MGoPodcast 9.15: Not This Down

MGoPodcast 9.15: Not This Down

Submitted by Seth on January 3rd, 2018 at 6:01 PM

1 hour and 54 minutes

mgopodcast 9.15

We are at the Residence Inn Ann Arbor Downtown, which has nine or ten conference rooms depending on if we count Wisconsin’s loss to Rutgers in basketball.

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 we’d be sighing to ourselves.

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 Bowl Game Happened, and Hey, a Basketball Game!

starts at 1:00

Hit Kenpom Time at 7 minutes, positive step forward for the program despite getting almost nothing from Mo and Matthews. Very different to want Z taking shots. Getting Robinson back to the bench, where he can be on the floor with Teske, is the best part of starting Livers. Typical Beilein team coming together, Teske earning equal time. Best shot at a tourney win is beat Purdue at home—RPI hell going to put a good team on the 10 line. RPI should please adopt hockey’s adjustment where if a win would lower your RPI they drop it. Does Poole need a Xanax or roll with it?

2. The Bowl Game Happened, We’ll Talk About It

starts at 32:14

Every quarterback who played this year regressed. Losing the mash brothers lost the running game. Standard crazy good D with a big safety crack on a slot fade. Not upset with the direction of the program; upset with the takes this year invited. No excuse for pass protection to be THIS bad.

3. Next Year

starts at 46:17

Defense returns Don Brown and 10-ish starters, with some backups in line for breakouts. One guy they lose is the best DT in program history but deeper team could murder a la 2016. Bring back two elite LBs with a lot of good backup options, and possibly the two best CBs in the country plus Ambry Thomas.

Offense seems pretty bad. Looks like another staff shakeup coming. RB should be fine, Ben Mason is fine at fullback, Gentry/McKeon will improve, get more from Eubanks and Wheatley. WRs won’t be all freshmen anymore. Interior OL has to get better at pass pro. Bredeson needs a jump next year since he doesn’t fit with the mash-you unit. Gotta find two tackles, can probably find at least one?

Special teams: Gotta find a punter, Nordin good.

4. Star Wars: The Last Jedi wsg Richard Hoeg of HoegLaw

starts at 1:13:28

One of our advertisers wrote a viral Star Wars take so we invited him on. Brian loathed The Force Awakens for making a 2016 remake of IV. Agree there was a Marvel-ish iconoclasm to it—this bothers Richard and Brian thinks this series badly needed it. Ryan Johnson got a crap sandwich and figured out a way to make the third movie not Return of the Jedi. Do you want Windsurfing Skywalker? Casino planet too ham-handed—important for plot because it sets up a bigger galaxy that hates the First Order.

MUSIC:

  • “X”—Xzibit
  • “Fiery Crash”—Andrew Bird
  • “Star Wars Theme Kazoo Cover”—Morpeef
  • “Across 110th Street”

THE USUAL LINKS

Kylo-Ren. Kylo-Rey is like they’re now dating. You’re shipping them.

An Open Letter To Larry, The Dude Scheduling Michigan Basketball

An Open Letter To Larry, The Dude Scheduling Michigan Basketball

Submitted by Brian on June 14th, 2017 at 12:56 PM

121711-AJC-basketball-Michigan-vs-Alabama-A-and-M-31_display

never again please

Dude. Larry. We have to talk:

Coming off a 2-27 season, the Bulldogs will play at Michigan at Crisler Center on Thursday, Dec. 21, according to a contract for the game obtained by MLive. U-M will pay Alabama A&M a guarantee of $95,000 for making the trip.

Coach Willie Hayes' team finished No. 351 out of 351 teams in both the RPI and Kenpom's efficiency ranking in 2016-17.

Its lone wins came over Mississippi Valley State (344) and Prairie View A&M (313). The Bulldogs finished last in the Southwestern Athletic Conference.

This is literally the worst possible game Michigan can schedule. Not only is it an offensive blowout in the making the likes of the Delaware State football game, it is poison to Michigan's RPI. Any SWAC team is an anchor; the worst SWAC team is even more so. A win against a team like Alabama A&M hurts your RPI. It would be better to simply not play that game.

Compounding matters:

John Beilein has previously indicated that there's a chance Michigan will not play a 31-game slate. He told reporters at the NBA Draft Combine that due to a condensed schedule -- the result of two Big Ten games being moved to early December and the conference tournament being moved a week earlier to Feb. 28-March 4 -- he will not shoehorn in an ill-advised game simply to get to 31.

