Monday, February 16, 2009

Basketball revisited

I would first like to apologise for lack of posts these past couple weeks of the season. I hope that most people appreciate the concept of being a full-time student and just hoping for something good to happen with the team which until Sunday had not been since, February 5th against Penn State, which still didn't seem like much to get too excited about. I wanted to save my post for after the UCONN game incase maybe just maybe we pulled one off which, we inspiringly lost, thanks to my boy Stew being unconscious from behind the arc. Then I watched with hopes of beating the school up I-96 and watching Manny Harris un-inspiringly stand on the left wing the whole game and get completely shut down by bigger better defenders. However my lack of post has allowed to me reflect on a few things I've learned the past week and a half. 
-Manny Harris isn't as good as I thought he was. I don't want it to sound like I woke up this morning and drank some Hateraide and I'm going to bash our best offensive weapon. However, how many times does anyone see many harris get the ball somewhere other then the left wing? And if he doesn't get the ball right at the start of the offensive set he seems to be a non-factor. Now I know he's been our savior and taken games over like he did yesterday I would like to see more consistency from his game that's all. To be a good NBA player he's going to need to be able to operate from both sides of the court and be able to get into the offense if he is initially taken away. 
- The culture of Michigan basketball is slowing leaning back towards success. I saw it in the UCONN game and even though Manny Harris was awful in the MSU game, the team could have folded after a 15 point outburst in the first half to the spartans or let UCONN run away with the game after taking a double digit lead in the second half. Unlike the Tommy Amaker teams of old they kept playing hard and stayed in the game competitively instead of just folding.
- What happened to us cutting backdoor and getting to the basket? Our offense recently has consisted of jacking up 3 pointers at any given opportunity. Only getting points in the paint from DeShawn Sims, a Manny Harris Drive, or somebody else getting a hustle bucket off the rebound. Announcers talk about Michigan being the leading three-point shooting team in the big ten in terms of makes and I say yeah obviously when you're putting about 30 3's a game up. I don't like this trend... Building a team around the three unless you're Duke is how you upset teams not win a championship.
Through this up and down basketball season and the torment of football season there is HOPE. A flicker of bright light in the distance. We might still be able to make the tourney and no ladies and gentleman I'm not talking the NIT this time. Dave Revsine touched on this yesterday for those of you that watched. There are no strong Mid-Majors making cases this year other then teams that we all can assume will most likely win their conference tourney ie) Butler, Utah State etc... leaving the door wide open for a team like Michigan quality wins and a quality strength of schedule. The problem is though, 3 road games in the last 5 of the regular season doesn't look good for us. Seemingly because yesterday was only our second true road victory of the season. So what is their left? A hope and a prayer, but I'm going to reluctantly hold my fingers crossed until selection Sunday unless the outcome is inevitable before that. Sorry again for the lack of posts expect a football recruiting roundabout roundup hopefully sooner then later.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Quinton Washington...Thank You

It has been reported that Michigan just received a commitment from 4-star and ESPNU 150 OG recruit Quinton Washington. Depending on what RichRod does with our boy Will Campbell this gives us 3-4 offensive lineman for the class and should improve our overall class ranking. Washington was considering South Carolina, Tennessee, USC, Miami, and Michigan. So as you can see from Washington's school's of choice his abilities seem to be no Fluke. With what we had to do endure with the O-line last season this is like pleasant music to my ear. The only downside is with RichRod's system and everybody coming back it will be hard for Washington to step in and make an immediate impact right away in Ann Arbor. Washington went to Miami for an official this past weekend and I am guessing going to parties at Miami and watching the players snort coke wasn't as selling as a midwinter snowball fight with the Michigan players. It was rumored that his final two came down South Carolina and Michigan, and thankfully for us he made a wise decision. Now not only does this commitment bode well for this year's recruiting class but the recruiting classes to come, this shows RichRods ability to go to the south and steal recruits from their home states. With PA WR Je'Ron Stokes, FL QB/ATH Denard Robinson, and Denard's tag along bff FL/CB Adrian Witty all expected to commit to M things on the recruiting front seem to be looking good for M.  We'll see how tomorrow plays out but things seem to be looking good. Expect a post coming soon after signing day for a full evaluation of this years class and where and how they potentially fit in next year.

Side Note: I just wanted to rant about the Detroit Free Press reporting that for the first time in 20 years the hillbilly school up I-96 was going to have a better recruiting class then M. Washington will be giving us our 5th ESPNU 150 prospect and Stokes and Robinson will give us 7....State = 2... GOOD REPORTING DUDES...