the large number of guys petitioning gives several different schools motivation to get this done, and collectively they should be able to gather sufficient hard evidence that Ole Miss got them to sign by lying their asses off to convince the NCAA of that fact. Hopefully that's enough for the waiver.

Hurst burst in first. Daniel Jeremiah ranks the top 50 prospects for the upcoming NFL draft; Mo Hurst lands at #21:

Hurst is an undersized defensive tackle with exceptional quickness and awareness. Against the pass, he has elite get-off. He explodes off the snap and has a collection of effective hand moves to generate pressure. His bread-and-butter move is a quick swipe before wrapping around the blocker and exploding toward the quarterback. Against the run, he relies on his quickness to beat cut-off blocks and disrupt. Occasionally, he'll get stuck on blocks and is moved out of the hole. His effort is excellent. Overall, Hurst is an ideal 3-technique and could emerge as one of the best interior pass rushers in the league.

No complaints with that evaluation. I do think that #21 might be low for him since the NFL is now such a passing-heavy league. The kind of interior disruption Hurst provides is much more important than his tendency to get clunked on the rare occasions anyone can land a clean shot on him. Naturally, PFF has him third overall because they're just behind Mo Hurst's mom on the list of entities that like Mo Hurst. (MGoBlog is #3.)

Never again. Stu Douglass has a story about offensive rebounding:

I think we all knew this in our hearts already.

Good move. Now generalize it:

The agent thing has always been more pressing in hockey because of competition from Canadian juniors. Agents prefer the security of a contract to the probable-but-not-definite relationship they had with an NCAA prospect as their "advisor," so the prevailing thought amongst college hockey coaches is that agents tend to push their guys towards the CHL. That barrier is gone. Probably won't change much in the ongoing CHL-NCAA blood war, but neither will it do anything to the competitive landscape of college hockey.

It's past time for everyone to get that consideration.

Don't get it stolen, don't get it blocked. Defense by possession start:

Fairly intuitive. It is interesting that first possessions are so bad even relative to normal half-court offense.

Etc.: Quinn Hughes is the #4 NA skater in the CSB midterm rankings. Incoming D Bode Wilde is #22. No one else makes the list except 2019 recruit Phillipe Lapointe, who's #201—in the usually undrafted range. Angelique on Grant Newsome. On Dakota Raabe's first goal. If I had one critique it's that the sword is nowhere near big enough. Abuse enablers for jail.

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Hoops Recruitin' Doesn't Eat Dirt Sandwiches

Hoops Recruitin' Doesn't Eat Dirt Sandwiches Comment Count

Ace September 28th, 2017 at 1:11 PM

The State of Things: Pretty Good!

247 changed latest commit Ignas Brazdeikis's composite ranking to reflect that half the services don't bother to rank foreign prospects. He's now the #42 overall player in the class, which would place him as the fifth-highest ranked signee in John Beilein's Michigan tenure, per Orion Sang.

That bump, combined with the scandal that's rocked college basketball (happy trails, Louisville's 2018 class), has Michigan occupying a lofty spot in the 2018 team rankings:


via 247, obviously

It really can't be overstated how nice it is to be one of maybe three or four major college basketball programs that isn't in a full state of panic over the possibility of an FBI raid. We're already seeing the fallout for other programs: Arizona lost a five-star commit; Louisville no longer has a coach, athletic director, or 2018 recruiting class, and they've suspended five-star freshman Brian Bowen. There's surely more to come, as Nike's EYBL, the most prominent AAU league, has been served with a subpoena.

Meanwhile, both recruits and coaches have to figure out how to navigate the post-Feds recruiting landscape, and both sides appear to be acting with great caution. The top overall recruit in the class, RJ Barrett, is no longer visiting Arizona after they were linked to the scandal. He's also no longer visiting Michigan this weekend and has eliminated the Wolverines; given Beilein's sterling reputation, read into that what you will.

