UM bball conference record predictions and how many games to win the B1G?

Submitted by iawolve on January 2nd, 2013 at 12:03 PM

Since we are kicking off conference play on Thursday, I guess it is time to see how well we do at predicting our conference play. I will not even try to order all the teams at this point, but I wanted to get the board's feedback on what our conference record will be and how many games will it take to win the conference?

Last year, 5 loses won the conference, but I am not sure that is a safe bet again because of Indiana's schedule. I can't see them losing a conference game in Jan, Feb's hardest games are UM, @Illinois, @Ohio, @MSU and @Minn with their March being @UM. I think they can win out at home and I don't know that I see them losing more than 3 of the above 6 which puts a share of the B1G at a 15-3 conference record with a possibility for 14-4. A strong home court advantage at Assembly will work in their favor.

In order to do match that, we would need a strong run of winning the games we should and being road warriors to get out of Jan- @Ohio, @Minn, @Illinois and Feb- @Indiana, Ohio, @MSU and Mar- MSU, Indiana with a 5-3 record which I think is achievable, just seems pretty hard. This leaves no room for error, injuries or a stumble with a lower team.

If we beat Indiana the last game of the year, we will win the conference with 15-3, losing that game puts us second at 14-4. I don't know that I am enough of a believer in Tubby Smith to put Minny into the above conversation to think he can get to 15-3 with his schedule, maybe 14-4, but I think they are a likely 5 loss or worse team.

What are your thoughts on how this will shape up?

Comments

snarling wolverine

January 2nd, 2013 at 12:14 PM ^

It's hard to say with Horford's status still up in the air.  His interior D is huge to this team and we will need him down the road.  If he can make a full recovery and stay healthy, I think we can win the league title.  Without him, I think we'll fall a little short.

Prediction:

With Horford coming back - 15-3 (Big Ten co-champs with IU)

Without him - 13-5 (probably 2nd place)

 

SF Wolverine

January 2nd, 2013 at 12:16 PM ^

14-4 is probably a tie, at best.  If Horford can get back mid-month, and Hardaway's boo-boo is nothing serious, I see this team playing for a piece of the B10 title in those last few games. 

Mgoscottie

January 2nd, 2013 at 12:17 PM ^

+/- 1 will be the champion, I think the top 6 or 7 teams can beat any of the other top 6 or 7 teams at home.  So I wouldn't be surprised to see Indiana or Michigan lose four games.  I think 26-4 would be a likely 1 seed for us as long as we can get some good road wins in the process.  If we get a 1-seed it will be the first year in a while that I won't look stupid for putting Michigan as the national champion in my bracket too....

ypsituckyboy

January 2nd, 2013 at 12:18 PM ^

Indiana will lose at least five. I'm not super impressed at their options outside of Zeller and Oladipo, especially the guards. The team plays good D and can run with the best of them, but they don't have guards who can put the team on their back in crunchtime. A dominant post player like Zeller is obviously great to have, but post-guys can be doubled more easily and can be fronted to deny an entry pass. When it's late in the game and you need a shot, it can be tough to get the ball down low because of double teams/fronting. At that point, you really need a guard who can iso and score at will (like Burke). IU's guard play will let them down on the road a few times, I think, and lead to a few losses.

FabFiver5

January 2nd, 2013 at 1:47 PM ^

"At least five" is a pretty bold prediction. I'll agree that they've looked suceptible, but the arguably the nest talent in the B1G outside of us. Add to that the experience of upperclassmen and they know how to win on the road. And they don't lose at home.

The combo of Watford-Oladipo-Zeller scares me. Ferrell will only continue to get better like our freshmen, so it should be an exciting year.

M-Wolverine

January 2nd, 2013 at 12:25 PM ^

@Ohio, @Minn, @MSU, @Illinois is any harder for Michigan than it is for Indiana. The bigger problem is with the other games one might drop. It looks like Indy only gets Illinois once, and doesn't have to host them, and while each team only plays Wisconsin once, we do it there and they get it at home. Other than a contender dropping off the schedule, it couldn't be laid out much more neatly for Indiana.

iawolve

January 2nd, 2013 at 2:16 PM ^

they would play UI just out of rivalry hatred. To a lesser extent, I think Ohio will be similar. Everybody wants to win every game, it just is different with certain teams when you can get extraordinary effort. Again, just an opinion.