You're not even going to play a full schedule because of Jim Delany! If you've opened the door to not playing games, this is the game you do not play. Nobody buying a season ticket is going to miss it. You are actively harming your RPI by playing it. An intrasquad scrimmage would be better preparation for the rest of the season. There is literally no reason to do this. And yet. Here we are.

I wrote about how to make your schedule pretty five years ago. (Not coincidentally, Alabama A&M was on the schedule that year as well.) Find high-win teams from lower leagues who you have a 98% chance of beating instead of a 99% chance. This has a material impact on your NCAA seedings, as this year's tournament amply demonstrated. A patently undeserving Minnesota got a five-seed this year because they paid attention to the RPI's flaws:

That and that alone was why Minnesota got a 5 seed and Wisconsin, which had a superior resume by any measure that was not an archaic and barely-tuned formula, got an 8. This matters, and every year Michigan plays two to four of the worst teams in the country. You're killing your father, Larry.

MGoPodcast 8.17: Freckles Like the Sprinkles on Top of a Ridiculously Good-Looking Man Sundae

MGoPodcast 8.17: Freckles Like the Sprinkles on Top of a Ridiculously Good-Looking Man Sundae

image

Marc-Gregor Campredon

We Couldn’t Have One Without the Other

We get to make audio content because we can afford the studio time and equipment to make it happen, and that’s thanks to the people running ads between segments.

The show was recorded in the Michigan Room of the Residence Inn Ann Arbor Downtown. It is presented by the Bo Store, UGP & Moe's, and if it wasn’t for Rishi and Ryan we probably would have jobs we might lose for googling the things we google for work sometimes.

The others: Homesure Lending, Ann Arbor Elder Law, the the University of Michigan Alumni Association, Deo Bookkeeping, Michigan Law Grad, Defensive Drivers Group, and Peak Wealth Management.

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1. That Basketball Season

starts against 1:00

Why doesn’t Kenpom let us sort stats by before and after an Illinois player calls the team “white collar”? Since then Michigan’s been legitimately the 4th best defense in the conference, the 6th best offense in the country, and the second-best team in the Big Ten. Other than Zak Heroball what’s the worst shot Michigan takes?

2. Maverick Morgan Memorial Bracketology

33:20

Big Ten MVP is the poker of the bear. Graham Couch’s plan to get MSU to stop gaming RPI to get on the bubble despite an atrocious season is a brilliant one. BTT: Get past Purdue and it’s four games in four days versus the short bench for a B1G title. Will it take that to get off that 8-9 seed line?

3. Gimmicky Top 5: Upside Down BTN Personalities

starts at 50:55

Stephen Bardo set a new record for worst sports broadcast by a sober person, inspiring our top five list of worst BTN commentators.

4. Harbaugh vs Everybody

starts at 1:10:40

We catch up on an offseason’s worth of Jim Harbaugh at the business end of some of the dumbest national media takes in the history of sports hot takes. Why is Pete Finebaum mad about Harbaugh trying to hire an NFL WRs coach? Why is Stewart Mandel hyperventilating about Michigan having exactly 85 players for exactly 85 scholarships? Basically there’s nothing that unethical cheating hypocrites hate more than a competitive, ethical, authentic, rule-abiding innovator.

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MUSIC:

  • "Sabotage"—Beatie Boys
  • “All Our Songs”—Built to Spill
  • “It’s Raining Men”—Weather Girls
  • “Across 110th Street”

THE USUAL LINKS

This Week's Obsession: Who Should Basketball Play?

This Week's Obsession: Who Should Basketball Play?

Submitted by Seth on November 11th, 2015 at 12:48 PM

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This was a good idea. Also omigod #23 is Carlton Brundidge; I totally forgot that. [Fuller]

The Question:

Nothing we can do about Michigan basketball's crappy nonconference schedule, but I asked the MGoCrew who they'd play in a home and home.

 
Opponent KP Rk %win
Elon 268 97%
Xavier 31 72%
Uconn 32 57%
Syracuse* 33 ~57%
Zaga, TX, A&M, Wash 8, 34, 39, 135 ~21%
at NCState 41 46%
Hou Baptist 308 98%
at SMU 23 38%
Delaware St 335 99%
N Kentucky 271 97%
YSU 287 97%
Bryant 240 96%
*Cuse plays Charlotte (261st) in the first round.

