Video: John Beilein Previews Ferris St., Names Trey Burke Starter


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.
  • South Florida Maize Rage

    Forgive me if this has already been discussed but are assuming that Bielfeldt is redshirting? The fact that Jordan Morgan is not in the starting lineup is alarming to me. He looked out of shape in the exhibition game. I hope this is not a problem all soon.

    • mikey_mac

      I too am concerned about Morgan. It seems unlikely that Horford could have surpassed him without Morgan lowering the bar some. Best case, Morgan would have to have plateaued, and not improved at all over the summer, which would mean Horford made huge strides to surpass him, but I don’t believe that’s the case.

      • Mattski

        Someone over at mgoblog suggested that he has been sick. Hope that’s the problem, that he’s soon over it and contributing. He’s one of my favorite players. 

    • YpsiTuckyBoy

      Bielfeldt won’t redshirt. Basketball isn’t like football. In basketball you typically use redshirts only on players who (a) have high-impact possibility but (b) are still pretty raw. Since Bielfeldt doesn’t really fall under either category, it’s unlikely.

    • sane1

      Morgan is not out of shape. 


    The school that I go to is a D-III school in West Michigan (Calvin College) and we just played and beat Ferris last week (77-72).  I was paying more attention to my own school than Ferris, but Ferris did not look like an especially good team.  They came out flat (exhibition vs. a D-III team) but when they started to turn up the energy in the second half they still couldn’t do a whole lot.  They didn’t shoot the ball especially well and had trouble finishing inside.  They look like a very athletic team that struggles against a good defense (my college is consistently one of the best defensive teams in D-III) so Michigan’s defense should shut down Ferris.

    Obviously, no surprise that Michigan should win this game, but I would not expect much of a fight from Ferris, they looked like a poorly coached team with little motivation.

    • JVL

      I’m a Calvin Alum, and watched that game with interest as a Calvin fan and as a Michigan fan looking at an upcoming opponent. I think that I will agree that Ferris struggled, especially shooting the ball from deep, but they also had a hard time on the boards against a D-III team, albeit a decent one. Most of us know that Michigan was outrebounded against Wayne St – if that continues in this one I think we have some real rebounding concerns. Also, I do think it’s hard for a team that made a deep run in the D-II tourney to get up for a game against a D-III opponent, so keep that in mind. Despite this, I do agree that Michigan should have little trouble against Ferris.

      As an aside, as someone who has intently watch Calvin bball for a while, I would disagree with your assertion that we’re a strong defensive team , as we’ve struggled the last 5 years on that end of the floor- just had to throw that one in there

      • I remember hearing a stat about how VandeStreek’s teams at Calvin have a very good eFG% against in his time there.  I know last year Calvin managed to hold teams to 42% (I could only find stats for regular FG%, not an eFG% stat) from the floor, which was the highest they’ve given up in some time I think.  I shouldn’t have said one of the best, but above average.  I think Calvin generally plays pretty good defense on a points per possession basis, but they turn it over a lot and will miss a lot of quick shots.

        And I agreed with Ferris starting slow and generally not looking up for the game.  But in the second half with the game close they basically gave up while their coach was begging them to do something.  I expected a team of their caliber to hold onto the 2nd half lead, even if it was an exhibition against a D-III team.

  • maxwell’s demon

    I don’t really get why people are that surprised Horford has the current edge over Morgan. He looked like had some potential last year but definitely needed some more mass, and he added that. Morgan definitely had great chemistry with Morris and seems to be a fairly good garbage man, but he has zero post moves and I think his upside is somewhat limited. Not trying to knock the guy, I have no preference on who wins the starting role. I just don’t think it’s shocking that Horford could have caught up to Morgan after a year in the system. And I also don’t think it’s necessarily a bad sign.

    • Sood

      Horford seemed to be missing last year wasn’t mass in my opinion, but a general
      feel for the game. Somebody over at mgoblog used the phrase “Bambi on ice,” which seems accurate to

      I also
      disagree that Morgan has zero post moves. On the rare occasion when they
      went to him in the low post, the moves he showed looked pretty smooth to me even
      if he didn’t always manage to finish. 

      Horford’s ceiling is higher, but he seemed an awful long way from reaching it
      last year. Count me among the surprised if he’s legitimately passed Morgan

      • Sven187

        And how bad did Morgan look when he was a freshman? So bad they didn’t let him play all year. I don’t know some of you find it so hard to believe Horford  could make an even bigger jump considering he actually got to play as a freshman.

        • Kenny

          If you watch the Wayne state game, horford is nowhere near what Morgan looks last year. My feeling is that Morgan is held back by illness. Yes, horford has a better bounce and his ceiling is higher but his progress is simply not that impressive judging from the last game. By the way, you missed a simple fact that Morgan was injured (dislocated shoulder?) and had a surgery his freshman year.

        • john

          Well you discredited your whole argument. Morgan was injured his first year which is why he was redshirted.

  • FGCU Maize Rage

    Is it worth watching on I think I’m gonna try it watch it online with the UNC game on the TV in the background. 

  • Tom, Too.

    Morgan has good footwork and post moves inside.  I am surprised he is not starting…I think too that a couple of his baskets each game were gimme’s from Morris last year and if Horford has better chemistry with Burke, then that’s it….Wide Receivers which work the best with the QB get the playing time.

  • Brad

    I do kind of think that people are selling Jordan Morgan short. He attacked the basket last year. Yeah, there were a lot of nice feeds from Darius, but he caught very difficult passes then went to the rim HARD. In addition, I do remember him having some nifty footwork, spin moves, quick jump hooks that kept post defenders off guard, and he finished very well. Finally, he was tough. He battled bigger guys and played pretty solid defense (when he wasn’t in foul trouble). It remains to be seen if Horford has that same type of aggression. Burke and Morgan could also prove to be dynamic with the pick and roll, as it is very hard to defend when a good shooter who can handle the ball is running it with someone who absolutely charges to the hoop on the cut.