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Tuesday, March 19, 2013

OT: March Madness Thread—

For some reason the OT: College Basketball Thread has been closed, just in time for March Madness.  So let’s use this thread for all of our NCAA Tournament discussion (and NIT, CBI, et al).

The title link goes to Ken Pomeroy’s 2013 NCAA tournament log5 predictions for each round of the tournament.

VoodooR Posted: March 19, 2013 at 11:04 AM | 641 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: basketball, off-topic

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   501. The Clarence Thomas of BBTF (scott) Posted: March 30, 2013 at 05:41 PM (#4399826)
The Gophers are not going to be able to find anyone to take their job.
   502. Publius Publicola Posted: March 30, 2013 at 05:51 PM (#4399830)
And count me as skeptical that UCLA really wasn't interested in Smart.


Of course they were interested.
   503. The Ghost's Tryin' to Reason with Hurricane Season Posted: March 30, 2013 at 06:36 PM (#4399859)
Celebrating before the buzzer is unclassy.
   504. Best Regards, President of Comfort, Esq. Posted: March 30, 2013 at 07:05 PM (#4399871)
Celebrating before the buzzer is unclassy.
Stealing that guy's fake eye and stomping on it at center court was beyond the pale.
   505. PJ Martinez Posted: March 30, 2013 at 08:04 PM (#4399903)
These refs are making some iffy foul calls.
   506. Textbook Editor Posted: March 30, 2013 at 09:59 PM (#4399944)
Go Shockers!
   507. Pasta-diving Jeter (jmac66) Posted: March 31, 2013 at 09:49 AM (#4400080)
I must say, this has been some of the WORST basketball I've seen--the Marquette/Cuse game was unwatchable. Both Syracuse and WSU make the final 4 after shooting under 40% in their elite 8 games.
   508. Infinite Joost (Voxter) Posted: March 31, 2013 at 10:14 AM (#4400084)
Nothing to the UConn-Butler final a couple years back. That was the worst game I've ever seen at that level.
   509. Publius Publicola Posted: March 31, 2013 at 10:43 AM (#4400094)
I must say, this has been some of the WORST basketball I've seen--the Marquette/Cuse game was unwatchable. Both Syracuse and WSU make the final 4 after shooting under 40% in their elite 8 games.


Defense is basketball too. Syracuse played fantastic defense, and playing fantastic defense is excellent basketball.
   510. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: March 31, 2013 at 10:50 AM (#4400097)
College basketball is becoming unwatchable. If this was the NBA, there would be a spate of articles about how the NBA is unwatchable, worrying about the future of the league, cherry-picking stats to make it seem like they're losing viewers.

College sports seems immune to all that stuff. The awfulness of quality of play has been going down for awhile now. Any theories why? Poor officiating? Style of play? Coaching fads? One and done rule? Conference re-alignment?

On another note, what is the rational behind requiring athletes to sit out a year upon transferring? I can kinda vaguely get why, but I can't clearly articulate what is wrong with a kid leaving for another school. Scholarships are year to year, and coaches can leave on a moment's notice, so I don't get the whole commitment thing.
   511. Der-K and the statistical werewolves. Posted: March 31, 2013 at 10:54 AM (#4400101)
510/AG#1F: The NCAA is not in the business of representing the interests of athletes, particularly if money is involved.
509: I love good defense - but this is something more. This is, I think, the first time I've ever agreed with the 'x' sport is in (aesthetic) trouble crowd, but college basketball is getting ugly.
   512. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: March 31, 2013 at 10:55 AM (#4400105)
I am just glad Wisconsin was not involved. now folks can rail about some other teams.
   513. Pasta-diving Jeter (jmac66) Posted: March 31, 2013 at 11:06 AM (#4400109)
Defense is basketball too. Syracuse played fantastic defense, and playing fantastic defense is excellent basketball.

that was bad offense, not great defense
   514. Spahn Insane Posted: March 31, 2013 at 11:12 AM (#4400113)
that was bad offense, not great defense

False dichotomies suck, jmac.

Funny how Marquette, Indiana, Cal and Montana all just happened to have bad offensive nights when they played Syracuse. Or, what 509 said.

Edit: Not to deny that Marquette shot terribly, but they had plenty of help.
   515. Publius Publicola Posted: March 31, 2013 at 11:14 AM (#4400114)
College basketball is becoming unwatchable. If this was the NBA, there would be a spate of articles about how the NBA is unwatchable, worrying about the future of the league, cherry-picking stats to make it seem like they're losing viewers.


Well, I hate it when the points come too easily. You aren't watching a well-played game when that happens.
   516. Publius Publicola Posted: March 31, 2013 at 11:24 AM (#4400120)
This is, I think, the first time I've ever agreed with the 'x' sport is in (aesthetic) trouble crowd, but college basketball is getting ugly.


