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After the Buzzer: Michigan

Relive the magic.

NCAA Basketball: Michigan at Louisville Jamie Rhodes-USA TODAY Sports

Quick Hitters

-Anyone else wake up today in a really good mood? It’s amazing what a big win over a top five team can do to start your day. I wasn’t there, but the Yum center looked and sounded great. Props to the fans that had that place rocking on ESPN for the country to see. Way to bring that smoke…

-Defense, defense, defense! Sometimes your shots won’t be falling, but the one constant you can have is effort and defense. If you bring your defense every game, you give yourself a chance to win. There will be 12 clips on the film review for this week, and six of them involve defense in some way. There was no plan for that to happen, but it does seem appropriate. Louisville shot 36.7% from the field and 21.1% from three and beat the 4th ranked team by 15 points. Always bring your defense.

-For future reference, a “kill” on defense is three possessions in a row where you get a stop. I learned about this a few years ago and we incorporated it into our game plan at the high school I coached at for the last seven years. After doing some research on how many was a reasonable goal, we set ours at six per game. Whenever we hit that mark, our winning percentage was probably in the 85-90% range, no exaggeration at all. You are “killing” any momentum for the opposition by getting that many stops in a row and doing it several times in a game.

-Louisville’s goal for kills is usually seven, as it was last night. Their final number was eight. I’d like to start tracking these for this post just so we can see how hitting or missing that goal reflects on the score and outcome of the game.

-Sometimes you just let the best player on the floor do his thing, and that was Jordan Nwora. He made big shots and sometimes did that when there was a defender in his face. There is a play you will see below where he uses a screen and his man still stays with him and the help defender is there as well. Nwora still drives to the basket and scores. Sometimes it’s just about going out and making plays because you are better than them. He has been great at not forcing the drive. If it’s not there, he takes the midrange jumper.

-I do have a feeling that Nwora will get called for flopping again before this season is over. That leg kick on his jumper when he gets fouled is going to get called. Coaches will start telling officials before the game to watch for it. Just my guess.

-As far as his assist/turnover ratio, he had one of each this game. Very happy with just having one turnover. His season totals are now eight assists and 19 turnovers.

-Is saying that you “want all the smoke” the basketball version of football teams jumping on the Cardinal at midfield several years ago? Just don’t do it. Better yet, go for it.

-Ryan McMahon was 1-8 and only scored four points, yet played 35 minutes. Why? Because he is doing other things very well. His defense has been very good this year. He is staying in front of his man or being in the right spots as a help defender. He hasn’t shown to be a liability out there just because of his size. He is much more than “just a shooter” this season and it’s been a pleasant surprise for this team.

-Steven Enoch showed up in a big way and was a beast down low. He also knocked down a couple threes and if he starts to hit that more consistently, it’s not even fair. I was very happy with his defense as well. Michigan runs so many ball screens and we see a lot where our big men will hedge out VERY far and sometimes can’t recover back to their man down low. Enoch was quicker to recover and played the ball screens very well. It was a major boost to the team defense. It allows the defender that is helping down on his man to recover back to their man on the perimeter.

-I like how even though his minutes have dipped, Samuell Williamson still makes the most of his time. He had a huge and one bucket where he finished through contact and it was a big momentum play heading into a timeout. He also grabbed four rebounds in just nine minutes.

-Virginia Tech football kind of has dibs on “Enter Sandman”. South Carolina has “Sandstorm”. I feel like “Joker and the Thief” is becoming our thing, and I love it. I’m sure other schools play it, just like we play the other two mentioned, but it feels like that song is definitely becoming ours. I have no idea what that means, and this may have been a pointless quick hitter note, but I just love when that song is played at our games and felt like it needed to be mentioned.

-Back to the game, where Louisville had three guys with double-digit rebounds. Nwora had 12, Sutton 11, and Enoch 10. You have the chance for more rebounds when you play great defense and force missed shots. Michigan only had nine offensive rebounds.

-That’s all I’ve got for this one. Enjoy this victory, it was a big one. Let the team move on to Pittsburgh, that’s their job. We don’t play, so we can soak this up a little bit longer. Go Cards!

Film Review