Game 23: Michigan at Ohio State Recap

Dylan Burkhardt


Missed opportunities. That’s all that will be on Michigan’s mind for the three and a half hour bus ride back to Ann Arbor. The chances were there but at some point you have to make your own break – hit a big shot, force a turnover, just make a play. A week ago in East Lansing, Michigan made those plays. Tonight, Michigan missed 14 layups, made just one of four free throws, and turned the ball over 13 times. That’s just not good enough to win on the road, especially against the nation’s best team.

This was a game of two halves. In the first half, Michigan played some of the best defense we’ve seen in a while. Michigan forced turnovers (10) and held Ohio State to just a 40% eFG% which resulted in just 23 points in 32 first half possessions (.72 PPP). In the second half, the defense fell apart as Ohio State scored 1.26 points per trip. The Buckeyes shot the ball better (61 eFG%), turned it over just four times, and attempted 21 free throws in the second stanza.

For one of the first times this year, Michigan had trouble with an opponent playing small ball. Matt Vogrich was sidelined with an illness and Michigan didn’t have many options in the backcourt. Evan Smotrycz is not quick enough to guard David Lighty which meant Morris, Douglass, Hardaway, and Novak basically had to be on the floor whenever Craft was in the game (the entire second half). Michigan needed production from its guards and Douglass and Novak just couldn’t provide it. There have been some questions where 2011 commits Trey Burke and Carlton Brundidge fit into the equation but today’s game proved that you can never have too many guards.

I’ll refrain from discussing officiating, one of John Gasaway’s four dullest topics for a college hoops blog, but, regardless of their merit, fouls played a huge role in this game. The shooting, rebounding, and turnover numbers were all relatively even but Ohio State attempted 25 free throws to Michigan’s four. Ohio State was the more athletic team, and has a track record of not fouling, but it was disheartening to see Michigan attempt just four free throws despite attacking the basket more aggressively than we’ve seen all season. Michigan attempted just 35% of its field goals from three point range, well below its season average, so it wasn’t as if the Wolverines were just firing up threes. The seven Michigan team fouls (and 0 Ohio St. fouls) in the first 5:41 of game clock in the second half certainly didn’t help matters.

William Buford also hit some huge shots in the second half, connecting on three of four long range attempts. His first two back-to-back threes were critical, turning a six point Michigan lead into a tie game in under a minute.

Michigan doesn’t have long to regroup because the next three games are probably the most critical stretch of the season. Michigan travels to Penn State for a Super Bowl Sunday matinée before hosting Northwestern and Indiana. Penn State has been playing great basketball at home but Jeff Brooks is day-to-day with a shoulder injury and it would be a great chance to steal a road victory. The biggest question is whether we see the road team that won at Clemson and Michigan State or the one that was blown off the court at Indiana and Northwestern.


Player Bullets:

