Beilein coaching at Michigan vs else where

Submitted by oHOWiHATEohioSTATE on February 17th, 2011 at 11:56 PM
I know he has won everywhere he has coached and he is the head of the ethics committee. Everyone that supports him talks about when he gets his players he will win big here too. What nobody wants to talk about is every where else he coached the 3 point line was 19 ft 9 in. Now that he is here at Michigan it has moved back a foot. How much does this affect shooters? Is it harder to evaluate recruits whom don't have the same 3 point line in HS that they will in college? Also is it harder to get offensive rebounds now that shooters are farther from the rim? I'm not here to rip on the system, rather looking for what others think about the possible affects and how much better of a team we may have if the line hadn't moved.



February 18th, 2011 at 12:09 AM ^

In the spirit of not being an arrogant dick, you have legitimate points but most of us are pretty happy with the young talent he's brought in and are eager to let his young players grow up. Hardaway could be the best player we've had in a while, a superstar.


February 18th, 2011 at 12:22 AM ^

This team has actually met my expectations this season. It has been fun watching the team grow. I couldn't help but wonder last night if players like Stu would have thrived with the old 3 point line. I'm looking to the future. It appears coach B will be here for another decade if he so chooses. How could he tweak his system to get more offensive rebounds? Most systems call for the shooter to follow his shot. In our system the shooter tends to get back on D to prevent fast break points. With the 3 point line farther back there are sure to be more missed shots and if we don't hit the boards more empty trips down the court as well.


February 18th, 2011 at 8:41 AM ^

Someone didn't read Brian's post yesterday:

"The one major misstep from Doyle and the PBP guy last night was repeatedly claiming Michigan was not a good rebounding team. They're well above average defensively; they get zero offensive rebounds but the overall gap is small. They're about average.)"

His Dudeness

February 18th, 2011 at 8:14 AM ^

Coach B generally recruits a giant 7 footer to put under the basket to bring in those offenseive boards you are talking about. His attempts at getting a big man to Michigan have not been successful yet. He will get his guy. He has tried numerous times here and is doing surprisingly well with what he has.

NOTE: That is not to downplay Morgan who in my opinion is playing very well. Morgan just doesn't fit the body type typically found in the big man role in a Coach B system.

Naked Bootlegger

February 18th, 2011 at 11:03 AM ^

"Coach B generally recruits a giant 7 footer to put under the basket to bring in those offensive boards..."

I just don't agree with this blanket statement about big men in JB's system.  Who is the prototypical center of the modern JB era?  Kevin Pittsnogle.  Everyone brings his name out as the perfect example of the skill set that a center in the JB offense should possess.  His 4-year stats at WVU:

Min.   Pts.   Reb.

26.6   11.6   4.8

22.7   10.2   3.7

19.3   11.9   3.7

36.0   19.3   5.5


Pittsnogle was not an effective rebounder.  He averaged about 1.5 offensive boards/game his senior year.  In fact, Mike Gansey - a small forward who is listed as 6'4" on the ESPN pages - outrebounded Pittsnogle and played 4 min per game less than Pittsnogle during their memorable senior year!   They were the only two players who averaged more than 5 rebounds/game in 2005-2006 for WVU.  Novak and Morgan are more efficient rebounders this year than anyone on the 2005-2006 WVU team.   Maybe there are other examples of 7 footers on JB's other teams (Richmond, Canisius, LeMoyne, etc.) that were offensive rebounding machines, but his most recent WVU teams were absolutely devoid of 7 footers who were monsters on the offensive glass.

"NOTE: That is not to downplay Morgan who in my opinion is playing very well. Morgan just doesn't fit the body type typically found in the big man role in a Coach B system."

Morgan is playing well and has exceeded most our expectations.  But if you again use Pittsnogle as the prime example of a center in JB's system, Morgan doesn't fit the mold for the simple reason that he cannot consistently hit a jump shot outside of 12 feet and stretch the defense.  That will hopefully change with 3 more years of coaching and practice, although I never see the day where we consider him a 3 point threat.  But Pittsnogle was a great weapon because he could linger near the 3 point line and hit the long-range shot (a la Bill Laimbeer).   Morgan, on the other hand, is an offensive threat because he seems to have a innate ability to find seams in the defense on pick and roll-type offensive sets and runs the floor extremely well to get easy interior shots in transition. 


February 18th, 2011 at 9:58 AM ^

guards don't give a crap about the extra distance.  Most of Stu's threes are closer to NBA range.  He's gotten better every year as most players do.  Case in point: Evan Turner.  Couldn't throw it in the ocean his freshman year.  Lights out last year.  Overall three point made % NCAA wide has hardly changed since the distance increased.

