John Beilein addressed the media briefly following Michigan’s 75-52 beating in East Lansing. You can watch using the embedded media player below or read a full transcript after the jump.
Transcript after the jump.
Opening statement: “Michigan State, as you saw today, really has an excellent team. I’ve believed that all year long. They really played like that today. That was the worst we played in a long, long time and credit Michigan State for that. The experience in their post play was big. They really took care of the ball and offensive rebounded extremely well. There were so many things we played poorly in, it’s hard to put my finger on it. But Michigan State was excellent today.”
- On Michigan’s offense and Michigan State’s defense: “They were very good; we couldn’t get anywhere where we wanted to get to. When we did have open looks, we didn’t make them. I said that before the game that we had to do that. We play in front of a sell-out every night, for the whole year, virtually. Somehow we did not play with poise offensively that we needed to have to be able to make some shots when you’re open and make some guarded shots as well.”
- On Michigan State’s play: “They have tremendous talent, I mean tremendous talent. Derrick Nix has developed into really a tremendous post player. The other four guys they put around him are as high level as there are in the country. They’re good, they have a great plan, they play very well together, and they played with great purpose today. They are playing freshmen like we are, probably not as many of them. The two, (Denzel) Valentine and (Gary) Harris were terrific today. We have to learn a lot from this game.”
- On rotating the big men: ”We tried to. None of them played up to their potential. Jordan, as you can see, just does not have the lift he had beforehand. We tried to put him in there. We had 16 turnovers and eight of them came out of post play, and virtually all of those were run-outs. We just have to keep working on that, make them better, make them more skilled, get it so that they’re able to catch the ball and make the easy play and make tough plays as well. It’s very much a work in progress with any of our big men. They’re all disappointed, we’re disappointed and we’ll go back to work.”
- On Tim Hardaway Jr.’s disappearance: “He’s been playing as well as any guard in the country. It was a bad night. He really had a bad night. Credit the Michigan State defense, but Tim Hardaway has been as good as any player in the country. He and Trey Burke, that backcourt is terrific. Tim had a bad night. Tim Hardaway will bounce back as he always has.”
- On his team’s inability to respond when dealt big blows early: “The offensive rebounds that they got took a lot out of us. We have one of the best defensive rebounding percentages in the Big Ten, but it wasn’t even close tonight. One of the things we emphasized was that we had to seek contact on every shot, and there was no contact. They got the best of us in that area, and obviously that’s a huge area, and it’s an area we have to work on. It’s a physical league, it’s a physical game, and you have to embrace it. We did not, and they did. They just got away from us. There wasn’t any turning back after they made that spurt in the second half.”
- On what his team can learn from this experience: “We are going to practice tomorrow, Thursday’s going to be our day off. I’m not going to say we weren’t ready to play — we were pretty pumped up in the locker room. You’re going to have days like this, and you have to learn that there are certain things in a basketball game that you have to execute every time. You just have to do it. Today, the block-out was huge; just paying attention in huddles, I felt like our guys were distracted in the huddles a couple of times. It’s just things they have to understand. It snowballs so quickly on you. We didn’t deserve, obviously, to win that game. Maybe we got exactly what we deserved, and maybe it’s medicine for the future.”
- On having one game in the next two weeks: “In the last 20 days we have had one practice that wasn’t about the next game. We’ve really been through a compressed schedule of seven games in twenty days and we need to practice. We did one practice that was a real practice before the Wisconsin game. So, we’ll get back to that. We have a couple of days here and there. We have four games in 20 after seven in 20. So, it will be a great time for us to get back to the basics that we were doing earlier in the year.
- On the struggles of Glenn Robinson III: “All our guys need to get back to some basics, not worry about the next opponent and improve at their own game both offensively and defensively. He’s not alone.”
- On Mitch McGary’s performance: “He’s still learning what is a good sound play and what is a play that he should not make. He’s still learning, and he’s thrown in there and has to learn. With Jordan’s injury — he’s not himself. So, we’re looking for some type of energy to replace him right now. Mitch had some bad turnovers, and he’ll improve from them. We’ll watch film, we’ll work on his footwork and his timing, and the decisions he makes.”