John Beilein met with the media during the weekly Big Ten teleconference call on Monday morning to discuss his 25th ranked Michigan squad.Here are notes and quotes from Beilein’s remarks on the game in East Lansing, Big Ten scheduling, Carlton Brundidge, Max Bielfeldt and more. (Photo: Dustin Johnston)
- On Michigan’s non-conference schedule, specifically playing Arkansas during the heart of the Big Ten season: “I think it has something to do with our very late exam schedule. They’re in exams when we’re not, we’re in exams when they’re not. We’ve done this every year, just trying to get a really good non-conference home game. (If we play away one year), it guarantees us a really good non-conference home game the following year.” Beilein also mentioned that with the current 12-team format in the Big Ten, he doesn’t think anyone should have a regular season bye – just keep the schedule regulated.
- On the last six games, in which Michigan went 3-3: “I think it could’ve been better, but it could’ve been worse too. We were very fortunate to win some very tight games. We got through it the best we could, and we’re learning from the experience, learning that it’s not about that stretch. It’s about learning from the stretch and getting better through these last three weeks in February into March.”
- On Carlton Brundidge, who didn’t travel with the team Sunday because of an illness: “He became sick on Friday with some asthma-related symptoms. He was with the doctors most of the day Friday and could not practice Satuday as a result… He still didn’t feel good on Sunday. It was just asthma-related symptoms that he had.”
- On Max Bielfeldt: “He has really improved this year. He came in this year with really bad tendinitis in his knees and was not nearly as athletic as he has shown in the past. He was really just struggling. He’s young, so given the fact that we’re still evolving with some positions here it just didn’t make sense for him or for us to burn a redshirt when he probably wouldn’t get quality time… He’s shown some really bright spots in practice this year. If he continues to improve, he’ll really help us.”
- More on Bielfeldt and what he can do to help the team: “Big men with good hands, they’re not a dime a dozen. Where he’s not gifted vertically, he’s really good in small spaces. Around the block he’s crafty. (In practice), he’s played every big man in the league so far. He’s a scout team all star right now. He’s a rare mix that will rebound really well and will shoot from the outside. He’s now 18 and nine months or something. He’s got a lot of more basketball he’s gonna learn because he’s got a great attitude.”
- On what the team needs to improve on the most: “If you look at yesterday’s game, I think our execution was not good, and we need to focus on moving on to the next play. Those are the biggest things we need to work on… We didn’t execute because we’re still on the last play, but the ball’s coming the other way. We have to be able to move forward. I may be thinking about a play on my drive home and could get myself in an accident…You have to be able to move forward.”