Big Ten Weekend Open Thread (1/11/14)

This weekend’s action… Any thoughts and predictions?

Indiana at Penn State (noon), Minnesota at Michigan State (2:15 p.m.),

Nebraska at Purdue (12:00 p.m.), Iowa at Ohio State (1:30 p.m.), Illinois at Northwestern (7:30 p.m.),

I’m most interested in what happens to Illinois and Indiana, as I see those two in particular as our chief competition for the second tier of Tournament slots from the Big Ten (5th through 7th place). As things stand now, MSU, Wisconsin, OSU and Iowa are pretty sure bets to be the top 4 and to make the dance. If we finish 5th at 10-8/11-7, we have decent chance to get in too. Seventh place at 10-8/9-9 and it’ll be tough.

Should be interesting. KenPom likes both Iowa and Michigan to go 12-6 with Wisconsin and Ohio State at 14-4 and Michigan State at 13-5.

Wisconsin has the easy schedule obviously and KenPom has OSU rated highest right now.

The January 22nd game in Ann Arbor against Iowa could be a big one if those two schools are battling for the No. 4 spot potentially.

KenPom is selling Minnesota (9-9), Illinois (8-10), Indiana (7-11), Purdue (6-12) and Nebraska (6-12). Which of those teams are undervalued? It’s probably too early to tell.

Finding it hard to believe we go 12 - 6 in conference play. Assuming we lose on the road to Wisconsin, MSU, OSU, Iowa ( I think that is a reasonable assumption at this point), and assuming we win only one of the IU/ILL/Purdue road games - That means we have to go undefeated at home in conference play. I think we probably lose a home game to one of MSU/Iowa/ Wisconsin, which means we would have to win 2 out of 3 on the road from the IU/ILL/Purdue games, and I don’t necessarily think we can do that unless we show some improvement. I think a reasonable range is 9-11 wins in conference play, with 10-11 being most probable.

Not sure why you don’t think we can beat IU or Purdue on the road lol

Did you not see the NEB game?

IU is a bad matchup for us, great rebounding team and lightning quick penetrating guard is cause for concern on the road. We can neutralize by winning the TO battle, but im skeptical it can compensate enough

I’d like to believe it, but I have a really hard time looking at our schedule and finding 12 confident wins. As MattD pointed out, at WI, MSU, OSU and Iowa are very likely losses, and I’d have to toss IU in there too. KenPom notwithstanding, we just don’t win down there unless we are overwhelmingly better, and we’re not this year. That’s 5 losses right there, and there are very probably two more among MSU/Iowa/WI at home and IL/PU on the road. Even at that point, we have to assume that Neb, PU, MN and IU at home are all wins, and that’s by no means certain. Let’s not forget that we only went 12-6 in the conference last year, when we started 16-0, spent most of the season in the top 10, and finished second in the country.

I wonder too if KenPom’s evaluations are based on his ranking of Michigan with McGary. Us not having him for the rest of the year changes all that.

I agree that 9-11 conference wins is our likely fate. Assuming we make our usual non-impressive 1-1 run in the BT Tourney (an annual ritual, it seems), 9-9/17-13 will almost certainly not get us in the NCAA, given that we have no quality NC wins and a bad loss. 11-7/19-11 almost certainly will get us in…even with our NC record, it’s hard to see an 11-7 BT team being kept out. If we finish 10-8, we will probably be holding our breath on Selection Sunday.

Nebraska can shoot and Petteway is a better slasher than either Ferrell or the Johnson brothers. We aren’t a bad rebounding team so I don’t know why you keep bringing that up? Maybe Hammonds goes crazy but he has been lackluster so far.

I don’t necessarily see Michigan as a 12-6 either, just passing along what the numbers say.

Michigan has won at Minnesota (39) and Nebraska (90) on the road, so I assume that’s where some of KP optimism is coming from… at Purdue (92), at Indiana (70) and at Illinois (49) might not look impossible by those metrics.

Indiana is obviously very tough just because of how we play down there.

W/r/t with or without Mitch. I don’t think there’s anything in particular to adjust for the injury but McGary hasn’t played in half of Michigan’s games (including two its three best wins) so I think it’s probably not a major factor.

Nebraska can shoot and Petteway is a better slasher than either Ferrell or the Johnson brothers. We aren't a bad rebounding team so I don't know why you keep bringing that up? Maybe Hammonds goes crazy but he has been lackluster so far.

#90 in the country and #7 in Big ten for rebounding rate - what am I missing here?

Nebraska is 1st in the Big Ten in defensive rebounding, 7th in offensive rebounding. Big Ten games only, FWIW.

Michigan hasn’t rebounded the ball well in conference play. Ranked 213th in offensive rebound, 20th in defensive rebounding for the season. But in three Big Ten games: 11th in offensive rebounding, 8th in defensive rebounding. U-M numbers are dragged down by the Minnesota game.

There are 7 teams with DR% between 28-31 in Big Ten games and Michigan is at the bottom of that group (30.7%). Then there’s NW (32.9%) down to Wisconsin (37.6%) in the bottom four spots.

Will be interesting to see how those numbers even out.

Well, none of Purdue, IU and Illinois on the road are impossible individually, but even if you give us a 75% chance of winning each of those games individually (which is probably rather optimistic), we’re still more likely than not to have at least one loss among the three.

As far as McGary, he HAS made a contribution (presumably a positive one) to our overall offensive and defensive rating on KenPom, even if not as a regular starter, so without him, our current rating has to be considered a bit high. At the very least, we’re much more vulnerable to foul trouble on the front line.

So wait, you assume that we will have one loss out of that trio, which is reasonable, but think we won’t upset any of the big 4 ranked teams?

I didn’t say either of those things, now did I? I said it was more likely than not (not a certainty) that we would have a loss among PU, IU and IL on the road, and that we would probably have a couple of losses among the five of MSU/WI/Iowa at home and IL/PU on the road. We may very well grab a home win against one of the top 4.

What part of all that do you have a rational reason to disagree with?

I don’t think it’s unreasonable to think it’s possible to upset any of the big 4 on the road either

Is it utterly, totally, completely impossible that we can pull an upset at MSU, Iowa, OSU or Wisconsin? No. Is it reasonable to expect at least one win among those games? No. We’re much more likely than not to lose all four. We have very shaky team defense, which is a key to winning tough games on the road, and Beilein has a very poor record winning against the top BT teams away from Crisler.

How is it more than likely when KenPom says statistically it isnt’?

Minnesota giving MSU all they handle but we can’t compete with teams on the road LOL

Duke lol

Minnesota @ Michigan St… overtime! Wow.