Maize and Blue…

February 18th, 2011 at 11:24 AM ^

Tired of the youth excuse.  The Fab Five was young and went to the championship.  Truth is their just not that talented.  JB doesn't recruit bigs and doesn't recruit the state very well.  It's the opposite of football when it comes to HS talent in Michigan.  There's a ton of Bball talent and he just doesn't manage to land any sans CB.


February 18th, 2011 at 11:49 AM ^

all Fab 5 players are top 100 caliber players.  Three of them are top 10 overall. One of them is top 2 in positional ranking.  This is a stacked team.  If you have that kind of young talent, you're expected to do well.


This is a different situation for Michigan.  They don't have blue chip freshmen nor do they have blue chip players(coming out of HS) on the roster.  Youth is a factor whether you like it or not.


February 18th, 2011 at 1:01 PM ^

in basketball (1989 NCAA Champion).  The Beilein era follows a less than stellar period of UM basketball (a decade of no tournament appearances, NCAA probation, etc.).  Point being, it is a little more difficult to attract the top tier of players until you bring the program back  up.  I think that Beilein has done well considering the circumstances and has the program headed in the right direction.



February 18th, 2011 at 2:16 PM ^

has done well in recruiting.  Landed Udoh, Horton, Dion Harris, Manny Harris, DeShawn Sims, Blanchard and to name a few.  Ditto with Ellerbe with Crawford, Ingerson and a couple of other players.

You're right, it's hard to recruit for Michigan considering that they haven't been to NCAA tourney for 20 years until 2 years ago.  JB is starting to put his foot on the door in recruiting and is starting to attract quality prospects who will stay for 3-4 years.  His first recruiting class doesn't count because he was hired so late in the process and went with Stu and Novak.  His 2nd was better but his last recruiting classes produced some good freshmen like Hardaway and Smotrycz.  He already landed 2 top 100 players in CB and Burke.  His recruiting is on the upward trend and if Michigan makes the NCAA tourney this year(long shot), it will only help recruiting especially if they can make it 2 years in a row which means 3 NCAA tourney appearance for the last 4 years.


February 18th, 2011 at 12:23 AM ^

I see what your saying, but in all honesty someone that could shoot a 3 pointer when it wasn't moved can probably still shoot just as well 1 foot back.


February 18th, 2011 at 1:10 AM ^

They moved it back because 19'9" was clearly too close, and because things were getting too congested inside the arc.  But 20'9" is also pretty close.   It's still not that difficult of a shot.  Case in point: entering the Illinois game, we were shooting 40% from 3 in conference play - and we were only fourth in the conference.




February 18th, 2011 at 1:19 AM ^

Currently only OSU is shooting over 40 percent from beyond the arc at .401. We are 8th in the conference at .348. We have had 624 attempts, connecting on 217 of them. Only NU (599) is close to us. The bigger problem is that we are 9th in conference in offensive rebounding percentage at 32.6 percent and only us NU have a negative rebounding margin on the season. Also we are dead last in offensive rebounds per game at just 8.6 per game.

Gardner FTW

February 18th, 2011 at 1:32 AM ^

before but I will again. If you aren't SUPER excited about the direction of this team, you either a) know nothing about basketball or b) have no pulse. When they are winning games up the a** I will try not to make snide comments when the bball team suddenly has 1000000 fans. Or maybe it's the smithwicks talking. I doubt it.


February 18th, 2011 at 1:37 AM ^

I was talking about stats in conference play.  Overall stats can be dragged down by all the end-of-the-bench guys that play in the blowouts.

I agree that we don't rebound well, but that has very little to do with the three-point distance.  It's not like we become rebounding machines on nights when we don't take as many threes.


February 18th, 2011 at 6:23 AM ^

the DetNews has this headline today (Friday Feb. 18):

ESPN's Jay Bilas: MSU likely in, U-M out of NCAA Tournament

but the article below the headline makes NO mention of Michigan whatsoever, good or bad.  WTF!  Sports journalism has gotten to the point where editing either (a) doesn't involve ensuring the content matches the headline, or (b) doesn't occur at all. 

Why even go to these sites anymore?!? 

Sorry for the venting.  Michigan is not out of the NCAA tournament yet in my book. 


February 18th, 2011 at 6:50 AM ^

Great question.  I don't, unless someone posts about a piece that looks interesting.  Usually, it involves Angelique Chengalis or Sam Webb.  

Other than that, it's mgoblog, A2 dot com, and a few national sites for me.    


