Pre-Final Four NCAA Tournament Thread

Submitted by Mr. Yost on April 6th, 2013 at 10:51 AM

As always, the game will get its own thread tonight, as will the other game. But for those that are too excited to's a thread for us to discuss today's games.

Schedule? Schedule.

6:09 PM (9) Wichita State vs (1) Louisville* CBS
8:49 PM (4) Syracuse vs (4) Michigan* CBS



Mr. Yost

April 6th, 2013 at 10:52 AM ^

I've done pregame or pre "whatever day of the tournament" threads on each day thus far.

Along the same lines...if anyone but M-Wolverine makes an in-game (Open) thread, I vote it automatically gets deleted.

KEEP THE STREAK ALIVE! Survive and advance. GO BLUE!!!


April 6th, 2013 at 11:01 AM ^

Love the "8:49" start.  

I'm going to hold them to it.  If they are off by a minute, i'm going to lodge a formal complaint with the FCC.


Willy Wonka

April 6th, 2013 at 11:16 AM ^

As Stauskas can be from the perimeter, is there anyone else who thinks he could have a field day as the one in the high post? He can knock down that shot, has a pretty good handle, and can pass well. I feel that if THJ starts there and misses a couple of shots or has a turnover it could lead to him having an off night, which would significantly hurt our chances. Same with GRIII. Let em hang and Go Blue!

Mr. Yost

April 6th, 2013 at 11:49 AM ^

General thinking says to put GRIII in the high post, but Stauskas might not be a bad look from time to time because of his height and passing ability.

That said, I think the keys to this game are as follows:

1. DEFENSE - Defensive stops lead to transition. This stops Syracuse from setting up their zone and transition is a strength of ours. This sounds obvious, but it truly has to be the focus. Not trying to crack their zone. GET STOPS!

2. HARDAWAY - I think Syracuse is going to shade their zone to Stauskas after his last game. THJ hasn't had a great game in awhile, but I think this game is where he shines. His ability to shoot the ball and put it on the deck is going to be huge for Michigan. Also defensively, getting stops and matching Syracuse's length is a huge plus. I look for Hardaway Jr. to be a man. In fact, I said he'd be the Final Four MVP.

3. GRIII - This is where you go back and forth. Do you put GRIII in the high post where he can be a nightmare? Or do you put him on the baseline where he's shown ALL YEAR that he can find the seam for Burke to make the pass? He's made a living off easy lay-ups, and-1's, and dunks from his baseline play. I say mix it up.

A couple other thoughts...we can't fall in love with the 3 point shot if we're not hitting. Find another avenue. Lastly, mix up defenses if Syracuse finds a rhythm on the offensive end. 1-3-1 and 2-3 could be devestating to them because they're not a GREAT shooting team.


April 6th, 2013 at 2:39 PM ^

When we've played the 2-3 in spots this season, it's been Hardaway at the high post.  I would expect to see him, GRIII and even McGary and Stauskas on occasion as Coach will be looking to mix up looks against the zone.

Either way, we will need a good shooting night from Stauskas and eiher THJ or GRIII to get the dub-ya.

I really think our ability to get into transition off their misses is the deciding factor in this one though.


April 6th, 2013 at 11:21 AM ^

I am cautiously optimistic about our game. I think we win by 8. Now I have to blow bubbles and play sidewalk chalk with my niece until the games start


April 6th, 2013 at 11:23 AM ^ below - numbers are courtesy of TeamRankings:

  Michigan Syracuse
Points/Game 74.9   70.8
Avg Score Margin +11.9   +12.2
Assists/Game 14.4   14.0
Total Rebounds/Gm 35.3   38.6
Effective FG % 54.6%   49.1%
Off Rebound % 30.0%   37.7%
FTA/FGA 0.276   0.372
Turnover % 12.5%   15.6%
Opp Points/Game 63.0   58.6
Opp Effective FG % 48.0%   42.5%
Off Rebounds/Gm 9.0   12.1
Def Rebounds/Gm 23.1   22.5
Blocks/Game 2.8   6.2
Steals/Game 6.3   9.1
Personal Fouls/Gm 12.7   15.8

Massey is giving Michigan a 56% win probability here, with a predicted score of 68-66. Lousiville is getting 81% against Wichita State, with a predicted score of 70-61 for that game. 