  • Darius Morris: Morris did a great job calming Michigan down early, hitting a couple tough shots in the lane and carrying Michigan through the first half. However, Craft really got the best of him in the second. Morris managed just 2 points on 1 of 7 shooting (0-2 FT) with three assists and four turnovers in the second half. Ohio State tried everything to keep the ball out of his hands and he just couldn’t get into any sort of offensive groove.
  • Tim Hardaway Jr.: Another strong performance from the freshman: 15 points on 6 of 11 (3-7 3pt) shooting with five rebounds, two assists, a turnover, and a steal. Hardaway attacked the basket in transition and hit some huge three point shots in the half court offense. Hardaway seems to become a bit more comfortable every game and his future is obviously bright.
  • Stu Douglass: This was easily Douglass’ worst game of the season: 8 points on 3 of 12 shooting (1-4 3pt – 2 of 8 on twos!), three rebounds, two assists, and two turnovers. Stu made five or six awful decisions (bad passes or shots) that he will be dying to have back when he sees them on film. As mentioned above, Michigan didn’t have many other options with Vogrich sidelined. Douglass found himself with the ball late in the shot clock several times and really struggled with the situation.
  • Zack Novak: Novak needs to take more than three shots in 38 minutes. The six rebounds are nice but Michigan needs offensive production. Novak was being checked by long and athletic guys like Buford and Lighty and just didn’t have the confidence to get his shot off.
  • Jordan Morgan: Morgan’s day was like a roller coaster. He was awful in the first couple minutes, missing a handful of layups and easy looks around the hoop. He responded in the second half with some great play, especially early on. He finished with 10 points (5-9), four rebounds, and two turnovers in 28 minutes. He didn’t provide much opposition against Sullinger but it seemed like he was trying to stand his ground, not foul, and wait for the double team.
  • Evan Smotrycz: This is a tough game for Smotrycz because Lighty and Sullinger are both awful match ups for him. He didn’t have a great offensive game either with five points on 2 of 7 (1-4 3pt) with four rebounds (1 off.), one assist, and two turnovers. Smotrycz has the pump fake down but he needs to be more efficient finishing after he gets into the lane. I actually thought he did a reasonable job defensively against Sullinger but he allowed some critical rebounds.
  • Jon Horford: Clearly overmatched by Sullinger’s size and physical play. Horford actually checked into the game three times but only played a minute total and picked up two fouls. Sullinger scored four points in that time and drew both fouls.
  • Colton Christian: Looks much more comfortable on the defensive end but is still a liability on offense.
  • Rb

    Thad Matta really bothers me. How does he have the nerve to complain about the officiating in the postgame? Also he’s a very underacheiving coach. And I wonder how he manages to sign the nations top big man every year. Probably just a coincidence right…

    • kevin

      oden, mullens and sullinger are all from ohio. koufos sucked anyways.

      • Beast1530

        Oden is from Indy

        • and mullens sucked also.

      • CJD

        Mullens and Koufos left early and never panned out in the pros; for that matter either has Oden but to say they sucked would be a bit much. Sucked as pro yes but not the case in college.

    • Don

      So if and when UM is 23-0 you will complain about our “underachieving” coach/team?

  • JeremyS

    This indeed was a game of two halves. I think this game was the Darius Morris show. Morris played a superb floor general the first half, made shots for himself (and made them) and made shots for everyone else. He played amazing. The second half he was terrible. He kept forcing everything. It seemed like when he was trying to be like he was in the first half, except nothing was coming naturally. Quit forcing it and pass the ball around.

    And where did Jordan Morgan’s second half come from? WOW!!! I want to see more of this from this big fella. He looks like he may actually have some potential.

    • Mith

      Ehh? Morgan has shown potential all year, IMO.

  • Agreed. Turnovers, missed layups and free throws certainly hurt us. But so did the extremely beneficial set of calls to tO$U in the beginning of the second half… Jus’ sayin.

  • But man, did Horford get manhandled down low by Sullinger or what?! He was like a deer in the headlights when that #1 player in the country was coming at him.

  • Tweeter

    Very tough loss considering there were more than enough opportunities to turn this game in our direction. However, we continue to see great development both on an individual level and as a team. I thought OSU guarded much tougher than they did in the first game and about as good as Purdue did in our game against them, yet Michigan did a good job of running the offense and finding great shots. I think the team is starting to become more comfortable in relying on what they do as a team instead of getting fustrated and throwing up bad shots.

    Individually, I saw a lot of good things out of everyone with the exceptions being Douglass and Horford. Horford was just over-matched physically but again at least that is something that is easily correctable in the offseason. Douglass, just looked like he was trying way too hard to make plays. I dont know if that was because the defense was suffocating Darius and he felt like he needed to make plays or he was just too excited for the game. Either way some of the shots he took were just plain bad especially the one turn around at the free throw line early in the shot clock. I will say that Dylan’s statement of 5 or 6 bad decisions seems a bit high. I thought some of those were probably out of necessity in terms of late clock situations.

