Dylan Burkhardt

It’s still way too early for this but here is a look at some tempo free stats from conference games only.

First, team efficiency margins:

                      Pace   PPP   Opp. PPP   EM
1.  Michigan St.      64    1.09    0.88    +0.21
2.  Wisconsin         59    1.05    0.88    +0.17
3.  Illinois          66    1.02    0.90    +0.12
4.  Michigan          63    1.06    0.96    +0.10
5.  Purdue            66    1.05    0.98    +0.07
6.  Minnesota         69    1.01    1.01    +0.00
7.  Ohio St.          66    0.97    1.01    -0.04
8.  Penn St.          60    0.93    1.07    -0.14
9.  Northwestern      65    1.04    1.16    -0.12
10. Indiana           68    0.85    1.03    -0.18
11. Iowa              66    0.86    1.08    -0.22

Michigan has the second best per-possession offense and the fourth best defense (mostly thanks to the Indiana game) This leaves them with the fourth best efficiency margin as well. Michigan is certainly playing a bit better recently but it is also worth noting that all 5 of Michigan’s conference games thus far came against teams in the bottom half of the conference. Looking at these numbers, it’s tough to ignore the fact that Michigan should be at least 4-1 right now.

Even more shocking is that Michigan’s 53.3% eFG% in conference play is the best in the Big Ten. Michigan is shooting 54.9% on two point field goals and only 30.3% from behind the line. Who says Michigan can’t shoot?

Another surprising stat, Michigan is the third best offensive rebounding team, rebounding 33.3% of their own misses. Michigan’s defensive rebounding leaves something to be desired, they are rebounding only 66.7% of their opponents misses.  Shockingly enough Michigan State is the worst defensive rebounding team in the conference right now.

Now here are a couple quick hitters from a glance over individual statistics through the first 4 or 5 games of conference play:

  • Robbie Hummel, John Shurna, E’Twaun Moore, and DeShawn Sims are tied for the scoring lead in conference play, all averaging a nudge over 20 points per game. Manny Harris isn’t far behind, averaging 19 points per game
  • DeShawn Sims is shooting a ridiculous 64.7% on two point field goals. Michigan State’s Draymond Green is shooting 78% on 2 point field goals but he’s only attempted 26 compared to Sims’ 72.
  • Darius Morris has a turnover percentage of 32.1%, 9th worst in the conference, a number that he certainly has to improve.
  • Michigan doesn’t have a player in the Big Ten top 10 in three point field goal percentage yet they have two players in the top 10 in attempts (Novak and Douglass), four in the top 20 (add Harris and Lucas-Perry).
  • Minnesota’s Damian Johnson is a freak on the defensive side of the ball.  He leads the conference in blocks and steals.

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  • Assuming that things are on the upswing for M in many of these statistical areas (surely 3-pt shooting HAS to improve), this is an encouraging set of stats.

  • Beast1530

    I agree that it’s encouraging. Before the Indiana game, Michigan was +.03 in EM which would place them 5th in the Big Ten.

    Last year, Michigan was -.07 in EM yet still made it to the Big Ten tournament. Not saying that we’ll make it this year but it’s something to think about.

  • jeff

    I hate to say it, but a lot of this is a function of schedule. We’ve played 3 games against the bottom of the league plus home games against NW (#7 in B10, IMO) and OSU without Turner. The schedules getting ready to turn a whole lot tougher.

  • Sam

    Well Beast, I sure hope we make the Big Ten Tournament. That would really hurt if they didn’t even let us into our own conference tourney.

  • jwalk

    (Was going to post this regarding Ant Wright on the last thread but figured I’d stay with the current one to give the man some love)

    The one positive I’ve been meaning to post regarding Ant (who by all accounts seems like a good guy), is he’s one of the better back-door passers on the team (I think Stu falls into this category as well).

    I don’t have mounds of empirical evidence (not that there would be much considering his PT), but from what I’ve seen he does a good job looking for the cutter from the high post & some of them (UCLA last year) have been clutch….

  • Deacon Blues

    No, the 3-point shooting doesn’t have to improve. Not enough, anyway.

    We might not shoot 28% all year, but it’s logical to expect us to continue to shoot below the national average from this point forward, since that’s what this roster has done for a season and a half now. While hitting a third of our threes would be an improvement over the first 16 games, it still probably won’t suffice, what with the schedule getting rough.

    The 2FG numbers scream for us to shoot fewer threes. The problem is that a few of our guys can only shoot threes. All the more reason to start and stick with Morris, who brings some other talents to the table.

  • gpsimms

    I think Beilein is aware of the 3pt%, attempts have been consistently lower since the non-conference schedule ended. 28 attempts against IU on the road. since then: 16, 24, 23, 18

  • SJWolv

    I just think we have a poor 3 pt. shooting team. If you look at last year’s 3pt stats, Grady, Merritt and Lee attempted about ~19% of our threes but were our best shooters at between 35-36%. One of those three was on the court the entire time last year at the PG spot.

