Yeah if I’m looking at matchups in the tourney, I don’t want to see a team with a 5 man that can stretch the floor or a team that plays small with 3 guards and a mobile 4 like Wisconsin and Ohio State. I think those types of teams would spell trouble for Michigan.
I thought Young being out for Ohio State would work against us and not in our favor. I think Ohio State is a more dangerous offensive team without him. I didn’t think our size advantage would be a major factor and it wasn’t. Livers is much better suited to attack a player like Young than Andre Wesson. He even tried to attack Washington a few times and ended up taking low % shots.
On the plus side, Franz is developing before our eyes. I can’t believe how good a rebounder he’s become. I really think he can be a first team all league player next season assuming he comes back.
Guess you never know what you’re going to get from Johns or DeJulius. Thought maybe they had turned the corner but they contributed almost nothing the last couple games.
This is our punishment from the basketball gods for all the “ARGH if Franz only finds his shot we’ll be top 5!” takes.
Franz found his shot. It just came at the expense of half the team forgetting how to do many basketball-related things. Welcome to the Michigan Fan Experience™️
2 games in a row where the opponent couldn’t miss. Yeah the defense was lacking at times but overall I thought it was fine. More important is getting Livers right. Maybe he sits for Nebraska? And while another B1G tourney run would be fun, the best thing might be to win the Thursday game and then bow out in the quarterfinals to get some much needed rest.
What a yo-yo of a season. Very frustrating to watch. We all know defending the three is a big problem of UM, but they also are missing that one stud player who at the end of the game takes it upon themselves to get buckets. Someone who get their shot off without help and can hit a few shots, in the final minutes, that make you say “how did he make that”.
Duane Washington Jr. 20/6/3. Plus 5 made threes.
Livers was not good but also just doesn’t seem right. I do think the suggestion of sitting against Nebraska does have some merit. Also to see if Johns can get going again. His breakout started in the first Nebraska game. Johns could be a huge X factor in March.
Also wonder if Johns should be an option against these pick and pop 5’s. Thats just not going to be in Davis’ wheelhouse. I get Wesson would be a load for him on the block but maybe to mix things up. Hurts when Johns and DDJ don’t really give us any options with their play being not good in games like this.
In the photo above, it looks like all Franz needs to do is go straight up and he’ll draw the foul because of the defender lean-in position. Also look at his arms-the kid is putting on some muscle for sure! #CampSanderson
Cylinders are for the other guys.
I think the frustration many of us feel with the team comes from what Franz alluded to in his interview. We know what the team is capable of doing, because we’ve already seen them do it. If we hadn’t seen them dominate a really good team, it’d be easier to say that this is simply who we are, and our ceiling is very limited. If we hadn’t seen them defend the 3-point line very well for the larger part of the season, it’d be easier to say that our defence can’t deal with a good 3-point shooting team. If we hadn’t already seen Johns and Dave come off the bench and make a positive difference, it’d be easier to say that we aren’t going to get anything from our bench. This can all come back together, and losing to Wisco and OSU isn’t anything that should cause alarm. Part of me just wants to get out of the B1G and into the NCAA. Life in this conference this season can really skew your perception of your team.
I’m sure you guys have discussed this in the game threads, but I don’t understand the mandatory post entry to begin every game. I get that it’s nice to establish the post, and it is a very old school strategy (Pistons, James Edwards). But, we are consistently getting nothing out of it, and everyone in the gym knows it’s going to happen (OSU defended it accordingly yesterday). If we had a reliable post scorer and/or if we’re playing an undersized team, then sure, go to the post early and often. But, to begin every single game; I just don’t get it.
First, great points in your first paragraph. College kids can be many things, but consistent usually isn’t up there. Hopefully the “we lose, we go home” element behind tournament games will kick them in posterior a little.
Second, I’d file your grievance “Teske Must Post Up First Play” in the same file as “Nunez Get Minutes”. I am incredulous about both.