    I will not comment again on the refs after this, but that was a joke of a game in terms of officiating and not just because of the disparity in calls in the second half, but really because of the complete 180 the refs did in the way they called the two halves.

    All that said, this team showed again that the future is pretty bright. They are going to be a very difficult team to beat next year.

  • grandchamp

    Well we aren’t that far way. We didn’t even come close to playing our best game and still went toe to toe on the road with the supposed #1 team in the country.Those who stay will be champions.

  • Colby

    Dylan, random question following a big game but who do you think JB offers from the 2013 class this summer? Thanks

    • Dylan Burkhardt

      As we get later in the high school season I’ll start working on a post… A couple names off the top of my head: Steven Haney, Derrick Walton, Zak Irvin, Basil Smotherman, Monte Morris. Not sure about the bigs, they are tough at this age, Leo Edwards and Jackson Lamb are candidates though.

      • Colby

        Thanks, that class is shaping up to a really big one so hopefully the staff makes the right moves and gets the guys they want.

      • Mith

        I hope they get Basil Smotherman simply on the name alone. It would be a bonus if he turns out to be really good, too.

  • CJD

    One player dribbling and 4 guys standing still will never be the way to win a high percentage of games. I thought we were supposed to be running a motion style offense? Well in more games than not it looks like a motionless offense.

    OSU just did not play well; some due to good defense in the first half and some due to turnovers and flat out poor foul shooting by Sully throughout. A very winnable game due to OSU’s poor play be we just could not step up when needed.

  • Jeremy_C

    Just gotta learn to finish!!!

  • Joel

    Wow we missed 14 lay-ups?? That’s never good. Like grandchamp said, pretty impressive to get that close to beating the #1 team on the road when playing that poorly, it was just frustrating to see us get that close (again) without finishing. Three questions/issues I have after the game:

    1) Tim Hardaway Jr looked fantastic – why didn’t he get the ball more often??
    2) Why was it that when we were down 7-ish points late in the game, a situation where you should be shooting 3-pointers, we weren’t? Twice in a row I saw D-Mo try to drive the ball against 4 guys and turn it over, which means there had to be a kick-out somewhere.
    3) Can someone PLEASE punch Aaron Craft in the face. And Thad Motta for that matter. Can someone post a video or tell me what exactly he said after the game. That is an absolute joke if he was whining about fouls. Though he is a Buckeye so why expect any better?

    • Dylan Burkhardt

      Here’s the Matta quote, he was talking about Sullinger.
      “The stuff down low, it’s getting ridiculous out there. What they’re doing to him is crazy”

      • Joel

        lol, what?? The “stuff” down low?? What, playing defense?? Hey coach, you just got 23 foul calls to 11. Man I hope they get destroyed by someone in the tourney. Or maybe, just maybe Michigan can have one more shot at ’em in the Big 10 Tournament, and this time close out the game.

        • lavell99

          Matta is a clown. “The stuff down low…”. Oh, you mean like when Sullinger tried to suplex Smotz and then whined about the call?

          • James

            In fairness to Sullinger, Smotz hooked his arm and then Sullinger yank it down. It was a crafty play by Smotrycz.

            Regardless, it doesn’t excuse Matta’s whining. That’s the kind of stuff Sullinger is going to have to deal with his entire career, so he should get used to it.

    • CJD

      Funny how you can not stand Craft; we have a very similar player that we all love in the name of Novak.

  • Sam


  • grandchamp

    In a perfect world I believe Stu would only be getting 12-15 minutes a game specifically as a shooter that can spread the defense and has to be accounted for. He is being forced to play around 30 minutes a night due to our youth and lack of depth. I’ll never forget his dagger against MSU and some of the other clutch shots he has made for us over the years. Next year when we get CB and TB I think Stu will have a crucial roll and a big season knocking down 3’s as a result of the penetrating ability of next years squad.

