Game 16: Indiana at Michigan Post Game

Dylan Burkhardt

It’s tough to complain about a 24 point win but man that was ugly. The first 30 minutes or so of this game were so bad that it was almost embarrassing that the monstrosity was televised nationally on ESPN.

Everything went wrong for both teams in the first half. Manny Harris looked disinterested, Michigan’s guards dribbled like third graders, Eddie Hightower was in full effect, and somehow Indiana looked worse than Michigan. The first half statistics are tough to swallow. The painfully low .84 points per possession that Michigan scored in the first half was actually significantly better than Indiana’s measly .64. Both teams shot in the 30% range and turned the ball over on more than 30% of their possessions. Certainly a half to forget.

After leading by single digits throughout the first 34 minutes of the game, Michigan went on a 21-2 run in the final six minutes of the game to put away the Hoosiers.

For one of the first times this year it’s safe to say that Michigan’s defense won them the game. Indiana is no offensive juggernaut but Michigan shut Indiana down, holding the Hoosiers to only .70 points per possession for the game. Michigan held Indiana to an effective field goal percentage of 37.5%, including 1-15 shooting from three point range. Michigan forced turnovers on 29.7% of Indiana’s possessions and despite giving up some painful offensive rebounds was generally respectable on the defensive glass, pulling down 66.7% of Indiana’s misses.

Offensively, Michigan was far from stellar. They turned the ball over way too much (25% of possessions) but they crashed the glass (!), rebounding 41.4% of their misses. Before the game I emphasized how important free throws would be in this game. Michigan won the free throw battle, getting to the line more often (FTR of 36.5% to 23.1%) and also converted (17/19 FT shooting). Despite the ugly half, Michigan somehow posted a respectable 50% eFG% thanks to 58% two point shooting. It almost goes without saying but yet again, the three point shooting was ugly: 4 for 18.

A win is a win and it’s tough to complain about a 24 point win but this was the ugliest 24 point win that I have ever seen. Michigan will obviously need a much better effort to knock off Connecticut on Sunday afternoon despite the Huskies recent struggles (2-3 Big East).

(caption) Michigan guard Darius Morris dribbles between his legs while keeping the ball away from Indiana's Jordan Hulls during the second half.  *** Led by Manny Harris and his 17 second half points, the Michigan Wolverines defeated the Indiana Hoosiers 69-45 at Crisler Arena in Ann Arbor. Photos taken on Thursday, January 14, 2010.  ( John T. Greilick / The Detroit News )

Player Bullets:

  • DeShawn Sims: DeShawn Sims has been terrific in Big Ten play and he was on again last scoring 20 points on 8 of 13 shooting along with 8 rebounds, three steals, two blocks, two assists, and two turnovers in 38 minutes. Sims was active running the floor, he worked hard on both ends of the court and if he can play like this night in and night out, Michigan will have a chance to win quite a few more games this year.
  • Manny Harris: After Manny’s benching, he put it together in the final 14:16 scoring: 17 points on 7 of 9 shooting with three rebounds and two assists. That is obviously impressive but the 4 points on 0 for 7 shooting before then was extremely frustrating. Harris looked out of sorts, turning the ball over, forcing bad shots, cheating on defense, and just playing poorly. There is no doubt that he deserved his benching but credit to him for bouncing back.
  • Darius Morris: Darius is coming along and at this point I would say he’s a jumpshot away from being very good. He forces a few plays but he can play defense (3 steals) and had 4 rebounds, 4 assists andonly 1 turnover. After playing 32 minutes tonight, I wouldn’t be surprised to see him start Sunday vs. UConn.
  • Matt Vogrich: Vogrich found his way onto the court thanks to some disciplinary benchings. First, Vogrich came on at the end of the first half for Laval Lucas-Perry and knocked down a three. Next, Vogrich came in for Manny Harris early in the second half and got putback basket. He also had his low points, like getting beat off the dribble by Jordan Hulls but he continues to show flashes.
  • Stu Douglass: Stu has been terrible for two games now. He isn’t hitting shots and can’t hold onto the ball. Michigan needs consistent play in the backcourt and right now they just aren’t getting it. Douglass lit up UConn last year, hopefully he can get it going again. The most frustrating part of Stu’s game is how he has suddenly began turning the ball over so frequently, Michigan is one of the best teams in the country at holding onto the ball, but the last two games have been terrible from a turnover standpoint.
  • Laval Lucas-Perry: Laval has been tough to watch. The bright side is that he grabbed 5 rebounds and somehow pulled a sick crossover out of his bag of tricks late in the game. The bad side is that he had 3 turnovers to only 1 assist and couldn’t buy a basket ‘til Michigan’s late game run.
  • Zack Novak: Novak couldn’t hit a three point shot tonight, and it seems like he hasn’t been able to for a while despite shooting 37.5% in conference play from three point range before last night. Luckily he still makes all of the hustle plays. He looked to be making a conscious effort to drive the ball, played good defense, pulled down 5 boards, and took a couple charges.

