Game 9: Michigan at Northwestern Open Thread


It’s okay, we kept the #1 spot in kenpom’s adj. defense.


Chris Collins was doing his best impression of Pat Fitzgerald tonight. He really tried to will his team to victory; the gods were unkind to poor Chris this evening.
Coach Beilein finally broke through in Evanston and it was a beautiful thing


Davis was always just such an odd fit here imo. Poor athlete and outside shooter and his biggest strength was his back to the basket game which is something our posts almost never do.


Iggy 8th in Kenpom’s POY thing. Pretty crazy how quickly he’s gotten Beilein’s offense down.


My only comment is that when he was out there, his play seemed like it was practice, not a game. That may seem harsh but I don’t know how game ready he really felt for significant minutes.


Jordan Poole had the lowest usage rate of all the starters. You take what the defense gives you, but it felt like he could’ve gotten some plays drawn up for him during the middle portion where things were going from potential blowout to “oh sh**”


A win’s a win! I was way off in thinking it would be easy. My thoughts and questions:

How does Simpson bounce back? I certainly didn’t expect him to ever get benched in the big moment again. Such a polarizing player, his offensive limitations are one thing, but he has always seemed to navigate around those and be more aware of his weaknesses than the opponents are. Hope this doesn’t become a mental block for him.

Pardon ate everyone alive. Got the best of Teske at times more than I remember any bigs up to this point. Just a one game thing or a sign of things to come when we see Happ, Jordan Murphy, Nick Ward, etc.

Livers has not looked like himself the past few games. Seems like he hasn’t had the open looks he was getting but also seemed a half step slow and foul-prone on first viewing tonight. Non-existent in the box score, besides a huge negative +/- along with Davis.

Matthews’ struggles weren’t totally unexpected, but hopefully just one game and not the start of a slump.

Poole and Iggy can definitely carry this team offensively in the half court, I still think Poole can almost be more aggressive overall from a playmaking perspective. After the first four minutes, he was quiet until crunch time. Iggy should be option 1A for as long as JB has him IMO.

Good to see the team come away victorious in a close game. Close games scare me going forward because I could see late-game half court execution and free throw shooting coming back to bite us. The last two possessions were ridiculously shaky and when we’re trying to kill clock and there’s no threat of pushing in transition, I’m way less confident in getting an easy bucket. I’m sure JB will figure it out, but the weird dynamic between the team’s leaders potentially not being the team’s best go-to offensive guys is an odd one to manage.


Losing the starting job last year seemed to light a fire under him rather than demoralize him. Perhaps this will do so on a smaller scale.


Vic Law finished the game with 4 fouls and 19 pts. Whomever said we should drive on him til he fouled out was right on. Really surprised we didn’t take that approach, and he ended up playing 38 mins and scoring very well in 2nd half. A missed opportunity. And while I side with most dissenters regarding Z and the 3’s, I still want his defense and game control whenever we are at risk. Brooks worked out tonite, but I hope that doesn’t become an end-of-game trend for us.


This game showed why auto benching is awful strategy. Collins knew he had to keep Law in if they were going to win. He ended up with 4 fouls but still played 38 minutes. Teske sat all that time and never got another foul. Pardon drew one foul on him in the post the entire game. Auto benching is even worse this year because Michigan has such a shallow bench.


This was a needed game in my opinion. A road challenge, kind of a wake up call game. Like someone else I trust this coaching staff will use this as a learning opportunity.


Yep. IMO, you can only justify auto-benching in scenarios where it is going to massively change your rotations to a point where a guy is not going to be able to get rest later in the game. Otherwise, you are just fouling out the player by benching him


I’m pretty sure the post defense today was an aberration based on the super soft early fouls rather than something to worry about down the road against MSU, Maryland, Wiscy, etc.


I think this would of been an L for last years team. Ugly win, but still a win


I guess I’m confused by what you mean?


Plus, Derek Pardon is NW’s senior leader who’s really good.


(Certainly beats the result last year on December 4th vs Ohio State!)


I just realized Northwestern was mid 40’s on kenpom. I thought they were mid 70’s for some reason. Does the tournament committee still do quadrants? Obviously with a vague and unexplained deformed stepchild of a predictive analytic system and a resume based ranker as the system of choice this year it’s impossible to guess, but I’d assume this would be a Q1 win if the NET turns out to have somewhat defend-able results?


It should be a Q1 win depending on how things fall considering its on the road… Still a bit early to tell where NW will end up though.


Time and information have made this game more pleasing to me. I don’t know why I thought NW was 30 spots lower than they are. Experience in close games on the road where the result goes the way you want is always a great thing.