I’ll take Stu.
When Michigan had Stu Douglass playing backup point guard they weren’t a consensus top 10 team, they were a bubble team turned fringe top 25. Also - this goes back to my point about recruiting classes. I find it highly unlikely that David DeJulius wouldn’t be ahead of Matt McQuaid on the point guard depth chart under Izzo, but he insisted on recruiting defensive liabilities at that position for 3 years in a row.
Wasn’t trying to sell anyone on MSU or compare McQuaid to DeJulius (?). Just pointing out a similar type of situation that most people would remember where a backup PG isn’t really a PG.
Didn’t mean to imply that you were. But Stu playing backup PG certainly spoke to a lack of quality options at the position. I’m comparing MSU’s team depth, which I believe to be terrible, to Michigan’s team depth, which I believe to be very good, particularly due to my belief that Michigan’s recruiting class is much stronger than MSU’s, which you seemed to disagree with in the other thread and implied that MSU may play 3 freshmen this year (Loyer being one of them) while Michigan will only play 1.
Seems like the answer to start the year might be 1 and 1.
One thing I wonder about is Winston’s ability to effectively play 36 minutes per game like Burke did his Freshman year. Winston played 28 last year and I can remember him struggling to breathe a lot more than you would expect.
He won’t play 36 minutes per game at that pace IMO, but he should be in the 30s I would think. I also think that Loyer will be in the rotation eventually at some point this year, just like Johns could be at some point even if he isn’t yet.
Loyer is going to play significant minutes once he’s up to speed. He’s to good offensively. His shooting ability is no joke
They have no other viable choices for backup point guard.
Seems like Winston’s conditioning could be even more key than Ward’s, since Ward at least has Tillman as his replacement-level sub. If Winston is already a sieve on D, and he gets gassed, that could really burn them at the end of games.
I couldnt really comment on if Winston looked like he wasn’t in the best shape, last year, though. He’s so slow that it’s probably easy to blur the lines of slow and tired.
So let me get this straight on MSU:
Their best two players are defensive liabilities with major conditioning questions.
Their backup front court depth is questionable at best and stylistically resembles 1990s NBA teams while the rest of the NCAA is going guard heavy.
Their 4th and 5th starters are career bench guys with no NBA future forced into bigger roles for the first time in their tenure.
Their backup point guard is a non point guard “just a shooter” out of necessity.
Their freshman class is five deep but is only projected to feature one freshman in the playing rotation, despite pretty clear needs/opportunities both positionally and from a talent standpoint.
Count me in!
To be fair, Ward is really only a defensive liability against stretch-5s. Im pretty sure he has a great block rate and elite Dreb rate.
@BleedBlue That’s the tricky thing with MSU. Ward is an elite rim protector and rebounder. He was at the middle of one of the best 2pt defenses in the country last season. Michigan gave MSU fits last year because of how it could space the floor against Ward, but if you look closely there weren’t many other teams that could do that.
Bates-Diop maybe a bit, but he just went crazy making mid-range jumpers. Duke just out-bullied them and Syracuse couldn’t score at all vs. MSU.
I don’t really know what to think of MSU… think their rotation will look different on Jan. 1 than Nov. 1
That is fair. Maybe I’m just so used to watching Wagner embarrass him that it fogged my perception. Even with out Wagner, I’ll be happy to put Ward in pick and roll opportunities all day long this year. I guess I assumed his 18 MPG career number was in part due to his defense, paired with the obvious conditioning concerns.
It’s hard to see Ward being able to stop Johns at the 5 if Johns can get up to speed quickly enough. On the other end? Eh, we’ll see.
Also Ward’s freshman year (in which he played slightly more than he did his sophomore year) MSU’s defense was good not great. 37th in Kenpom defensive ranks vs. 10th last year (insert Jaren Jackson).
We will have to wait and see how MSU’s team defense looks this year without Jackson, Bridges and Tum Tum. My assumption is that replacing those 3 guys with McQuaid, Goins and more Ward/Winston minutes is not going to be a very positive change for the Spartans.
Counter point: It is also easy to see Ward dominating against Austin Davis down low.
I also think Ward hates having Teske guard him. Not sure if others agree but I think I noticed Teske gave him fits last year.
Agree that Ward would probably have a big game against Davis.
Yeah, if it’s Teske v Ward, Tillman v. Davis, I’m not all that worried.
Overall - Teske/Iggy (or Livers) v. Ward/Ahrens &
Davis/Livers (or Iggy) v. Tillman/Goins
It certainly doesn’t seem big advantage MSU there, and that’s not considering possible small ball options for UM.
And is MSU’s frontcourt going to be an advantage over DeRon Davis and Juwan Morgan? Or Happ/Iverson/Reuvers? Roby/Copeland? Seems like there are a lot of teams out there who won’t be at a disadvantage against MSU’s frontcourt, which is not typically the case.
Don’t look at me, I picked IU to win the league That being said, I don’t really expect De’Ron Davis to be a starter especially early in the year. Sounds like Morgan started at the five in their scrimmage and Fitzner is a guy they’ll use there to space the floor a bit.