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  • Loving the Blue

    I don’t want to over react over just a bad 30 min of play, but is Manny Harris that ready for the NBA? I just didn’t see a first round player last night. And there have been other long streches this season that I thought the same thing. He surely would not come out early just be a second rounder (one way ticket to the D-league). Don’t want to get down on the guy, because he has been great of UM, but don’t want to see the guy go if he is not ready.

  • It’s certainly up for debate…

    DraftExpress is my favorite draft site and they have him as a mid-second rounder. has him at the end of the first

  • biakabatuka

    Great game summary and assessment of the team going forward. My own analysis skills are strictly amateur and impressionistic but two thoughts:

    D Morris is an impressive athlete who is extremely fast and easily the team’s best dribbler. But he shares the blame with LLP and Manny for that frantic, undisciplined pace that produced tons of unnecessary turnovers (mostly wild passes).

    Novak did drive the hoop, except the way his drives looked, I’m not sure that’s a good thing. He basically charges full-speed-ahead and, arriving in the general vicinity of the hoop, chucks the ball up desperately.

    Someone mentioned coaching. It’s hard to believe such a talented squad could play such ugly basketball for ~34 minutes against a woefully overmatched Indiana team. This might be a provocative statement but I don’t think it’s totally acceptable if we go 0-4 the next four games.

  • maxwell’s demon

    Anyone have an estimation of how many 2 star recruits start for teams like MSU, Wisconsin, Purdue? I’m too lazy to investigate.

  • For Purdue… Moore, Hummel, and Johnson were part of that loaded 2007 class that also included Scott Martin. Keaton Grant was a 3 star but top 150 player. Kramer is more of a unranked 3 star, probably comparable to Novak/Douglass in terms of recruiting hype, he was ranked 9th in the state of Indiana. The rest of Purdue’s complementary players are mostly 3 stars, but the core of Moore, Hummel, and Johnson obviously carries that team.

    MSU… Lucas, Morgan, Green, Summers, Nix, Allen, Roe, Lucious, and Sherman were all top 150 players. Draymond was a 3 star but won Mr. Basketball. Roe was top 10 before his knee injury. Summers, Allen, and Lucas were all ranked comparably to Manny. Morgan was ranked around the same slot as Sims. Nix and Sherman were top 150 bigs last year. Loaded.

    Leuer, Nankivil, Bohannon, and Hughes are the four stars at Wisconsin. Leuer and Hughes are obviously the ones that carry that team but Bo Ryan just reloads, doesn’t seem to matter what names are on the jerseys.

  • ToBlav

    looked to me like we played intentionally faster early in the game which is what you do if you have the other team out talented. We don’t have experience with that around here. So while it was ugly, it paid off near the end of the game. You learn to play faster by playing faster so hopefully we’ll become better at it and a team that can play well at different speeds.

  • maxwell’s demon

    Thanks! So we truly are at a large talent deficiency even within the Big 10. The reason I brought it up is because I’ve been pretty frustrated with Stu recently but then remembered he’s a sophomore 2 star recruit. I really hope Morris will be ready to lead the team next year.

