20 offseason thoughts on the Big Ten

Would love to hear your thoughts on the league… Should be some good offseason talking points here that can generate some discussion.

A lot of people seem to be puzzled at Michigan’s placement in national polls. While I think top 25 is a fairly easy sell with the defense we’ll return I must say having Poole as the only returning guy I feel truly confident in with shooting from deep is a worry. As you pointed out in the Athletic PF article Livers was only at 25% after the missed game. If Matthews and Simpson get to the 35% that we would like to see and one of Johns, Livers, or Iggy provides a consistent corner three then we’re probably title contenders. If not, we’re probably still looking at a top 3 B1G finish IMO, but it’s hard for me to picture another deep run.

tl;dr: I can at least tell understand why some national guys are less optimistic on Michigan compared to the fan opinions.

We are talking about a coach who played Ben Carter for more minutes than Jaren Jackson Jr. in a NCAA Tournament loss so your guess is as good as mine.

Oh no you didn’t


I think the kneejerkiest of kneejerk reactions from our crowd come from comparing Michigan’s ranking with Sparty’s ranking.

Minnesota will be get overranked by the preseason media. Overall I think the league may be a bit better? But there also may not be any teams as good as last year’s MSU, Purdue, or Michigan

Overall I think the conference will be better than last year. We’ll have to see if any teams can reach the top like UM, MSU, and PU did last year, but the middle should be much stronger, with improvements from Wiscy, Iowa, and others.

Indiana sets up as a possible big riser, but guard play and perimeter play in general is the big question mark. DeVonte Green can’t shoot well and turns the ball over a lot. Who’s going to shoot 3s for them? And I’m not particularly sold on Archie Miller as a coach. His advanced metrics have never been particularly impressive. But if Langford can really take the reigns and be a lead guard, they have some pieces.

As the article points out, guard play or lack thereof will be a factor for other teams, like PSU and Minny. Seems like these teams will win some games because of their frontcourts when the match-ups allow but will have a bunch of losses too.

I think Dylan might have been a year early on his Iowa love last year and not quite enough seeing their potential this year. They were quite good on offense and atrocious on defense. I don’t think they’ll win the conference or anything but a return to the top half of the conference seems quite plausible.

Yup, now or never for Tim Miles. I think he gets them back to the tourney.

MSU will be good. They obviously use their best talents but should finish in the top 4 or 5.

I’m not too worried about UM’s shooting or offense. Wagner is the big loss but we’ll be more dynamic at other positions and JB will figure it out.

Your article has caused me to give Nebraska a second look…And I do like them a bit more after chopping up the numbers. BartTorvik had them as the 24th best team last season from Jan 2 on. So they were ACTUALLY pretty good for the most part, but these are still my concerns with them.

  1. They lose a couple of good rotation shooters/starters in Anton Gill and Evan Taylor. These two are relatively small losses, but Nebraska hasn’t always been able to successfully generate solid rotation pieces from young players. Are Thomas Allen and Nana Akenten gonna be able to take those spots and be effective? Or is this a 4-5 man team next year?
  2. I am skeptical of massive improvement. Copeland and Palmer just do not seem like guys who have a lot potential yet to unearth. I could easily see them coming back and being the same as they were last year.
  3. Glynn Watson just straight up sucks. Seems like he just had one fluky 3 point shooing year, but besides that he doesn’t bring much to the table in my mind.
  4. Can they win away from home? Generally, I feel like this is an overblown thing, but the KenPom metrics actually kind of back this up. Nebraska has a significant homecourt advantage. 3.9 points above expected at home (32nd in all of the NCAA).
  5. I can’t shake away the second Pettaway year

Seems harsh. He was really good as a sophomore and plays well out of ball screens.

Very fair and I honestly have no idea. I just think they have some nice pieces and actually landing a few home games is nice.

I kind of like Allen stepping in as a shooter. He was a highly regarded kid out of HS, especially for NEB.

Thought provoking article. Too much to comment on. Could be broken down into at least a dozen forum topics.
I’ll just say this about Wisconsin: the good news is, they return almost everyone from last year’s team. The bad news is, they were not very good last year.

Fair. But that includes injured players and the majority of guys who played were very young. Seems like an ideal growing year.

I don’t think its fair to base the “talent” of the big ten strictly on draft picks. Guys like Haas and Happ are studs but won’t get drafted for whatever reason.

Not saying that the Big Ten is completely doomed because it is low on pros, but I do think it is fair to say that more pros elevates the ceiling of a league.

Whatever reason is that Haas is practically immobile guarding a ball screen, especially against NBA athletes, and can’t shoot. Happ, too, has only attempted a hand full of shots outside the paint in his Wisconsin career and is a below-the-rim athlete, relying on his craftiness. He also has really short arms and would likely to struggle scoring the same way he does in college at the NBA level.

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I know. In college those things matter far less. That’s why im saying you can’t just take pro prospects as a base of league talent.

I really don’t care too much about preseason rankings so MSU being rated 10 spots higher now doesn’t really bother me. But I will be very curious to see Dylan’s position breakdown of MSU on The Athletic after he’s done with Michigan. Someone could reasonably argue that MSU has the advantage at PG, SG, & C. And maybe over the course of the whole season, they might be right. But I think head-to-head we match up really well, again. I like Teske and Ward might have a good game, but I think Teske can hold his own against him. I’ll take Simpson head-to-head over Winston because that’s how it’s been the last couple years and more will be on Winston’s shoulders. Langford might be more consistent than Poole next year, but Poole is quicker and more dynamic and Poole’s swag >>>> Langford’s swag. I think we’ll be much better at t the 3 and 4 than MSU. Plus Beilein > Izzo.

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I’ve just never been impressed watching him play live and his overall effeciency numbers seem pretty poor except for his sophomore (which could easily just be fluke 3 point shooting).

Was Allen known as a shooter out of high school?


Illinois is gonna be small.

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Ha. Just when I said they might surprise!

At this point, they might surprise us by having enough players to fill out a roster

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