Michigan vs. Detroit Discussion


Yeah, I think Teske has a chance to be a real difference maker as an upperclassman. As JJ3 and wolverheel say, he still looks rushed and off-balance and needs to improve his finishing – but I think he could get there. He’s got plenty of skill and clearly the size.


I agree that Teske gets lost under the basket from time to time, and certainly looks awkward/rushed at others, but he’s shooting 77% at the rim last I checked. That’s pretty solid all things considering. He’s far exceeded my expectations this year.


Yeah, I think another off season under Sanderson will have him ready for those kind of minutes against good competition. I think people tend to forget it’s not exactly common to have backup centers who can come in and not have too big of a drop off from the starter, and I think Teske provides that (I think Donnal got a lot of unnecessary hate in hindsight after seeing the backup centers of some other Big Ten teams).

I also spent a lot of the Detroit game watching individual players on defense and I must say, Robinson looked like an extremely intelligent defender. He’ll always be incredibly awful 1 on 1, but I was underselling his defensive IQ by a decent amount, at least based on that game. And to be honest, that makes perfect sense. I see a lot of people saying “Oh it’s amazing that Michigan is top 25 on kenpom defense with two black holes at the 4 and 5” but I don’t think that’s true. Off ball I think both Wagner and Robinson are quite impressive.

Michigan at Iowa Discussion Thread

“Robinson looks like an extremely intelligent defender.” Thank you, wolverheel. Duncan Robinson is an extremely intelligent BASKETBALL player. He generally plays good, smart, position defense. Is he blessed with great athleticism, quickness or speed? No, he isn’t, but he is a smart basketball player. He creates great space on offense, and when his three point shots start falling…with Charles and MAAR and Z…that’s going to be fun to watch. There are those who say he can do nothing but shoot. Shooting is a pretty good skill to have, by the way. But I have seen him, several times, put it on the floor and take it to the hole! And finish! It IS fashionable on here and the other blog to say he’s a horrible defender, but he works hard and he’s smart and he knows how to play. Thanks for giving him some credit in your comment. Oh, and like SO many Beilein players, he’s a GREAT kid!


I don’t feel as though he is very smart on the defensive end. If he was just getting beat off the dribble or outjumped, outran etc, it’d be one thing. But from my watching of the games, he gives up just as many baskets due to poor positioning and biting on pump fakes.


Agree to disagree. I DO wish he would keep his hands off people. Although, it’s hard when you aren’t as athletic or quick as the player you are defending. Does Duncan makes mistakes? Of course he does. I don’t know too many players who don’t. Is he a great on the ball defender? Nope, he really isn’t. Of course with all the switches on ball screens he often finds himself defending smaller and quicker guards than your typical power forward type. I think the criticism he takes on here and other boards is not always well founded. It IS fashionable, I have found, to criticize Duncan. It started, really, from the time Coach B brought him in. There are those who comment and really have little clue. You do. I’ve found from reading your comments that you have more than a clue. I respect your opinion. What matters most most, though, is what Coach B and his assistants think, not the opinion that you or I may have. I appreciated wolverheel saying something nice about Duncan’s defense. That’s pretty unusual on any of the boards I read. But if we sat down with Coach B and his staff, and if we had the privilege of picking his brain, I KNOW Coach would say, while Duncan is far from perfect, far from being a GREAT defender, far from an athletic defender, he has made excellent strides in the past couple of years. He would say Duncan has worked hard to improve his defensive abilities. He would say Duncan is a smart player. He would say he is glad Duncan plays for Michigan. I KNOW he would also say, he needs to “keep his hands off people!” Which means, you are right, his position isn’t always as good as it could (should) be. So, while it’s fun for us to express our opinions, and to sometimes agree to disagree, as you and I are doing here, I just feel privileged to watch this coach and these kids. And, frankly, while he sometimes frustrates me and I yell at my TV, I’m pretty happy Duncan Robinson chose to play for the “good guys.” Just the opinion of an old guy (really old!) who LOVES Michigan basketball, just as I KNOW you do, too!


I don’t disagree with some of what you say. He gets a lot of schtick from M fans for things he’s not capable of. But i am also not going to give him credit for things he’s not and I don’t think he’s that good of a positional defender.


To my eye, and I’m just a guy who played for awhile, never coached, a lot of Duncan’s irritating defensive plays would go away if he just kept his hands high and tries to take away passing lanes or sight lines. He rarely produces steals, but he keeps trying, and picks up fouls instead.

He has a knack for picking up charges, and has improved his box outs and rebounding.


Fair enough.


I think you should consider watching closer over the next several games, his positioning was quite good.

Yeah, he needs to fix the foul rate, although his steal rate is actually better than Matthews and MAAR. I’ve noticed he gets a good amount of deflections. I wish he’d stop going for on ball steals so much, like you said.


I login here and @wolverheel is defending Duncan Robinson’s defense. What is the world coming to.


I figured three guys couldn’t single-handedly make our defense top 25 [edit: 27 now] in efficiency with two supposed black holes, so I put aside my prior prejudiced gripes and started anew. They’re certainly not good, but I think “Bottom 5% in power 5 conference” was something I’ve said before about Duncan’s defense and I don’t feel that way anymore.


I feel like his bad positioning leads to a lot of his and 1s. And going for steals when he shouldn’t is part of bad positioning.

You could be right as I don’t know if a way this is charter or tracked, but it’s my perception that he doesn’t help himself out much


I think Robinson has slowly and steadily improved his defense from awful (his first year) to bad (last year) to below average (this year). He’s not a good defensive player, but he is light years better than he was. Similarly, his defensive rebounding awareness has improved — still below average but significantly better than where it was.

And if he can re-find his 3pt stroke and be a high volume 42-45% 3pt shooter in conference play, he’ll be a very valuable player for this year’s team.


100% agree. Based on the ESPNU broadcast, he basically missed a dunk opportunity because he got legitimately hacked, then later missed a tough put-back dunk (was probably too deep but still made great effort), and the narrative became “Teske needs to improve his finishing at the rim”.

I truly don’t see his finishing as a concern, I see it as a strength


The reason I am excited about Teske is he is already quite effective and It is easy to see room for improvement. If he is able to improve his weaknesses he is an all big ten type player. For example, if he can just gain four more inches on his vertical it is going to make a huge difference for him. He already checks so many boxes…The boxes that are still not checked seem realistically attainable.


He had a double double with no fouls and no turnovers in 28 minutes. That is about what Wagner is averaging per game. Pretty damn good if you ask me.


Agree–Teske looked great to me. I see slamming down dunks with authority as something that will come with increasing strength. Look at how slender the guy was when Beilein first started talking to him. The razzing got a little carried away–guy had a double double!


It’s not inconsistent to say (1) Teske has exceeded expectations and looks great for a true sophomore getting his first significant minutes and (2) he can continue to improve certain things, like strength, vertical jump, aggressiveness, or gain more chemistry with his teammates, to become a real difference maker against top-level competition. I don’t think Teske is a finished product, and for me that’s exciting because it leads to projecting what he could do and become. But to each their own.

One little thing to remember about the stats is that they don’t include misses where Teske gets fouled and shoots FTs. So, for instance, against Detroit he went 6-12 and shot 4 FTs (making three). So he actually made 6 of 14 shots from the field. I think he can (and will) do better than that.


I don’t get your point about not counting shot attempts when the shooter is fouled.