  • Brian W

    As the season goes on, it’s pretty evident that Big Ten officials start to have thin skin at arenas with loud fans who chant and doubt their calls, and it really doesn’t matter who the opposing team is. MSU fans chanted “flopper” after Novak took an obvious charge last week, and for the rest of the night, refs were calling blocking calls on Novak, even when he took an obvious charge near the end. Matta and Izzo are good at riling up the home fans during games by complaining to and about the refs, and their student sections then get on refs who don’t like to hear the criticism of their calls. The home town discount was definitely in full effect at Value Pity last night, though.

    The lack of finishing around the rim didn’t help U-M, though. Darius threw up several layups that didn’t have a chance, and Stu had some trouble as well.

    I agree with Grandchamp on how adding players like Burke and Brundidge will help in games like the one Thursday. Having a second dribbler in the game who can drive and dish should open more opportunities outside and in the lane.

    The U-M women’s team lost to Penn State also. So it was a bad night overall.

    • Joel

      Yeah, I’m (for some reason) watching a replay of the 2nd half, cause I was working during the game & didn’t get to see all of it – the charge call on Smotrycz to make it 7-0 Michigan in terms of fouls was absolute nonsense. At the risk of sounding like a conspiracy theorist – the top teams seem to almost always get the benefit of the doubt from the officials, and especially Ohio St, being undefeated this late in the season…….I mean, you know ESPN would like to see them stay undefeated as long as they can – they keep advertising how their next however-many number of games are on an ESPN station………..just sayin’.

      Bottom line though, we didn’t play well enough to win and I should probably go to bed and stop analyzing this game.

      • Mattski

        I tend to agree. I felt badly for him–you rarely see a kid just hang his shoulders with unhappiness like that after a bad sequence. But. . . Stu shows up last night and we are in it to the end.

        Beyond Stu, though, I’m not sure I see that we played well–nearly as well as we’re capable of. Novak contributed little and–for all his grit he often has guys blow past him for layups. In truth, I thought we were intimidated–to some degree needlessly by their height underneath. That many blown layups suggests that people were losing their concentration as they neared the hoop. Sullinger will be good, (and good riddance to him) but he is not ALL THAT yet. I was proud of the way Morgan came back from a terrible first half and asserted himself–that bodes well for the future. He has some nice moves around the basket. I just wish the rest of the team had picked up the fire, too.

        • Mattski

          This was meant to be a reply to Matt D, below. Not sure what happened. . .

  • matt d

    I really hate to do this, but I have to be honest here – I really think we had a legitimate chance to win the game if Stu simply makes layups. Hard to say a single player can make/break a game, but when you have 3 WIDE OPEN layups in the second half alone, and you don’t convert any of them, that’s a possible 12 point swing. I like Stu’s game, I think half of his problem is simply a confidence issue, but his decision making, and obviously his inability to finish around the rim were huge issues for the team last night. That being said, I really think this team is on the cusp of being pretty good. Next year I think we’ll be a borderline tourney team, with everyone returning, and significant upgrades in the backcourt.

    • BeileinsBricks

      It’s not Stu’s fault. He just doesn’t have the ability. If after three years and playing 30+ minutes a game he can’t make layups, he’ll never make them. He doesn’t have much ability to put the ball to the floor, but based on our current roster composition he’s one of the best we have and he’s forced into these positions. I really hope B&B (Burke and Brundidge) come ready to play right away next year, as we’ll really need them. It’s really unfortunate once again we’ll have to rely on true freshmen. However, the sooner Stu can go back to be a spot-up shooter, the better (for us and him).

      • jmblue

        Stu has the ability to make layups. I think the presence of Sullinger spooked a lot of our guys around the rim.

