Monday, November 10, 2008

UM vs the GLIAC: Round 2

Michigan Basketball will take on its second opponent in as many games from the mighty GLIACconference for the 2K Sports /Coaches vs. Cancer tournament.  Having already beaten tiny SVSU, Michigan now faces a program from even farther north in Michigan Tech.  The Huskies were picked to finish second in the GLIAC preseason coaches poll, with the Grand Valley State “Spartan Killers” ranked first.  If you’ve never been to Tech, just think of the movie “Fargo”…except more trees, snow, and a pregnant Frances McDormand isn’t solving crimes. 


Anyways, here’s a few things to look for Tuesday:

The Starting Five: Coach Beilein went with a line-up of Gibson, Wright, Harris, Douglass, and Merrit last game.  While Wright did a great job of forcing turnovers and being active with his on-the ball defense, I thought DeShawn Sims did a much better job on offense and on the defensive boards.  Remember, the Wolverines were out rebounded by the Cardinals 39-34 last Thursday.  Sims as a starter makes sense, but Beilein said he likes Sims at the 5 and may stick with him off the bench.  This game should show if he intends to stick with the plan.


This game isn’t being played at Yost…which is the only place Michigan Tech would ever have a prayer of beating Michigan.  The Huskies biggest frontcourt players are two 6’7 Freshman….meaning Zach Gibson gets another week to work on his low-post game before he faces a real test.  Gibson showed signs of a legitimate basketball skill set during the SVSU game, so it’ll be interesting to see if he continues his progress.


Benching Ben? I don’t know what we are going to see from Ben Cronin, if anything.  Cronin looked like an efficient passer out of the post, but only played 3 minutes and looked like he struggled.  A lot of people are high on this kid and think he could make a difference.  To all those people, I say that size is no substitute for skill and this kid is the poster-child for redshirt freshmen. He has a lot of potential, but he is a very raw player who would do better to get a year of practice and strength training under his belt.  Plus, I think he is injured far worse than people inside that program are letting on.  (All aboard the Gibson bandwagon!


Speaking of the Freshmen, can anyone think of a good nickname for the Douglass/Novak duo? The fact that they have almost the exact same skill set and hair style, and will be confused with each other for the rest of this year by all broadcasters, really calls for a moniker. So far, all I’ve got is “The Cabbage-Patch Twins.”  It stays until I hear something better.


Tuesday’s game is free for students (just like every other game that doesn't involve Duke and MSU).  The weather has finally turned towards typical November temperatures, but expect decent sized crowds this week, especially if Michigan gets a win the first night.  With Michigan Football coming to a close and Hockey becoming something of an underachiever, fans could be looking to this team as its savior for the Fall Sports season.  The answer to this could be found in attendance numbers for the Basketball games compared to Friday’s Hockey attendance vs. WMU.  More on this later in the week.


Anonymous said...

This is not one of the canned-food drive games. That is Norfolk State (tuesday the 25th)

Anonymous said...

Cheech & Chong?

Matt Boyer said...

Thanks for the correction

Anonymous said...

the blue bombing brothers

Anonymous said...

the blue bombing brothers