With the Final Four approaching this weekend, I decided to review the Michigan vs. Florida tape to get a feel for this Michigan team that is seen as the offensively most efficient team in the tournament. I have always been a fan of Coach Belein’s teams and thought I might be able to provide some insight to the upcoming Syracuse game. Here are some of my notes, with a strong slant on how they will perform against the Orangemen. Please excuse the spacing with the webpage and the diagrams.
- Belein is seen as a great X’s and O’s coach, but I am amazed at the efficiency of the Michigan transition game.
- Michigan got 3 layups from their big’s doing rim runs (running right down the middle of the floor to the opposite rim), one for McGary, a dunk for Robinson, and a 3 point play for Horford
- These rim runs will be huge against Syracuse as the weakness of a zone is its ability to convert from offense to defense. If they take away the rim runs by jamming the lane, Michigan will have some great opportunities for deep wing threes.
- Stauskus is really effective on the left side of the court, he can really drive it to the middle from there.
- Beilein’s teams were famous for the Princeton like backdoor action when he was at West Virginia, you don’t see that any more as teams don’t really try to deny any passes against them. College basketball has become a very help/gap oriented type of man-to-man defenses.
- His teams will often keep their post player (McGary, etc) in the high post. This gives room for the back cut, but this cut isn’t available as teams don’t deny anything. However, when they curl cut into the lane there isn’t any help there from the big.
An action that I loved that Michigan ran is below, the key point is this came out of transition. As you can see below, while the Florida defense is not set we get McGary setting a ball screen from Burke and rolling down on an open post side. Florida defends this by offering help from the weak side wing. Burke recognizes the helper immediately and throws across his body to Stauskus. Michigan got a lot of success out of this trailing big man ball screen action. Burke gets a lot of credit for his ability to drive the ball, but his greatness as a point guard to how quickly he read how Florida was helping on the roll man and finding the wing shooter immediately.
Another action I really liked that they won’t be able to use versus Syracuse is that they will screen a big so that he can ball screen. The big advantage with that is the defending big can’t get in position to help /hedge on that pick and now you have Burke attacking the rim with a head of steam.
One action I really liked against a zone, is they went to a two guard front with Hardaway on the wing. They would keep the bigs low toward the short corner/block and then flash Hardaway at the high post. Hardaway had enough size and ability to make good decisions from this point. Because he is hidden in the corner, he has a great angle to get open at that sweet spot. We might see this against Syracuse.
- In the half court versus the Florida zone they also looked to play high/low with their bigs.
- I expect Michigan to ball screen the Syracuse zone.
- Michigan had marginal success against the Florida zone, there biggest successes were found in ball screening the zone in transition. When the Florida zone was set Michigan really struggled.
- Michigan will catch the ball very high on the wing, this makes this a very easy pass. The reason I point this out, is that I look for them to play high at times versus the zone to prevent turnovers.
- On a side note, I like Burke on Triche as he has the strength to battle and Hardaway on Michael Carter Williams because of his competiveness and length.
Something from Syracuse to look for, in there baseline out-of-bounds (BOB) zone defense to trap any inbound play in the corner. They do a great job of taking away every inbound but the corner and then clamp down on it.
Keep an eye out for me on twitter, I am going to try to live tweet during the game. I can be found at @CoachAnglim.