NCAA 2018: Michigan vs. Texas A&M Discussion Thread


Yeah, I’d probably guess a Zags crowd. Will be interesting to see. There weren’t open practices or anything which can sometimes provide a clue.


Just pray for him to hit one early.


I’m wondering how well they’ll show considering how small of a school they are. And it’s not like Spokane is THAT close. Still a 2.5 hour flight or 19 hour drive.


I just generally expect that basketball only schools will travel fairly well, especially in their own timezone. But that might be an assumption, I’m not sure I’ve ever been at a NCAA regional or first rounds that Gonzaga was at.


81st percentile (slightly worse than their man at 92nd, but still good).


Looking at the highlights of the Xavier-Gonzaga game last year in San Jose, it does sound decently loud for Gonzaga. Not overwhelming though


If you live in Spokane (or anywhere in the West, really) you’re used to long distances. The WCC plays their conference tournament in Las Vegas and the Zag fans show up.


The zone is a wild card, but that can go in all directions. It can throw Michigan off, but it also has TA&M playing something other than its base defense. It opens TA&M up for offensive rebounds – they weren’t as dominating on the defensive boards as on offensive ones, where they otherwise might have a bigger advantage. And the SEC was a bad 3-point shooting conference, so it’s a little hard to be sure of what to make of their zone and 3 point defense in general. Seems like we’re likely to see it at some point, but it’ll be very interesting to see when they play it and what effect it has. Michigan’s 3 point shooting is important enough anyway, and the zone doesn’t lessen that.


Gonzaga had a bigger crowd than UNC in the championship game last year FWIW (at least judging by the visible seats in the lower bowl and loudness) and that was in Phoenix, quite similar to LA in terms of distance.


There’s a ton of transplants and snow birds down here in L.A. Not sure exactly how that will translate tomorrow, but we’ll see. I’ll be doing my damndest from section 218.


Helluva of a day of travel to get here. So this game is at 4:30 in the afternoon here, huh?

I think I’m going to try to get there pretty early.


I see it’s in the first preview but I really worry about our ability to keep them off the glass.

We’ve been so diligent about this, but even diligence can be overwhelmed when the height advantage is a bouncy 3, 4" taller.

Boy, it would be great if we could get some over the back fouls on them early. Please please please.

Read the other previews - am I the only one worried about our ability to finish on the break? This is not a normal team to fast break on. Carolina had breaks that those guys just swallowed up with their size. I guess finish strong - no half hearted lay ups, and maybe we really need to go for the fast break three? I know we’ll have scouted them super well, I just hope that the lessons of the scout will have sunk in. It was kind of fascinating to see Carolina attempt those “not enough explosion left, but I’ll put it up anyway” attempts at the rim. Carolina kind of has been doing that in a bunch of games I saw them in, so this may have been coming. A Carolina credo is also to never be ashamed of having your shot blocked - the theory is that eventually guys will get themselves in foul trouble so keep putting up those shots - may have been a uniquely bad matchup for that theory…


This is mainly a matter of shot selection. He needs to stick to the wide-open variety.


So, I think the Carolina game was cued up for A&M. Carolina loves to hit the offensive glass and A&M was having none of it. Carolina only got 9 offensive rebounds, about half their average. Carolina isn’t that big either. Maybe that’s why it turned into a track meet.
I think this will be a pretty good matchup for us. We’re great at preventing transition buckets because we don’t sell out for offensive rebounds and our 4-out offense means most guys are better positioned to get back on D. We’re also pretty good at limiting 3-pt attempts, and from the box scores I looked at, when A&M takes 20-ish attempts and hits them at 35%+, they’re likely to win. Almost all their losses feature 3-pt attempts in the mid-to-high teens.
So the key will be to do the things well that we normally do well and which are controllable.
Also, Robert Williams only plays about half the game for whatever reason. So we shouldn’t be that freaked out about his shot blocking.
A&M seems like a very inconsistent team that needs everything clicking to win against good teams and chances are they are due for a more typical performance.


Sometimes I think NCAA “crowd support” is overrated. The team that shoots better and controls tempo has a heckuva shot to win. No matter the venue.

NC got blown out in North Carolina and MSU got shocked in Breslin East.


Didn’t we go over this already? Fans can accentuate momentum and so on. You saw two games, and there’s a conclusion? I’ve seen Duke in Greensboro just become an avalanche. Fans can help turn a comeback into a full on panic situation for the opposition. I think teams just about kill to get into their home region and now pod and a couple games doesn’t turn the evidence of how badly teams want to play in front of a home crowd on its head.


@umhoops, two questions

when do you think the building opens for entry (what time) and

any idea what the temperatures will be like at Staples? It was pretty chilly at The Garden…


My understanding is that it can be pretty cold in the Staples Center. This from conversations with my son who works there. If I can get ahold of him this morning I’ll ask him, and also I’ll ask what time the doors open to the public. :slightly_smiling_face:


I’m psyched and whacked out, lol.

Still think Mo is due for a good game !


I have a good feeling about this game. Not sure why but I think it’s for a couple reasons. 1. TAMU is getting most of the attention currently. Not entirely sure why as we are the better team, probably because they beat UNC and have a top 20 pick. But they’re not that great a team and I think a lot of what they did against UNC is not necessarily repeatable (unless it is). 2. Our defense. I have such confidence in our D that if we score 1 PPP I’m confident we’ll win by 6-8 points. Even if we don’t get to 1 PPP we can still win like last week but it’ll be close. 3. We’re due for a good shooting game. This is obviously not analytical but I just feel like MAAR is in for a good game since he did not play well last week. Poole keeps momentum going, Duncan gets free, etc.