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04/04/2018 - 12:37pm Let's just say...

... that he hasn't posted there lately.  Here are just a few excerpts from MattD from a legendary thread over there that was basically MattD crowing that he was right all along that Beilein wasn't a very good coach:

"I think a lot of what you think of JB is based on standards - for those that are ok with being a perennial bubble/bubble plus team, JB is great." 

"Its ok to have a gimmick system provided the team is winning, but once the elite talent leaves, the gimmick systems tend to go very bad, very quick."

"Being blunt, I don't think there's any way in hell JB is a top 10 coach."

"So sick of some folks acting like we have to cheat to get better recruiting."

"I can personally tell you that some kids simply don't want to play for a soft coach..........and that is the perception of John Beilein."

"True question...............does anyone really care if a coach is nice guy? I could give 2 f$^ks less. Was Bobby Knight a nice guy? Is Jim Harbaugh considered a nice guy? The answer is no.................a coach has a singular job, and that is winning. I don't care if John Beilein is Time Magazine 'Man of The Year'............all I care about is the product on the court and the independent variables that contribute to that product. Right now, I don't like much, if anything, about John Beilein as a coach."

"Have to disagree with you on UM being fun to watch under JB, I don't find his style of play to be fun at all. Honestly, I think its a very boring style of play."

Here's the thread just in case anyone wants to read the whole thing:

04/04/2018 - 11:19am So MattD, you changed your mind about Beilein?

For years, MattD was on the UMHoops forum calling Beilein "mediocre" and "boring," saying that 2013 was a fluke, that Michigan should fire him and would never be more than a bubble team, and denying that Beilein was at any disadvantage for being clean in recruiting.  I guess you've changed your mind?

04/02/2018 - 10:40am Re: Matthews going left...

... here's an excerpt from an Athletic article about him prefering to go that way.  Some of the issues with him seeming to always go right earlier in the season might have been trying to follow coaching.…

This season, between Charles Matthews and Jordan Poole, Beilein has key pieces who tend to drive with their left hand. Ideally, he’d prefer the offensive set, not their instincts, to decide if they go left or right. That development hasn’t come yet, though. When it comes to the here-and-now, Beilein could either fight those tendencies in some Sisyphean coaching struggle or change course and adjust to his players.

03/29/2018 - 11:47am Many OSU fans were rooting for UM

A significant chunk of OSU fans were rooting for Michigan, at least up until now, which may be what prompted the article.  Perhaps it would be different in football.

03/28/2018 - 8:35pm Ace Was Off the Bandwagon Too

In January 2017, Ace didn't do a game recap after the Illinois loss.  Instead, there was  a post titled "John Beilein Hot Seat Possibility" that ended with "his recruiting and defensive coaching may lead to a change sooner than anyone could've reasonably expected not so long ago."  The recap of the ensuing Maryland game concluded that “this team so rarely puts it all together that it's becoming harder and harder to hold out hope for a strong run through Big Ten play.”

10/30/2017 - 4:43pm That would make linking to

That would make linking to them difficult...

10/30/2017 - 2:53pm The accusations regarding

The accusations regarding Balas and the Wolverine should probably come with links or some evidentiary source, especially as Brian and Mgoblog are not neutral -- they have long-term financial relationships with the competitors (Scout, Webb, 247).

09/07/2017 - 3:41pm Kenpom says that 3-point % is

Kenpom says that 3-point % is "random" for defenses, not offenses -- it's the offense that mostly controls whether 3 pointers have a good chance to be successful.  Kenpom does not say, as Brian seems to assert, that all three pointers are the same from an offense's perspective.

06/28/2017 - 11:00am For reference, these guys

For reference, these guys were very down on DJ Wilson too.  Kept calling him a "waste of a scholarship" over on the UMHoops board.

04/04/2017 - 10:26am JB offered Cain

Michigan doesn't hand out many offers and Cain got one.  Seemed like he liked Michigan but was waiting to see what other offers he got, but not a ton materialized, and Livers took his spot.  But he wound up in a fine spot at Marquette with a couple other Detroit  area guys.