It's going to be a long, messy ride for many of college basketball's top programs. Beilein's insistence on sticking to rules almost literally nobody else follows has rankled in the past, even those who want a generally clean program, but he sure looks better for it today. Running a program that isn't in danger of major sanctions or, like, having coaches literally end up imprisoned is going to be a major draw for the foreseeable future.

[Hit THE JUMP for weekend visitors and more.]

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WTKA Roundtable 1/12/2017: Right From the Oven

WTKA Roundtable 1/12/2017: Right From the Oven

49 minutes

image

[Marc-Gregor Campredeon]

Things discussed:

  • Pep Hamilton Part 1: It makes some sense if you understand it’s the Browns, and the fact that he can be reunited with Ed Feng.
  • Hoop: very poor defensive effort, AND opponents are shooting the lights out from three, AND…callers
  • Callers: They call into a radio station to talk about Beilein. Most of what they say is sensible. What happened to the Donlon Effect?
  • B recruiting: it is what it is. Recruiting with attrition in mind is a good change.
  • The O-Line: Hoke’s bad recruiting and bad luck left just one upperclassman tackle (JBB) on the team for 2017.
  • Pep Hamilton Part 2: Pep was on hand for the big uptick in Stanford. Calm, smart, confident—not fiery on the sideline. Coaching turnover will be a thing as long as Harbaugh’s here, but not a bad thing.
  • PJ Fleck rowing his whole recruiting out of K-zoo with him; we’ve moved WMU’s kitchen sink to soft commit.

You can catch the entire episode on Michigan Insider's podcast stream on Audioboom.

Segment two is here. Segment three is here.

THE USUAL LINKS

Beilein Extended

Beilein Extended Comment Count

Seth November 4th, 2015 at 10:48 AM

Via the mothership:

11456070

And the relevant bits from the release:

The terms of Beilein's extension call for him to earn a base salary of $400,000 with additional compensation of $1,470,000 per year for TV, radio, internet, shoe/apparel sponsorships, consulting, promotion and other services. In separate deferred payments, Beilein will receive an additional $1.5 million annually through the University's Supplemental Defined Contributions Retirement Plan.

The contract also provides opportunities for supplemental pay based on a range of performance measures from winning the Big Ten regular-season title and tournament championships as well as selection to and victories in the NCAA Tournament.

The perception already was that he was here through retirement—Michigan would be insane to let him go—but it was time to do this again because his last contract, signed in 2013, would have expired when this year's freshmen are seniors. When this one runs out he'll be 68.

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Unverified Voracity Might Be Coffee Dad

Unverified Voracity Might Be Coffee Dad Comment Count

Brian March 25th, 2014 at 12:28 PM

YES DO IT YES. Oversigning for the win:

Knows Nussmeier, started four games for them a year ago, immediately eligible, Michigan has the room, just do it.

Are we sure he's not actually coffee dad? From John Beilein's favorited tweets:

image

Coffee dad. Also he favorited some random dude talking about his teams' rebounding derogatorily. John Beilein!

…is self-aware. So it's good he's not Skynet.

OH REALLY. Lost in the sea of March Madness last week was one statement from Brady Hoke that will hopefully prevent me from typing yet more spittle-flecked all-caps rants about how fifth year senior starting quarterbacks don't get benched except in the event of catastrophic injury, and sometimes not even then:

He's doing okay, (but) he's not ready to be the starter at Michigan," Hoke said Thursday. "Devin's got the most experience at that job. … But if we were starting today, (Morris) wouldn't be the guy out there."

All right then. That's settled.

"Two weeks from now? We'll see."

ARGH.

And the Crimson sea parted. It's that time of year again, where players either flee or are pushed from the Indiana basketball program. This time it seems more like a mutual flee/push, as two struggling players Indiana probably needs anyway are exiting. Jeremy Hollowell, one of the two large athletic Hoosiers who can't play basketball, is out the door. Austin Etherington is the other departure. Noah Vonleh already announced he's entering the draft.