  • Kevin in GR

    Dylan beat me to it! If it’s any consolation, Mike Davis (Ill) and John Shurna (NW) were both a 1 star.

  • Junderground

    As far as Morris starting at point, I would like to see, to some extent this year, but moreso next year, Beilein just giving him the ball and telling him he’s it and sticking with it unless he plays absolutely horribly, which I don’t think he will. I think Stu has no business as a starter at either guard–bring him in off the bench and if his threes happen to be falling, that’s a great, quick boost. Morris has a better overall game, and if he’s given enough minutes and the confidence of his coach, I see him developing just fine.

  • timeout1993

    I’d like to see UM retire the white home uniforms. They play much, much better in the maize.

  • umhoopsreader

    I wish it wasn’t taking this long, but the more Darius matures, the more I realize he is going to be a great player at UM. His length, athletic ability, and awareness are great strengths for a point guard…but I’m impressed with his attitude and willingness to play defense. His shot isn’t as bad as it looked earlier in the season, and a full off-season program with Beilein should help. If he continues to raise his level of play, he needs to be on the floor 32-35 minutes ever game. Go Blue

  • Bardo

    timeout1993 – I have been saying that for a while now as well. They play better when they look sharp. I love the maize unis.

  • Adam Sez

    Ant Wright is so god awful!!!! i literaly want to break my beautiful new TV and then send him the bill!!! i don’t usualy get down on ANY Michigan student athlete but other then that Oklahoma game he needs to be on the bench the whole season, he’s horrible!

  • Adam Sez: Ant has been brutal but Michigan really has no one else that can back up Novak.

  • maxwell’s demon

    At least it appears Wright has no longer been given the green light to shoot, or he realized he shouldn’t be shooting.

  • Giddings

    A few thoughts:
    1) Loved to see Darius start in the 2nd half, and then was surprised but pleased to see him stay out there for the entire half. Experience is huge for him. I also noticed that a few times early in the 2nd half he got out on the break but ended up being passive with the ball, getting it to Manny in a bad position, which led to nothing. Beilein brought him over and told him (I think) that he’s one of the best finishers on the team and should look to take it to the rim. Sure enough the next time down, Darius took it all the way to the rim and finished with a nice reverse layup.

    2) I find it hard to believe that LLP only had 3 turnovers. Stat keepers must have been feeling generous…

    3) I agree that Stu has played poorly the last 2 games, but everyone is making it seem like he hardly belongs on the floor. This guy is our best perimeter defender (watch him go over screens) and until the last two games was by FAR the best on the team at assist/turnover ratio. He’ll rebound…

    4) If we go 2-2 or better over the next 4 games, we can start talking about what it takes down the stretch to get a bid. 1-3 or worse and it’s looking like we may need to win the BTT. As of now I’m “allowing” us 5 more losses (probably @Wisc, @Pur, @OSU, @Minn, and @MSU).

  • Kevin

    Sure the game was ugly. But I didn’t necessarily think it was all that bad. You’re gonna have ugly games in the big ten. I Was very impressed with our defense the whole game. The only weak link was manny. Whether it was struggling to get back in transition or just mental errors, he relies on his athleticism on d a lot.

  • Wright hasn’t put up a shot in the new year…

  • FlintsVoice

    I believe Michigans problem is a lack of size. Beilein has said he wants 4 perimeter players between 6’4 and 6’8 and a big in the middle. We don’t even come close to fitting that description. He needs players with more size to make the 1-3-1 dangerous and his offense works better with taller shooters. Our current shooters can’t shoot over anyone and are taking long 3’s or quick 3’s. Based on our recruits and Sims leaving next year I think it will be a couple years before we have the players Beilein needs to win consistently

  • Manny was clearly not 100% healthy last night. He looked about 60% and still scored over 20pts. I’m scared about UConn coming into Crisler Sunday.

    On another note, I saw Darius Morris being escorted home after the game by 3 girls on Church St. Good work buddy!