As for Elliot, he seemed to develop late and Michigan seemed happy with Brooks and Poole and their other guards (like DeJulius).  It will be interesting to see if Elliot's ball skills develop. Marquette is probably a good spot for him and his style of play.  

03/29/2017 - 3:12pm That's what it sounds like.

That's what it sounds like.  They interviewed DJ and he said he skipped the meeting and might've considered transfering but didn't want to sit out another year after redshirting one year and barely playing the next.  He played something like 15 minutes in his last 10 or 12 games and not a minute in the NCAA tournament.  

Yup, what a difference a year can make. 

03/29/2017 - 1:52pm Dickerson camped at Michigan

Dickerson camped at Michigan when he was in high school but didn't get an offer.  He's always seemed to be more interested in Michigan than the other way around.  He was  a pretty highly regarded recruit.  People can search for him at the UMHoops site if they're interested.  

I'd be pretty surprised if JB encouraged Dawkins and Chatman to transfer and certainly not both of them (especially knowing now from the Dak and Dunk show that Wilson skipped his end of the year meeting with JB).  The forward spot was looking pretty thin.  Dawkins went to be with his dad.  Doyle, maybe, but there's also a vast difference between saying something like there's probably not going to be much playing time and it might be in the best interest of all parties to at least consider a transfer and what it is alleged Collins did (even way before it got really crazy with falsification of documents).

03/28/2017 - 3:02pm UM Hoops is by far the best website for Michigan basketball

And it isn't close.  From analytics to game recaps to play breakdowns, from understanding stats to traditional hoops concepts, from top to bottom, Dylan and co do it best.  

03/28/2017 - 9:54am Let's just hope that MattD

Let's just hope that MattD has learned his lessons from the UMHoops board.

03/27/2017 - 11:38am Poole isn't just a shooter.

Poole isn't just a shooter.  He can shoot, and that may be his primary role next year, but he's a great passer with a good handle who can finish around the bucket too.  

Conversely, MAAR really wasn't showing drive and pass ability vs OkSt.  To be sure, a couple times he dribbled to the free throw line and then passed to Walton, but those were set plays, with the big screening Walton's man at the top.  Technically he drove and then passed, but it wasn't a drive and then scanning the court for an open man.  I would be surprised if his usage goes up significantly.  He's just too one-dimensional with the ball in his hands.  The offense is much more likely to run though the PG, Wilson, and Wagner, and that's not accounting for the role Matthews might play.    

03/23/2017 - 11:19am I was watching closely.  Have

I was watching closely.  Have been for a number of years.  Paid attention to the stats too.  Losing a game @Iowa when they shot 58% from 3 or against MD when then shot 67% from 3 isn't so shocking.  The team has improved, sure, impressivley, but it was not shocking at all that the results in terms of wins and losses would be much better.  I'll just leave this quote from Mo himself from his article today:

Call us a Cinderella if you don’t really understand what the term “Cinderella” means (like, at all).

03/23/2017 - 10:30am It's the opposite.  Our fan

It's the opposite.  Our fan base overplays how unlikely the turnaround was.  Our opponents three point percentage against us in nonconference and early in Big Ten play was completely unsustainable.  And it was quite possible to look more than a year or two back into Beilein's coaching record.  It may not have been evident that we would win the Big Ten tournament and make a run in the NCAAs or that Walton would become such a boss, but it was evident for those who were willing to see that we had a very good chance to show improvement on the defensive side.  And the facts of the past two years -- all the NBA attrition and injuries -- weren't present this year.  It really shouldn't have been that surprising that a John Beilein coached team would get better and have a good result.

03/14/2017 - 1:06pm The "team nobody wants to

The "team nobody wants to play" thing is somewhat more true for a high seed in my opinion, because in that case you think that you're a better team and will beat them most days but if the lower seed happens to be "on," there might be nothing you can do about it.  If you're a lower seed the confidence over a series of games isn't as true.  Although, if you think Michigan is more like a higher seed this year because they've been playing so well, it might apply.

