Spike on last year's title game

Spike on last year's title game

Submitted by JeepinBen on March 19th, 2014 at 3:43 PM

http://grantland.com/features/spike-albrecht-luke-hancock-rewatching-2013-ncaa-tournament-final-louisville-michigan/

Whole thing is worth a read.

 

in the final game of the season, there at the Georgia Dome, we saw one of the finest title games in years. It was free-flowing and high-scoring, low on turnovers and rife with scoring runs. As much as anything else, it was a showcase for two bench players who became stars. The night belonged to Spike Albrecht, the tiny Michigan freshman, at least until it belonged to Luke Hancock, the sweet-shooting Louisville junior.I traveled to Ann Arbor and Louisville to re-watch the game with its two standouts. Nearly a year after the wild first half that made them famous, both remember almost every last detail from that night. Both are entering this tournament with increased roles on altered teams that are once again peaking right on time for March Madness. Both could return to the Final Four this month. But both know that even if they lead their teams in scoring on the way to a national title, they will never experience another night quite like April 8, 2013.

MBB Remaining Games: Bonus Edition!

MBB Remaining Games: Bonus Edition!

Submitted by mistersuits on April 8th, 2013 at 8:36 AM
I can''t help myself!!!!!

Remaining Games Chart:

Since the last time I've modified the chart a bit so instead of a non-sensical number average, "Difficulty" is now on a log scale of 1 to 10 of the KenPom/RPI average weighted by site of game.

 

Rank Opponent Difficulty KenPom RPI Result
- MICHIGAN - 5 11 -
1 #Louisville 10 1 2 ???
2 @Indiana 9.5 3 9 73-81
3 @Ohio 9.5 6 7 53-56
4 #Florida 9 2 10 79-59
5 Indiana 9 3 9 71-72
6 @MSU 9 10 5 52-75
7 Ohio 9 6 7 76-74OT
8 #Syracuse 9 8 7 61-56
9 #Kansas 9 9 6 87-85OT
10 MSU 9 10 5 58-57
11 @Wisconsin 8 12 29 62-65OT
12 #VCU 8 16 25 78-53
13 #Wisconsin 8 12 29 59-68
14 @Minnesota 7.5 20 28 83-75
15 #Pittsburgh 7 11 44 67-62
16 #Kansas St. 7 33 22 71-57
17 @Illinois 7 39 32 74-60
18 Illinois 6.5 39 32 71-58
19 N.C. State 6.5 38 37 79-72
20 Iowa 6.5 23 61 95-67
21 @Purdue 5 64 124 80-75
22 Arkansas 5 71 89 80-67
23 #South Dakota St. 5 103 75 71-56
24 Purdue 5 64 124 68-53
25 WMU 4 111 118 73-41
26 Nebraska 4 128 104 62-47
27 #WVU 4 125 134 81-66
28 @Northwestern 4 130 164 94-66
29 @Penn State 3.5 140 174 78-84
30 #Penn State 3.5 140 174 67-39
31 Northwestern 3.5 130 164 68-46
32 @Bradley 3.5 164 184 74-66
33 Penn State 3 140 174 79-71
34 Cleveland St. 2 266 196 77-47
35 EMU 2 245 234 93-54
36 CMU 2 238 264 88-73
37 IUPUI 1 336 326 91-54
38 Binghampton 1 343 336 67-39
39 Slippery Rock 1 NR NR 100-62

 

Well, Here We Are

Not surprisingly, the most difficult game by the numbers comes last. Michigan displaced the previous #1 KenPom team convincingly and is rewarded by playing the new #1 for the championship.

The good news is that these rankings and statistics are a formality at this point. The game is a one-off, winner-take-all, who is hot on the right night, who gets the 50/50 call, who can make the shots. Michigan has been in every single game this season except for one and the circumstances leading up to that game are not what we have here tonight.