Mr. Yost

April 6th, 2013 at 11:54 AM ^

He's been talking them up since Selection Sunday.

I believe he was really impressed in the loss @ IU and the win vs. Ohio when he saw us live. Even in those games he was clearly taken back by our team.

He also likes Louisville, it would/will be interesting to see who he picks in that matchup.


April 6th, 2013 at 12:11 PM ^

but media people seriously cannot remember anything. Everyone (everyone, everyone, etc) is touting Syracuse's defense like they're unbeatable and we haven't played a good defensive team yet...

So I'm sorry, but we just beat Florida and Kansas. Shredded Florida actually.  Florida is the #3 Adjusted D team per Kenpom and Kansas is #5. Syracuse is #6.

Just beause Marquette can't shoot threes to save their life doesn't mean we can't too. But it's fine, because as Bacari says "You gotta play with a chip on your shoulder. Lets eat"


April 6th, 2013 at 4:10 PM ^

bunch of other teams figured out how to beat Wisconsin, but they still beat Michigan in the Big Ten tourney.

Like Wisconsin, Syracuse has a system and they run it well.  That's not to say it can't be beaten, and Michigan definitely has the talent to do it, but predicting which way it will go tonight is not easy.

I feel like Michigan's play at the end of the Kansas game and throughout the Florida game has made people forget that this team sometimes struggles.  Crossing my fingers that it doesn't happen tonight.



April 6th, 2013 at 12:21 PM ^

getting better each game. Every player has had a great game in the tournament, but they each have also had poor games (except McGary). I don't think they have played their best game yet as a team. Tonight could be the night.


April 6th, 2013 at 1:09 PM ^

Just finished two soccer practices with the little ones. Now WTF am I going to do except read, pace, panic, chew nails, rinse and repeat for the next SEVEN HOURS! The anticipation is the worst, man I can't imagine what the boys are thinking/going through right now.




April 6th, 2013 at 2:28 PM ^

This has been one of the best weeks ever.  The anticipation of being in the Final Four is fantastic.  Three days from now it'll be over, which is always a little sad no matter the outcome.      I've been trying to take it all in.


April 6th, 2013 at 3:41 PM ^

Came into my office today, thinking "This will be a great time to get work done. I can get it all done before the game starts"

Optimistic thinking usually doesn't pan out. 

Oh well. Looks like it'll have to wait until Sunday.

Go Blue. Beat Syracuse. 


April 6th, 2013 at 3:42 PM ^

but everyone is trying to act like he died or he got terminal cancer in how they're trying to make him a rallying point. The dude might play basketball again within a year, he's not dead people


April 6th, 2013 at 5:02 PM ^

just forgot Stauskas' name, and reverted to "the kid who shoots the 3's." Throughout the season I've thought he was so much more than that...


April 6th, 2013 at 5:38 PM ^

Great to see UM play the Shockers - it's been 20+ years since both teams basked in national attendance.

Shocks didn't make it this far in the 1980s while we won it all, but those WSU teams with Xavier, Antoine Carr and Levingston were fun to watch.

Of course we will squelch them on Monday night ...


April 6th, 2013 at 6:02 PM ^

I'm seeing on ESPN's poll that the U.S. wants Michigan to beat Syracuse.  Most desired matchup is L'ville against Michigan and more people want Michigan vs Wichita than Syracuse vs Wichita, I'm hoping that means that the Louisville and Wichita fans will be rooting for Michigan at the game.  It would be sweet to make this game as close to a home game as possible.  GO BLUE!