Can I ask what our rooting guide is for today?

Submitted by jbrandimore on March 25th, 2018 at 10:54 AM
I’m not one that cares so much as to the Kenpom ratings but more who we think we would have the best matchup with in a theoretical NC game. I’ve seen Duke play a couple times, and their zone does worry me, but I have never seen Kansas once. The 4 guard thing seems ok to me, but I haven’t seen them, so I welcome your opinions. As for the other game, I know Brunson on Nova is great - but I have faith in Simpson being able to neutralize him. Am I crazy? I have only seen Texas Tech dismantle Purdue, but without Haas, that didn’t seem like an accurate gauge of their abilities.



March 25th, 2018 at 11:54 AM ^

first I hate Coach K and Duke and think we could take them; with that step, it seems to me that we emerge as a full-blown basketball blueblood

second I fear Nova of the teams remaining, though--agree--the opportunity to see Simpson go at it with Brunson could be memorable


March 25th, 2018 at 12:26 PM ^

Something like 13 of the last 14 national champs have had blue as oneof their team's colors.  The one that didn't was Louisville, so some would argue that 14 of the last 14 were blue.  So, just root for Texas Tech to make it to the championship game and everything else will take care of itself.

Go Blue! 


March 25th, 2018 at 10:57 AM ^

Texas Tech and Kansas. Villanova is very very good and they can shoot it. An experienced team too. Duke is a bad matchup for us with Bagley at the 4. I don’t know how we’d neutralize him. Robinson has done a good job at not being terrible at post defense but Bagley is much more polished than Jaren Jackson Jr.


March 25th, 2018 at 11:24 AM ^

The only real answer there that I could think of would be to play Mo and Teske at the same time at the 4 and 5. I don't think we've ever done this? and I'm not sure that it makes good basketball sense (because I am certainly no basketball expert). That would give you size on size with Bagley. That being said, it could also open us up to serious foul trouble with our two bigs on the court at the same time. 


Otherwise, Bagley is having his way with us if we keep Livers and Duncan on him. Really hope it's Kansas.


March 25th, 2018 at 11:33 AM ^

We’ve done it for like a total of 5 minutes this year. I don’t think it’s a real possibility. I don’t think Moe could handle Bagley either. Teske would be better, but again, it’s foul trouble waiting to happen. And Davis seeing any minutes in a national title game is probably a recipe for disaster.


March 25th, 2018 at 12:05 PM ^

The Moe Teske pairing would never be an option against any team really. If the other have two bigs like TAMU we want to bring them to the perimeter to neutralize that.

If it's Duke with a guy like Bagley, I think you stick with the same plan as now. Throw Livers at him, athletic enough that he might stand a chance. Throw DRob at him, maybe he surprises us with his D there, but in reality hope he just survives on D and can exploit/tire Bagley out on O by running him through screens and hitting his 3's.

Duke starts 3 guards who are 6'6, 6'5 and 6'3 so I think the curveball option is put Matthews on him at the 4 and go with Z, MAAR and Poole 1-3. Matthews would probably get bullied size wise by Bagley down low but he's the best wing defender so you hope he can use his quickness to neutralize him before he gets the ball down low. Trent and Allen, especially Allen, are basically 3 point shooters exclusively on O, granted Allen does get a good amount of assists, so try to hide Poole on one of them.

I don't think any of them are great options. It's why Bagley's so good.


March 25th, 2018 at 1:59 PM ^

Texas Tech and Kansas would be the slightly easier teams to beat. 

We could beat Texas Tech in an ugly game like last nights even if we shoot poorly.  We'd be favored over them by a point or two.

Kansas is good, but I'm not that scared of Bill Self.  They'd be a challenge but certainly beatable.  This is probably about a pick 'em game. Maybe KU favored by a point or two.

Duke is the most talented team.  We'd almost certainly have to shoot well from three to beat them.  The good thing is I think we'd get open threes against their zone.  Even though Bagley would get his, I'm less scared of Duke than I am Nova. We'd probably be about 4 point dogs against Duke.

Nova is really good.  We almost certainly have to make our threes at a decent clip (near 40) to beat them. I do like Z on Brunson, though.  Would be a fun game. We'd probably be about 5 point dogs against Nova.

LSA Aught One

March 25th, 2018 at 10:58 AM ^

I am legitimately frightened by Loyola. They play fast and score a lot. If Michigan gets past them, then I’ll worry about the next opponent. Bracket-wise, I need it to be Kansas. If Michigan plays and beats Kansas in the final, I win $200.


March 25th, 2018 at 12:14 PM ^

Total score is deceptive. Loyola plays slow which keeps their total down but they are like the third best shooting team in the country, all of their guys can shoot.  Probably the most balanced offense we have faced since purdue and can hit tough outside shots A&M and FSU couldn't.

They are a really good team. 


March 25th, 2018 at 11:47 AM ^

Loyola is 60th in offensive efficiency on KenPom, so not at all terrible, but not quite elite either. I do believe a lot of their offensive advantages they've had over other teams, most of which play traditional lineups and don't have much experience guarding that 4-out style, disappear against Michigan. A single-elimination tournament is always susceptible to random events, but if Michigan loses, it's almost certainly going to be due to another poor shooting outing than being lit up by Loyola's offense.


March 25th, 2018 at 11:54 AM ^

Loyola is almost a mirror image of Michigan, as far as style of play. They don't have a big that can stretch it as well as Moe, but their big is probably a little better around the blocks. Michigan obviously has more talent, but neither team has a guy scoring 15+ a game. They're all about spreading the ball around, hitting threes, limiting turnovers, staying out of foul trouble, playing assignment defense, etc etc. Even the stat leaders are similar. Leading Scorers: Moe 14.4, Custer 14.2 ... Rebounds: Moe 7.2, Krutwig 6.5 ... Assists: Simpson 3.6, Custer 4.2 ... Blocks: Moe 0.6, Krutwig 0.6 ... Steals: Custer 1.7, Simpson 1.2