NCAA Tourney Run vs B1G Gauntlet

If you laid out Michigan’s tournament games from the Sweet 16 to the Championship you would see before you, at least according to KenPom, an unrivaled task of difficulty – four consecutive top 10 opponents, with lots of travel and not much time to prepare.

Michigan, incredibly, has already run an equally challenging gauntlet earlier this year. There are no advanced statistics that can measure what kind of benefit of experience a team takes away from playing the top four teams consecutively (three on the road) in a nine day span; but it is safe to say that these are the kinds of things that either make you or break you. Regardless of outcome Monday night the answer is already clear.

February 2nd – 12th

@Indiana (3)
vsOhio (6)
@Wisconsin (12)
@MSU (10)

March 29th – April 8th

#Kansas (9)
#Florida (2)
#Syracuse (8)
#Louisville (1)

As painful as it was to watch, can you draw up a tougher cluster of regular season games with which to teach and prepare this extremely young Michigan team?

The Team

  • Without Burke, could Michigan have rallied vs Kansas?
  • Without Hardaway pouring in 21 points on 5 of 7 three point shooting in a fifteen point victory, does Michigan have what it takes to beat South Dakota St?
  • Without Stauskas firebombing Florida, do the Gators keep it close and have a shot to win?
  • Without Robinson III's offensive efficiency and offensive rebounding does Michigan sputter in any of its tournament matchups, particularly Syracuse or SDSt?
  • Without McGary becoming a world beater, doesn't Michigan suffer an inevitable "Wisconsin"-style loss to Syracuse or get blown out by Kansas or get upset by VCU?
  • Without Albrecht becoming the most eligible bachelor and putting together a tournament highlight reel all his own, does Burke get worn down to the point Michigan exits early?
  • Without LeVert making two critical three pointers and playing a terrific defensive game, does Michigan have what it takes to outlast Syracuse?
  • Without Jordan Morgan "getting stops", does Michigan make it to the Championship game?

The best part of this run has been every rotation player has made plays crucial to the success of the whole team. As much as I thought the team's success would be utterly reliant on Trey Burke's performance, as went he so would the team's fate. Now vs Kansas this was true. But against South Dakota St and Syracuse in particular this was very much not the case. As a whole, the team has exceeded wildest expectations.

The Path To 32:

At Christmas I had seen this team play three games out in New York, I knew they were special. Now to climb to the top of the mountain we can throw out all the numbers, forget all the statistics, take our own time-out and appreciate how awesome this team is. The most difficult game of the season is the last. There is no tomorrow, but there is no fear.

Go Blue!

(Photo from UMHoops)

FGCU Links to B1G Programs

FGCU Links to B1G Programs

Submitted by mvp on March 27th, 2013 at 10:56 AM

By now everyone knows Florida Gulf Coast is the first 15 seed to make it to the Sweet 16. Today, in the Wall St. Journal, there is a neat story about FGCU's history and links to Big Ten programs.

I don't know if a subscription to the WSJ is required to read, but here's a link.

Most interesting quote for M fans (referring to the first coach at the school):



As for the actual brand of basketball, Balza coached what he knew, and what he knew was Michigan's 1989 national championship team. He was a student manager under Steve Fisher, who served as his primary reference for the FGCU job. Today, the Big Ten boasts four teams in the Sweet 16 and is known for its bruising inside play, stifling defense and molasses-in-January pace—basically the exact opposite of Florida Gulf Coast. But in 1989 the conference boasted some of the highest-scoring teams in the nation, including Michigan.

Balza wanted his team to be a shameless imitation of that Wolverines team: In the years before they became full Division-I members in 2011-2012, it wasn't uncommon for the Eagles to blow past 100 points in a game.

 

There's also info about the former athletic director (retired MSU AD Merrily Dean Baker) and connections to Ohio (for those that don't know, Urban Meyer's daughter is a volleyball player for FGCU).

Overall, a pretty good read.

