Notes & Quotes: John Beilein previews Indiana

Michigan vs Iowa_24

John Beilein was available to speak with the media via teleconference on Saturday afternoon just before Michigan hit the road for Bloomington to take on Indiana on Sunday. You can read the full transcript of the call below.

Opening statement: “We just finished practice and we will leave later on today to get down to Indiana. Our kids are excited. We’ve had good practices these past two days, and with the short turnaround, I think they have to be. So we move forward and see what we can do down in Indiana.”

  • On Yogi Ferrell: “He had such a great team last year. The four other guys who started with him were just terrific. He did a wonderful job fitting in before he tried to stand out. Now, all of a sudden he’s taken on the personality of a four-year starter. He’s running the team, he’s making big shots, he’s a go-to guy for them. He got a lot of minutes from us with USA Basketball. I think that helped as well. He’s really been impressive in all these games.”

  • On whether or not coaching Ferrell this summer gives him an edge: “I’m not sure, because we also taught them a lot of things that we like to do at Michigan. Watching him play, he’s young as well, watching him play, anything I learned from him or anything that we worked on at World University Games, he’s playing at a high level right now and it won’t make a difference.”

  • On why his team has been so good playing on the road: “There’s only one place in the league where we have not been able to win and that’s Columbus. So we did win in East Lansing before and we had one at Wisconsin before, but very few teams do. Probably the ball bounced our way and it didn’t in those times.”

  • On the difficulty of playing at Assembly Hall as opposed to other venues: “There’s a lot of loud places in the country that we’ve played at. It’s hard to know the decibel levels of who’s got the loudest. I believe that atmosphere probably gets as loud as the Dukes, the Michigan States, the Purdues, those places that seem really loud. Iowa State was really loud this year, and Michigan State was. It’s as good as it gets as far as the atmosphere for a home game and it’s as tough as it gets for a road team. You’ve got to play through all that.”

  • On Derrick Walton: “I think you have to have thick skin, you have to have a very high IQ, to be a freshman point guard and have success. The very best ones — first of all, it’s very rare that they start and it’s very rare that they do everything to get a positive assist-to-turnover ratio, to shoot from deep with good percentages and also run their team. You watch the really good ones, it usually takes a couple years. Derrick’s somewhere between there where the past couple weeks he’s really shown some flashes of playing beyond his years, of the typical freshman point guard.”

  • On what areas Derrick Walton has made the most progress in: “I just think the minutes he’s played has allowed the game to slow down and I think defense would be the biggest thing I’ve seen so far. He’s been able to play some pretty good defense on some pretty good players.”

  • On the different challenges posed by this Indiana team as opposed to last year’s: “Tom’s teams have always been very good at driving the ball, but not like this. This team really drives the ball hard and to the basket. That’s why they’re one of the better rebounding teams. They have everyone trying to give help one-on-one, and then they’re crashing in while you’re giving help, and you’ve lost your positioning. Of all the teams he’s had at Indiana, this one drives the ball the best, it rebounds the best. It’s probably the best true point guard that he’s had since he’s been there as well.”

  • guestavo

    @Indiana, @Ohio St and Michigan plus 4/5 other B1G regular seasons wins. Sounds like a dream scenario.

  • rlcBlue

    Sparty picks up a terrible loss to Georgetown, Minnesota loses at home to Northwestern, and Wisconsin loses at home again – to OSU.

    I don’t know, I’m starting to wonder if the rest of the conference is any good at this basketball thing this year. We need to win the B1G outright; finishing 3rd or 4th doesn’t look like much of an accomplishment.

    • mistersuits

      Agreed that upon further review this is looking like a down year for the conference. You wouldn’t have expected the projected bottom three PSU, Nebraska and Northwestern to give other teams a combined 10 losses through the halfway mark.

      These are clearly not vintage OSU and Wisconsin outfits.

  • BlueBear_E

    Not saying this is certainly going to happen, but winning in Madison, East Lansing, Bloomington, and Columbus in one season would be “amazing”. Add a B1G regular season title to that and we are talking “legendary”. Only and national championship would top that.

  • JimmyZ5

    Derrick Walton was a high-mid four star. Yogi Ferrell was a five star, according to most. They seem nearly identical. Is there any reason Yogi had a higher profile? Not that it matters.