With Luke Fischer's departure for Marquette in the middle of the season, Indiana has lost every player over 6'8" who saw time except for Hanner Mosquera-Perea. Meanwhile the biggest guy in their recruiting class is a 6'7" small forward.

Is it too late for James Blackmon to decommit again? Asking for a friend.

And then the other red sea parted. OSU takes a major hit with LaQuinton Ross's NBA draft declaration. They've got a terrific recruiting class coming in, and now they're really going to need it. They've lost Ross, who was 30% of their shots, Amedeo Della Valle, Aaron Craft, and Lenzelle Smith from a six seed and first-round exit.

And then everybody in the Big Ten laid out the red carpet. West Virginia shooting guard Eron Harris is transferring closer to home. Home is Indianapolis. Harris averaged 17 points a game as a sophomore, shooting 42% from two and 86% from the line. Scout's Brian Snow says Michigan will be involved($), and lord knows everyone in and around shooting-challenged Indiana will also make a run. Michigan's hoping that "closer to home" really means "away from West Virginia" since 250 versus 350 miles isn't much of a functional difference.

I'm in favor of Michigan trying to grab him. Think of him as a 2015 recruit who only  gets two years before he has to go to the NBA, and oh right that just makes him like anyone else who ends up shooting the ball a lot under John Beilein.

Michigan has an open scholarship this year and it would be nice to have a couple of upperclass years to fill in those vacated by Michigan's NBA draft departure. After Harris sits out a year he would be competing on the wing with a senior Caris LeVert—maybe—and a junior Zak Irvin—maybe, along with Kam Chatman and any class of 2015 freshmen. Harris is a proven high-level player who will make a decision well before the 2015 kids will. And he'll have a year to get better under Beilein before he gets back on the court. If you can get him, get him.

10751383523_25f3593c4d_c[1]

[Bryan Fuller]

Open to a return. Glenn Robinson was as noncommital as everyone is when asked about entering a professional draft, but this is something good to hear:

"There have been times this year when I thought about it and heard a lot of talk and everything," Robinson said. "I just want to make the best decision, the best decision for me, because I want to play this game for a long time. So if I'm not ready, I'm not ready."

While you can't begrudge someone their desire to get paid lots of money for their skill, it does grind my gears a tiny bit when guys leave early without the prospect of a first-round pick waiting. Robinson might have fallen into that boat; it would be really easy to ignore the stuff they're saying about you this year because you were supposed to be a first rounder last year. Hopefully one of these two things happens:

  1. Robinson annihilates Tokyo as he drags Michigan to a national title
  2. Robinson plays pretty well and follows the Tim Hardaway Jr model.

Open to stay. Please hold your nose at a reference to a Michael Rosenberg-gathered quote, but it's kind of a big deal:

Jordan is so admired within the program that Alexander, another rising coach, endorses him to be the next head coach at Michigan.

"In my mind, I think he would be a great progression, when and if the time comes, when coach Beilein decides to transition on," Alexander says.

Alexander is 37, and he set a goal for himself to be a head coach by age 40. But he looks at Jordan and thinks of the Michigan football team's defensive coordinator. Says Alexander: "I would be more than willing to be (Jordan's) Greg Mattison. We want to continue to work together. I just think the world of him."

If Jordan and Alexander are both around when Beilein hangs it up, I don't know how you don't give Jordan the job after his work with Morris and Burke and Stauskas and LeVert, plus the recruiting bonafides and possible huge long-term upside. (Beilein is 61, so if he goes another five years you'd be hiring a 39-year old guy who could be around for the next 25 years.) Especially if that would mean Alexander sticks with him.

They've really got to do something about this. Urban Meyer on the packaged play trend and its acceleration:

The second-level zone read has his attention. In the traditional zone read, the quarterback reads the defensive end to dictate whether he'll hand off or run. In this version, the quarterback is reading the linebacker.

“That's going to not disappear,” Meyer says. “It's even in the NFL now. The NFL doesn't give you three yards.”