NCAA Tourney: End of first round conference records

NCAA Tourney: End of first round conference records

Submitted by trueblueintexas on March 23rd, 2013 at 2:53 AM
One of the things I look at every year is conference records after each round. I always think this is one of the best indicators of how the conferences really stack up against each other. Granted match-ups have a lot to do with who wins and loses, I still think it is a good indicator of conference strength. Chart? Chart. Conference # of Bids Record Win % R64 R32 Big Ten 7 6-1 .857 7 6 Atlantic 10 5 5-0 1.000 5 5 ACC 4 3-1 .750 4 3 Pac-12 5 3- 2 .600 5 3 Big East 8 3-5 .375 8 3 MVC. 2 2-0 1.000 2 2 SEC 3 2-1 .667 3 2 Big 12 5 2-3 .400 5 2 Mountain West5 2-3 .400 4 2 Atlantic Sun 1 1-0 1.000 1 1 C-USA. 1 1-0 1.000 1 1 Ivy 1 1-0 1.000 1 1 WCC 2 2-1 .667 2 1 By the end of the tournament the Big East will always have more loses because they get the most teams in, but 3-5 in round one is really bad, especially when you add in the Georgetown upset since a 2 seed is usually good for at least one more win in the round of 32. Other things of note: big props to the A10 and MVC. The SEC showed up better than they did in the NIT. The Big 12 is showing some signs of weakness as K State and Ok St we're the second and third place teams in the conference. Yay for the B1G (even with Arggggggggggh Wisconsin). EDIT: not sure what happened to my char formatting. Will need to fix in the morning since it is already 3 AM and my little one will be waking up in 4 hours. Also, should not have done this on my iPad apparently.

Blind Resumes Part II - The 1 Seeds

Blind Resumes Part II - The 1 Seeds

Submitted by Paps on March 11th, 2013 at 6:34 PM

Welcome to Part II of the blind resume game.  Multiple people in my last post asked me to make one for the 1-2-3 seeds, and here it is!  The original post was comprised solely of "bubble teams" and can be found HERE.  I have made a few slight changes to the game and criteria. 

  • Because conference record can be misleading (see: St. Mary's), there is a RPI number in parenthesis after the conference record.  That is simply the addition of the RPI of every in conference team for every game they've played, divided by the amount of conference games they have played. 
  • I also got rid of the teams in the "good wins" and "bad losses" section, and replaced them by the RPIs of the teams.  (@ means away game, vs means neutral  nothing for home).  This should make the game as blind as possible, taking out all possible biases, and making it tougher to guess the teams without looking.
  • I also made my standards higher on what constitutes a good win or bad loss.  In the bubble teams section I pretty much said anything under 75 was a good win, and over about 125 a bad loss.  Now, (because let's face it- these are ONE SEEDS) anything in the top 50 is a good win, and anything below that is a bad loss.  I realize losing to the #51 RPI team isn't a bad loss.  It's more of an OK loss.  But nonetheless, I put them in there.  Consider them what you want.  It's just a bunch of information. 

Other than those three things, it works exactly the same!  Just look over the chart, pick the team you think is most deserving of a 1 seed, and then click the link below the charts to find out who was who.  I have made 4 tables of three teams, so you will be picking all four one seeds! All stats are as of 3/11/13.

 

Blind Resume Table #1:

 

Criteria

Team A

Team B

Team C

Overall Record

27-4

26-5

23-7

Conference Record

14-4 (RPI: 90.3)

14-4 (RPI: 97.2)

13-5 (RPI: 63.4)

RPI

1

6

14

BPI

2

7

10

Strength of Schedule

1

25

5

Non-Conference SOS

1

20

154

Home

16-0

16-1

16-2

Away

5-4

7-3

5-5

Neutral

6-0

3-1

2-0

Record vs. RPI Top 25

7-1

5-2

5-4

Record vs. RPI Top 50

10-2

11-3

6-7

Record vs. RPI Top 100

15-4

13-4

10-7

Last 10 games

8-2

7-3

7-3

Good Wins

RPI #s: 3,4,14,18,@18,23,25,

29,36,50

RPI #s: @14,19,@21,21,

@24,vs27, 34,35,36,@47

RPI #s: @5,7,12, 23,42,43

Bad Losses

RPI #s: @66,@83

RPI #s: @61,@226

NONE

 

Click HERE to find out which teams are in Blind Resume Table 1.