  • JimC

    Somebody has to defend Ant in here so I (&Ryan/Maxwell) will defend the indefensible…
    He’s stopped chucking the ball up as soon as he touches it, plus he’s a big wide body who plays OK defense. I think he made a nice block last night. Check that because i’m too lazy to even look at the box score today.

    Go Ant!

  • Adam Sez

    Ant Wright’s two turnovers were so pathetic that it made me say to myself “I can do better than that!” and i hate when i actualy think i can play any sport better then any current D1 player. It has just been so hard to watch these guys knowing they have the potential to play better. The turnovers are so frustrating.

  • Adam Sez

    Ant got schooled on D, it was either Jones III or Rivers but they took him all the way from the 3 point line to the rim with Ant just backing up the whole way for the easy duece, I wouldnt care or knock Ant but this was when the game was close, late 1st half, maybe some early 2nd half, it was not scrub time i know that.

  • Beast1530

    Surprisingly, Michigan is given a 51% chance of beating UConn this coming Sunday according to Ken Pomeroy rankings. UConn is overrated IMO but I thought that they’re more of a fringe top 25 team. Their offense is pretty bad and if Michigan can pick up the defense where they left off from Indiana, they have a decent shot of winning this game.

  • michigan fan

    I agree with an above post that we just need more size. Indiana’s coach in his pre-game interview described Michigan as “4 guards and a small forward”. I don’t think he was knocking Michigan but rather saying that Mich was different than other teams. I know we were hurt with the Udoh transfer and Cronin’s injury. We need size!

  • Loving the Blue

    With our need for size this year, and even more next year. What can we expect from Morgan and McLimans. Every time the camra goes to the bench during a game I begin wondering what they will offer in a college game.

  • bird

    I think McLimans needs a cookie.

  • chitownblue

    It’s tough to make Douglass and Morris mutually exclusive as they’re our only two perimeter defenders approaching “passable”. Novak and Perry get routinely killed by penetration, and Manny’s effort on D is often questionable (he’ll often just decide to jump the passing lane rather than guarding a player)…

  • GoBlue

    In regards to Stu Douglas, his assists/turnover margin was pretty good as a result of teams not pressing him. Think back to NW trapping well behind the 3 point line and Stu crumbled everytime, giving up his dribble which resulted in a bunch of turnovers. The fact is Stu is NOT a capable ball handler against pressure at this level and teams are going to exploit this now. I am not trying to tear down a UM player but this kid came in with a shooters reputation and its obvious to me that it was unwarranted. Sure he might have a good night shooting occasionally but he has shown no consistency. I wuld like to see D. Morris start and play most of the minutes and give Stu 15-20 a game based on whether his shot is falling.

  • Jay

    I might be Novak’s biggest critic..but when was the last time he hit a 3 when the team needed it? He’s like Miguel Cabrerra vs the White Sox last year! When the team has a chance to open up the lead he most certainly misses his wide open 3’s..When they need a big 3, o yea he misses those too. Idk maybe im to harsh on the guy, but I know if the game is on the line I pray the ball doesnt get swung his way because I already know the outcome. And for a guy who has sneaky athleticism, he sure is uncomfortable attacking the rim.

  • Erik

    I think Novak is just worn down from playing oversized opponents at the 4. His shot looks flat. I don’t really fault him for his poor shooting slump because he’s so out of position. He needs to start making layups though. I believe he’s blown 3 layups in the past 2-3 games now.

    Dylan, I know this site takes up a lot of your time but I was thinking about something during the game. I like Brian’s charts over at and I know we’ve talked about charting things in the past. I was curious with our shooting woes what a shot chart would look like with the following categories, broken down by player:

    “Wide Open”, “Moderately Defended”, “Well Defended”, “Fouled”. Each category would have a “Make” column and a “Miss” column.

    I’d just be curious to see how well our guys shoot in each scenario. For years I have felt that we are one of the WORST shooting teams when it comes to “wide open” shots. I would love to compare UofM with other big ten teams.

    I wonder how difficult it would be to just print out a chart and make tick marks for each shot during the game.

  • I like ToBlav’s comment about playing fast. There was some talk about pushing the tempo at the beginning of the season.