Also, the TNWTP idea is particularly appropriate to teams that shoot a lot of 3s, I believe.  OkSt shoots plenty (38% of their shots are from 3), but significanly less than us (45%).  If we don't foul and can limit their 3 pt looks, this seems like a team that can be baited into a fair amount of early tough 2s.

03/14/2017 - 12:55pm Yup, make Evans (and others) hit tough 2s

Don't foul Evans and don't overhelp/keep initial rotations solid.  Their percentage of three pointers assisted for everyone but Evans is extremely high.  Forte takes some off screens and the dribble, but not the others.  We've been good at limiting 3s taken and that'll hopefully continue.

03/14/2017 - 12:05pm The transition % stats seem to be off?

Unless I'm missing something, hoop-math has us at 20% and OkSt at 32% for transition offense.

Also, the ORB ranking is I believe total number, which is slightly inflated by their pace.  In terms of ORB% they are still a very good but slightly lower 13th I believe.

02/28/2017 - 10:24am You guys should stop

You guys should stop pretending that Ace was there "through the bad times."  As I noted last time you said this, Ace's first Illinois Game Recap wasn't there, just a post titled "John Beilein Hot Seat Possibility" that ended with "his recruiting and defensive coaching may lead to a change sooner than anyone could've reasonably expected not so long ago."  The ensuing MD recap concluded that “this team so rarely puts it all together that it's becoming harder and harder to hold out hope for a strong run through Big Ten play.”  This was all despite being a "numbers guy" and an obvious reason for the losses were that teams were hitting an unsustainable percentage of threes against us.  This revisionist history now is weak sauce.

02/27/2017 - 3:19pm Ace Gave Up - It was pretty disappointing

Ace gave up.  His Illinois Game Recap wasn't there, just a post titled "John Beilein Hot Seat Possibility" that ended with "his recruiting and defensive coaching may lead to a change sooner than anyone could've reasonably expected not so long ago." The ensuing MD recap concluded that “this team so rarely puts it all together that it's becoming harder and harder to hold out hope for a strong run through Big Ten play.”

It was disappointing, especially considering part of the reason for the losses were that teams were hitting an unsustainable percentage of threes against us.  It was an opportunity for a "numbers guy" to go against the mob mentality.  That opportunity was wasted.

02/22/2017 - 10:50am Ha, that's by far my most

Ha, that's by far my most effective post ever.  And I can see why it seems shady at first glance.

02/22/2017 - 10:27am You have it backwards

You get a scholarship for four years, that's the understanding.  It's not at all shady to redshirt a guy and then give him a firm handshake.  It would have been better to play Donnal spot minutes his first year and burn his RS?  Consider this year -- JB has said Austin Davis could provide a few solid minutes a game -- would it be better for Austin to burn a year of eligibility to provide a few minutes here or there for a few games or have an opportunity for a fifth year, even if it's not a Michigan.  

Beilfeldt got to have a year paid toward an IU business degree and be a sixth man on a B1G title team.  He still proudly reps the M.  Spike is getting some kind of PU graduate degree and playing for a contender despite being injured.  Etc. etc.  

JB is doing these guys a solid by preserving their eligibility, and particularly when it hasn't benefited UM overly much with any fifth year guys.  From everything we've read he's always up front with guys about their status.  The only improvement is that now they just list guys without the RS tag so it's all clear on the roster.

02/15/2017 - 4:45pm Yup, we probably want IU to

Yup, we probably want IU to beat Minny.  We have two wins against IU, including a road win, by a combined 42 points.  We definitely don't want them falling out of the top 100.  And it's not like Minny is so far from the bubble.  In fact, if they lose to IU and us and we also beat Wiscy, we're ahead of them.  And I'd rather face them after a loss, though that could go either way. 