Generic MGoBlogger

January 2nd, 2013 at 12:40 PM ^

lose at Indiana, but I can see us making a spectacular run through the B1G regular season... Ohio isn't that impressive, Illinois is human, Minnesota is tough but a winnable game, State is not that tough, and Indiana their past couple of games has been shaky.  I can see us losing 3-4 at most and taking the regular season championship again.  The fact of avoiding injuries may be our biggest challenge... I mean look at what two injuries did to UNC late last season.

LSAClassOf2000

January 2nd, 2013 at 1:00 PM ^

This is one of those situations where, for purposes of the NCAA Tournament, starting the season 13-0 is a nice problem to have.

As for winning the conference, there are no games on the schedule in which we would not have a realizable shot at winning - that's how good this team appears to me. We likely will not win them all, but even in a conference where seven teams have ten or more wins right now, I would still say that even matching the 13-5 conference mark of last year puts us in the discussion (with a strong likelihood that this is a 2nd or, worst case, 3rd place finish). Even going +1 win to 14-4 probably makes the probability high that we would lead the conference, as competitive as conference play should be. Going back even a few years, in fact, it seems that 13-5 and 14-4 are not all that uncommon in the Big Ten as conference champions go (with 15-3 and 16-2 being on the high end).

 

AA2Denver

January 2nd, 2013 at 1:08 PM ^

B1G champions, BIG tourney champions, 2 losses, #1 seed in NCAA. 

Nobody's hitting big shots like Michigan right now, and we're getting better. 

 

StephenRKass

January 2nd, 2013 at 1:13 PM ^

I think Michigan is better than people realize, and that they are only going to get better. 15 - 3 is not unrealistic.

  • McGary is continuing to improve.
  • LeVert is continuing to improve.
  • The team is only going to get better on defense.
  • Their depth is unreal. I believe Horford will be back.
  • Their scoring options are unreal. Burke, Hardaway, GRIII, Stauskas, and LeVert can all score from the perimeter, and  McGary, and Morgan from the inside.
  • Bielfeldt and Spike are great placeholders to give Burke and the bigs a breather, without a significant drop off in play.

No one will be able to play zone against Michigan, given Stauskas et al shooting from the three point line. I think that McGary is only going to get better and better.

I think Indiana will struggle against the best highly disciplined and athletic teams.

I don't think Minnesota is deep enough to make it through the season.

And I think that Ohio and Michigan State are overrated.

Hardware Sushi

January 2nd, 2013 at 1:34 PM ^

I think we go 14-4 and tie or get second in the Big Ten regular season. Losses @OSU, @IU, @Minn, and one game at home. We might win or loss another game.

We're solidly in the top tier of teams with Indiana and maybe Minnesota. Hopefully we can play that way when it counts and things go our way for 15-3 or 16-2.

Needs

January 2nd, 2013 at 2:09 PM ^

We'll know soon enough. After playing Northwestern on Sunday, they go @Illinois, @Indiana, Michigan, @Northwestern, @Wisconsin. If they go 3-2/4-1 through that, they'll probably be around the top of the league all year, particularly b/c they only play Michigan and OSU once.

jonnyknox

January 2nd, 2013 at 2:30 PM ^

This is going to be a fun season with so much talent in the conference.  I see 16 - 2 with loss at Ohio and at Indiana.  Trey is B1G player of the year.

coldnjl

January 2nd, 2013 at 2:36 PM ^

I think we win both games against Minn, OSU, and Illinois. I think we go 1-1 against MSU with each team winning at home respectively, and I feel will go 0-2 vs INdiana. Sprinkle in an unforseen loss somewhere and we get 4 losses.

Soulfire21

January 2nd, 2013 at 2:44 PM ^

I like us to finish 14-4 +/- 1.  15-3 likely wins the conference, 14-4 and we're starting to look at ties, and 13-6 well, that'd be mighty disappointing

spartanfan123

January 2nd, 2013 at 5:40 PM ^

13 wins (multiple winners) or 14 wins (1 winner, with a couple sitting at 13) to win the B1G.

Indiana was awful on the road last year and they look like it again this year. I think they lose @OSU, @Illinois, @MSU, @Michigan, and @Minnesotta at least.