Well, one thing I've noticed is how many questionable charges are called. If you gave the benefit of the doubt to the offensive player, you would see a lot more scoring. There's too much stepping in after the offensive man leaves the floor and drawing a charge. That's unfair.
   517. Conor Posted: March 31, 2013 at 11:41 AM (#4400129)
I think both marquette and Indiana had their worst offensive games of the season this weekend against Syracuse. I'm sure some of it was bad offense, but i think at some point you have to concede SU was playing some great defense.

But I think college hoops needs to clean up the game. I'm an SU fan, so I had fun watching the game yesterday, but I can certainly see why it would turn people off. Some suggestions

1) shorten the shot clock
2) Cut out the handchecking. Guys get mauled on the perimeter, and mauled off the ball. The NBA cleaned up the game, and it worked out great.
3) Make the restricted area further away from the basket, and stop letting guys slide in under after a guy has jumped and giving them the charge
   518. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: March 31, 2013 at 11:44 AM (#4400130)
As coincidence would have it, I was at the barbershop yesterday and while I was waiting, I read an SI article on the 1990 Loyola-LSU game featuring a young Shaq and Hank Gathers, that ended with a 148-141 score. (There is an alternate version of the article here: not sure what the difference is).

Anyway, the article discusses the decline in pace in college basketball. Loyola averaged over 100 possessions per game in 1990; several teams averaged over 70. Last year, North Carolina had the highest pace of any team in college basketball, with just over 70 possessions per game. The reasons given are the appearance of new defenses to limit the fast break such as the "Pack Line" and coaches' pursuit of higher scoring efficiency at the expense of pace. Worth a read.
   519. Der-K and the statistical werewolves. Posted: March 31, 2013 at 11:46 AM (#4400132)
That article was linked to in a previous discussion of this subject as well - I agree, it's worth checking out.
I'm also on board w/ all three of Conor's suggestions.
   520. greenback calls it soccer Posted: March 31, 2013 at 12:49 PM (#4400149)
Dick Vitale was complaining about the ugliness of college basketball last night on ESPN. At this point everybody recognizes the problem. I think the biggest roadblock will be coaches, because it sure seems to me that "good coaching" is largely synonymous with "team utilizes envelope-pushing contact."

Marquette's wins against Davidson and Butler were ugly, ugly, ugly. It's not surprising that they would be incredibly ugly against a competent Big East team.

The UCLA-Memphis game from a few years ago was the worst that I've seen.
   521. Infinite Joost (Voxter) Posted: March 31, 2013 at 12:56 PM (#4400152)
I think that a lot of this could be solved with changing the way referees are instructed. Call fouls on bullshit defense, call the intentional foul at the end of the game when teams start hacking in an attempt to stall the inevitable. It might be worthwhile to outlaw the zone, too.
   522. Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams) Posted: March 31, 2013 at 01:32 PM (#4400160)
I'm not taking away anything from SU's defense, but Marquette has been an awful jump/3pt shooting team all season.

The games are dreadful, and the BEAST refs are total enablers of this style. I think coaches are to blame too, as they are doing way more 'coaching' on each and every possession than I can ever remember.
   523. Conor Posted: March 31, 2013 at 01:40 PM (#4400163)
I'm not taking away anything from SU's defense, but Marquette has been an awful jump/3pt shooting team all season.


No question, but awful is 29.6% (their season %), not 12.5%. Certainly some of that though is just good fortune for the SU defense.

Call fouls on ######## defense, call the intentional foul at the end of the game when teams start hacking in an attempt to stall the inevitable.


Definitely agree with the first, but the second won't do much. Technically, they don't even have intentional fouls anymore, just flagrant 1 and flagrant 2. But if you are behind late and are trying for a steal/trying to foul, as long as the defense makes a reasonable play on the ball, it's just going to be a common foul.

I think coaches are to blame too, as they are doing way more 'coaching' on each and every possession than I can ever remember.


My pet theory is that since every game for most teams is on tv now (and has been for a while, I think) coaches are more hands on than ever, since people can see every play for every game, and they want to make sure it looks like they are doing something.