College does -- as in, officials allow linemen to get up to three yards downfield before a throw. After following up with other coaches on this concept, one popular play is to throw a slant to the open space if the linebacker goes inside to cover the run, knowing linemen are already headed downfield to block.

This has started to become comical. Last year in the Michigan-Air Force game, two Air Force OL had in fact engaged defenders six yards downfield on a pass play without a call. Either get rid of the illegal man downfield rule or enforce it. But pick one.

Etc.: Glasgow's issue was a "driving-related offense," which seems pretty likely to be one particular driving-related offense unless they've got some really strict new rules about using your turn signal.

Derrick Green getting slimmer. Jim Tressel's CV doesn't include anything about sweatervests. Bo bracket. Pistons to chase Izzo because owner is MSU grad. No idea why MSU NBA owners want to wreck their alma mater's program but fine by me.

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Unverified Voracity Forebodes

Unverified Voracity Forebodes Comment Count

Brian March 11th, 2014 at 12:11 PM

Post game celebration. Confetti ho.

Morgan's singing voice is not the strong point of his game, but we'll forgive him.

All of the (most of the) awards. John Beilein is coach of the year to the media while Tim Miles wins the coaches' vote. This is justice. Meanwhile, John Beilein remains John Beilein:

Beilein said he will give away the coach of the year award as a trivia door prize at the radio show.

The first words out his mouth when asked about the award were about Tim Miles; he seemed almost annoyed he'd been handed a plague.

Meanwhile, Nik Stauskas is your Big Ten player of the year, Caris LeVert is second-team All Big Ten, and Derrick Walton is on your all-freshman team. On the snub side of things, Jordan Morgan is passed over for all-defense and Irvin for all-freshman.

It was probably tough for anyone to look at Michigan's defense and provide an all-D nod to them, even if most of the things going on weren't Morgan's deal. Irvin losing out to Purdue's Kendall Stephens is hard to defend since they were the exact same player and Stephens hit 37% of his threes to Irvin's 41%. But whatever, man.

Mmm, foreboding. John Gasaway puts together a list of the top players in college basketball($) that includes one Nik Stauskas, and sums him up from the opponent's point of view well:

At the moment, I'm not sure there's anything else in Division I ball quite like the deep foreboding experienced by opposing fans when the first 3 falls for Stauskas.

He's an Illinois fan, so he may be extrapolating from his most recent Stauskas experience.

Major blow to a contender. Kansas's Joel Embiid has a stress fracture in his back and is a "longshot" for the first weekend of the NCAA tourney. He's just plain out for the Big 12 tourney. If Kansas maintains their spot on the two line the toughest seed they can face before the Sweet 16 is a 7, but they just got beat by WVU in a game that would have been a blowout if WVU could handle a press.

For Michigan, a Kansas loss in the Big 12 tourney helps them in their quest to scoot into a Nova/Wichita region, and possibly Indianapolis. It would at least take a Villanova loss before anyone starts talking about a potential one seed for Michigan.

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It's desperation time for hockey. [Bill Rapai]

The other bracket. Michigan is just about hanging on to a spot in the hockey tournament despite their inability to beat some of the worst teams in the country. They are 14th in the Pairwise at this moment; current hockey bracketology has them matched up against Union in Bridgeport, Connecticut.

At 14th, Michigan could withstand one bid thief but not two. There is an extra conference this year, and thus an extra tournament to worry about. At 14th, there's probably a 50-50 shot at a bid. Ferris State is the only WCHA team in the top 16; St. Cloud and North Dakota are the only NCHC teams in the top 16. The ECAC has three teams slated for the tournament, as does the Big Ten. Bid thieves are everywhere.

That's if Michigan maintains its current position. The bad news: this weekend's opponent is an excellent Minnesota team. The good news: a split will be massively helpful thanks to the new quality win bonus. Get swept, though, and Michigan will be either right on the bubble or right outside it.

These are the wages of going 5-4 against Penn State and Michigan State. If Michigan ends up on the outside looking in again, that is 85% of the reason why.