02/15/2017 - 4:21pm This logic may apply to

This logic may apply to VTech, but probably not Marquette, who is at 85 in the RPI and was an out of conference neutral court victory.  The chances of Marquette being the one team to knock us out of the tourney/into the first four/down a seed line are pretty low, especially with our head to head victory.  On the flipside, we'd really like them not to fall out of the top 100 RPI and the committee often talks about wins against teams in the field.  With games left @Xavier, @Providence, and vs Creighton, we probably want Marquette to win this one.

03/30/2016 - 10:39am Quantity does not equal quality

On here, you don't have to bother reading the columns, just assume they say that the last thing that happened is the next thing that'll happen.  And while you don't have to be a former basketball star to write about hoops, reading Brian and Ace talk about basketball makes me wonder if they can dribble a basketball for more than ten seconds without tripping.

03/30/2016 - 10:33am That Ace doesn't know when Jordan Poole is coming... all you need to know about the basketball analysis on this site.

11/19/2015 - 3:15pm Responses, not quite in order

3.  Interestingly, I went back to look at the play-by-play for the 2nd TD drive, and Michigan also converted a 2nd and 20 by running on 2nd down! Houma got 7 yards, leaving 3rd and 13, which they convereted on a 19-year (i.e., less than 20-yard) scramble.  So not only can it make sense, but Harbaugh had already showed that he would run on that exact down, 2nd and 20.  Also, I don't have time to check exactly what they did to convert when they had fifteen yards to go, but are you saying none of those involved runs?

1.  My numbers are arbitary, but they are also illustrative of the point that saying TDs are better than FGs is not the end of the discussion.  As to your numbers, Smith, who was in the game, averaged almost 5 yards per carry, and the numbers are skewed by the three runs for no yards at the end of regulation.  And running plays are less likely to get 0 or negative yards than passing plays even if the overall average is less, which is crucial when you are on the fringe of FG range.

2. Running on 2nd down does not give up any possibility of a touchdown.  See point 1.  And is 26-24 at the end of the 3rd (including a punt return TD) really a shootout?

4. Did Indiana play a different defense on that down than they did at other times?  And...

5. ... he did bite a little bit, which can make a big difference.  

Anyway, I'm not saying that running is obviously the right thing to do, or that the call was necessarily genius, but I don't think it was so ludicrous or crazy as to draw bafflement.

11/19/2015 - 12:52pm It was definitely a duck, but...'re being late was worse, and, more importantly, it was probably too tight a window.  I dont' think he needed to throw it away though.  He still had time and had Smith coming open on a checkdown that looks like it could've gained significant yardage.

11/19/2015 - 12:42pm I think I'm Right -- or at least the answer isn't obvious

1. Of course a TD is more desirable than a FG.  But if one play call will give you a 10% chance of a TD while another will give you a 90% chance of a FG down two late in the third, which is better?  And it's not like a run eliminates getting a TD in Michigan's situation.  Remember, a sack can take you out of FG range altogether.

2.  Harbaugh has shown the inclination to be aggressive, but also to be smart.  The question I'm posing is whether it was the smart play.  And other coaches take field goal position into account in long yardage situations in opposing territory.

3.  How many 2nd and 20s did Michigan convert on Saturday?  How many of their 46 passes went for more than 20 yards.  Again, even getting some yards on 2nd helds your FG position and increases your odds of converting on 3rd down.

4. I think this is covered.

5. According to Space Coyote above, the "guy that made the INT even bit down on the play and was frozen for a little bit."  So does that mean it was the right play call?  Maybe Jake just made a late or bad throw... 

11/19/2015 - 12:14pm He said it in the game article and on Twitter

He said it in the game article and on Twitter (and probably elsewhere).  He seemed to feel very strongly about this.

11/19/2015 - 12:08pm Again, this assumes a pass is the obvious or expected play

You assume the defense expects pass, but why?  In that time of the game in that down situation, a FG is a desireable outcome.  Running twice and gaining 8 or 10 yards total dramatically increases the chances of a successful field goal.  Opposing coaches and players could and probably should take the threat of a running play seriously.  Lining up as Michigan did increses the odds they will.