In general, there is just way too much contact on the perimeter in the college game, away from the ball and on the ball. It seems like there has been a large groundswell of support for this idea this year, more than any other year, and i think there will be some legitimate rule changes after the season.
   524. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: March 31, 2013 at 01:42 PM (#4400165)
mrams

what fans are seeing is just the result of all the various forces at work

--universities wanting teams to win is at a fever pitch
--coaches pay increasing accordingly
--rosters fluctuating year from year
--practice time strictly regulated

so you have ever younger teams, with 'x' amount of practice, coached by coaches who know that winning 'now' is absolutely, positively critical.

it would take some dramatic changes to turn this ship around
   525. Publius Publicola Posted: March 31, 2013 at 01:45 PM (#4400167)
Loyola averaged over 100 possessions per game in 1990


Loyola didn't play basketball games. They scrimmaged with referees.
   526. Infinite Joost (Voxter) Posted: March 31, 2013 at 01:57 PM (#4400171)
the second won't do much


It would do a hell of a lot if implemented and called properly. Teams are very rarely making a play for the ball in that kind of situation -- and even if their hands are somewhere near it, that doesn't mean that the foul isn't intentional. A situation in which the fouling team does not get to simply stop the clock and get the ball back after free throws would fix something that has plagued the sport for decades.
   527. CFBF Is A Golden Spider Duck Posted: March 31, 2013 at 02:11 PM (#4400178)
Ha. CBS is losing their pre-game show to tennis.
   528. CFBF Is A Golden Spider Duck Posted: March 31, 2013 at 02:35 PM (#4400189)
The good news is that Florida doesn't seem to have to worry about blowing a big lead in the Elite Eight for the third year in the row.
   529. greenback calls it soccer Posted: March 31, 2013 at 02:59 PM (#4400207)
You might want to guard #11.
   530. Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams) Posted: March 31, 2013 at 03:00 PM (#4400208)
good points HW. I think the solution is no cap on practice time, or at least allow 'off season' organized practices even if limited. In exchange for just 2 time outs per game.
   531. Conor Posted: March 31, 2013 at 03:01 PM (#4400209)
It would do a hell of a lot if implemented and called properly. Teams are very rarely making a play for the ball in that kind of situation -- and even if their hands are somewhere near it, that doesn't mean that the foul isn't intentional.


Then teams would just be more careful to make sure they were making more a play on the ball when they fouled at the end of games.

But also in general, most of the people I see complaining (myself included) aren't complaining about the end of games. What exactly is that going to fix? I don't see this as a big problem in the game right now.

Also, if they shortened the shot clock, especially to 24, then you'd see a lot less fouling at the end of games because teams could squeeze more possessions out even just by playing D.
   532. CFBF Is A Golden Spider Duck Posted: March 31, 2013 at 03:11 PM (#4400216)
Well. That was unpleasant.
   533. Spivey Posted: March 31, 2013 at 03:17 PM (#4400221)
To say that Florida played a poor, unprepared half would be an understatement. I did not see a lot of logistics out there.
   534. CFBF Is A Golden Spider Duck Posted: March 31, 2013 at 03:19 PM (#4400222)
I did not see a lot of logistics out there


Heh.

On the plus side, I've been involved in a lengthy argument with Andy Staples on Twitter, so that distracted me from whatever it was that UF was doing out there.
   535. Spahn Insane Posted: March 31, 2013 at 03:23 PM (#4400223)
OK, Michigan officially scares me. Zone doesn't defend so well when your opponents are knocking down 3's one after the other. Or perhaps Florida really is playing that poorly.

   536. Srul Itza At Home Posted: March 31, 2013 at 03:47 PM (#4400230)
Okay, that's the first time I saw that commercial with Bill, Larry, Magic and Kareem. I thought that was pretty funny. Reminds me of the old McDonald's commercials.
   537. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: March 31, 2013 at 03:58 PM (#4400234)
Michigan was a very good team before their center played himself into shape. Now they have an above-average big, along with terrific guard play that had them in the top 10 most of the year.
   538. Spivey Posted: March 31, 2013 at 03:58 PM (#4400235)
Florida is supposed to be one of the best defenses in the country? I'm going to chalk that up to playing in the SEC.
   539. Spivey Posted: March 31, 2013 at 04:00 PM (#4400236)
OK, Michigan officially scares me. Zone doesn't defend so well when your opponents are knocking down 3's one after the other. Or perhaps Florida really is playing that poorly.

They're clearly damn good. But let's not forget they needed Elijah Johnson to beat a superior Kansas team. I don't think the zone effort that Florida is running out there is any sort of barometer for for what they will do against Syracuse. Syracuse has much more length, athleticism, and they are much more comfortable running the zone as a team.
   540. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: March 31, 2013 at 04:00 PM (#4400237)
Also, McGary has a bit of Charles Barkley in his game.
   541. CFBF Is A Golden Spider Duck Posted: March 31, 2013 at 04:05 PM (#4400239)

Florida is supposed to be one of the best defenses in the country? I'm going to chalk that up to playing in the SEC.


It's what all the schedule and tempo-adjusted stats say. Sometimes the other guys just blow the doors off the joint.
   542. Spahn Insane Posted: March 31, 2013 at 04:17 PM (#4400246)
Florida is supposed to be one of the best defenses in the country? I'm going to chalk that up to playing in the SEC.

