Game 20: Minnesota at Michigan Open Thread

Dylan Burkhardt
on

Source: MGoBlue

Michigan looks to break a five game losing streak with its fifth straight win over Tubby Smith and the Minnesota Golden Gophers. Tip off is at 7:00 p.m. eastern at Crisler Arena and the game will be televised on the Big Ten Network (radio info). We encourage you to join the conversation in the comments below if you aren’t headed to the game this evening.

Pregame Content

  • wayman britt

    Vogrich has got beat twice on D. No foot speed.

  • wayman britt

    Novak is playing his typical hard fought game.

  • gpsimms

    novak is playing his heart out (nothing new there, I guess)

  • gpsimms

    wow. that was the most explosive i’ve ever seen jordan morgan. unbelievable body control. i thought he was going to get seriously injured, and he went up strong and held onto the rim.

  • Dylan Burkhardt

    You just can’t win in this league if you don’t defend. Michigan continues to be unable to get a defensive stop when it needs one.

  • wayman britt

    I like this new offense with Morgan down low. They may have played this before, but don’t remember. It has opened up Morgan underneath and drives down the lane.

  • maxwell’s demon

    We better pray Horford and Morgan develop.

    • wayman britt

      Maxwell I agree. With two 6 footers coming in next year, we are going to continue to be very small. Horford and Morgan are the only hope. Maybe we can get another scholarship opening in 2012, if one of our lower skilled players don’t stay four years.

  • Alex

    Minnesota is playing gritty without Nolen. Never want to see an injury, hope he recovers. The bottom line is the team is trying.

  • Dylan Burkhardt

    This one hurts. Really disheartening performance, especially because Minnesota was beat-able.

    • wayman britt

      Agree. Morris’s play is especially disheartening. Wonder if something is wrong with him.

  • Alex

    Nice one Hardaway.

  • gpsimms

    argh. i really thought we had a chance tonight. but we just couldn’t get a stop, or a rebound. well, i hope we can beat iowa. i also hope i can stand all the ridiculous things people are going to say about beilein and umhoops for the next few months.

    • wayman britt

      gpsimss – I agree some people are going to say UM should fire Beilein, which they should not, but he needs to evaluate his system. He already made some tough decisions on assistant coachs, it’s now time to evaluate his recruiting and whether you can win in the Big Ten without some tall strong players.

      • gpsimms

        morgan seems like a pretty prototypical b10 big to me. horford has a pretty nice frame to build on. anyway, minnesota is one of the most beast teams in the league, bigs wise. Three juniors over 6’10” are going to cause problems for a lot of teams. Maybe there’s no hope for mcclimans, but when jmo and horford are both juniors, i can imagine them causing some problems for other teams.

        and heck, maybe mcclimans can by some miracle become tisdale and then we’ll have three upperclass bigs that can play.

  • RG

    we’re probably in line for a beatdown on Thursday…..should be fun

  • Andy

    This is as low as I’ve felt about this program in a long time. Realistically, I knew it was going to be a long year coming in for all of the reasons that we already know. And I’ve been with this team through the last 10 years, most of which have been nothing but pain. But I just don’t see how this works out. I’ve been the biggest Beilein supporter around, but this team is just so passive and weak. I don’t know that youth is the only culprit anymore.

  • grandchamp

    Tim is a stud and Novak is a machine, can’t say anything good about anybody else.

  • grandchamp

    I think Europe gave us an early head start on team chemistry over the other teams but they have all caught up by now.

  • Jeff

    Well, I said before the game, a loss would be disappointing, but another blowout would make me start to question whether Beilein could turn this thing around. It definitely wasn’t a blowout, but this program is on a very slippery slope. All I’ll say is, they better take care of business against Iowa next weekend.

  • BeileinsBricks

    I don’t think it was an issue of getting a headstart on team chemistry. The opponents simply got tougher, and this team is not built to compete in the Big Ten. We’re young, but we’re also not talented enough. I actually think our shooting has been decent. The defense and rebounding are simply atrocious, and I’m not sure if even with more age this will be rectified.

  • wayman britt

    Beilien will get more time by the UM administration, but he needs to make some hard decisions. The one opening he has currently for 2012 possibly might make or break him. He will need to seriously evaluate every player on scholarship.

    The Big Ten is not the Big East.

    • Dylan Burkhardt

      We will take two in 2012.

      • wayman britt

        I thought we only have one in 2012 with Robinson’s oral committment.

  • Jeff

    One thing I would like to see going forward is if somehow someone can penetrate the rather thick skulls of Morgan and Smotrycz that they cannot continue to take stupid early fouls literally in every game.That and allowing Minnesota to run the same inbounds play right under the basket three times in the first half had me wondering if some of these young guys are capable of learning from their mistakes. Sorry this is rantish.

    • gpsimms

      the inbound plays have been frustrating all year. and smot’s fouls were really killer. he was in a nice rhythm early, and then didn’t get to take a shot for 45 minutes or so and lost it.