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Ace: Michigan's non-conference schedule outside of Xavier and the Battle for Atlantis tournament—admittedly some strong competition—is woefully bad. Xavier is the only non-conference home opponent ranked within the top 240(!) teams on KenPom. While you want to schedule some easy wins, that's taking the concept to an extreme while sacrificing both RPI standing and fan interest; games against Houston Baptist and Delaware State aren't exactly big draws.

I'd love to see the Wolverines rekindle a local series against a team that's still quite beatable but at least has a pulse: Oakland. The Grizzlies tend to be ranked in the 150 range on KenPom—they're 160th this preseason—and John Beilein went 4-0 against them from 2008-2012, playing those games either at Crisler or The Palace. They're seemingly the perfect level of opponent; they hung within 20 points of Michigan in each of those games but never came closer than ten points in the final score. Their coach, Greg Kampe, still very much wants to play the series. They're local. They play MSU on a near-annual basis. It makes almost too much sense from both a resumé and fan interest standpoint—I'd so much rather watch Michigan take on Oakland or Detroit than some bottom-feeder from outside the Midwest, and I'm sure I'm not alone there.

[After the JUMP: if you seek a pleasant peninsula, look about you.]

Unverified Voracity Needs Word Like Epic, Only Moreso

Unverified Voracity Needs Word Like Epic, Only Moreso

Submitted by Brian on March 20th, 2013 at 3:38 PM

Or maybe "fail." Minnesota lost money selling beer.

The University of Minnesota lost almost $16,000 last year on alcohol sales at football games, despite selling more than $900,000 worth of beer and wine.

Proving that there's nothing too goddamn ridiculous to assert in public in a laughable attempt to save face, Minnesota responds!

University officials say it was never the intent that the school turn a profit on alcohol sales.

Jim Delany has taught you well, Minnesota.

Do you like pictures of oily men not wearing very much? Have I got some instagram for you, ladies and men hopeful Frank Clark is going to be superbad this year. Before and after winter conditioning, here's Devin Gardner and Frank Clark:

imageBFrajY8CUAAI2Uf[1]

ANN ARBOR (AP) – FEMALE BLOG READERSHIP DROPS 96.5% AS COLD SHOWERS SKYROCKET. MEN GENERALLY HOPE FOR MORE PASS RUSH, WITH SCATTERED EXCEPTIONS.

I now believe Clark is at 277, sure.

Is oiling an extra benefit? Get Rosenberg on the case, yo.

I certainly hope this prediction is worthless since you seem to have something more pressing to do. Man with no more knowledge of basketball than random Rome caller picks Michigan to Elite Eight. Happens to be president, so people note it. Watch for upcoming Graham Couch column on how Obama is racist!

Obama chose Indiana, Ohio State and Louisville as his other Final Four teams [to go with Florida].

"I think (Aaron) Craft's defense is unbelievable," Obama said. "That makes a big difference."

OBAMA IS A RACIST

By Grahm Graghm Graham Couch

Has anyone notice how racist Obama is?

Welcome to the jungle!

I kid, kid.

It's just that for a black man his skin tone isn't very dark and he seems to think Aaron Craft is good at basketball.

I think Aaron Craft isn't, because he's white.

That makes Obama racist.

Just sayin'.

I like pudding.

Alot.

Graham Couch can be reached at [email protected].

Old lady is a nut. Old Lady, please leave man-mountain alone.

"I had an old lady who saw me at Kroger with my dad, (she asked) 'Are you Taylor, that No. 77 fella?'" said Lewan, mimicking her voice. "I was like, 'Uh, yeah, I'm Taylor.'

'She goes, 'You're an idiot! Why would you do that? You're dumb.'

"I was like, 'I appreciate it. Thank you. Go blue.' I didn't know what to say."

That's what you get for going to Kroger, man. Mandatory scan-your-card grocery stores FTL, amirite?

Aw man but we're just a four seed. Jeff Goodman runs down the list of teams with the most NBA talent and starts in Ann Arbor:

Trey Burke (G, 6-0, 190): The sophomore is a National Player of the Year candidate and also could be the first point guard taken in the June draft. He can shoot it, distribute, and will be ideal at the next level in pick-and-roll situations. Most NBA executives have him going somewhere among the lottery selections.