Beat me to it. I suppose I shouldn't evaluate them based on one game, but they've not done anything today I'm impressed by. They don't seem to position themselves that well, they don't seem to move to the ball that well, their attempts at zone seem kinda disorganized...

I don't think the zone effort that Florida is running out there is any sort of barometer for for what they will do against Syracuse. Syracuse has much more length, athleticism, and they are much more comfortable running the zone as a team.

I think that's right, but the UM guards shoot well enough that they might be able to offset some of SU's size advantage, and the big center is an advantage for UM as well--Syracuse has long bodies inside, but nobody who can score down there. The Orange are going to have their hands full.
   543. Spivey Posted: March 31, 2013 at 04:19 PM (#4400248)


It's what all the schedule and tempo-adjusted stats say. Sometimes the other guys just blow the doors off the joint.


Yes, which is why I had them in my final. That said, there were clear warning signs. First off, almost everything meaningful they did to become a computer darling was done in the first half, and for the most part the first 10 games. Prior to the tournament starting, they hadn't won a difficult/meaningful neutral court or road game in a couple of months. And their path to the Elite 8 was about as easy as you could imagine - 14 seed, 11 seed, 15 seed. That's actually probably the easiest path any team has ever had to advance this far.
   544. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: March 31, 2013 at 04:19 PM (#4400249)
And, Michigan gets a week to prep.
   545. Spivey Posted: March 31, 2013 at 04:23 PM (#4400250)
Michigan is an incredible shooting team. Up there with Duke for the best shooting team in the country. They also appear to have guys that aren't fazed by shooting NBA 3s. So from that standpoint, Michigan has the ability to attack Syracuse's zone a bit. But the Cuse zone is so active, they're not going to be having their white guard shooting 6 uncontested corner 3s in the first half either.

I think it will be a great game, and I don't know who I'd pick to win.
   546. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: March 31, 2013 at 04:37 PM (#4400260)
spivey

i wouldn't be too effusive in praise of Michigan. they were the definitive soft team that would pack it in at times. lots of similarities between this and the 1989 team except burke is a better all around player than rice and this team is younger. but that team, like this one, turned it on come tourney time.

every Michigan fan i know (and big ten fans) were slackjawed at how Michigan scrapped in the second half against Kansas. the Michigan we know would just say 'scr8w it' and go home instead of putting up their dukes and banging away
   547. Darkness and the howling fantods Posted: March 31, 2013 at 05:40 PM (#4400282)
Wow, that's something I never want to see again.
   548. Squash Posted: March 31, 2013 at 05:48 PM (#4400289)
Jesus I haven't seen anything like that since Bryant Young broke his leg with the 49ers in the late 90s.
   549. Darkness and the howling fantods Posted: March 31, 2013 at 05:50 PM (#4400290)
I'd (amazingly) forgotten about that one. It reminded me of Theismann.
   550. The Clarence Thomas of BBTF (scott) Posted: March 31, 2013 at 06:20 PM (#4400302)
Theismann was exactly what I thought of. That was just awful.
   551. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: March 31, 2013 at 06:21 PM (#4400306)
That's still generally a career ender. See Tyronne Prothro.
   552. Mess with the Meat, you get the Wad! Posted: March 31, 2013 at 06:56 PM (#4400332)
I didnt see it happen, and I am glad they did not replay it during half time, not something I want to watch
and Theismann tweeted about it, seems he was watching the game
   553. Mess with the Meat, you get the Wad! Posted: March 31, 2013 at 07:04 PM (#4400339)
looks like louisville is about ready to put duke away. the old big east is at least making some big noise this year, good and bad
   554. Spahn Insane Posted: March 31, 2013 at 07:41 PM (#4400360)
The L'ville/Duke game ended up more lopsided than UM/UF. Amazing.
   555. Depressoteric Posted: March 31, 2013 at 07:47 PM (#4400368)
Poor Kevin Ware. I never want to see that again for the rest of my life. And yet, sadly, I cannot un-see it.
   556. Steve Treder Posted: March 31, 2013 at 07:58 PM (#4400373)
# 556: Me too. That was grotesque.
   557. Eric J can SABER all he wants to Posted: March 31, 2013 at 08:04 PM (#4400378)
Michigan-Syracuse is the first matchup of two 4-seeds since the beginning of the 64-team era in 1985 (not sure if or when it had happened before that).
   558. greenback calls it soccer Posted: March 31, 2013 at 08:15 PM (#4400403)
i wouldn't be too effusive in praise of Michigan. they were the definitive soft team that would pack it in at times.