        • BeileinsBricks

          His ability to make layups has improved, but he’s still pretty bad. From 2-pt range his shooting percentage is 44%, and most of those attempts have been of the easier kind considering the vast majority of shots he takes are from 3. I just looked, and also didn’t realize he’s shooting 2-8 in free throws this year…wow. No shame to admit you’re simply a spot-up 3 point shooter, and hopefully when B&B come into town he can go back to do that. I bet you his 3PT percentage goes back up over 40% for next season in that case.

  • JimC

    O$U is the new MSU. A lot of thuggish, not-even-close-to-being-student athletes. Looks like they’re going to lose about 80% of their team to “graduation” and the NBA this spring.

    Dylan, totally agree about PSU: this is a ripe opportunity. We’re playing better than a month ago. Before the MSU game, @PSU looked like a certain loss, but now it looks like a toss-up.

    • Todd – not Boeckman

      Everyone but Lighty will be back next year. (yes, even Sullinger)

      I am a high school basketball referee here in Ohio, and I have to agree, that the standard of officiating in the B10, IMHO, is shockingly and consistently poor. As someone above said, its the lack of consistency on the calls that makes them poor. (Oh and a few, old time, showboaters.) You know its bad when both teams can make legitimate cases for how bad things were. On the “famous” Sullinger v Smotz tangle that was called on Sullinger when he whined; should’ve been called earlier on Smotz, but the officials famously, saw the second foul. As an official, my question is, there are three officials on the floor. The Lead (under the basket is only responsible for the post play. So what the &%@% was he looking at to miss the first foul? See. so now, both teams have a beef. no call on the Michigan player, so Sullinger whines, and then the foul on Sullinger, so Matta gets upset.

      We are taught game managerment and honestly, I am appalled game in game out at the number of officials I work with who would be better than the jokers the B10 hires. And its just as bad in football. They need a new officiating supervisor.

      As an outsider, IMHO your team needs some beef underneath, but I think your program is in good hands.

      • Todd – not Boeckman

        Oh, by the way…nice website. I like the “pomeroy” like feel to it.

      • Dylan Burkhardt

        Everyone will be back but Lighty!?!?!?!

        Even Diebler, a senior? I think Buford and Sullinger would be crazy not to enter the draft.

        • mat

          NBA work stoppage could be a factor there.

        • Todd – not Boeckman

          Oh yeah. Diebler gone too Sorry. But Sullinger has repeatedly said he wants to spend at least two years in college after his brother has given him the advice to stay in college as long as possible.

          • georgeesq.

            Lauderdale is done, too. If Sullinger stays, that would be rare, since he’ll be a top 5 pick in the draft, if not #1.

      • Tweeter

        Yea I cant see Sullinger staying for another year. He will be the number one pick if he leaves, at least I would take him one, at the worst top three. Dont know why you would pass up on that even if you really love college. I think Buford is gone too, he certainly has the ability to be a lottery pick. Thomas would shock me if he left, I wouldnt draft him in the first round.

        • BeileinsBricks

          I think there’s almost no shot Sullinger stays another year, and Matta’s recruiting probably backs this up. Didn’t he pick-up Amir and McDonald? I think they’re both going to be the OSU centers next year.

    • Jeff

      Diebler, Lighty and Lauderdale are all seniors. It would be extremely rare (almost unheard of) for a certain top 3 pick like Sullinger not to go into the draft. Buford (a junior) and Thomas (a freshman) also have a shot of getting drafted if they decide to leave early. My guess is they lose four starters from this year’s team. Don’t forget they basically play a 7-man rotation. Next year, they will be talented but very young, and not nearly this good.

      • Deacon Blues

        I can’t find a mock draft that lists Buford as a first-rounder. Maybe they’re all wrong or maybe that’ll change, but that’s not the makings of a guy who’s certain to bolt.

        And Lauderdale only plays 18 minutes a game, so that’s not a huge loss, even though he starts. Who knows what’ll happen, but I’d bet they have a core of Craft-Thomas-Buford next season, which is obviously a step back but still keeps them in the upper half of the league.

