Minnesota at Michigan Discussion Thread


Dakich talked about how MSU practices different strategies – looping around the back, popping to the middle of the lane, etc., to try to maximize some of these factors.


I mean, sure, and we’ve all deployed that stuff at some point in our basketball lives. I loved being the guy doing the loop around, as it was second only to being the second man in on a stunt in football, where the other guy got the joy of slamming his body into two guys and I got to rush in unabated, lol…

I think one thing, though, also, is, of course, personnel. MSU has some pretty unique personnel for the job. And cursed Jordan Bell was pretty uniquely great at rebounding FT misses :sob:



Just watched the whole game and damn I love this team and it’s potential. What’s great about this team is they aren’t even playing to their potential and they are winning big games. It’s amazing what defense and rebounding can do for a program. The assistants coach b has brought in have done wonders the last two years. Props for coach b to recognize his weaknesses and addressing them with the coaches he selects and kids he recruited like z and Mathews. By adding a few kids with different strengths he’s added a lot of balance and made his program much better all around.

Notes on the game itself. How good is z? I love this kid and I am so happy he’s our pg the next 3 years. He’s showing everybody why he was rAnked so high and why he was mr Ohio basketball in a strong class of kids. He’s a great player. He will be here all 4 years too which is great for us. By the time hEs a senior I’m confident they will be talking about him as one of the program’s better pg ever and I think he’s going to be all big ten. He’s so hard to stop from getting in the lane and he’s great at finishing. He also
Has great vision and sets guys up for open looks.

The next evolution in his game as an upperclassmen and a go to guy is his mid range game. You saw it in high school and I can see him giving people nightmares. He’s so quick and guys have to give him so much space not to get blown by, that when he stops he often has a lot of space to shoot av10-15 footer wide open. I see him looking at it and he passes on it but I think next two years you see him trying those little pull ups and those slight faders. He’s a real nice 3 ball guy too. Lots of hiS passes are on a dime, nice feeds like a qb floating it in. Great defender too. He just took over when we needed him to. As you can see I’m very high on him and excited the ft will come. It’s 100 percent mental. He’s on a block right now but he will fix it, hopefully this year.

Maar is the man. Has there been any guy you can remember who gets more tough baskets in recent memory? He’s hit two game winners this year already and his whole career he always gets that much needed bucket at crucial points or runs in the game to stop another team and bail us out. He’s one of my favorite wolverines ever. I still wish he was a bit more aggressive at all times and took more looks.

Duncan was great. His d was nice and he gave us good minutes. Moe was moe. Always a beaat and he did great on the d boards again. Wish we’d see a bit more moe in the post though as he almost always gets a good look/ touch make or miss. Would make him unstoppable. Mathews has nice vision and his rebounding and drives are an element we need.

Long post but another nice win. Let’s avoid the pitfalls these next two road games abd play just as desperate as these teams trying to save their seasons are. This team if it ever puts it all together is very deep, balanced and dangerous, we could be sleeper contenders.


IMO, it seems to me that this team is playing to it’s potential for the most part. They just aren’t a very skilled team and that probably won’t be changing mid season. The expected PPP stat that Dylan posted convinced me of this.


If the team is playing to it’s skill potential then does that mean you think these individual players are playing to their individual potential?


Great post, Sly! Your glasses might be a bit maize colored but I love it. I, too, like Z. There is a reason he was Mr. Basketball in Ohio and if you talk to his teammates they’ll tell that this kid is just tenacious! I am pretty impressed with the defense of a young man that people on here said couldn’t play defense. Of course I’m talking about Duncan. I love Isaiah Livers’ game, and I think he’s going to be really good, but there is a reason Coach B plays Duncan at crunch time. He just knows the offense, is smart on defense and just “get’s it.” When that three ball starts falling again, and it will, watch out!. MAAR probably does defer too much, but he’s a very heady, very cerebral player. If you need a bucket to win, MAAR is there. He is SO solid! Moe IS Moe and I like it. I’d sure like him to be here next year, too, but if he’s not, you’ll know it’s because he had a great end of the season. How about his rebounding numbers?!? Charles is so athletic. A quiet, almost shy kid, he seems not to have as much confidence as I think he should. When he gets that confidence, and he will, again, watch out. So, I love your post. Thanks for putting it out there!


Potential at this moment, yeah. Charles isn’t gonna all of a sudden become an average ball handler over night. X isn’t gonna be able to develop any sort of off the dribble jumper tomorrow. The team is executing the offense pretty well but we just don’t have guys who can create and make shots.

Guys can improve if they spend an offseason working but the players right now simply don’t have the skill to be a consistently high level offense.


I can assure you that that skill development is taking place in practice everyday, almost as we speak, but you’re right, skill development does take some time with lots of drill and repetition.


Insert 2018-2019 Jordan Poole


I am not necessarily disagreeing with you. It does seem like we have overachieved a bit with the number of wins we have, imo. If I had the energy right now I would start a list of our individual players different skills and whether or not they have fallen short, met, or exceeded reasonable expectations. A couple of areas where we have performed below potential are X FRee throws, Matthews Free throws, Robinson’s 3’s. I think Poole will be offering more In the next month. On the other hand, I believe Z has overachieved shooting 3’s, Livers has probably overachieved shooting 3’s too.

The 4 areas that I could see exploding down the stretch are 1) Poole as a shooter/ playmaker. 2) Robinson as someone who can actually make 3 balls. I think 3) Livers might have a next level of play in him. And 4) we can make a much better percentage of our foul shots.


Seems to me that having Robinson hit threes on par with last year would give them 6-9 more points a game. And a number of these Ws would have been more comfortable with even average FT shooting. Not buying that the team is at its potential PPP.


Just my opinion on this, but I’d rather lose to good teams by 4 and beat bad teams by 4 INSTEAD OF lose to good teams by 10 and beat bad teams by 10.

What’s my point? The efficiency numbers seem skewed because although they’ve covered spreads well, they haven’t blown anybody out. They’re going the win close/lose close route instead of vice versa.

I’ll take the glass half full optimism because I’d rather know they can compete with the top teams over blow out the bad ones.


MAAR’s shooting 38% from 3, Duncan 36%, Poole 38%. That’s probably the biggest area I can see for improvement. And if Matthews can get back to his elite finishing at the rim.


The next two games could be key to the season. These are two winnable road games, but not gimmies, for sure. But, if we can win both, then we come home for Iowa and OSU. Defend home court and then the pressure is off the final two road games at PSU and Maryland. It all starts tomorrow at Northwestern.


I could see this point, I guess I look at it like they are pretty balanced and young so I expect an uptick in improvement from a few guys still. I guess I should say they haven’t really put it all together where everyone is on, outside of those Purdue games, and if that happens they could be pretty tough.

I think their a bit more skilled then they’ve shown. I think it’s possible to get bigger efforts out of livers and even Poole on a consistent basis towards the end here. Maybe Duncan gets hot again. I think our offense has potential to improve. Lots of guys have shown some flashes of offense because of our depth and balance. If they can get more consistent we could be pretty damn good. I’m hoping at least.


I agree with those who have pointed out that very few of our current players seem to be playing to their full potential. If it can be agreed upon that this is truly the case it’s kinda impossible to say the team is at it’s ceiling for this year.