Five takeaways from Michigan's win over Michigan State

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Can someone clue me into why I’m seeing Jeff Jackson name by U of M fans when talking about MSU?

They are joking about the fake name that Simpson gave to the cops.


Simpson had a great game, and I think Livers return opens up the offense for him and everyone else. I’m also ecstatic to watch previously disparaged players become key parts of the lineup in their third and fourth years. Here in Chapel Hill, I watch NC and Duke churn through one-and-dones every year, and that’s fine. But there’s something to be said for watching young people struggle and develop to their full potential, even if it turns out to be less than playing in the NBA. Michigan is first and foremost a university. Howard gets that, and he also has a different personality than Beilein that has helped some players.



As much as we all, admit it, have been complaining about Juwan’s substitutions patterns this year, I have to admit that it seemed seamless Saturday. Amazing what one player (Livers) and learning on the job (the entire staff) can make. Livers being injured will be to our benefit going ahead. If X can come close to replicating Dwalt’s productivity, going forward, and we stay healthy, with continued improvement of Johns and Wagner: we could be in store for a magical run for the rest of the season.


Injecting 32 fringe all-conference minutes across 2 positions into a rotation does a lot of things for you


You’re takes on Simpson are interesting b/c from my view the better teams in the Big Ten have figured out how to mostly shut him down. It will be huge if he keeps making threes, but I think this season will be defined by how the players around him step up (or don’t).

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The issue with that logic is that most of the other players on Michigan’s roster depend on Simpson to create the opportunities for them to step up.

So yes, Simpson making shots is important. His teammates stepping up is important. But Simpson is still in the middle of everything that Michigan is going to do.


That’s fair; it just seems like the days of X being an elite ball-screen guard are over.

He’s averaging 8 assists over the last 3 games. And that number should be way higher if not for the house of bricks the team built against OSU.


Again, I don’t really follow your logic. Simpson is one of the very best ball screen guards in college basketball.


It’s not logic, it’s stats. From your OSU write-up: “U-M’s ball screen actions netted 9 points on 28 plays (including passes), which is just .32 points per play.” This is indicative of what I’ve seen throughout Big Ten play. Good defenses know how to shut-down X’s ball screen, which does not mean that he cannot score/produce in other ways. But without his bread and butter, I’m not sure we’re going to see a heroic level of performance down the stretch. Of course, I’d love to be wrong.

I just don’t think that you can say because Ohio State, which has the No. 2 ball screen defense in the country, stopped Michigan on a night where it didn’t have Isaiah Livers then Simpson is somehow ineffective as a ball screen player.

For example, Cassius Winston isn’t somehow “solved” as a ball screen player because U-M played a good game against him on Saturday.


Simpson creates 7 of the shots in this video – 2 layups and 5 open threes. He can’t both create the shots AND make them.


There’s much to be said for knowing how to stop a specific offense, and also having the ability to actually go out get those stops. It’s not a given that you have the guys on defense to defend it well. It’s not like the ball screen is some newfangled strategy nobody has ever heard of and Zavier Simpson is the first and only guard to run it.

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That was staggering to watch. Wow.

You’ve gotta put Teske in ball screens. That’s where he’s a liability

This was a quote from one of those articles where a journalist, in this case Seth Davis, gets anonymous quotes from coaches. This doesn’t seem right at all to me.

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On offense or defense? If the latter, I’d say over most of the beginning of the B1G, he has been. The drop coverage wasn’t really working for him.

Here’s the link

I’d say that you’d rather post Teske up one-on-one than try to ball screen Michigan. U-M grades out in 91st percentile PNR D and 9th percentile post up D.