Glenn Robinson III (F, 6-6, 210): The Big Dog's son still needs another year in college, but he's intriguing. He's long and athletic and has shown spurts in which he's looked phenomenal. He still needs to shoot it more consistently from the perimeter and also play hard all the time, but he'd likely be a first-rounder if he left after this season.

Tim Hardaway Jr. (G, 6-6, 205): Another ex-NBA player's kid, Hardaway Jr. has improved his decision-making. He has nice length for a wing player, but still needs to improve his ability to put the ball on the floor. Likely pegged somewhere in the second round.

Stauskas and McGary also mentioned. But hey, at least we're a four-seed instead of an eight like #2 NC State. Mark Gottfried may be a terrible coach, but I remember thinking that about Thad Matta a few years ago and… uh… no. I will reserve judgment this time around.

This may be why. Even when talking about dangerous mid-majors in the tourney, Luke Winn manages to rope you in with interesting Michigan-related stats. Like this one:

130320.11[1]

Michigan isn't just the least experienced team in the tourney, they're the least by a mile.

SDSU is included at #8. Winn says watch out for this business:

The Wolters Special is a left-hand hesitation dribble, followed by a drive left and a righty floater/runner.

That's alarmingly Burke-like.

Aw man but they're an eight seed. A tip of the hat to Robert Morris despite their fans' failure to chant "N-E-C" last night after they knocked off the NIT's top seed Kentucky in a first round game at the Colonial's 3500-seat arena. (Rupp has NCAA games this weekend so Kentucky did not bid to host.) Even with the missed opportunity, Robert Morris set the irritating meme about "perception" harming the NCAA fates of SEC bubble teams on fire.

What meme? This meme. Cuonzo Martin two days ago:

“I wish I knew,” he said. “It’s unfortunate. I would say a lack of respect more than anything. When you have a second-place team at this level (Kentucky and Alabama finished second in the SEC and will join UT in the NIT), it’s almost like a mid-major mentality in this league. When your second-place team doesn’t get in the NCAA tournament — this is a BCS league, it’s one of the best league’s [sic] in the country — that just shouldn’t happen.” …

“When you look at Alabama, Tennessee and Kentucky,” he added, “those are NCAA tournament teams; they’re just not playing in the NCAA tournament.”

If the SEC had actually beaten anybody in the nonconference maybe we could talk here. Florida got a three-seed thanks in part to wins over Wisconsin, Marquette, and I guess Middle Tennessee. Missouri got in comfortably with wins over VCU and Illinois. The entire rest of the league had three (three) wins over teams that got an at-large bid to the tourney, those Arkansas over Oklahoma in the midst of a 1-4 slide against BCS teams (and at home, obviously), Alabama over Villanova on a neutral floor, and Tennessee beating Wichita State at home.

USA Today rounds up the internet aftermath, with obligatory wikipedia vandalism:

w5eW8KW[1]

oh god someone get rid of that apostrophe

The ACC is also bitching about a lack of respect, Rodney Dangerfield-style. If that's the case, the ACC is suffering a lack of respect from every-damn-body on the internet. Of 120(!) brackets tracked by the Bracket Matrix, all of seven had Virginia in them.

It is not that hard to predict this stuff, as Andy Glockner points out in excellent article. It's no secret how to game the RPI: don't lose at home, play some road games, and if you have to play a really bad team make sure they're not D-I. Glockner points out an imbalance in the RPI's home-road adjustment I hadn't thought about:

Almost a decade ago, the NCAA made an adjustment to the RPI formula to try to incentivize teams to play more road games. Of course, they screwed up the math such that the new formula rewards “not losing at home” more than it does “winning on the road,” at least for what its primary purpose is: sorting teams that may make the NCAAs.

The formula adjustment for Factor I (your winning percentage) now credits you with 0.6 wins for a home win and 1.4 wins for a road victory. Likewise, you get 1.4 home losses for an actual home defeat and 0.6 losses for an away loss. That sounds like a reasonable plan until you realize that the target demographic — NCAA tournament-caliber teams — are all way above .500. As such, when you split two games (.500 overall), you want that impact to be as small as possible on your overall adjusted record, as determined by the RPI formula.

