On Thursday, John Beilein met with the media to preview Michigan’s season opener versus Ferris State. The big news out of press conference was that Trey Burke will be replacing Stu Douglass at point guard in the starting line up. Here’s high definition video of the press conference followed by notes and quotes after the jump.
- Last Friday, Wayne State played “really good defensively and they shortened the clock enough so it was a shorter game than we wanted.”
- Ferris State was a Division II Sweet 16 team last year. Lost some guys this year, but they played tough in an 85-58 loss to MSU on Oct. 30.
- Trey Burke will start at point guard on Friday. Stu Douglass will come off the bench.
- On Burke: “He’s really a point guard who has really done a great job his whole life of running a team.”
- On Douglass, who took just four shots and had 0 points while starting at point against Wayne State: “I know he doesn’t mind coming off the bench and hunting shots more than running a team. He’s a shot hunter more than he’s a guy that’s running the team.”
- The rest of the starting lineup will be the same as it was against Wayne State – Hardaway, Novak, Smotrycz and Horford.
- Still now just seeing the effects of Darius Morris leaving. Obviously thin at the point guard spot, so it’s “key” that Burke can step in. Confident he and Michigan are moving in the right direction.
- On courting McGary, who went to the same high school as Novak: “We just sort of stayed in contact with his coaches, and just kept in the back of our mind there that if we did need a big man…we just kept in contact.” Said McGary has really embraced his situation at Brewster Academy, which really helped to recruit him.
- On rest of recruiting class: “Just fine young men who you want to coach, and the big thing is they want to be coached.”
- Still very hard to judge exactly how good players will be in college while they’re still in high school.
- Novak has “without question” played a big role in recruiting McGary and Robinson III, who played against Novak when he was a freshman and Novak was a senior.
- In practice this week, have been emphasizing front court issues, “playing bigger.” Mostly talking about Horford and Morgan. Been difficult for Morgan to transition from starting to coming off the bench.
- Against Ferris, need to especially work on playing “with the same type of poise we were last year at the end of the year.” That’s hard to do and takes time. Have to play harder and smarter going forward.
- Next 3 games are going to come very quickly. Trying to get the players in game shape as fast as possible by playing these early games.
- On finding chemistry: Noted CJ Lee, who didn’t become a starter until the end of the season; you can’t really predict when or how chemistry will be formed.
- Burke has picked up the offense at a high rate, which is “very hard.”
- Would like to get McLimans and Brundidge some playing time, but at the same time you don’t want to take away minutes from the guys who you’d like to see play 30 minutes a game.