Submitted by Brian on February 13th, 2013 at 11:22 AM

2/12/2013 – Michigan 52, Michigan State 75 – 21-4, 8-4 Big Ten



A few weeks ago, this space batted around the shocking revelation that Michigan was something like 338th in average experience, and asserted that this certainly didn't seem like the case. It does now. Michigan has built first-half deficits of 21, 15, 9, and like a billion in their losses, all of which came on the road. They managed to avoid that fate against Northwestern, Minnesota, and Illinois, which does count for something. Not enough of a something to file this team as elite, or a national championship favorite, or even particularly likely to beat MSU and Indiana at home.

And I guess that's fine. Most Michigan fans entered the season leery of the top-five ranking bestowed on the Wolverines because Trey Burke, and if you'd handed them this…


…before the season they'd have snatched it from your hands gleefully, especially if you'd mentioned that the Big Ten was obviously the toughest league in the country and that three-games stretch in November was against a couple of teams on track for Sweet 16 seeds and a third not too far off.

This perspective is brought to you by gritted teeth and turning off a game like Brian freakin' Ellerbe was on the sidelines. It is hard-won. Stupid everything.

So… yeah. This is not a miracle team like last year's all-the-freshman Kentucky outfit, and now we know that. Michigan played ten guys before walk-on time kicked in (with eight minutes left): six were freshman of some variety, and zero were seniors. This is no longer a cleverly obscured fact. It's a thing that becomes obvious when the pressure turns up on hostile courts, and separates Michigan from being a truly elite team. They probably aren't getting a one seed; they probably aren't winning the league. Here is a picture of pad thai.



It could be a lot worse. Getting teased like this is still teeth-clenching.


Well, at least one guy came to play. I can't say I liked a lot of Burke's shots early, but once it became clear that he was the only guy on the floor who could do, like, things. He put in 18 points on 11 shots and had four of Michigan's six assists.

Things went from bad to worse in two periods when he was on the bench. The first was a generic get-this-guy-rest period in the first half that featured two bigs, Albrecht, Levert, and Hardaway. That did not go well. The second was a brief period after Burke picked up his third foul early in the first half on an over-aggressive three closeout that looks exactly like every other overaggressive three closeout that knocks the shooter over. By the time Burke returned a pretty-much-over game was over.

And poof like that he's gone. Glenn Robinson III's cliff-dive is now undeniable. He'd put up at least eight points in every game this season other than a couple of low-major blowouts; in the three recent losses he's acquired 2, 4, and 2 points. Michigan stashed him on the bench for half of this one, choosing to go with a clumsy two-big lineup for large chunks of the game. Robinson has to score if he's going to be out there against Adriean Payne, and as soon as he put up that ugly brick on one of those pass-up-a-set-open-three-for-a-pullup-two shots that are just the worst, you could see that Michigan wasn't getting anything from him.

Part of that is the permissivity of Michigan's defense in these games. It's hard to get into transition, where Robinson has made a lot of hay, when you're picking the ball out of the basket every time down the court.

Stauskas defense: actually impactful. In the wrong way, obviously. He was checking Gary Harris; Gary Harris hit 5 of 9 threes because each was a comfortable look. That was the first time his guy had really gone off.

A question. So, let's say Tom Izzo is three feet onto the court as his team is trying to play defense and Mitch McGary barrels into him at top speed, sending him flying into the bench. Is that a technical on Izzo? On McGary? On both? What would happen if someone went out of their way to make the presence of a basketball coach on the damn court a problem? I assume that in the rules leaving the approved coaching box is a technical foul, but basketball doesn't really have rules, it has easily-ignored suggestions.

All hell would break loose, at least.

How you lose by 23. Michigan got doubled up on the boards (18% to 37%), in turnovers (16 to 8), tripled in FTAs and assists, and gave up 55% shooting from two. I have lost all motivation to discuss this game right now. Just now, it happened. I was going to keep putting words in there about how this performance was ass, just comprehensive and disillusioning ass, and now I feel that this is so beyond pointless that I don't even think I'm going to finish this sent



February 13th, 2013 at 11:32 AM ^


OK Finally a story about the MSU game.


Listen, this is like a manifesto for me:  I am a fan, but this UM Basketball team SUCKS.  I am tired of hearing how great they are.  They reek.


Don't post any more bullshit about how they are this and that and going to win it all.  JUST WIN THE GAMES already.  I don't want to read another post about guessing the scores or uniformz!


I think UM sports need to pull their pants up and MAN-UP already.  




FITZ T should be ashamed of himself as well.  MAN UP and run.  RBs sucked this year.  GREEN better be ready to kick ass.  I hope you go to the NFL in 3 years.  That would be a good thing...


Love Denard, but he didn't win the Heisman after all.  UM should have been close with Alabama.  The team didn't score points in the 2nd half of OSU.  BORGES that was so so so so so SAD!

