Moving Screen: A pod on the state of Michigan basketball

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great pod as always guys.

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Hey Dylan I here Josh Christopher is down to final 5 now. I assume M is being scheduled for a visit. Do you have anything official yet?

This has been out for a bit

Thanks I remember seeing it now. M insider had an article dated yesterday and I thought there may have been something new. It was premium article so I couldn’t read it.

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Have not heard anything new on Christopher. He’s called Kentucky his dream school and he has family ties to Arizona State and Missouri. Michigan has made progress by all accounts, but still a tough sell. No announced visit yet that I’m aware of but obviously top five should be in a position to get an official visit.

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Christopher’s dad said they are gonna try to set up officials this weekend


I’m sorry but 5-6-7 seed ceiling? I think a 7 seed is a fair projection right now. If things Quinn says fall into place, this team will be higher than a 5-6-7 seed. If Franz is as good as people think he can be and Johns becomes a Big Ten level contributor, this is a top 15 team.

And while we don’t know much about Howard, returning three great upper classmen (Simpson, Livers, Teske) makes the floor more solid than you guys give them credit for. At the very least we know Michigan’s defense will be really good with returning those 3.

I’d say a 3 seed ceiling with a 12 seed floor (barring injury).

I would have like to see a prediction based on conference finish, to compare with what the guys thought before Franz’s commitment. I still think that Wisconsin and Purdue have even more offense to replace and less with which to do so, and that it was crazy in the first place to talk about Rutgers or PSU finishing ahead of Michigan in conference. If you go with the theory that in the end it’s about the Jimmys and Joes and not the Xs and Os, thinking Michigan might finish outside the top 5 requires you to be thinking that Howard’s really going to fuck things up from his role. I could certainly see how he makes some first-year-coaching mistakes that may cost them a few games, and may struggle to perfectly execute his plan. But I agree that the Z-T-L core makes the floor pretty high in a conference this weak.

If two ifs (Johns, one of DDJ/Brooks/Bajema/Nunez) fall into place, this could be the conference’s most talented starting 5 and with two bench players who can be expected to more than just hold down the fort until the starter goes back in. If another if from the list hits, then it’s 8 deep. Maybe Brooks gets it done. DDJ should surely thrive in a faster pace and in a simpler system. Bajema has the critical mass now to come in and be a freshman Zak Irvin.

Which means its all on Johns, really. If he hits, I agree with you that a 3 seed is well within reach.

5 seed is top 20 so I’m not sure the ceiling is as far off as you are saying. Is it possible that Michigan ends up with a protected seed? Sure, but I think with all of the uncertainty you are looking at some growing pains along the way that keep you from that spot.

I don’t think this team has a floor in the NCAA Tournament given the number of questions (2,4, coach, bench) that it has to answer.


Lol. He didn’t have his normal mic with him which made things worse. The iPhone mic drags against his shirt (sounds like a marker) and then he holds it out and makes his audio too high. Unfortunately I’m not a strong enough audio editor to fix any of it :cry:

We are looking into some options to improve recording quality when we do in-person pods too for the upcoming season. Hopefully fewer sirens, etc.


I’ll be honest fellas – it sounds great. But I could’ve used a little more siren.



Srsly tho I personally have no complaints with the quality of the audio.

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I noticed that marker sound and I was curious where it came from, but it really wasn’t that bad at all.

I definitely agree with your take that the guys that we haven’t seen are more probable to shoot it well from 3 than Isaiah is to suddenly become a creator. The major key being that the guys that UM has to fill those shooting gaps have shown in other levels that they can shoot the ball at a high percentage, and Isaiah has shown that he struggles to put the ball on the floor. Obviously it would be nice if we had a few guys at like the level of Jordan Poole between his freshman and sophomore years in terms of demonstrated potential in a limited role, but we don’t have that. What I’m particularly curious about is if Cole can carve out some minutes for himself. Regardless, unless we see a lot of DDJ or Eli this team is going to be LANKY.

A ceiling scenario in my mind is one where Franz, Johns, and one of Brooks/Dejulius/Bajema/Nunez are Big Ten level players without “growing pains”.

I personally don’t see our defense being a big drop off form last year. Starting two elite defensive seniors and an elite defensive junior makes the floor pretty solid even if scoring gaps aren’t filled. The defense should be a top 10 level defense.

A top 10 team defensively only needs to crack the top 100-150 or so to be a top 35-40 team.

I don’t think our floor is below that.

The floor for the defense is certainly worse than 10. If I had to guess I’d say we finish top 10, but there’s definitely a scenario where we aren’t. I mean Torvik has us projected 11th AdjD FWIW.

10 was my projection, not my floor. It’s to show how crazy bad the offense would have to be if our defense plays to what I project they’ll be.

The floor has to do with the fact that the head coach has never been a head coach. I explained that on the pod I think.

Is it controversial to say that Michigan’s floor is missing the NCAA Tournament? Doesn’t seem like it should be when you consider the circumstances.

I’m not predicting it. I just don’t think you can take the typical well the offense was this last year, the defense was that last year.

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I don’t need think it’s controversial I just disagree.

I also don’t see my opinion as controversial, either. I tend to give teams with upper classmen stars somewhat of a “floor bonus”. The fact that our three top players have so many logged minutes, conference games, postseason games, etc. counts for something when it comes to how much the wheels can fall off. You replace them with equally talented but less experienced freshmen and the floor drops considerably IMO.

I agree with this–having a senior, 2nd team All Big Ten PG and a quality senior center is something few teams have, and should (assuming no injuries) insulate this tam from the drop that some fear.

I also think that the fact that Juwan has never been a head coach is, while certainly true, perhaps a bit overplayed, especially in the context of this team. Most first year head coaches don’t have a guy who was a HC for twenty-five years sitting in the next chair over–a guy who was hired expressly because the new guy recognized, and acknowledged, what he did not know. Most first year head coaches don’t have a holdover assistant from the previous staff who is intimately familiar with the team’s personnel. Most first year head coaches take over teams which have fired their previous head coach because of a lack of success, rather than inheriting a team which has won thirty or more games in each of the last two seasons. Whatever Juwan’s ultimate abilities as a head coach prove to be, he has a unique opportunity to ride along on the tails of those with successful experience this season while he learns the gig. In many ways, this year could be easier for him than the few which follow (when he’ll be breaking in a new PG, among other things), not harder.