11/19/2015 - 12:04pm This assumes the conclusion

You assume it's an obvious throwing down.  Gaining yards short of the first down is a huge benefit because of the increased probability of field goal success.  Running twice and gaining 8 yards total could be a perfectly good outcome.  The other coaches (and even players) might know this and take the threat of a running play seriously.

02/11/2015 - 12:04pm Gloating about publicly

Gloating about publicly humiliating MIchigan undergrads?  Threatening MIchigan undergrads who have different ideas than you with sabotaging their career opportunities?  This is not only abusive, it's a classic display of hubris. 

12/04/2014 - 12:41pm The Self-Evaluation Is For Everyone

Ven Bergen called for self-evaluation from everybody who supports the program, including fans and, I presume bloggers.  I hope that was noticed.

10/14/2014 - 1:34pm The result was a good one -

The result was a good one - an extra hit on the QB (and perhaps some added momentum for the defense, which pretty much owned the second half).  I thought it was a bad idea, but it is interesting that with the actual result having been positive, and the chances of a 60+yard touchdown hail mary quite low, there's still so much anger.

(Also, a problem with calling the TO earlier is that PSU could still go for it on 4th and 1 and have more downs.  And even if you get the ball on your own 30 or lower with 15 seconds left, it's no great thing.  It seemed to me an attempt to get a punt block/return, thinking that PSU would see the probability of getting their own score pretty low and would rather punt it away, even out of bounds, to avoid a pick or a Hackenburg sack.  Like I said, I didn't love it, probably not the right move, but it's the same aggression that was once lauded around these parts and, to me, the whole episode is more revealing of the anger and lack of composure around here than on the sidelines.) 


09/18/2014 - 5:53pm I like the way this site

I like the way this site portrarys its businesses of advertising and sportsgambling and merchandise marketing as innocent fun while maintaining such strict moral judgment for everyone else.  Well done!

09/15/2014 - 12:38pm When Rich-Rod Was Here, Support the Troops Was An Argument

It was also an excuse -- if only everyone would've supported the coach, supported the troops, etc., then...

07/16/2014 - 11:26am Missing the Obvious Answer

This is likely not about getting cheap home games, but a clear scheduling preference by Beilien and co.  You have a young team, you want some opportunities to build confidence, try different things in game settings, etc.  While the overall RPI might take a small hit, playing teams in the 190s vs the 290s doesn't affect how many top 50 or top 100 RPI wins you have.  And with the B1G being so good, the end of year RPI is always high if you do well.  The marginal difference in overall RPI might not make the increased chance of losing one of those games worth it if you're trying to game it out.  But it seems to me it's just a clear choice by the coaching staff: in the nonconf they want (1) big-time games and (2) games the team is going to win by 20 pts, and that's about it.

02/27/2014 - 5:38pm whoops


02/27/2014 - 5:10pm The stats and experts disagree

Beilein is considered a master of late-game/out-of-time plays.  ESPN's Fraschilla tweeted last night about JB being a maestro after the play for GRIII.  Dakich has praised this about JB too.  And the stats suggest that JB and Michigan have been the best in the B1G the past couple of years in out-of-timeout situations.

11/07/2013 - 5:40pm It was execution, but that doesn't excuse the coaches

A way to beat that type of defense is with big passing plays.  These plays were there for the taking.  That first pass on the first drive should have been a touchdown.   On the third drive we get this: DG "can't find Funchess wide, wide open on a circle route for the first down and instead takes off."  On the fourth drive we get this: "Funchess runs a great route that gets separation; Michigan protects it; Gardner chucks it wide."

I'm not blaming DG and excusing the coaches.  It's the coaches job to get the QB ready to execute the gameplan.  And to have linemen and RBs who can pass protect.  But the "scheme" actually had pretty wide open TDs or close to it on a whole bunch of drives, including the first few.  That's not a bad scheme.   

Richrod had 28 yards total rushing his second year @MSU, but people go crazy for his scheme.  

