Game 19: Minnesota at Michigan

Dylan Burkhardt

Post Game: Wow. Depressing. Not much to say besides Minnesota came into our house with their students (who outnumbered ours probably) and kicked our butts. The game wasn’t really ever close. Manny is getting frusturated to the brink of disaster I think which is a scary thought. Minnesota shot 59% for the game which makes anyone sick to their stomach especially when compared to Michigan’s 36%.

As I expected Grady got the start but only managed 2 points, 2 turn overs and 2 assists. Manny got his 19 points but at the cost of 2 assists to only 5 turn overs.  The fact that we were out rebounded only 35-33 (and Michigan had 15 offensive rebounds to Minnesotas 9) is shocking to me because it seemed like again Minnesota got every 50-50 ball. Not to mention both teams had the same number of turnovers (17) and you wonder how the game was such a blow out. Michigan simply can’t score the ball and can’t keep opponents from getting (and making) open shots.

Don’t really know where we go from here… It’s not going to get any better.

Pre-Game: When will Michigan finally get a win? A home game against Minnesota probably sounded like a win before the season but now it is not so certain at all. Michigan is reeling off four straight losses after an encouraging performance at Northwestern.

Minnesota has an RPI of 82 and a 12-6 record. They are led by big men Spencer Tollackson and Dan Coleman, both of them should give Michigan trouble all day as Michigan doesn’t have to size to bang with many teams. In the backcourt Lawrence McKenzie has been stellar averaging 11 points and 3 assists.

I think Michigan will shake up the starting lineup up tonight and go back to Kelvin Grady. Just a gut feeling here. I think Kelvin, Manny, Shepherd, DeShawn and Ekpe get the nod today. In terms of Michigan’s play the most encouraging thing is that we have started to rebound the ball much better. Now the biggest issue is the defense to me (followed by the shooting) DeShawn Sims should get his minutes greatly reduced until he “gets it” on defense. Because right now I am just not seeing the effort.

It is the 40th Anniversary of Crisler Arena (although Cazzie Russell bobble heads were scratched, three cheers for the AD), there might still be 100 wigs for students… Yes only 100, student attendence is bad but not that bad, 100 wigs have to cost about 20 dollars. Lacy has a couple good entries in his blog about the anniversary.

I think Michigan keeps it close tonight, the biggest worry for me is Minnesota’s senior players compared to our young guys. This is one of those games against a team that I think we feel we can beat so maybe we will.

UMHoops Prediction: Michigan 67 – Minnesota 66

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  • RB

    The best thing about this season has been the creation of your blog. Please keep up the good work even though it may seem pointless to dedicate time to this debacle.

    The worst thing about this season is that is seems like there is no light at the end of the tunnel. I love college basketball (as much or even more than football) and the team I have faithfully backed since the days of Antoine Jobert is at least 2 seasons away from sniffing the tourney. It is so depressing that I don’t even want to think about it. At least we now have this blog to vent our frustrations.

  • Steve

    The season is a wash, but it’s depressing to see ZERO improvement from the team. I think the team is just beaten, physically and mentally. Confidence is everything in basketball, and the players would be lying if they said they still thought they were a good team.

    They will get better, just not this year. Can’t have Merritt eating up 20 minutes a game. LLP will help so much at that position.

    Don’t know what the hell is going on with Peedi, he can’t seem to do anything right now, looks completely lost.

    I think the most upsetting thing is the lack of movement and crispness on offense, even our simplest passes are off the mark. Beilein has his hands full, but I know we have the right guy to turn in around. We must land 2 more for 2008.

  • It’s also good to see that there are still others around, waiting for the Blue to bounce back. Even if it takes a long time.

    At best, hopefully this is a good experience; Beilein seems like the kind of guy that can take adversity and turn it into toughness, the kind that you want when you’re hunting for a tournament spot in the Big Ten.

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