February 18th, 2011 at 10:57 AM ^

you are right.  That article does not mention Michigan's basketball team one time, not even in passing.  In fact, the article really doesn't say that Bilas said they are likely in, but that "they are a tourney team in his opinion."  And the Penn State win was a "big win."  Why, because they beat Penn State at home by ten.  Michigan's overall record is better than Michigan State, their conference record is all but the same aside from MSU's bye week, and Michigan has won the only head to head this year.  That headline and article is actually insulting to the reader. 

His Dudeness

February 18th, 2011 at 8:09 AM ^

The reason he runs the system is because of this:

A shot taken from within a couple feet of the basket is worth more than a shot taken elsewhere.

A three point shot is also worth more than a shot taken from elswhere within the two point range given that it is not within two feet of the basket.

It's a statistical game. The mid-range jumper is a lost art because it is the least efficient means of scoring points in basketball.

As for the three point line; A shot is rarely from the same place on the floor even from behind the arc. A shooter is a shooter is a shooter. It may take some getting used to, but that is what practice is for.


February 18th, 2011 at 11:03 AM ^

Hey Dudeness, you seem to know quite a bit about basketball as well. I had a question for you or for anyone else with the knowledge base.

Does any other school run a Beilein-like system? When RR was here we always heard the comparisons to Oregon and some of Urban Meyer's offenses; just curious if there's a similar basketball offense at another school.


February 18th, 2011 at 3:41 PM ^

Hmm, maybe I just don't know enough about basketball to see that without 28395 3-pointers slapping me in the face.

Or maybe it's because I've only watched them about twice this year. Either way, thanks for pointing that out, I'll have to look for all that next time I see them on.


February 18th, 2011 at 8:21 AM ^

The fact that the 3 Point line has been moved back makes no difference what so ever to these shooters. They shoot so many of them also that believe me they dont even notice the change. Beilein gets guys that are good shooters and it def doesnt effect recruiting. You can tell good shooting by mechanics, ball rotation, how quickly they get their shot off, etc.

Undefeated dre…

February 18th, 2011 at 8:29 AM ^

But is getting negged because it does come off a bit like a hatchet job. This site: has a lot of great historical info. You can see the obvious spike in 3 pt attempts with Beilein's arrival. And note that Michigan's two best seasons (this one and 2 years ago) coincide with our best 3pt %.

Across all of the NCAA, defensive rebounds went up slightly with the extended arc, and offensive rebounds down a bit (more players further from the hoop). And 3pt % across the entire NCAA dropped about .8%.

Again, I think they are fair questions, and the extra distance must have affected Beilein's system a bit. It's clear he's adapting, but we'll still live and die by 3pt shooting.  BTW, across the NCAA, 3pt shooting is up a bit this year -- is it the start of a trend due to more practice, etc, or just a blip? We'll have to wait.

el segundo

February 18th, 2011 at 10:36 AM ^

Michigan shot 2-18 from three the other night and lost by 2 at Illinois.

If three-point shooting determines Michigan's success, then this result would have been impossible.  According to your logic, with an abysmal three-point shooting performance like that, Illinois should have won by 20.

Michigan's success is determined by two things:  its ability to get out on the break; and the success of its screen-roll game on the perimeter. 


February 18th, 2011 at 9:13 AM ^

Beilien was just on the radio and explained his system very well and very efficiently. I'll try to summarize.

"Our system is not about 3 point shooting and I undertand if people get the wrong perception, but what we want to do is make sure we have at least 4 good shooters on the floor and then we just react off what the defense gives us.   If teams sag off of us we will shoot 3's, if they pressure the ball we want to dribble drive and back door, if they leave the post man in a 1 on 1 and don't give help we dump it down.  When you don't have shooters on the floor the defense can sag back inside and the inside gets mucked up and you can't drive to the hoop."

He then gave example of games where Morgan scored his career high and last year against Iowa when Sims had a monster game because teams took away the 3.  If you are paying attention we have done the same thing this year.  Lately we have not been shooting nearly as many 3's because we finally started making them(counterintuitive right), but teams have started to overplay the 3 opening up the back doors and inside game for Morgan.

As for Beilien I like to take the word of actual coaches over guys on the internet or media hacks.  All I need to know is that his peers voted him the best strategist in the game over guys like Kryzewski, Izzo and Williams 4 years ago.   If he's even half that good, I'll take it. 