This plus Davis’ defense the last two games… eesh
At this point, I think I’d like to see Michigan rest Livers at least until the BTT. He needs to get healthy for this team to reach their ceiling. His lateral movement is bad right now. He keeps getting beat off the dribble like he’s standing still.
Hmm, the title of the video says the Wolverines struggle to stop one-on-one drives, but every clip was either Livers getting beat or a big getting beat after a switch. The latter happens sometimes. But we need Livers to get well, it seems.
Pretty much all of them are livers and Johns matched up against a guard. Since we don’t have an athletic 6ft4 type we can play to play small, we are just going struggle against 4guard type looks.
I agree. He’s not right. Shut him down down this week. It’s effecting his game all around. He never gets beat off the bounce like that or plays so poorly on offense. I don’t want him to start to get a mental block and it might be heading that way.
Hell I might be ok with resting him further just so he’s as close to 100 as possible for the dance. Any deep run is predicated on him being healthy.
Maybe johns can find his confidence again in the mean time and play through this slump again. Could work out to get them both playing at close to their top levels.
Lots to digest here - good post and good comments. My thoughts:
– Livers had a rough game. We had hoped he’d be a solid defensive stopper on the wing and that hasn’t been the case at least recently. Maybe it is health, or maybe he is more match-up dependent on both ends of the court than we hoped.
– Michigan’s offense requires at least two guys to be a threat from outside. Simpson is going to find them and they’re going to be open. The theme of the entire year is the inconsistency with which we can find two people to hit open jump shots. Livers was the guy when he was healthy, now he’s struggling. Wagner couldn’t hit the ocean for most of the season, now he’s hot. Brooks varies wildly game to game. Johns was on fire for weeks and now he’s ice cold. Teske has struggled with the longer 3pt line all year, DDJ has never found his outside stroke, Nunez is a disaster, Bajema can’t see the floor, and Simpson has been better but limited.
– The defense wasn’t great, but I didn’t have as big of an issue with the 3s as the stat sheet implies. Two banked-in, contested, NBA threes? A bunch of crazy off-the-dribble threes from a guy who averages 11ppg? Those shouldn’t go in at a >50% rate. I was more frustrated with the handful of easy shots in the paint.
– I know we have a long history of getting screwed by Terry Wymer. I didn’t think the calls were horrible against OSU, but man does that guy love calling moving screens. What frustrates me the most is that he calls any time a screener moves their hip but he lets a lot of stuff go where a guy gets in front of a defender and moves into them. OSU did that a lot to prevent contests. He also should have called a flop on Wesson against Davis instead of the other way around. But that’s where Michigan needs to learn from that and take advantage of the way they’re calling it.
I feel like multiple illegal screens have been called in the vast majority of games I’ve watched this season. It isn’t just a Wymer thing. It’s a point of emphasis, and a good one. Way too many years of liberal screening passed before the rules committee decided to tell the officials to call the play as the rule intends. I’m both impressed that officials have stuck with the emphasis throughout the season, and disappointed that players, especially seniors like Teske, won’t stop setting illegal screens.
Agreed with the three point defense. You can only limit three point attempts so much if a team is gonna force contest looks, and that’s mostly what OSU did. Wesson had a couple open looks, one of them off an offensive rebound, but other than that the majority of threes were forced shots and bad looks.
They hit their threes and mid range jumpers at a rate far higher than they normally would, this was a game they shot multiple standard deviations above what they should have. Washington goes 5/7 from 3 while Livers shoots 2/7, but if you were to rate the quality of looks in order, maybe one or two of Washington’s were better looks than Livers worst.
I do need to add some nuance to this – there is a reason I worded the tweet as I did.
In the first clip, it looks like Livers is beginning to set his foot angles to “ice” or keep the ball screen to the side of the court. Whether there was a lack of communication between he and Davis or Davis just didn’t get into position, we don’t know. In the third clip, Liddell does slip out of the screen before making contact, but Davis still needs to help a bit to deter the drive if Livers is on the ball handler’s back hip, as he is here.