D STONUM: You might be a Michigan man, but you also effed the program with your selfishness.  Thanks.

The team didn't have D.G. ready to play against Nebraska.  They effed up.  Pathetic for a Michigan team to do that.  


The Team, the Team, the Team yes.  But WIN THE BIG GAMES too.

I am a UM  fan, but the kool aid drinking is out of hand.  


Give me a break!


February 13th, 2013 at 12:30 PM ^

Let's see what I've got so far:

  • Our 21-4 basketball team suck and reeks
  • No excuses
  • We need to Man Up....oh pardon me, MAN UP!  and pull our pants up when we do the manning up.
  • Just win the games
  • We need to beat OSU every year...and win our bowl game
  • Lewan should block Clowney and other guys need to make catches
  • No excuses
  • Excuses are for losers
  • Toussaint should be ashamed (presumably before he broke his leg)
  • Green has to kick ass and make the NFL in 3 years
  • Denard did not win the Heisman, but we can still love him
  • We should've played better against Bama
  • Stonum is selfish
  • Gardner should've been ready to play against Nebraska
  • Michigan is pathetic
  • The Team, The Team, The Team
  • Win big games
  • We've all been drinking too much of the kool aid.

Did I miss anything?

Phil Brickma

February 13th, 2013 at 11:37 AM ^

I really appreciate you taking the time to vent about Darryl Stonum and Al Borges of all things in a story about how a young (but very talented) basketball team got their collective asses handed to them by another very good basketball team on the road.

You're a great human being.


February 13th, 2013 at 11:41 AM ^

Whatever Phil.

All I have been hearing is how great this B-Ball team is and in reality they lay some GIANT EGGS.  I'm just asking for some quiet.  Let them win some games before annointed.  Looks like the FAB FIVE doesn't need to come back now does it?!

And I do think some members of the Football team need to be called out.  STONUM is one of them.  Because of him, DG became a receiver and that was stupid assed.

Phil Brickma

February 13th, 2013 at 11:49 AM ^

I get it, buddy. You are frustrated. That was a shitty game last night. It sucked. But you look like a royal ass. And if you still are upset about Darryl Stonum, who hasn't been affiliated with the team for a year, you have some serious anger issues.


February 13th, 2013 at 12:18 PM ^

How did we get onto the topic of football?  I think this might be a new, frightening for of emo whine posting.  Kind of like a new strain of flu virus.  The "kitchen sink" approach seems to be very effective because it not only takes the reader offguard but also makes it very difficult to respond to - where to start?  A very interesting case indeed!


February 13th, 2013 at 12:36 PM ^

How did we get onto the topic of football?

Well PGB, it seems PasedenaFan is less than pleased not only with the results of our basketball team, but our football team as well. We don't beat Ohio every season, or win every bowl game, and Denard it turns out, did NOT win the Heisman. He is advocating a new paradigm of eliminating excuses and a cessation of kool aid consumption, and I for one think we should all give his eloquently stated manifesto careful and conscientious consideration.


February 13th, 2013 at 12:56 PM ^

Whatever Dude.

We lost to OSU like 8 years in a row.  We need a run outselves.  And we should have won this past game.

Denard could have won the Heisman, instead he went out with a fart.

Team only visited the Rose Bowl in the Spring.  Should have been there on Jan 1st, G.D.-it!

That's what I am saying, Denard never played in the Rose Bowl.  That is outrageous.

I know my words hurt, but they ring true.


February 13th, 2013 at 1:19 PM ^

We lost to OSU like 8 years in a row.

7 actually. It's really only 6 offically because OSU had to vacate their victory in 2010.

We need a run outselves.

Sounds great, looking forward to that.

And we should have won this past game.

Definately had a chance, but then Ohio had a pretty decent defense. Wait, does that count as an excuse or drinking kool aid?

Denard could have won the Heisman, instead he went out with a fart.

Annnnddd, I assume we're attributing this unwelcome flatulence to somebody else or is this Denard's flatulence?

Team only visited the Rose Bowl in the Spring. Should have been there on Jan 1st, G.D.-it!

Damn right?

That's what I am saying, Denard never played in the Rose Bowl. That is outrageous.

True, I too am full of outrage. Point of order, I don't know what Denard not playing in the Rose Bowl has to do with last nights basketball game? Also, small critique, if this was really what you were saying, you could've just said this, much more concise.

I know my words hurt

Not really, no worries mate.

but they ring true

Sadly, also not really.


February 13th, 2013 at 6:23 PM ^

Wht Denard not playing the Rose Bowl and last night's game have in common is that this fanbase, this MGOBLOG fanbase, the UM fanbase are too accepting of mediocraty for me. I know Bo or Mo or Frieder or Steve Fisher would not accept this as a get em next time sort of thing.  