February 18th, 2011 at 10:03 AM ^

Like Ziff said moving back the 3 point line should only open up the rest of the floor. If you think about it, the defenders will now be moved back to the 3 point lane opening up more work for post play or for back door cuts. For instance the threat of the 3 pointer early made the illinois guard very close, which in turn led to lots of back door cuts. In the Northwestern game they were guarding close also, but in that game it freed up Morgan to go off in the post.

The extra foot for the 3 point line shouldn't make a difference for shooters. These kids now are all accustomed to it, so they practice it every day. Any good shooter can adjust their shot and should be able to get comfortable with this range.


February 18th, 2011 at 9:34 AM ^

I've been happy to see that in some recent games the team wasn't glued to the perimeter early.  In fact, in some of the games the team has waited - for the most part - until the 2nd half to really start launching the threes.  I think that has caught some teams off guard.  Defenses may have been surprised to see how effectively the Wolverines were actually able to work the ball around on the interior.  I think the trend would have continued were it not for Illinois' freakish length.


February 18th, 2011 at 11:19 AM ^

Hardaway's increased aggression is the biggest cause of this. When he used to spot up behind the arc we had 1 playmaker, 1 big man and 3 shooters. Now we have 2 playmakers, 1 big man and 2 shooters, a balance that's much tougher to defend. 


February 18th, 2011 at 11:48 AM ^

We need to re-establish our PSL life line.  If we do, we'll get our bigmen year in and out.  Yes, Coach B has had some success in Detroit (Manny, Simms, etc), but I'm talking about every year getting the best teh City has to offer.  Let Sparty get their Flint players, over the long term Detroit is where the talent is.  And besides, we can pillage Flint (ie Glen Rice) when necessary.

el segundo

February 18th, 2011 at 10:00 PM ^

Beilein has recruiting success in Detroit very recently, getting Morgan and Brundidge.  Morgan played in the Catholic League, not the PSL, but does that make a difference?  Brundidge plays just across 8 Mile, at Southfield, but his AAU team is The Family, which draws almost all of the best players in the city and close-in suburbs.  (And think about this.  The Family is a Nike-sponsored program which tends to steer its kids to Nike schools.  That adds to Beilein's achievement in getting Brundidge.)

I think the current importance of the PSL is greatly exaggerated.  For a lot of reasons, the PSL is not the hotbed of talent that it has been in the past. For example, Detroit Southwestern used to produce D-1 players almost every year.  I don't think it does anymore.  Terry Foster, for one, keeps saying that Beilein can't recruit Detroit becuase he does not get kids from PSL schools.  I think that if you get first-rate talent from southeastern Michigan, it does not matter whether you get it from the PSL or not.

Bottom line:  Beilein's first two classe left something to be desired.  His last two have produced a lot of talent. I think he's getting enough talent to win in the Big Ten, with or without a "PSL pipeliine."

As an aside, Beilein did not recruit Harris or Sims.  Sims was here when he was hired and Harris had committed to Michigan when Amaker was coaching.


February 18th, 2011 at 12:41 PM ^

The PSL simply isn't churning out the top prospects like it used to. The Rivals 150 for the 2010, 2011, and 2012 classes lists only two PSL players--Keith Appling and Sherron Dorsey-Walker--neither of whom is a "big man."

I agree that Michigan should recruit the Detroit metro area heavily, but that's something they're already doing with some success--most notably, Carlton Brundidge for 2011. But, overall, there simply isn't enough top talent coming out of even the Detroit metro area for Michigan not to go after players from elsewhere in the state and elsewhere in the country as well.

Maize and Blue…

February 18th, 2011 at 5:55 PM ^

Recruit the state in general.  Amir Williams, Ziegler, Maurice Jones from Arthur Hill, Tommie McCune from Saginaw High, Matt Costello, Jordan Hare, Appling, and the PG that went UD (Names escaping me).  I would take any of them and those are just guys from the last year and this current recruiting class.

I'm not saying I want JB fired, but I want to see a more athletic team that can get some easy buckets when they are struggling with their shot.  Even if it's an ally oop out of a half court set which we don't see very often.



February 18th, 2011 at 1:22 PM ^

I honestly think Beilein is one of the BEST game-time coaches. I seriously rarely see the help that he gives to his players from other coaches. Its not just encouragement and criticism like most coaches, its truly teaching. That is actually what I like most about beilein and why I think he will succeed here.


February 18th, 2011 at 3:16 PM ^

I do believe that. Wins are not what I'm talking about. Its what he does during the game that I'm talking about. He doesn't have all that many wins becuase he really hasn't had good players up until this year, and the good players this year are all very young. Yes he had sims and Harris who were both good players, but neither seemed to mesh well with his system, not to mention they were not surrounded by enough good players.