If you win at home and lose the away game, you would get an extra 0.6-0.6 added into your overall adjusted record. If you do it the other way, you get 1.4-1.4 added to your totals. If you are well above .500 overall, like all these NCAA caliber teams are, adding the 1.4-1.4 into the record drags you down more than the 0.6-0.6 does. In simple terms, losing home games (for 1.4 losses in your adjusted Factor I) is the worst thing you can do, and it’s way more harmful than adding 1.4 wins to the ledger is helpful.

He also mentions that the committee did to some extent see through the Mountain West's conference-wide Game of RPIs*, dropping New Mexico and their on-paper case for a one seed down to a three and giving the rest of the league seeds that portend a second-round exit.

Yeah, it is perception that the ACC is down and the SEC is worse than the Mountain West. An accurate one.

*[CRAPPY MATH IS COMING]

This week in Expansion Was A Bad Idea. Verizon FIOS wants to move to a you-watch-it-you-pay-for-it model. Who could have predicted this?

“This is the beginning,” said Gene Kimmelman, a former senior antitrust official at the Justice Department. “If the conflict between cable distributors and content owners persists and prices keep rising, there will be enormous market pressure to begin unbundling offerings, give consumers more choices and, from my perspective, ultimately let consumers control what they buy and how much they pay.”

Nobody! Except a lot of people. [HT: Get The Picture.]

Etc.: But the kids love it! In other news, kids enjoy Laffy Taffy. Wetzel on O'Bannon and Delany. How did it take this long for someone to beat up Tim Doyle? No offense, Tim, it's just that you shouldn't have called Kendall Gill "that wasp that lays eggs in spiders and then the baby wasps eat the spider from the inside out" for ten years.

Of course Michigan State fans are buying up SDSU apparel. This is why you are Sparty. Delany-inspired "feelings collage." "An Open Letter From Jefferson Davis To Jim Delany." Don't recruit short fat guys.

Basketbullets: Binghampton

Basketbullets: Binghampton

Submitted by Brian on December 12th, 2012 at 11:31 AM

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Ace stole my joke so I guess I have to write something longer. /shakes fist at ace

Why did this game get played? I asked Nick Baumgardner about this on twitter and this was the response:

@mgoblog Beilein is friends with Binghamton's coach -- not sure if that makes it OK, but there it is.

"Hey, John."
"Yeah, Binghamton Guy?"
"Could you do me a favor?"
"Anything, Binghamton Guy."
"I need you to punch me in the face really hard."
"Love to, Binghamton Guy."

I guess Binghamton gets a check for the one-off game. In all other ways that's a weird way to do a guy a favor.

Seriously though. I'd rather Michigan played a string of Bradley-type games where they play decent competition in home-and-home situations and just inflated the ticket price the dollar or whatever that they'd have to to compensate.

For one, it's more fun for everyone. For two, you get an RPI bonus for playing on the road, a relatively big one:

A home win now counts as 0.6 win, while a road win counts as 1.4 wins. Inversely, a home loss equals 1.4 losses, while a road loss counts as 0.6 loss. A neutral game counts as 1 win or 1 loss. This change was based on statistical data that consistently showed home teams in Division I basketball winning about two-thirds of the time. Note that this location adjustment applies only to the WP factor and not the OWP and OOWP factors.

You can futz with the system to give yourself an edge by playing a team that you should beat on the road like Bradley, and in doing so you prep yourself for playing in hostile environments a bit. I'd like Michigan to have a couple mid-major road tests a year.

Unfortunately the Bradley home-and-home is also a Beilein's buddy sort of thing—probably not a coincidence that this series was scheduled after Bradley hired Beilein's son. It's not a thing we can expect to continue. Michigan decided to stop playing Oakland because they were too good, which like… mmph.

That's unfortunate since that game in Peoria was a lot more interesting than this one. It's a lot better to see your team beat an opponent in front of a packed house of upset-demanding Peorians than a deservedly half-full Crisler. It will also be a relative asset come tourney time. I'd like it if Michigan made a habit of going on the road to MVC and A-10 schools. I mean, what if Michigan made a habit of playing at Calihan Hall? That's some branding activity right there.

Ah, that's not going to happen. I know I know incremental revenue is more important than anything that does not provide incremental revenue. As far as the actual game…

Idle Kenpom thoughts. It seems like the way to solve a problem like Wisconsin is to discount games between heavily mismatched opponents. You could feel Michigan just shrug in the second half as they launched uncontested three after uncontested three, and does it really matter that they weren't as good at annihilating a team that plays like that as Wisconsin is?

