WTKA Roundtable 12/14/2017: Just Go Play Basketball Comment Count

Seth December 14th, 2017 at 4:00 PM

“We know what we’re involved in. We’ve seen the ball, it’s a basketball, it’s not a highlight object…what’s a highlight ball called?”

WTKA cover 12-14-17

Things discussed:

  • Patterson a done deal, again tentative leader to start next year remains Brandon Peters. Shea’s like Tate Forcier if you came in on the higher side of Forcier. Patterson has to learn the offense, drop-backs, while Peters has a two-year head start on all of that.
  • Tolbert: Michigan wanted to get stronger after the OSU game. Has this been an issue before? Another run at Turley?
  • Texas: They made Shaka look baaaad with his drop-ins.
  • Hoops: Is Michigan playing defense?
  • Out OREBbing Texas: Charles Matthews is the best we’ve had in years and years. Beilein’s got no choice but to put it down to the post.
  • Is Wagner a 1st rounder after this year?

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

Segment two is here. Segment three is here.




December 14th, 2017 at 5:25 PM ^

Just to add to the convo, as it's still unclear how in the world a team with Robinson at the 4, and Wagner at the 5 is thus far better than any Beilien team has finished at Michigan. There are three things contributing to that:

1) Defensive rebounding.  We amazingly aren't giving up many second chance points because we're the 23rd best defensive rebounding team in the country thus far.  Part of this is Wagner picking up his rebounding as he's been great on the defensive glass, but we're getting contributions from everywhere.  MAAR and Matthews both have great DREB rates for their positions.  In the past two games when we've played big teams, Mo only had five total DREBs, but he did a good enough job blocking out to allow MAAR, Matthews, and Livers to clean up.  This appears to be mostly sustainable.

2) We're getting a lot of steals.  We're forcing a lot of TOs for a Beilien team and this has a lot to do with Z, Teske and Wagner's ability to get steals.  This appears to be somewhat sustainable as well, given the makeup of the team.

3) A relatively low 2pt percentage allowed.  This is the surprising stat given our lack of rim protection with Wagner in there.  2pt% allowed is pretty coorelated with block % and our block rate is not indicative of this low 2pt% allowed.  And when Teske isn't in the game, we don't get any blocks.  We saw Texas miss some wide open layups.  I imagine this stat won't hold for the rest of the season, unless Teske gets more minutes.  Big Ten teams that scout us more heavily will exploit our interior defense.

I do think that we have better perimeter defense with Z, MAAR and Matthews than we've had since Stu and CJ Lee/Morris were playing guard for us so that helps in all regards.

All in all, its an encouraging start.


December 14th, 2017 at 7:24 PM ^

Also John Beilein with his guard heavy and bigs who can pass is like the death note to any extreme press.  I turned it on thought, "Oh Texas, this may be a nailbiter".  Heard, "Shaka Smart", and cackled remembering all those poor VCU teams we seemed to play once a year.

Sorta like when Kentucky just Manballed us out of the Tournament a few years back playing what seemed like endless giant McDonald's All American's.  Although that game was still crazy close.  Having McGary would have sealed that game, goddamn NCAA hypocrits.  How can you not modify a penalty when the rule has since changed.  That was lunacy.


December 15th, 2017 at 6:56 AM ^

Harbaugh said "stronger" but I think the guys on the field were fine.  But of course they played their best guys but their options might've been limited by:

Mone basically got benched for being out of shape.
Onwenu was in and out of the rotation and struggled to keep weight off.
Speightlisberger slimmed down to just Speight, then went down (not that 20 pounds would've made a difference o that hit but still).
It could also be that a lot of the freshmen and redshirts who haven't seen the field are behind schedule on their weight targets.

I mean, this is a very circumstantial case, but it WAS Tolbert's job to get these guys in shape and I do want to know whose idea it was to get Speight to slim down.