  • BeileinsBricks

    I wonder if there’s a way to cut/churn out a few guys to free up some scholarships. I think Beilein at WVU used to oversign, and people would transfer out, so that may be the recipe. We need a couple of athletic players besides the little guards next year. I’d be willing to get a couple of 2-3 stars for 2011 as long as they have strong athleticism and can play defense and rebound.

    • gpsimms

      like colton christian?

      • BeileinsBricks

        I would take a 6′ 8” or 6′ 9” Colton Christian. I actually like his athleticism. Too bad he’s a blackhole on offense, but I guess that’s the risk with a 2 or 3 star. However, it would be worth the risk to get someone that at the very least could crash the boards. Getting outrebounded 38-13…there’s gotta be some sort of remedy…I’m just out of answers with the current roster.

        • gpsimms

          i agree, and i’m afraid the only remedy might be “wait for juwan johnson, jon leuer, colton iverson, ralph sampson, et al. to graduate,”

          • BeileinsBricks

            It’s true those guys graduate and it’s an exceptional senior class. However, just because Big Ten teams graduate alot of senior talent it won’t level the talent gap between us and the rest of the league that much. It seems like all Big Ten teams are reloading with better players than ours (I think Purdue may be the exception, though). So maybe we get more competitive, but I think our ceiling may be competing for the 6-8 spots in the Big Ten.

            I really like baby Hardaway. Despite his recent struggles, I think Darius is still a good player. We really need those two freshmen guards next year to hit the ground running. It’s everyone else I have doubts about….sigh

          • gpsimms

            actually, the minnesota ones are just juniors : (

    • wayman britt

      If Beilein’s and the administration’s goal is to be in the top four of the Big Ten, churning a scholarship or two might be necessary. The quality of recruits looking at UM has improved tremondously for the upcoming classes.

      I would guess Beilein would need Brandon’s approval to replace current roster players with new recruits.

      • gpsimms

        I think I’d prefer we honored our current scholarships. If Beilein can’t get it done with the kids he’s picked, then he should go.

      • CJD

        What information do you have that shows the quality of player that is looking at UM has gotten better?

        As for releasing players; based on how he handled the injury to Ben Cronin that does not seem likely.

        I am a fan of the coach in regards to his integrity and class; but it is just not happening for him in the Big Ten. People keep saying give the kids time we are young. It is true we are young but who’s fault is that?

        Class of 2007
        **** – Manny Harris 6-4
        ** – Martell Webb 6-5 (playing football)
        *** – Kelvin Grady 5-10 (playing football)
        Class of 2008
        ** – Novack 6-4 (a 2 guard often forced to play the 4 spot)
        NR – Douglass 6-2 (very streaky shooter with ball handling and defesive issues)
        *** – Cronin 7-0 (injured and never played)
        Class of 2009
        *** – McLimans 6-10 (un-athletic big who is allergic to the paint)
        **** – Vogrich 6-3 (good shooter who struggles to handle ball and play defense)
        *** – D Morris 6-3 (erratic one handed point guard who struggles on the defensive end)
        *** – J Morgan 6-8 (undersized big who plays smart high effort basketball)
        2010
        ** – Christian 6-6 (solid athlete with limited basketball skills)
        *** – Horford 6-8 (an effort player that could turn into solid Big ten defender)
        *** – Hardaway 6-4 (Best athlete on team with highest ceiling – but immature at this point)
        **** – Smotrycz 6-9 (one dimensional on offense (3 ball) and lack of foot speed will limit his growth on both offense and defense)

        Manny – Vogrich and Smot are the only 4 star players he has signed since his arrival; and Manny was signed but previous coach and decided to honor his agreement.

  • Alex

    People predicted doom before this season. Team really exceeded expectations in the non-conference against what I would argue was some good competition. Specific teams include Oakland, Clemson, Utah, and Harvard. Obviously, conference games have been challenging to say the least. The team is doing what people expected of them. Next year will be interesting but expectations are not at the level of football. It would be huge for the team to get to the NIT by winning some games down the stretch to feel good about themselves.

    • jihadistjohn

      exactly…this team drives me insane with the scoring droughts as well, but people NEED to stop with the overreacting, especially right after a game when emotions are at their highesgt…the B10 is insanely tough, and it’s not as if we’re being coached by a worthless, unqualified, unwanted dewkie again…good times are coming soon, as the beilein track record will attest to…there *is* a light at the end of the tunnel, but it was MUCH easier to see in non-conference…not that it explains the IU or the mildcat game, but B10 teams with legit NCAA plans look at UM as a win they have to get due to how rough the rest of their schedules are

  • grandchamp

    Would be crucial if we could pull a big man out of Europe for the 2011 class that would be game ready.

  • AG2

    We kept it pretty close considering we were playing the Minnesota Golden Rebounding Machines. Look what we lost from the last 2 years, look who they gained in Trevor Mbakwe. This team has *SO* much potential, they just need some strength and some training. We could be really really good next year.

  • CJD

    Anyone know where I can go back and watch this game again or previous games aired on the BTN?

  • michigan fan

    Beilein needs to recruit bigger and quicker players. Unless we have a hot day hitting 3’s, we can’t compete in the Big 10. Yes, our players are young and they will improve, but they will still be smallish and too slow. That will not change over time.