 

Blind Resume Table #2:

 

Criteria

Team A

Team B

Team C

Overall Record

23-7

25-6

26-5

Conference Record

14-4 (RPI: 71.8)

14-4 (RPI: 95.6)

14-4 (RPI: 66.5)

RPI

10

21

5

BPI

18

30

3

Strength of Schedule

14

79

10

Non-Conference SOS

97

156

48

Home

16-0

16-1

17-2

Away

5-6

7-3

7-2

Neutral

2-1

2-2

2-1

Record vs. RPI Top 25

2-4

2-5

8-3

Record vs. RPI Top 50

7-5

5-6

8-5

Record vs. RPI Top 100

10-6

7-6

12-5

Last 10 games

8-2

8-2

7-3

Good Wins

RPI #s: 9,16,@40,40,

43,44,45

RPI #s: 8,24,@35,35,47

RPI #s: 7,@7,9,12,@12,

@14,18,23

Bad Losses

RPI #s: @51,@161

NONE

NONE

 

Click HERE to find out which teams are in Blind Resume Table #2.

 

Blind Resume Table #3:

 

Criteria

Team A

Team B

Team C

Overall Record

26-5

25-6

24-6

Conference Record

14-4 (RPI: 72.8)

12-6 (RPI: 71.8)

15-3 (RPI: 96.1)

RPI

3

12

4

BPI

1

6

16

Strength of Schedule

7

49

4

Non-Conference SOS

31

197

3

Home

15-1

17-1

14-1

Away

8-3

5-5

10-3

Neutral

3-1

3-0

0-2

Record vs. RPI Top 25

3-3

4-4

4-2

Record vs. RPI Top 50

9-4

8-5

6-2

Record vs. RPI Top 100

12-5

11-5

14-4

Last 10 games

9-1

5-5

7-3

Good Wins

RPI #s: 10,@16,@17,vs32,40,

44,@45,46,50

RPI #s: 7,14,vs21,@23,29,vs40,

@42,42

RPI #s: 1,7,@18,18,@29,39

Bad Losses

RPI #s: @51

RPI #s: @182

RPI #s: vs73,@94,126,@164

 

Click HERE to find out which teams are in Blind Resume Table #3.

 

Blind Resume Table #4:

 

Criteria

Team A

Team B

Team C

Overall Record

24-5

30-2

24-7

Conference Record

14-4 (RPI: 66.6)

16-0 (RPI: 168)

13-5 (RPI: 60.1)

RPI

9

11

7

BPI

17

5

9

Strength of Schedule

23

78

5

Non-Conference SOS

174

39

55

Home

16-1

15-1

17-1

Away

6-3

10-1

6-5

Neutral

2-1

5-0

1-1

Record vs. RPI Top 25

4-2

2-1

4-6

Record vs. RPI Top 50

8-3

5-2

8-7

Record vs. RPI Top 100

12-4

11-2

11-7

Last 10 games

9-1

10-0

7-3

Good Wins

RPI #s: 3,10,16,@16,vs31,

@44,@45,@46

RPI #s: 21,24,@33,33,35

RPI #s: vs6,12,14,23,37,

42,43,@43

Bad Losses

RPI #s: @51,@130

NONE

NONE

Click HERE to find out which teams are in Blind Resume Table #4.
 
I hope you enjoyed Round II of the Blind Resume Game! Hope Michigan can grab a good seed and go far in the tourney.  Thanks for reading!  Go Blue!