The problem with this theory is that I bet Kenpom tried it and it didn't work. When he makes changes to his formulas he checks them against previous seasons to see if the changes make them better or worse at predicting things, and I'm sure he's tried something obvious like lessening the importance of mismatches.

It is worth noting that Kenpom took a lot of heat for having Wisconsin second as of January ninth last year, when the Badgers were 1-3 in the Big Ten and had nothing positive on their record save wins over UNLV and BYU. Wisconsin won 11 of their final 14 regular season games and came within a point of upsetting Syracuse in the Sweet 16. Were they overrated? Yeah. Did Kenpom probably have Wisconsin rated better than people complaining about them? Yeah.

But maybe it's just time to throw your hands up at the Badgers and say computers can't rank them well. Last year:

For instance, one of the most respected ratings systems in the nerd world is the LRMC ratings. They had Wisconsin fifth before yesterday’s games. Last year, heading into the tournament, they had Belmont fourth, and their system outperforms mine! The Sagarin predictor, also deservedly respected, had Wisconsin second heading into yesterday’s games.

As always, this is the right attitude to take:

Q: Your work is flawed. (Not really a Q, either, I guess, but I get this all the time.)

A: Ugh, I hate it when people say this. Of course it’s flawed. The thing is, your knowledge is flawed, too. If you are ignoring potentially useful tools because of a single issue, then your judgment is flawed as well. And I’m guessing you’ve never tracked the quality of your knowledge so you don’t even know how flawed it is. If you’re like most people, you think you’re knowledge is great because you remember the predictions you made that worked out and you forget about the ones that didn’t. It’s human nature. …

I would say there’s still enough value in the work here to provide a useful reality check on your own knowledge. Used together, your flawed knowledge and my flawed tools can be more powerful than used separately.

Just mentally account for the fact teams that annihilate low-majors can get overrated and that Wisconsin is currently benefiting from some amount of preseason expectation that is keeping them loftier than they otherwise would be.

No seriously this time I'll talk about the actual game…

Hardaway shooting alarm going off. Baumgardner wrote an article before this one mentioning that Hardaway's shooting had been falling off and that this was okay because he was doing other stuff. I'm on board, but at some point the shooting woes become problematic. In this one he was 2/9 from three, 1/4 from two, and the vast majority of those were wide open looks he just missed. His three point percentage has dipped to 33% and the number of threes he's taking is accelerating rapidly.

He started the year off going to the basket over and over again; he should resume that activity. I'd rather have the guy commit a charge per game than camp out at the three point line. We've got a guy for that now.

Tray Woodall Nik Stauskas NIT Season Tip Off vq8Me0P7Zjnl[1]

The inevitable decline continues. Stauskas was 4-8 from three and was saved a ninth miss on his record because he had a toe on the line—must have, anyway. He got hacked on a couple of short attempts, and this was ignored as the refs must have had DVRed a House marathon and couldn't wait to get back to watch it.

I am still in favor of Stauskas shooting all of the threes. Surprise.

Albrecht still pretty good. Perhaps less impressive against this outfit than Arkansas but in ten minutes he canned a three and had a 2-0 A:TO ratio. He keeps things moving when Burke's out.

Also Horford. Horford is Michigan's most active and impactful defender. McGary keeps sucking in huge rebound numbers (10 in 17 minutes in this one with four offensive rebounds) and will probably keep his place in line. I'm not sure I can detect any dropoff from center #1 to center #3. All of them bring different things to the table.

I'll be interested to see what happens when Cody Zeller comes to town. Eyeballing it, it seems like Horford is the best matchup against him. Will he get extended minutes or will Michigan roll with their current lineup?

The 1-3-1: too aggressive? I may be remembering this wrong but it seems like the 1-3-1 is now extending itself all the way to half-court, which seems like a problem. I recall Horford getting all the way out to the three-point line on one of the 1-3-1 possessions when a driver tried to take it between the trappers, and I recall that happening a couple feet closer to the hoop when I watched WVU.

The thing has not been particularly effective against teams other than Pitt and I wonder if they're just giving up too much space by extending it all the way out. I know a conservative 1-3-1 is a bizarre concept, but… yeah.

Opponent watch update! West Virginia lost to Duquesne for the first time since 2003 despite going up 25-10; they closed the game 9 of 32. Michigan should not have much trouble in Brooklyn.