Michigan survives NW Snowflakes Thread

Submitted by Bambi on December 4th, 2018 at 11:12 PM

Not surprised the game was close, we always struggle with NW, especially at NW. That being said, thoughts:

  • Bench is a massive issue. Brooks came in and did some positive things at the end but Livers was a no show and Davis was a massive negative. Need the bench to improve or some freshmen to develop.
  • Collins was pretty aggressive with his decisions (not benching any of his players in foul trouble) and it generally worked for him, but the decision to not guard Z at the 3 point line was his best. Z was 0-5 from 3 in the second half and missed 3 straight during the 15-2 NW run. If he can't make even 30% of his 3's, that might be a strategy we see a lot more often and we might struggle against it.
  • Goes back to point one, but yikes to Davis. He does not look like a B1G quality player. Either he or Johns needs to develop ASAP because we can't go all season 7 deep with Livers a backup wing and at the 5.
  • That being said, a road win against a decent team at a place we struggle is a positive. Also nice to see us pick up a close win, especially on the road, after blowing everyone else out.
  • I definitely thought the last 3 was going in.

Luckily the schedule lightens up, only 4 games before January and it's all body bag games and a mediocre South Carolina team. That's a lot of time to fix the issues we saw today, work towards developing a bench, and get a miracle worker to work with Z maybe?


Bando Calrissian

December 4th, 2018 at 11:14 PM ^

A win's a win, but I'm not going to lie and say I wasn't confident that three was going straight in and the court was going to be rushed in about 15 seconds or less. Because I like Michigan sports.


December 4th, 2018 at 11:14 PM ^

GIven that this is the 9th game of the year, and Michigan usually starts out slowly, I'm okay with this outcome.  Michigan got the win and they are 9-0.

Not every game is going to be a blowout, and if they can struggle and still win against quality opponents, I'll take the W.


December 4th, 2018 at 11:42 PM ^

Sure, but did you wonder why he was taking those shots?

It's because the team was getting mugged anytime there was a shot inside, with no fouls being called.

Northwestern only got whistled for five second-half fouls.  They damned near committed five on one play where Iggy got two consecutive shots "blocked" by three players surrounding him on the low post.

The unbalanced officiating absolutely changed Michigan's offense in the second half.


December 5th, 2018 at 2:44 AM ^

eh, NW turned up the D pressure big time and we wilted; especially simpson.  i think on 4 straight possessions, Z had two TOs on bad passes and a couple bad 3 pt shots.  4 empty possessions in a span of about 2 min all on Z.  So glad JB benched him to get his mind right.  

Also, matthews decided to go hero ball about that same time on a few possessions and came up empty.  the two worst shooters decided to take the game upon themselves instead of playing the normal offense which has been successful.  they allowed NW to get back in the game.

so happy we still managed to come up on top.  huge props to Ziggy!!!


December 5th, 2018 at 7:42 AM ^

Matthews with the ball in his hand and the shot clock running down is terrifying, it's almost like he wants to take those shots all game but he finally has justification in those situations to jack up bad shots one-on-one.  Someone mentioned in another comment that the Simpson/Davis pick and roll needs help.  It reminds me of the Simpson/Teske pick and rolls last year and what a step down in was from having Mo out there to stretch the defense out to the three point line while still posing a threat to cut to the basket.  Teske has been awesome this year at so many things but if him and Simpson are 0-7 from behind the arch the offense is going to have issues.  All seven of those looks were wide open - if they can't hit 35% of them defenses will be happy to let them shoot it all game.  25% from 3 point range as a team is the difference between a nail-biter and a comfortable road win against a tournament team.  

Reggie Dunlop

December 5th, 2018 at 10:39 AM ^

I disagree. Keep firing. He's not incapable of hitting a jump shot, he's just not very good. He'll hit his share (about 28% according to last year). That's 1 or 2 makes yesterday instead of 0-5. And if/when he hits those two threes, Northwestern and any other future opponent has to stop giving up free points. That pulls out his defender a couple steps, gives him room to drive the lane and we all know how that goes for this offense.

Keep shooting, Zavier.


December 4th, 2018 at 11:16 PM ^

That right there was the "I wonder how this team responds if they can't make anything" game. 

They found a way to gut that win out somehow and hit clutch shots. Lots lots LOTS to work on, this will serve the team really well - next practice is going to be rough ;) 


December 4th, 2018 at 11:16 PM ^

Offense fell apart down the stretch. Team struggled when Teske and Iggy were on bench 


This game will be a good lesson, I don’t think we should be too worried. 

M Ascending

December 5th, 2018 at 9:18 AM ^

Totally agree.  Anytime Iggy goes to the bench the offense suffers.  Anytime Teske goes to the bench the offense and defense suffer.  When they both go the bench at the same time -- the Apocalypse.  

I'm also still opposed to Beilein's autobench on the first foul.  Matthews was benched just one minute into the game, and I think he never was able to get into a flow when he came back.  Teske was benched with his first foul, which allowed NU to creep back into the game in the first half.  

I also think it's tough on a player to know that the first foul you commit, you're coming out.  That has to force you to play tentatively.


Gentleman Squirrels

December 4th, 2018 at 11:16 PM ^

Simpson's deep shooting is really concerning because opposing teams can essentially hack-a-shaq him. We need Simpson out there in late game situations and he can't be a liability in his free throws or deep shots.

M Ascending

December 5th, 2018 at 9:23 AM ^

Collins's strategy was outstanding re: Simpson.  By playing off, not only do you induce him to take shots he rarely will make, you also prevent his dribble drive penetration, at which he is so effective, both passing the ball and making layup/hooks from ridiculous positions.  And, you clog the lane for guys like Iggy and Teske.  I expect this strategy to be repeated; but hopefully the coaches can come up with a counter-strategy to this move.


December 4th, 2018 at 11:17 PM ^

Play Johns and accept their will be some lapses and mistakes. Get him ready for the end of the year.

Someone get Livers head out of his ass and don’t go Ghost mode on offense.

Z is great and he shouldn’t lose any minutes and should still shoot a few 3s a game but holy hell not 3 possessions in a row.

Poole needs to be more aggressive on O.

Iggy needs a little bit more of a break during the game. We need his playmaking ability late in the second half and not to be totally gassed.

Matthews....Jesus that was a bad game. I mean really bad. Hopefully just chalk it up to an off night and move on.

But a win in that arena and against that annoying team is big, we weren’t gonna blow every team out forever.