I think Michigan’s best path forward comes from 4 or more specifically TWill. I think the backcourt has been okay for being young players so I’m not sure how much more growth we are going to get by the end of the year
TWill has been underwhelming but has shown in the past he has games where he can bang 3 or 4 threes. On almost the same number of attempts he is 27% this year vs. 38.5 last year. If you figure him in the middle to get to 32/33 percent, he probably needs to go 40+ the rest of the way.
I do think he is overexposed in his role but if he can go on a hot streak here (not unprecedented for him) then that can open up Hunter more. I think no matter what the backcourt does, if teams are going to use the PSU strategy then TWill has to shoot them out of it.
I think other opportunities for Michigan to go on a hot streak (all of which do feel unlikely):
- Kobe starts hitting threes. He’s been a terrible outside shooter despite a smooth stroke and if he can settle into a 38% shooter down the stretch that’s huge.
- Dug makes a few more veteran plans in the ball screen game. Most of our losses have been close and lately ball screens have been poor. Dug starting to figure out how to find his teammates good shots down the stretch is possible and would help.
- Tschetter or Reed thrive in more minutes. They don’t play much, they have limits to their games, they aren’t suddenly going to become lottery picks…but there’s a chance they offer more than other options and improve faster.
- Hunter decides he’s going to go beast mode. We have seen Hunter play a lot better than he has for long stretches this season and carry the team. If he starts crushing teams and averaging 22/11 the rest of the way, we’re going to win games.
Unfortunately, I can’t say that I’m optimistic for those things - but anything is possible in a conference where everyone is basically a flawed .500 team except Purdue.
I’m about to listen to this. Just want to mention a minor nitpick on the posting: It mentions the timestamps from the B1G Ref episode a while back, which I’m pretty sure only apply to that one episode:
(0:00): Big Ten thoughts on Michigan State, Michigan, Purdue, Indiana, Northwestern and Iowa
(44:00): Rick Boyages on Big Ten officiating
Oops, sorry about that. Forgot that was at the bottom of the post.
Re: bids by conference & where the top teams land - Brendan seems surprised by the thought of nine B1G teams with a single 1 and a bunch of 4+ teams - as opposed to two 1 seeds in the SEC with little else, but if we’ve learned anything from football, it’s very normal to see this, and people will overvalue the SEC given the two 1 seeds (regardless of how poor the rest of the conference is).
The B1G and Big12 have similar “problem” in a bunch of decent teams beating each other up. The shocking thing would be to see Purdue maintain a 1 through a gauntlet of B1G tourney-team away games.
Dug or Kobe taking a step would be a big deal for making the last option of Hunter playing great possible. I think Dylan said this on the pod, but the guards or a guard improving has a chance to make the players around them, especially Hunter, better. Last year, Hunter posted monster numbers when Devante seemed to figure it out. There’s a multiplying factor to dug breaking down defenses like a top 3 big ten point guard for the last 10 games.
that is VERY generous to the B1G
I said “decent”, not good. Also Big 12 is generally better than B1G, obviously