Worst best mascot ever. I see shots of old mascots that seem designed to engender years of nightmares and pine for their return. South Dakota School of Mines and Technology has my back.

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His name is Grubby. Seriously. If Dave Brandon could guarantee that hypothetical Michigan mascot would be a homeless Wolverine named "Diseasy" I would support a mascot for M. Alas, it will just be a wolverine in a bread bowl.

Well that's (partially) random then. If you were wondering if student sections could affect free throw shooting, the answer is probably no since Northwestern crushed all comers in this department while MSU finished last.

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While most of this looks like random variation, those gaps down to Nebraska and Northwestern are pretty wild. I wonder if that's repeatable. 148 attempts is kind of a lot for that to be totally random.

Next year's schedule. Michigan's preseason tourney next year will take them back to Brooklyn. They'll play a couple of warmup tomato cans at Crisler before taking on one of Villanova, VCU, or Oregon at the Jay Z Center in the "Legends Classic"*. I'd imagine they'll split Michigan and Villanova with the hope the two meet in the final.

*[Which sounds like a fictional tournament hosting Generic State, East University, Ivy Tech, and COLLEGE COLLEGE.]

Well, yeah. By FOIAing the Ann Arbor Police Department, MLive discovers that Michigan's Office Of Institutional Equity asked them for the Gibbons police report in October, which doesn't clarify anything as to when the athletic department knew about what was going down. The most interesting bit of the story is actually a comment from an MLive person:

For context, the Ann Arbor News has been requesting several documents and communications via FOIA from U-M, but they have declined all of our requests citing sections of the Freedom of Information Act that allows U-M "to refrain from disclosing information that would constitute an unwarranted invasion of an individual's privacy." We continue to file FOIAs with U-M, but it appears in this case our best bet for information is requesting it from other sources that U-M has communicated with in regards to this case, including the AAPD.

Other FOIA-covered organizations offer up their data. Michigan has a culture of secrecy that has nothing to do with the privacy of individuals, but rather seems to be focused on covering for people who may or may not have screwed up, whether that's in taking four years to act on the Gibbons information or as part of the massive PR debacle that ensued after actually acting.

Etc.: Scouting Jeremy Gallon. McGary and Robinson on list of folks whose draft stock has slipped. Kam Chatman named to one of those basketball all star type things. Lax getting competitive this year. Sloan Sports Analytics conference suffers fate of all things. Jordan Morgan's top moments.

Some detail on the ongoing title IX investigations at M and MSU. Iowa's defensive collapse under the microscope. Yogi and Troy Williams dissecting M.

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One Frame At A Time: Ohio State

One Frame At A Time: Ohio State Comment Count

Ace February 13th, 2014 at 12:19 PM

Somewhere there should be 
for all the world to see 
a statue of a fool made of stone.

An image of a man
who let love slip through his hands
and left him to stand here all alone.

— David Ruffin, "Statue Of A Fool"

I found your statue, Mr. Ruffin.

It depicts Dan Dakich watching Aaron Craft attempt this shot.

[Hit THE JUMP for the rest of the GIFs, including lots of Derrick Walton, "Plastic Man," John Beilein giving dap in the run of play, sad Ohio fans, and more.]

Comments

One Frame At A Time: Iowa & Michigan State

One Frame At A Time: Iowa & Michigan State Comment Count

Ace January 28th, 2014 at 3:13 PM

John Beilein, with 4:01 left, more enraged than he's been since Costco raised the price of tube socks:

John Beilein, 1:33 of game time later:

John Beilein is Walter White if Walter White is also Benjamin Button and boy did this sentence get convoluted in a hurry.

Also, note Michigan's 8-0 run over that span. Coaches, if you have the self-control to not lose your mind at every opportunity, the moments when you completely lose your mind have a much greater impact. This is the Law of Beilein, and I'm totally not basing it on one piece of circumstantial evidence. Nope.

[Hit THE JUMP for Nik Stauskas, more Nik Stauskas, various reactions to Nik Stauskas, and a whole lot more from the last two games.]

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