Some of that can be laid on Morgan. Nothing against the guy's character, but when you play four guards, and your one big guy is as physically limited as Morgan is (not that big, not agile, mediocre hands), your team can go through stretches where it is manhandled around the basket.
   559. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: March 31, 2013 at 08:21 PM (#4400416)
green

c'mon. glenn robinson iii is 6'6" and solid and until the tournament avoided contact with the dexterity of a mongoose on speed
   560. greenback calls it soccer Posted: March 31, 2013 at 08:54 PM (#4400446)
C'mon, what? Robinson is a big guard, and he's had some pretty dunks, but he's still clearly a guard. He's not a shot blocker, a rebounder, or a post defender. The biggest complaint I would have is that he hasn't shown much energy until recently in the passing lanes or on the ball on the perimeter.
   561. Steve Treder Posted: March 31, 2013 at 09:11 PM (#4400459)
Any of you who didn't just finish watching the Louisville-Baylor game, your loss. What. A. Game.
   562. Publius Publicola Posted: March 31, 2013 at 10:28 PM (#4400542)
Really, Steve? I thought Louisville was trying to give the game away. Turnovers. Stupid fouls. Missed layups and free throws. And it's not like Baylor was playing all that well either.
   563. Howie Menckel Posted: March 31, 2013 at 10:31 PM (#4400549)

I found most of the NCAA tournament to be unwatchable, with the Marquette-Syracuse early 2nd half sending me away for the rest of this weekend. Not sure I'll even be back for the Final Four.

It's a bad product...

   564. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: March 31, 2013 at 10:57 PM (#4400574)

Michigan was a very good team before their center played himself into shape. Now they have an above-average big, along with terrific guard play that had them in the top 10 most of the year.


I haven't followed Michigan closely this year and I was floored when I heard McGarry didn't even start much of the year. When I saw him in the second round I thought he might give KU some problems, and he went out and put up 25-14 against IMO the best defensive center in college basketball.

I like Michigan over Louisville in the championship.
   565. Steve Treder Posted: April 01, 2013 at 12:09 AM (#4400602)
Really, Steve? I thought Louisville was trying to give the game away. Turnovers. Stupid fouls. Missed layups and free throws. And it's not like Baylor was playing all that well either.

Well, it was among the few greatest upsets in NCAA tournament history, and it went down to a game-tying and a game-winning free throw with fewer than 3 seconds remaining. So, yeah, it was, really, a superb game.
   566. Ray (RDP) Posted: April 01, 2013 at 12:15 AM (#4400604)
.
   567. madvillain Posted: April 01, 2013 at 02:45 AM (#4400624)
I haven't followed Michigan closely this year and I was floored when I heard McGarry didn't even start much of the year. When I saw him in the second round I thought he might give KU some problems, and he went out and put up 25-14 against IMO the best defensive center in college basketball.

I like Michigan over Louisville in the championship.


I'm not sure they can beat Louisville, as from a talent perspective they're the only team left with more than Michigan. As for McGary, he had a lower body injury (Michigan never really said what) in the pre-season that really limited his conditioning. He was probably 20 lbs overweight at the start of the year. Down the stretch he was playing better but it seemingly all clicked for him once the tourney began. He has learned to play without fouling, which is critical for any young big.

That said, he'll be 21 in a few weeks thanks to his time in prep school. He's still a helluva talent but that will keep him from going higher than probably top 12ish when he does decide to come out.

The Kevin Love comparisons are pretty good except Mitch has a much better face up game but lacks range on his shot past 12 feet. The thing about Mitch is that at 6-10 250ish he has the feet of an NFL cornerback with the hands of a gold glove shortstop. His coordination and ability to control the ball on rebounds and forays in the paint is really something to watch.

I predict UM to beat SU, too much offense (and length on the perimeter) for Michigan and SU doesn't have the offensive minded bigs to get McGary in foul trouble.

   568. My name is Votto, and I love to get blotto Posted: April 01, 2013 at 09:39 AM (#4400709)
The current rules favor defenses. I agree with enlarging the restricted area, and maybe do away with one-and-ones. Dropping the shot-clock to 30 seconds should be a no-brainer.

I think it's also easier for coaches to teach defense when you have the turnover of a college team. Picking up the nuances of an offensive scheme requires a lot of floor time to come together.
   569. JJ1986 Posted: April 01, 2013 at 09:41 AM (#4400711)
Is Louisville going to wear those horrible jerseys forever or is this a one season deal?
   570. Conor Posted: April 01, 2013 at 10:04 AM (#4400721)
I predict UM to beat SU, too much offense (and length on the perimeter) for Michigan and SU doesn't have the offensive minded bigs to get McGary in foul trouble.