        • Dylan Burkhardt

          Lauderdale’s loss hurts with Sullinger’s likely departure.

          Amir Williams, Trey McDonald and a transfer big man from out East somewhere (BC?) are all they’ve got in terms of post players. Amir Williams is a good player but he’s not going to give them the kind of low post scoring that they’ve been accustomed to. McDonald is more of a project type that probably needs seasoning.

        • Jeff

          Pretty much agree with you. Although it’s not that uncommon for someone to leave after their junior year even if they don’t have much chance of going in the first round. Manny Harris is just one example of that. My guess is Buford comes back, which means they only lose four starters. Takes them from national championship contender to fourth or fifth in Big Ten.

  • wayman britt

    We had a chance to win this game, just didn’t make a couple of key plays. Hopefully they will learn from this game.

    Morris is a good player and very talented, but the team lives and dies by the way he plays. We aren’t going to win when trys to do everything himself. The offense becomes one guy dribbling and four guys standing around. Hopefully he learns more by watching the tape.

    • CJD

      I keep trying to figure out if they stand around because he dribbles the air out of the ball or he dribbles the air out of the ball because they stand around????

      Regardless at this level motion offense needs more motion……..

  • Jeff

    Didn’t realize Brooks had a separated shoulder. We need to take advantage of that. Illinois beat them soundly without him in the second half. By far the second best player on a team that basically plays a 7-man rotation.

    • Dylan Burkhardt

      The Jackson kid is pretty good as well. And it’s a dislocated shoulder, not a separation. It will be interesting to see if he plays.

    • Dylan Burkhardt

      More… Here’s the AP report:
      STATE COLLEGE, Pa. — Penn State leading rebounder Jeff Brooks is day to day with a dislocated right shoulder, and his status is unclear for Sunday’s game against Michigan.

      Brooks hurt the shoulder late in the first half of Tuesday’s 68-51 loss at Illinois. A team physician said X-rays Thursday revealed no damage to the shoulder joint or bones.

      The team trainer said he was surprised with Brooks’ range of motion, and that swelling and pain for Brooks was minimal. The team will monitor his progress before determining his availability when Penn State (12-9, 5-5 Big Ten) hosts the Wolverines (13-9, 3-6).

      Brooks leads the team with 7.2 rebounds per game. He’s second in scoring at 13.2 points behind guard Talor Battle.

  • MikeSal

    A game most of us thought we would lose but in the back of our heads wanted to win. I hope we see them again in the B10 tournament. 14 missed layups isn’t going to win any games and hopefully we can fix that going into a huge stretch. Big games requires big plays and we just didn’t have enough of them. I would be highly surprised if Sullinger and Buford didn’t enter the draft. Borderline shocked.

  • Alex

    The team should be proud of themselves for the most part. They played with the number 1 team in the country in their arena. Missing 14 layups may be the exception. The team needs to move forward and garuntee a spot in the NIT over the next three games. If the entire team stays and half the freshman classmates the same sophomore leap Morris did, Doylemay be right that we will make the Tourney next year. Go Blue! Beat PSU.

  • AG2

    I want to remind everybody here that the “Big Ten officials” are used by almost every conference. Hightower, Valentine, Burr, they all coach Big XII, SEC, ACC, and Big East games too. And those fans can’t stand them either.

  • Andy

    Couple thoughts…

    1, I’m pretty firmly behind Beilein, but I thought he made a couple critical errors last night. Momentum is huge in basketball, and it’s usually pretty obvious too. After UM got the six point lead in the second half and OSU started to make its run, I would have loved to see a time out a lot sooner than we did. When you’re on the road as the (honestly) inferior team, you have to stop those runs right away. One big run essenstially ends the game. Also, when OSU made the obvious commitment to start driving to the basket, I would have liked to see a zone look. When a team gets on a roll, change up what they’re seeing. He also needs to figure out a way to at least get some post touches in the offense. There were times in the last ten minutes where there were literally zero out of ten players in side the three point line when UM had the ball. I realize none of UM’s bigs are a real threat to do a lot of damage in the post, but you have to at least work it inside / outside regularly to generate the kind of shots you want.

