Depth and future rotations


So in your mind is JB an innovator regarding playing time distributions? Is JB conforming to standard practice regarding playing time distributions? Is JB’s past playing time distributions a reflection of his circumstances regarding disparity amongst his players?


I tend to think the fact that our best players are usually at 35+ minutes is why we seem to have a poor record in close games under Beilein (no idea if this is even true, but it sure feels like we do).


What’s this based on?


I mean in the sentence you quoted I specifically said it’s based on nothing factual.


Generally speaking, record in close games has more to do with luck than anything (IMO). Obviously any specific close game has its own issues, but over time teams that play and lose a lot of close games are generally ‘unlucky’ in my opinion.

The only year that I really felt like Beilein ran a team into the ground was 2011-12.


Since Beilein got here we’ve been about 186th in the NCAA in close games so I guess I was wrong.


It feels that way because we tend to remember the close losses more than the close victories…


I think JB is doing what he thinks is best. I think part of this is that everyone looks equal when they have 4-stars next to their name, but some people will be better and more ready to play than others and it is rare that a coach can’t pick out his top group of players.

I remember a couple years back, Beilein was talking about how they log every play in practice and use some of that data to determine what lineups are best, etc.


To be fair, in terms of actual buzzer beaters we’ve certainly gotten the raw end of the deal (although burke’s makes up for like 5 of them).


But for every Northwestern full court pass, there’s GR3 at the buzzer at Purdue. I think it is a tough subject to evaluate and ignore cognitive bias without actually going back through and keeping track of each game.


Looking at our overtime record might be worthwhile. Of course we would have to adjust our conclusions based upon assuming there really is wisdom in autobench :slight_smile:


Yeah, it does feel to me like we’ve gotten a raw deal (I think particularly of Brust’s heave or Evan Turner’s prayer), but if you starting counting up the buzzer beaters that were or weren’t, it’s probably at least not as bad as it seems. Some indeed have gone our way:

-Zak Irvin making the lay up to send the game to OT vs PU in BTT (to cap a relatively improbable last twenty seconds)
-Wagner blocking Eric Davis at the buzzer against Texas
-Kam Chatman buzzer beater v IU
-Jordan Morgan getting the charge call against Tennessee
-Morgan hitting the layup on the pass from Nik against UI in the BTT
-Trey vs Kansas
-Draymond missing two decent buzzer beater looks against us a few years back

So I’d say we probably have gotten a little unlucky but (a) that’s going to happen to some teams in a small sample size, and (b) we probably haven’t been as unlucky as we think we have.


Did a quick scan and got 16-9 in overtime since 2009-10. Not sure that tells ya much though and not sure it is dependent on the rotation either.


Great info. Thanks.


Even with all this information It still feels to me that for the last couple of years and even longer our go to players have logged a lot of minutes and seem to play tired down the stretch. Looking back just this past season/tournament when Wilson had a break out year but there were several occasions when he seemed tired and could not get the blockout on a crucial rebound that got away. At Northwestern where Walton seemed to log every minute of the game seemed gassed at the end and barely made it up the floor for Zak’s last shot before the heart breaker. If X could have logged at least 10-15 minutes per game last year not only helps out Walton but also MAAR and maybe Zak.

JB going 9 and maybe 10 deep on a limited basis to keep the team fresh could go a long way. I think if JB has the horses that can produce he will adjust his rotations.


I see cross-cutting imperatives in this commentary. Even if the quality of your team overall is higher than formerly, you’re still going to ID your best rotation–and want them on the floor in important games. OTOH having one or two more guys that you can call on in a pinch, in unusual situations. . . don’t think the coaches are going to sneer at that. But I remember more times when our guys were warriors and came up big down the stretch than when their legs gave out because they had been overworked. Take the Big 10 tournament last year, for example.

Are there really many instances when Beilein has overworked guys?

I wonder if we get on TV more if our guys will stay more rested. :slight_smile:


If I was JB I would be very excited about the depth not just because it provides him with a bigger pool to pick “the best 7”. I would be excited (if I was JB) because the collection of layered depth, with a variety of individual strengths, allows him to think about advantages gained/ lossed through matchups.


But you have to ask the question (as does Beilein), how tired does Walton have to be before Simpson becomes a better option? And will even a physically tired Walton not make the mental mistakes that a 100% fresh Simpson would? If Walton at 80% is better than Simpson at 100%, then you keep playing Walton until he’s below that. Or at least you don’t take him out just because he’s down to 90.

And it isn’t just about the end of the game and how fresh your best guys are then. That scoring drought you went on in the first half, or those couple extra turnovers because you played Simpson 5 minutes instead of 2 matter just as much to the final outcome as what happens down the stretch.


At PG, there’s no doubt that both Burke and Walton were overworked at times. Beilein talked about it a number of times, and though Spike’s injury played a big role in that, ome of the few criticisms I have if Beilein is that I think I he needs to rest his guys regardless of the game or situation. Walton was a warrior but it’s a huge advantage to go into the last 5 minutes with the more rested team.
The good news is that Simpson souls have Beilein’s trust enough to keep Simmons fresh at PG.
I would pick Mathews as the guy most likely to log heavy minutes this year. GRIII was never the best player on the team but Beilein seemed to hate to sit him because of his versatility.


The key to satisfaction is lowering your expectations.