 I knew with certainty that the loss to Nebraska put UM out of the Rose Bowl; and yet the team pissed around the second half, never to put DG in.  We should have won that game, yet the fan base coddles the FB program even after that loss and the OSU loss.

 In the same way, last night's loss to State is similar in that the UM team got ripped and everyone thinks I am from Mars for objecting to some shitty play and coaching.  This isn't OCC here; this is Michigan.  There is an expectation to compete (and dare I say it WIN); not roll over and make excuses the next day.

I know I'm right on this, BO, would be pissed off for years if UM lost to MSU, ND, OSU, and there has been too much of that happening.


February 13th, 2013 at 12:47 PM ^

I'm obviously no mod and don't want to tell you what to do (actually I do), but you guys should just delete his posts. Everyone's had their fun responding to him and they're so stupid and inflamatory, and there are so many responses pointing that out, that they make it impossible to discuss the game.


On second thought, who wants to talk about that flaming turd. I rescind my suggestion.


February 13th, 2013 at 11:40 AM ^

I'm not sure you understand how college sports work...

We are never going to beat teams every year- even bad ones.  

Bowl games are all played in locations favorable to opponents for the Big Ten- and for the last decade against conferences far superior to ours.

Lewan is one of the best players to wear a Michigan uniform- and actually played quite well against Clowney who is the most talented player in college.

UM basketball set records this year for winning games- yes our losses have been painful and frustrating- but that is a good thing.  Yesterday hurt so bad because people cared and have high hopes- since the Fab Five people have been so numb to a terrible Michigan team (or at least hopelessly mediocre) that such pain wasn't possible.

We are not an elite team this year- we learned that in EL- and the message was very clear.  It does not mean we are not a very very good team however.  This year there are not clearly dominant teams.  Duke lost by 20-something to Miami- who lost to Florida Gulf Coast.  Indiana lost to Illinois who most likely won't be .500 in conference- and Butler.  Kansas lost to TCU- which is the BigXII's PSU.  We have a chance this year still- for the conference and the national title.  The odds of that went down after the destruction by MSU- but they are not gone.  We got handed a dose of reality- and it sucked- but don't freak out about everything.  Last year Michigan basketball split a big-ten title- and that was all it took for that year to be something special.  Now the program is big-time, so any set-back will hurt- but I'm glad we finally are in the place where it matters like it does now.

It's easy to say we didn't "man-up" but this team has accomplished a lot.  Freshman got half our minutes yesterday.  Burke is a sophomore.  We have no seniors who play.  We played at a pumped up Breslin to a great MSU team.  We just played two OT games and had away game at MSU to end the toughest 4-game stretch in recent memory.  If we lost by 10 it'd just be frustrating- losing by 20-something is more than frustrating- but no matter how you spin it- it is not doomsday.

That was way too long a response to a crazy post... maybe mine is crazy too...


February 13th, 2013 at 11:51 AM ^

I understand how college sports work.

I also understand, that the Clowney hit changed the MOMENTUM of the game, and UM lost.  Sorry I care.

I understand you're making excuses.  "UM Basketball setting records for winning this year"  Weeeee!  give me a break.  They were down 30 last night!

My comment is more about the press and discussion this year annointing this team as the  Shit.  

And yes, the football team needs to man-up.


I see I caused some controversy for the kool aid drinkers.


February 13th, 2013 at 11:55 AM ^

The team has been a top-5 team all year- not sure how fans are kool-aid drinkers for thinking we are a good team with a chance?

The Clowney hit also came after the worst officiating call ever where we should have not even had the ball.  They played a better game than we did- that hit was obviously important- but get over it- we lost to a team that played better than us.  We had more losses than you'd hope in a year- but we lost to 3 top 5 teams and lost to Nebraska after our QB got hurt- that's not too bad.

Only idiots or 5 year olds thin ktheir team should win every year- and freak out when they dont.  Sports don't work like that.

Bill the Butcher

February 13th, 2013 at 12:03 PM ^

If you understood anything you would be able to understand that the Clowney play you continuously reference was not at all Lewan's fault because he made a check at the line and then the TE made a mistake.  

Usually I wouldn't reply to someone who is so uniformed but as you say "Sorry I care"


February 13th, 2013 at 11:41 AM ^

and post a "look at this meltdown thread HALOL".

There is so much wrong with this post but I will only mention 1 item. Lewan wasn't supposed to block Clowney on that play.

You are young and should learn that your team winning and losing is not life or death. If you aren't young, please refer to the Xanax post above.


February 13th, 2013 at 11:48 AM ^

Dude: seriously,  it was Lewan who said he wasn't supposed to block Clowney.  Don't tell me he did a great job blocking Clowney and his job was to block Clowney and then on this play he checked off Clowney.

Block effing Clowney!  Man-up and take responsibility.  Something like, "I MISSED HIM" would be better.