    2, I know Stu had a bad game in some respects, but I think a lot of the criticism he gets is unfair. Other than Darius, he’s the best ball handler on the team (and I’d argue that he initiates the offense for others better than Darius), he’s become a solid defender on the outside and seems to play an overall smart / solid game. If he could just hit a few more shots, he’d be so much more of a factor. Stu, if you happen to read this, I think you need a little more continuity in your shot. Bringing it up and letting it go should all feel like one continuous motion. I think he’s bringing it up, slightly pausing, then releasing. You’ll get more consistency just by thinking of it all as one motion.

  • Jodi

    Thad Matta showed little appreciation for Michigan’s play. He seemed completely absorbed with his team being “number one” opposed to how we were leading at half and nearly upset his prepaid squad. I can’t wait till the day his team is revealed of encouraging and allowing boosters to do what they do best.

  • bird

    The only F-bomb I dropped while watching last night was at that same point–after we’d extended the lead shortly after the second half started–when we had that shot clock violation. Grrr.

  • Jeff

    I kind of enjoyed the exchange between the announcers during the second half when Morris was obviously hammered and got no call. O’Brien said if I’m Beilein, I expect to get that call, Bardo went through some long spiel trying to justify the no call, and O’Brien just repeated, if I’m Beilein, I expect to get that call. Then Bardo basically said yeah, you’re right. Kind of reminded me of the Minnesota game last year when Bobby Knight was openly questioning how lopsided the officiating was.

  • gpsimms

    the smot “charge” on Lighty was the quintessential call of the game. true freshman vs. 5th year senior and “best defender in basketball.”

    i think we just have to deal with every reputation call going againsus for the rest of the year. next year, when we have more experience than the t(some of) eams we are playing against, hopefully the refs will give us some respect.

    i wish beilein would have taken a tech after dmo got raped in the lane, then sullinger got a weak call right away on the other end. that stretch put us officially out of reach, he may as well have gone on record saying “we got screwed” at that point.

  • gpsimms

    oh, also, matta is such a douche. at one point during osu’s run he started waving his arms up and down to “pump up the crowd.”

    it reminded me of when he ran to the michigan bench to talk sht after turner hit from half court. i actually like most of osu’s players: lighty is one of my favorites in the big ten, and i respect diebler and buford. i hate craft, but that’s mostly because he’s a player.

    anyway, you’re not playing the game, chill out. also, complaining about the reffing and the complete lack of respect for his opponent is disgusting. like his face OH BURN!

    • Mattski

      He IS still a couple of operations shy of a complete face, but his coaching was pretty good in the second half. They changed up by sending people to the hoop and on D as well. He may be crookit, physically and morally, but he can coach a little.

      • gpsimms

        didn’t say anything about his gameplanning, coaching, etc. simply said that he’s not playing in the game and he has no place talking sht to the other team, inciting the crowd, etc.

        his post game comments are always egocentric at best. i’ve got no love for izzo, but there’s a guy who takes blame when things go wrong, and deflects credit when things go right.

        matta is a great recruiter, and maybe even a decent coach. doesn’t make him not an asshole, which is all i was saying.

        • Mattski

          You’re taking that a bit personally, G. My observation was in no way a refutation of yours. Read that “But” again. I’m just saying he deserved a few props–I realized–for his in-game strategizing.

          • gpsimms

            right, my bad, sorry.

  • Mattski

    Guess that was Trey Burke getting grief from OSU fans there during the timeout?

    • Dylan Burkhardt

      I didn’t see, when was that?