    So, if you take away 20% of your best 3 pt. shooters shots you need to replace that volume. We’ve replaced it a little with Vogrich (not enough shots) and more shots from Manny, Novak and Stu. The latter group of which are shooting worse than last season. You only get so many possessions in a game, and instead of getting the open CJ Lee look this season we have more 24 foot Stu shots and Manny off-balance threes. Stu shoots 5 threes a game! He looks like a good shooter but his streakiness contributes to that reputation. Novak’s regression is really hurting us though, 27% is below Ant. Wright freshman year territory. Hopefully Evan Metrics can hit at a 35% clip next season.

    Speak of the devil, some might say that putting a leash on Ant. Wright should increase the percentage, but I couldn’t believe my eyes when I saw he shot 33% last season. The Oklahoma game helped him up the % obviously but I was still shocked.

    Anyway, the only way we’ll start “winning by the three” is to replace our lost 20% of 3pters at 35-36% with our better shooters shooting more. Unfortunately Vogrich is our only upgrade in that department, but his defensive limitations stunt his playing time. If only we could go to zone when Vogrich is in the game and hide him defensively so he can start chucking up more treys.

    Imagine if Timmy Jr., Evan and Vogrich were taking the majority of our treys and hitting over 35%. We might be horrible defensively but there is nothing more frustrating then watching this team brick threes. Even my wife who doesn’t like basketball notices the trend and makes fun of us!

  • eddie

    Anyone catch the lockerroom clip before last night’s game? As Coach B was rallying the troops, you can see the words “use the post as a springboard” written prominently on the white board behind him.

    Seems to me that this is the key to the remainder of the conference season. With Sims playing the way he is, only good things can come from continually feeding the big man–an increase in 2pt% and/or an increase in open looks from behind the arc if teams collapse to double in the lane.

    For so much talk of Coach B’s unique offensive schemes, it’s refreshing to know that part of his playbook also comes down to one of the most basic philosophies–that being the ability to work the ball inside out for high quality shots.

    It will be curious to see how that develops over the years as our big men feature different kids of talents and assets.

  • Sid

    Re: the surprisingly good offensive rebounding, I think that’s also a function of all the threes. The longer the ball, the more unpredictable the rebound, which in general benefits the shooting team.

  • JimC

    Nice stats.

    Now here’s my personal dilemma: going on a cruise out of Miami with the wife tomorrow, and I wonder, does the Carnival Glory have CBS? What about a sports bar on the pier? Do I even risk missing the cruise if we’re winning in the 2nd half?!

    See you people back at Crisler v MSU,


  • Paul F.

    Well folks I keep asking my Cassie Russell bobblehead doll If were gonna win tomorrow and he keeps on shaking his head yes. So I asked him if I should call in sick for work tomorrow he says no. lol Go blue! Beat them Huskies!

  • Paul F.

    Cazzie not Cassie. LoL

  • JimC

    Does he think we’ll get Zeigler?

  • JimC

    Hey FYI if you’re going, Sunday’s game is a Maize Out.

  • Deacon is of course right in saying the 3-pt shooting doesn’t HAVE to improve. And I agree that this Michigan team isn’t a great-shooting squad. But the surprised comments from team members that the sharpshooting in practice hasn’t translated to games lead me to believe they can be a BETTER 3-pt shooting squad. The percentages tend to catch up with you, esp with nervous young teams as they get their sea legs.

    On another thread I suggested that Beilein hadn’t altered his philosophy much (observing rather than necessarily criticizing his approach). But there’s a good diary up at mgoblog that describes how he has tweaked the defense; against Indiana, it looked like he had done so to good advantage. And certainly going inside more, along with letting Manny create, have been bows to the strengths of his personnel. All of which suggests that we might see more of his philosophy in practice next year, even if that squad isn’t great.

  • Distik

    Our 2pt% is that good because of sims and manny. I loved how the big ten geeks said this last indiana game you might be referring to UM but say MSU…I forgot the quote but it was pretty stupid if you watched the game. Sims has become a beast during the B10 schedule not only inside but draining anything before the 3 point line. Manny had a bad first half and I pretty sure in the post comments he said he became aggressive in the second half which is bs. Manny was forcing everything in the first half thats why he was sucking and the second half rolls around and he let the game flow and did’nt force stupid shots. I’m going to say it vogrich equals novak in the sense that they both seem like they are going at it full speed all the time…I’m wicked excited for next year it may be ugly but it will be fun. What can I say I’m all in. GO BLUE BEAT UCONN

  • michigan4204

    Great stuff yet again Dylan. Watching this Georgia Tech vs. North Carolina game and man what I wouldn’t give to have just one of the big men in this game. Does any one else think Ed Davis and Manny look like they could be twins?

  • Sam

    hahaha michigan4204, I never thought of that, but they both have extreme baby faces and look similar I guess. But yeah, give us Davis, Lawal, or Favors and we would be great. Enough of the ifs though. Win tomorrow and let’s go!!

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