Is Michigan's defense a lot better with McGarry in the lineup? As an SU fan, the one thing I noticed about Michigan is their defense, for a final four team, is pretty meh. (36th in adjusted defensive efficiency). Of course, their offense is fantastic. Indiana's is great too, but their small guards were a real matchup problem for the SU zone. Michigan has one small guard, but he's also one of the best players in the country. Pomeroy has Michigan as a 1 point favorite, and that seems about right to me.
   571. CFBF Is A Golden Spider Duck Posted: April 01, 2013 at 10:16 AM (#4400729)
I knew that Florida had heavily recruited Mitch McGary and came in second for him, but until yesterday I hadn't known that he at one point told Billy Donovan he was coming to UF. I imagine that sort of thing happens often enough to coaches that it's not a huge surprise to them, but still. Ouch.
   572. I am going to be Frank Posted: April 01, 2013 at 10:21 AM (#4400738)
Does Syracuse have big men who can score in the post? That's the big weakness. Robinson will guard the second biggest guy but is only 6'6" and wiry. He doesn't have the heft/strength of his dad. McGary is big and strong but is not as good as Morgan with positioning and post defense but compensates with his energy and better overall athleticism. He had a lot of issues with foul trouble but seems to have fixed that.

Also Michigan doesn't like to foul so they play "soft" when teams drive to the basket. They are taught to take charges and not to go aggressively for blocks. Its a little frustrating but it works, especially since Michigan doesn't have much depth. On the perimeter Michigan likes to switch because the four perimeter players with the exception of Burke are roughly the same size. Stauskas is a pretty weak defender.
   573. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: April 01, 2013 at 10:29 AM (#4400744)

Also Michigan doesn't like to foul so they play "soft" when teams drive to the basket.


Yes, I noticed this. KU had something like 4 free throws in regulation. All the more frustrating they wilted in the second half when they could have had their way inside with Withey and Young.
   574. Conor Posted: April 01, 2013 at 10:37 AM (#4400752)
Does Syracuse have big men who can score in the post? That's the big weakness. Robinson will guard the second biggest guy but is only 6'6" and wiry. He doesn't have the heft/strength of his dad. McGary is big and strong but is not as good as Morgan with positioning and post defense but compensates with his energy and better overall athleticism. He had a lot of issues with foul trouble but seems to have fixed that.


Neither of the guys who play C for SU can score in the post at all. Cj Fair, who is one of the fowards, can score in the post, so he may get some touches down there against Robinson. Both of the SU fowards are 6-8, but neither is really an inside player. Southerland is the best 3 point shooter they have. Like I said, Fair may get some touches down in the paint but he is more of a face up player.

On Thursday they actually posted Carter Williams up a few times at the beginning of the game; so it's possible they do that against Burke, since he has 5-6 inches on him.
   575. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: April 01, 2013 at 10:43 AM (#4400761)
Does Syracuse have big men who can score in the post? That's the big weakness. Robinson will guard the second biggest guy but is only 6'6" and wiry. He doesn't have the heft/strength of his dad. McGary is big and strong but is not as good as Morgan with positioning and post defense but compensates with his energy and better overall athleticism. He had a lot of issues with foul trouble but seems to have fixed that.



Another thing to note is that Morgon and McGary played together for stretches of Sunday's game after UM was up by 15+. They weren't particularly effective, but my hunch is that it was laying groundwork for next weekend, if someone tries to attack the four-guard lineup they've been using most of the season.
   576. Spahn Insane Posted: April 01, 2013 at 10:48 AM (#4400766)
I'm not sure they can beat Louisville, as from a talent perspective they're the only team left with more than Michigan.

Well, SU beat Louisville on Louisville's home floor (and had 'em down 16 in the Big East title game before imploding), so if Michigan's more talented than SU, I'd say it's possible. Louisville will and should be a strong favorite against either team, but they're beatable.
   577. Spahn Insane Posted: April 01, 2013 at 10:51 AM (#4400771)
Conor covers SU's problems in the post--Christmas and Keita are worthless on offense, even on dunks. They don't have anybody who scores in the post through brute force--Fair is pretty much it, and he's more an improvisor/shot creator than a widebodied power guy.
   578. Conor Posted: April 01, 2013 at 10:56 AM (#4400774)
Christmas must miss a larger percentage of dunks than any 6-9 guy in the country. It's uncanny.

SU beat Lville in Lville, though it was basically a toss up game. They lost a toss-up game to Lville at home, and then they had Lville down 16 in the second half at MSG before their legs gave out (and oh yeah, Lville made some plays. But they are pretty much the last team in the country you want to be playing when you are on your fourth game is an many days). Either team would be an underdog to Lville on Monday, but both teams are more than capable of winning that game. I think Michigan might have more legit NBA players than Lville, as well.