      • Mattski

        In the Det News lead story on the game it mentions that he was there in a Michigan sweatshirt, sitting behind the bench. There was a scence on ESPN during one stoppage that showed a thin kid in M gear being hectored by some OSU coeds–all pretty good-natured. I assume it must have been him? If so, hats off–more courage to ya.

  • mat

    work stoppage could be a factor there

    • mat

      Oops double post…Anyway,

      I just want to say thanks for not griping about the officials. It IS extremely boring to hear about, not just in blogs but twitter, email, any form of conversation.

      Admirable restraint, regardless of when its deserved.

  • MGoYooper

    Wait, 14 missed layups?? I didn’t get a chance to watch the game. Is that an exaggeration or a real stat? That’s insane if true.

  • JDiesel

    I was infinitely frustrated by last evening’s game, which I thought we had a very legitimate chance of winning. Officiating was abhorant in the second half, especially in the beginning. It all spiralled after Motta complained incessantly after the first foul called against Sullinger. Then we had what seemed like fouls on 6 straight possessions. I also thought Stu played his worst game of the season. Not to belabor this, but he made several critical errors at the absolutely most key portion of the game. My question is this: was DMo being shut down/prevented from getting the ball so much that we had to run O through Stu? IMO, the ball should be in DMos hands on the majority of every possession. Perhaps we need to run multiple screens to get him open so he can get the ball if he is being covered closely.
    Also, I thought he got a little rattled after the charge call went against him. It was, like many of the calls, pretty suspect….

  • SubAlum_06

    Off topic-I am going to the game Sunday, any recommendations on a places to eat in State College?

  • MikeM

    Only thing duller than talking about officiating is talking about John Gasaway’s blog post over and over. ;)
    Constant harping about officiating is annoying, but I think in this game, the officiating was a huge contributor to the final score and a big storyline during and after the game, so why wouldn’t you mention it in a recap?

    • Dylan Burkhardt

      Touche ;-) But, I think the free throws and fouls were the difference in the game, right or wrong.

      • MikeM

        Definitely, and the reason for the weird free throw and foul totals was the officiating. I don’t know if it was egregiously one-sided, because I just couldn’t predict how anything would be called. Charges, over-the-backs, and general physical play (picks, positioning) were all called erratically and this made it very hard on most of our guys who can’t rely purely on their size and quickness.

        I’d like to mention I really appreciated UM’s sportsmanship in how they handled the officiating compared to OSU’s whining and smirking. I don’t like the character blame-game, but OSU is exhibiting some real silver-spoon syndrome. Just compare THJ and Morgan to Sullinger and Craft.

  • KAB

    If we continue to play this well then it is going to be a fun second half.The BT is so tough from top to bottom that almost every win is a quality one.This team just has a special look and a glow with them right now that I think we go to State College and handle Penn ST.

  • KAB

    Oh yea,and Matta is a peice of you know what.God I hope we get another crack at him and his little clone(Craft)!!!

  • Dylan Burkhardt

    Gene Steratore, a ref from last night’s U-M game, is the same guy that made Calvin Johnson no-catch call vs the Bears.

    • Todd – not Boeckman

      I get a kick out of the fact that you guys hate him so much but your post brought a smile to my face. The image of the little dog on the Bugs Bunny cartoon jumping around “Spike” the big dog popped into my head and I had to laugh out loud.

    • BeileinsBricks

      Ha…now that is funny. You gotta give the guy credit. He’s consistently incompetent across two sports.

    • Brian W

      Wow. If he was also a spokesperson for Lenscrafters, that would be the perfect trifecta.

    • Joel

      Wow, seriously? Explains a lot….

    • Joel

      Another thing, in regards to the officiating – I wouldn’t mind seeing Beilein working the refs a little more than he does. I appreciate the fact that he doesn’t whine/look like his pants are on fire (Izzo) if a call doesn’t go his way, but I would think that when Coach A is working the refs and talking to them a lot, and Coach B isn’t, Coach A is likely going to get a few extra calls his way.