There might have been and might continue to be a battle at the PG, but it’s obvious right now (if it weren’t already) that Simpson is winning that battle. And Simmons is running out of time. But this is a very nice situation to be in. It’s like when Walton and Albrecht were healthy at the same time. You have two very capable guys. Simpson obviously just feels more comfortable out there than he did last year and it’s nice to see. Except his shooting. If he’s not shooting 1,000 shots a day, he needs to be.
Very pleased with Charles Matthews. It was the Matthews Show in the first half. He seemed to shoot pretty well and was constantly hustling for rebounds. He doesn’t have a great handle, but seemed to have decent vision and found his teammates a few times. If he can tighten up the handle and then keep working on his shooting, he’s going to be very, very good.
Eli Brooks is a very solid player. Nothing wows you (except maybe that great bounce pass ahead to Teske), but he seems to just know how to play. Squares up nicely on his almost set shot.
I think the game needs to slow down a little bit for Livers, but like his potential. I’d rather he be in the rotation at 3/4 than Ibi Watson, who got a good amount of run. Watson made some nice plays, but also some bad ones on both ends of the court.
The only thing maybe worth mentioning among the veterans Abdur-Rahkman, Robinson, and Wagner is that Wagner seemed to be more determined to get rebounds. He’s not a natural-born rebounder like Mitch McGary, for example, so he has to work at it and it seems like he’s making a concerted effort. i hope it continues, but it could also be a recipe for foul trouble. Abdur-Rahkman didn’t do much, so I’m curious to see how he does in the games that count.
Mathews was impressive. He is going to be great.
Teske and Watson are much improved from last year.
Brooks is a player and will see the floor a lot.
I think the competition on this team is going to keep players pushing each other for minutes, which will make us better.
Game recap is up
Here are Ethan’s thoughts
@dylan (in his recap) wrote " I wouldn’t hesitate to take the 35 minutes that were next to Zak Irvin’s name last year and give them to #1 this year.".
Nice first game for Matthews but that’s all it was. And the opponent was weak. I am certainly not ready to predict 35 min/game. We’ll see, I am skeptical.
Weak opponent, but Matthews was basically the focal point of the offense. Who do you see eating into his minutes? FWIW Beilein basically said he’s a 32-35 minute guy at this point.
Your number 1 Point was interesting, I️ would’ve put Simmons ahead of Simpson based on that game.
From the takeaways? Ethan wrote that. But in my recap I think I said that Simmons seems to have a much higher ceiling. Eventually I think he’s the staring PG on this team.
Livers, Poole, Watson could eat into that 35 minutes. Even MAAR sliding to the 3 so that Brooks could play the 2, that could happen.
If Matthews had been 3 of 5 from downtown, that would have been something, but he only made 1 of 3. The big 10 coaches will figure out CM’s tendencies and will take away many of his drives. Remember how effective MAAR was driving to the hoop in the beginning? Then the league figured out what he did.
We also have to see how CM handles adversity. Will he get down on himself?
From the OP in this thread
Gotcha, my bad. And I agree, Simmons looked like the longterm guy to me. But it has to click.
Yeah. I don’t agree with point one either. Time is not running out on Simmons. He just got here. All three of the point guards showed good things. I would probably give the edge to Simmons after a couple more weeks…It is a close race but Z’s outside shot is really going to be an obstacle to his success I think. His 3 attempt was very ugly.
Brooks impresses me. If he had a year under his belt then I believe we would be trying to figure who was going to be his backup—Simpson or Simmons.
Hopefully, my comment does not sound down on z. I really enjoy watching him play—except for his shooting.
X has gotta be able to shoot a little
Yes, everything but z’s shooting I love. His D is awesome. He has great vision. Good in open court…
At this point it looks like Poole may redshirt, Ibi is an unknown and Livers is not ready for much beyond garbage time. I can easily see Matthews getting 32-35 minutes.
Totally disagree about Livers. Livers can play. He is alert, athletic, anticipates well, can shoot. Livers is a high iq player.
I very much agree with Geoff Clarke on point #4.
Simpson also has to hone in an effective floater to make up for his lack of size IMO. He simply isn’t going to have consistent success going straight into centers.
I was just thinking the same thing. Going for the layup every time is not going to be sustainable against more athletic teams.
Simpson and Simmons looked dead even to me. And if that’s the true scenario, I admire JB’s decision to go with the young guy over the transfer lol