Also, I don't think Mich is going to have to play the two bigs against SU. It's possible, if they won Sat, that in order to match up against Dieng and Behanen they might play both, but it shouldn't be an issue next week. Though I think it would make them much easier to defend, so I'd be all for it.
   579. CFBF Is A Golden Spider Duck Posted: April 01, 2013 at 11:01 AM (#4400779)
That Big East championship game was something to watch. You hear people talk about "the flood gates opening" all the time in a sports setting, but that was as close to a visual approximation of flood gates opening as you're ever likely to see on a basketball court.
   580. Spahn Insane Posted: April 01, 2013 at 11:07 AM (#4400792)
Christmas must miss a larger percentage of dunks than any 6-9 guy in the country. It's uncanny.

Boy howdy.
   581. Spahn Insane Posted: April 01, 2013 at 11:08 AM (#4400794)
That Big East championship game was something to watch. You hear people talk about "the flood gates opening" all the time in a sports setting, but that was as close to a visual approximation of flood gates opening as you're ever likely to see on a basketball court.

Yep. The Orange went from being up 16 to being down 17 in something like 12 minutes. I've never seen anything like it.

EDIT: Checking the box--Louisville outscored SU 49-16 from around the 15 minute mark on.
   582. Conor Posted: April 01, 2013 at 11:30 AM (#4400807)
Yeah, that BE final was something else. I was pretty sure Louisville was going to make a comeback, because I figured SU was going to wear down a bit under the pressure, and oh yeah, Louisville is also really good, but they played about as well as a college team is going to play for the final 15 minutes of that game. I don't want to take anything away from them, but I do think playing four games in four days contributed in part to the meltdown.

This is kind of random, but the ACC is going to be an absolute monster in a few years. Duke, UNC, SU, Lville. That's 4 of the top programs in the country. Pitt probably deserves to be there too. ND is a top 25ish team nearly every year. And then you've got State, who might be turning it around with Gottfried, and UVA with Bennett. And I'm sure I'm forgetting one or two
   583. Der-K and the statistical werewolves. Posted: April 01, 2013 at 11:32 AM (#4400809)
Georgia Tech?
(sigh...no.)
   584. Amit Posted: April 01, 2013 at 11:47 AM (#4400825)
If Andrew Wiggins decides to attend Florida State next year, FSU could become another strong ACC team.
   585. CFBF Is A Golden Spider Duck Posted: April 01, 2013 at 11:58 AM (#4400836)
If Andrew Wiggins decides to attend Florida State next year, FSU could become another strong ACC team.


I've no doubt Leonard Hamilton will find a way to foul it up.
   586. cmd600 Posted: April 01, 2013 at 12:56 PM (#4400932)
but the ACC is going to be an absolute monster in a few years


This assumes, and my guess is that the assumption will be incorrect, that the Big Ten won't begin the teardown of another conference.
   587. Conor Posted: April 01, 2013 at 01:48 PM (#4401010)
This assumes, and my guess is that the assumption will be incorrect, that the Big Ten won't begin the teardown of another conference.


This is a good point, definitely possible.
   588. smileyy Posted: April 01, 2013 at 02:11 PM (#4401055)
I can't tell -- is it a point in favor of or against the Big 10's "big boy basketball" that only one of their 4 top-10-KenPom teams made the final 4?
   589. madvillain Posted: April 01, 2013 at 02:23 PM (#4401075)
I can't tell -- is it a point in favor of or against the Big 10's "big boy basketball" that only one of their 4 top-10-KenPom teams made the final 4?



Look at their overall record of the teams in the tourney and the computer rankings from the season -- the B1G was clearly the best conference this year from top to bottom.

One thing I will say is that the B1G sludgeball helps teams like Wisconsin and MSU win games in conference but it does nothing for them in the tourney. MSU is usually talented enough to make a run, but Izzo has been slipping a bit recently (imo) and they didn't have enough scoring.

____________________

Kenpom has gone from under-rated to over-rated this year. Everywhere I go online it's "kenpom this" and "kenpom that". I love advanced metrics but comparing Kenpom to WAR is silly. WAR is both way more accurate and precise than Kenpom because it's what happened, not a predictor. People start to use Kenpom as a predictor (which is how you install Florida as a favorite against Michigan) but fail to also consider that Florida was mop-water in every close game they played and that they got fat on a dreadful SEC slate. Yea, their efficiency numbers are great, but they also played a weak schedule. Also, Kenpom seems to vastly over-rate teams that have strong rebounding, even if they can't throw the ball in the ocean. Whisky, GT and Pitt aren't top 15 teams, but by Kenpom you'd never know.

   590. Conor Posted: April 01, 2013 at 02:53 PM (#4401145)
Also, Kenpom seems to vastly over-rate teams that have strong rebounding, even if they can't throw the ball in the ocean. Whisky, GT and Pitt aren't top 15 teams, but by Kenpom you'd never know.


