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We are inept defensively. So I went and started looking through stats....
Glenn Robinson III is an elite athlete right? What kind of an elite athlete has 5 blocks on the entire season. ZERO in B1G play.
Jordan Morgan was the biggest player on the court for the most part tonight. As a starting Center on a B1G team he has 3 blocks on the season. ZERO in B1G play.
How is that even possible? A supposed super athletic wing player, and a starting Center combine for 8 blocks in 28 games.... with none coming in conference play.
No aggression and no toughness on D.
Clark, it starts with mentality.
Before I worked in football, I used to think that I would end up being a basketball coach. And there's actually a number of similarities between the two games when it comes to defense.
In my opinion, defense is really a function mentality. I'd go so far as to say that good defense is almost a state of mind.
When a player is committed to playing good defense, he demonstrates effort, hustle, aggression, determination. You see it in a guards that works very hard to deny penetration by stonewalling the opposing ball-handler in the perimeter. You see it in a forward that expends a lot of energy in ball denial or tries to clog a passing lane. You see it in a post player that hedges hard to cut off a guard's visual field.
I rarely see any of those things from our guys. A number of players on this team are guilty of playing matador defense. And not only is that problematic, it's unacceptable.
This Michigan team is capable of excelling in transition offense. And the way to create transition offense is to defend well and force bad shots or turnovers. That's what allows for the run-and-gun style.
It actually upsets me that this team hasn't fully grasped the notion that "good defense leads to good offense."
* * * N E O . R E T R O * * *
Robinson is also a 6'6 wing player who is playing the 4 spot. I agree with the overall premise though. The team, as a whole, is soft and finesse. Takes the character of their head coach. The players on this roster that have any kind of "dog" in them are either freshmen(McGary), or rarely play(Biedfelt). Speaking of Max, what a complete shame he doesn't get more minutes. You're telling me he couldn't have provided a spark in last nights game? He didn't play 1 minute. Baffling. Trey Burke also busts his ass, but he can't do everything himself. Beilein is one of the most stubborn coaches I've ever seen, and he will go down with the ship.
it all starts with the coach. i remember when we played Upper Sandusky in the District final my junior year. Jon Deebler was a senior on their team at the time. Their philosophy was score has much as you want, we will just score more then you. We had a pretty good guard on our team; ended up playing D III ball. He put up 32 on Deebler. Deebler could have cared less because he put up 48 himself. The final score was in the hundreds for a high school basketball team.
Beilein seems to have the same mentality that RR did. Defense is an afterthought.
Speaking of that game and minutes, why didn't Mcgary play more than 8 minutes? If anyone could have lit a spark for us around the 5 minute mark when Penn state was making a nice run, it would have been Mcgary with his effort and hustle, but we kept morgan in...(not that morgan was having a bad game, but he doesn't ignite anything and change the mentality of the team like mcgary can)
Morgan is the heart and soul of our D. That is why he was in the game.
The heart and soul of a D that gave up 85 to Penn St....
He can't close out on every shooter himself.
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