10/24/2013 - 1:23pm The problem isn't timing, it's jumping to conclusions...

...without sufficient data.  As Sherlock Holmes will you tell you old chap, "it is a capital mistake to theorize before one has data.  Insensibly one begins to twist facts to suit theores, instead of theories to suit facts."


10/08/2013 - 1:27pm This could be true, but these

This could be true, but these are the kinds of rumors I don't put much stock in.  First, it's a rumor of what other players say Booker said.  That's a game of telephone, that is.  And players often have no idea what exactly is going on -- that one kid was sure that Grantham was following him to Cincinnati and then the Bearcats were out of the picture a couple days later.  Meanwhile, even Ulis publicly said that Booker hasn't told him anything although they've talked about playing together, and Booker seems to have been careful not to say anything publcly in advance of his Missouri trip.

All that said, I'd certainly rather have the rumor be that he's telling people he's going to UM, and thanks for the info.

10/04/2013 - 11:23am You have to count Doyle

Not counting him because he was an early commit makes no sense.  Hatch was originally a 2013 guy so we can exclude him in discussing 2014.

Here's another way to think about it:

Early offers/high interest:

Doyle - commit

Chatman - commit

Looney - miss

Diop - miss

Tate - miss

Bluiett - miss

Booker - ?

Edwards - partiall miss?


Late interest:

Blackmon - ?

Wilson - ?

Devin Robinson? - miss

Grantham - miss


By my count, we're 2 out of 6 so far on early offers/high interest.  That strikes me as very good considering how high these guys were rated and that none of them were from Michigan.  Remember, Doyle reportedly had OSU, Purdue, Notre Dame, and Miami offers. You can't get every high-rated guy you go after, and it's very hard to come in late on high-rated guys who've had people recruiting them for ages.  The final grade will depend on getting one of Booker/Blackmon (or I guess Bluiett or Bolden maybe), but so far they've done very well after two pretty exceptional years.  I'd say they have a good recruiting strategy.

10/03/2013 - 11:47am If true, my guess would be a 2015 guy

Maybe Jalen Brunson?  Although that's based on zilch other than no 2014 guys seems to fit and good-but-no-insider vibes on his recruitment.  After all, his dad was an NBA player -- those guys tend to mesh with our staff.  Plus, Illinois got a top 2014 PG and they were thought to be our major competition.  Just to add total internet speculation to unverified speculation, though I hope it's all true.

10/02/2013 - 11:43am I don't see it that way for Booker/Blackmon

Blackmon and Booker both have Kentucky offers.  If Kentucky was really the first choice for both, one would jump on it.  There may be some interplay between Blackmon, Booker, and Oubre, but my guess is it's much less simple than how Brian depicts it.  After McGary, Irvin, Chatman, etc., the evidence shows that UM has a good shot at the prospects they're in on seriously no matter who else is there too. 

09/26/2013 - 3:16pm I get your point, but...

...there's also been some revisionist history the other way.  In his first game, Trey went 1-7 against Ferris State with 0 assists.  He had 7 assists and 6 TOs in his first 3 games.  Over the course of the year, his asst/TO ratio was 1.66 and he shot just under 35% from 3.  He was bad against Ohio St. in the B1G tourney and pretty poor against Ohio in the NCAA tourney.  If he'd left after 1 year, he might not have been drafted at all (and was certainly unlikely to be a 1st rounder). 

Don't get me wrong, he was great for a freshman his 1st year and well-above his ranking.  But he improved greatly from how he came in, a testament to his hard work, the coaching staff, and his teammates.  Walton might or might not be better at the same stage, but it's not a crazy statement.   

09/25/2013 - 5:26pm Has Sam Webb said anything about Booker lately?

He's been pretty bullish overall and he is usually in the know.  Until he goes negative, I'll continue to think we have a good shot. 

McGary's recruitment was a lot like Booker's.  Some go your way, some don't.  Booker's had a process in place for a long time and I wouldn't take too much from the fact he hasn't committed yet.