Hmm, I wonder if that's it. Wisconsin especially, it seems. All 3 are usually really slow teams, I think that may be what it is. Since it's based on per possession numbers, those teams can sometimes put up really big margin of victory numbers against poor teams in low possession games.

Though I'll have to disagree on Gtown, as much as it pains me. They tied for first in the BE, which was the second best league in the country. They took the regular season champ of the best league in the country to OT on a neutral court. They went 3-1 against Syracuse and Louisville. They lost to FGC, but I still think they were one of the 15 best teams in the country. The other 2 I'll give you
   591. cmd600 Posted: April 01, 2013 at 03:18 PM (#4401222)
I love advanced metrics but comparing Kenpom to WAR is silly. WAR is both way more accurate and precise than Kenpom because it's what happened, not a predictor


Using KenPom to say that Florida will beat Michigan is as wrong as saying Trout will have a better game tomorrow than Pujols because he has a higher WAR. Pomeroy wrote about this at the beginning of the tourney when cbb writers were saying something to the extent of 'lets test KenPom and see if Florida actually wins' to which KenPom pointed out that his metrics only had FLA as a 1 in 5 to win the whole thing. In one game, #### happens. Both Michigan and Florida shot 38% from 3pt this year. But one night, Michigan might shoot 53% to Florida's 20%. That's not evidence that KenPom is overrated.
   592. nick swisher hygiene Posted: April 01, 2013 at 03:27 PM (#4401245)
trying to figure out KPom ratings over the past few years my guess is that he does stuff with margin of victory that ends up treating discretionary coaching style decisions as indicators of talent level: it matters to his system whether you beat the 176th best team in the country by 40 instead of 25, and maybe that shouldn't matter since those things are so dependent on how you use your deep bench.

but that's just ex recto, really....I do notice that Wisky seems to specialize in beating teams 72-38 or so, the same kinda teams that my Tar Heels would beat 88-66....
   593. smileyy Posted: April 01, 2013 at 03:35 PM (#4401259)
I had kicked around the idea of doing something with the area of the curve of expected winning percentage throughout the course of a game as a way to neutralize margin of victory in runaway games.

That is, if you're up 20 with 10 to go, it might not matter (from a predictive point of view) if you win by 20 or 30 or 40, but it probably does matter if you win by 5.
   594. smileyy Posted: April 01, 2013 at 03:42 PM (#4401268)
Kenpom has gone from under-rated to over-rated this year. Everywhere I go online it's "kenpom this" and "kenpom that".


IIRC, it has performed pretty well as a predictor in the past.

People start to use Kenpom as a predictor (which is how you install Florida as a favorite against Michigan) but fail to also consider that Florida was mop-water in every close game they played and that they got fat on a dreadful SEC slate.


Its supposed to be a predictor, right? So, you're saying its not a very good predictor, or not a very nuanced predictor -- which is a legitimate argument. Are there better predictors?

OTOH, I could have said:

"I can't tell -- is it a point in favor of or against the Big 10's "big boy basketball" that none of their 3 top-10 poll-ranked teams made the final 4?"

I just picked KenPom, because its really easy to pull up his page :)
   595. Der-K and the statistical werewolves. Posted: April 01, 2013 at 03:48 PM (#4401283)
I do think kenpom might be a bit overrated now (I've heard casual fans namedrop it and many talk of it as if it were the only game in town outside of RPI), which I don't mean as a knock against it (it is and has been my go to rating metric for a few years). Might be onto something wrt how it handles pace.

Swisher, please pick a name format that doesn't break the site.
   596. bunyon Posted: April 01, 2013 at 03:50 PM (#4401285)
I can't tell -- is it a point in favor of or against the Big 10's "big boy basketball" that only one of their 4 top-10-KenPom teams made the final 4?

Sample size. I love the tournament, it's a lot of fun. But it's one off games. I mean, I have no doubt the better team usually wins but not nearly often enough to use the one loss and out set up as anything other than entertainment.

Of course, had Michigan lost, I would have changed my tune. :)


Also, I notice no one is projecting how Wichita State will do in the championship game. So I have my rooting interest at least.
   597. HMS Moses Taylor Posted: April 01, 2013 at 04:15 PM (#4401333)
Also, I notice no one is projecting how Wichita State will do in the championship game. So I have my rooting interest at least.

Close enough for you?
   598. bunyon Posted: April 01, 2013 at 04:23 PM (#4401356)
I was mostly kidding around, Moses, but thanks for the link.
   599. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: April 02, 2013 at 12:45 PM (#4402027)
Boy, didn't take long for Andy Enfield to get snatched up. I figured it would happen eventually, but thought it might be a year or two down the road.
   600. Spivey Posted: April 02, 2013 at 11:36 PM (#4402806)
filp
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